Distance from San José: about 54 km (about 33 miles) / about 1.5 hours
Opening hours: Daily from 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Date of foundation: July 30, 1955
Size: 2309 hectares
Hiking trails: Only limited possibilities to hike alongside the crater
name Irazu comes from the Indian words Istaru, Iaratzu and
Iartazu, which mean the mountain of trembling and rumbling.
It is an active volcano that towers 3.432 meters above sea
level and spreads over 500 square kilometers, which makes
it the largest volcano in Costa Rica. The main crater is almost
perfectly round with a permanent lake at its bottom. Diego
de la Haya was active in 1723 and was named for the colonial
governor who wrote an account of the eruption. The volcanic
ash has greatly increased the fertility of the soil of its
slopes, making the area of Cartago an agricultural center.
Today, the colossus is showing signs of becoming active again
in the near future. The crater is accessible by car. There
is only one trail half way around the crater lake.
Currently (April 2016) the crater lake is almost dried out.
Amenities: Cafeteria, viewpoints, picnic area, bathroom facilities