With an elevation of 8,885 ft. (2,708 m), Poas is one of Costa Rica’s most spectacular volcanoes and frequently visited national parks. Its summit consists of two distinct craters, with the largest measuring a whopping 3,281 ft. (1,000 m) in diameter and 1,030 ft. (314 m) deep. Most recently active in 2014, this particular crater contains a hot lake at its base. which is clearly visible from the observation area.The Boots crater, situated off to the southwest, was last active 7,500 years ago and now contains an astonishingly beautiful cold water lake measuring 1,312 ft. (400 m) in diameter. A wide path allows visitors to view both craters, a must for anybody visiting Poas Volcano. It’s not particularly steep or long, but it is healthy walk.
Poas Volcano, like Irazu Volcano, tends to cloud up as the day progresses, and this is particularly true during the rainy season. Therefore, we recommend you visit as early as possible, when you’ll have much better luck of seeing the volcano with clear, blue skies.
While not as high as Irazu Volcano, the temperature in and around Poas Volcano can get surprisingly low, so you might want to bring a sweater or jacket.
Car - depart San Jose as if you were going to the Juan Santamaria International Airport. When nearing the airport, stay to the right and follow the signs for San Ramon - the turn-off is approx. 9 miles (14.4 km) from San Jose. Continue straight on the highway, through the town of Alajuela. At the end of town, there is a sign pointing to Poas Volcano. From here, there are several signs to lead you directly to the volcano’s entrance. The climb is impressive, twisting and turning most of the way. From San Jose, the trip to Poas Volcano could take anywhere from 1.5 - 2 hours.
Tour - tours to Poas Volcano can be arranged at any hotel or travel agency. Unless you’re traveling in a private group, you’ll most likely be bundled with other tourists in a shared minivan - a service provided by local ground operators. Most tours will include a stop in Sarchi, where you can visit oxcart factories, Café Britt’s coffee farm, or one of the many other attractions in and and around Poas Volcano/Alajuela, i.e. butterfly farms, waterfall gardens, etc.