Seeing Costa Rica: Poás Volcano

 

poas-volcano-crater

It’s crazy to think that I’ve already been in Costa Rica for a month. Time has seriously flown by since arriving in San José on February 22. While I am excited to finish pre-service training and start my official Peace Corps service, I’m trying to savor the time that I have left in Concepción, San Isidro with my host family and fellow PCTs (Peace Corps Trainees).

Over the past 2 weeks, I finally got the chance to explore some of this beautiful country. Two weekends ago, my host family took me to Poás Volcano National Park. It. I had never seen a volcano before so you can imagine my excitement when they asked me if I wanted to go (¡ahhh Sí, por supuesto!).

poas-volcano-drive
The drive up to the park!

According to arenal.net, Costa Rica has 6 active volcanoes and 61 dormant or extinct volcanoes. Poás is one of the largest most active volcanoes in Costa Rica and is the largest active crater in the world. The crater is about 1,000 feet deep and almost one mile wide. Inside the crater is a small lake called Laguna Caliente, the most acidic lake in the world. Because of the sulfur acid in the water, the lake is a beautiful light robin egg blue sorta color.

poas-crater

I was surprised when we got to the park and didn’t have to hike the volcano from bottom to top (not sure why that was my expectation, it sounds extremely unsafe and dangerous…). After a long uphill drive we parked and walked about 15 minutes to the site. After seeing the Poás crater, we walked up to Lake Botos, also known as Botos Lagoon or Laguna Botos, a tropical lake that fills an inactive crater. The lake is also highly acidic and contains little to no marine life but is home to many cloud forest birds (and a super straight tree line, right?!).

botos-laguna

botos-lagoon

On our way home, we stopped to see La Paz Waterfall (Catarata de La Paz) which was just off the Pan-American highway. What a beautiful weekend!

paz-waterfall-costa-rica

 

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