Poas Volcano National Park is about an hour/sometimes 2h drive from San Jose. It’s one of the most stunning views I’ve ever seen in my life – 350 meters deep crater with lagoon water.
How to get to Poas Volcano from San Jose?
Poas Volcano in definitely one of the best places to visit in Costa Rica, although it’s quite touristic. It’s very easy to get there by public transport.
- you need to get from San Jose to Alajuela (city located on the north from the airport) by public bus (cost around 1$).
- when you get there – ask for a bus terminal to Parque Nacional Volcán Poás – everyone will lead you the way. The ticket costs around 2$. We’ve been searching hundreds information on bus schedules and each website contains different information. In January 2017 the was only one bus during a day going to Poas Volcano at 9 am. You will see photos of a bus station sign – Poas Volcano (station nr 8).
We were there in 2017: The entrance to the Park is 15$ (as far as I know the price is the same in 2019) and 2$ for Costa Ricans or residents. 🙂 The walk toward the Poas Volcano takes about 10 minutes. Yes 🙂 don’t expect long hiking. There is a paved road you can walk on to get to the lookout spot. This is a very short and easy walk taking you directly to the crater. After you see Poas Volcano another path takes you to beautiful Botos crater lake. It takes around 30 minutes to reach Botos and go back, so take your time to admire amazing nature and wildlife along the way. The weather and visibility in January was amazing!!! but I know sometimes it gets really cloudy and it’s impossible to see anything from the hill.
The same bus will leave the National Park at 2.30 pm. Don’t be late as there were more people coming back to San Jose and this is the only return bus!!!
Extremely important update from 2019!! It’s safer to buy tickets in advance – tripadvisor, restaurants, local agents! It happened that people were refused to enter the park cause they didn’t have tickets, while it was not possible to buy them on the gate.
Want to hike another stunning volcano visit Cerro Chato here: http://freestyletraveling.com/hiking-cerro-chato/
If you have more questions – write me!