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Exploring La Paz Waterfall Gardens: Costa Rica’s Hidden Paradise

La Paz waterfall gardens Costa Rica is the best place from this tiny but stunning country to observe wildlife and waterfalls in the same place.

La Paz waterfall in Costa Rica is not a public area but it is owned by a private host and consists of a sanctuary for rescued animals (animal sanctuary), a hotel and also hiking trails and waterfalls hidden between the jungle.

This waterfall gardens natural park was open to the public some 20 years ago and is one of the most popular attractions in Costa Rica.

It is true that during the dry season the place becomes really crowded but worth visiting as you can see an impressive collection of wild animals and many beautiful natural attractions in a single trip.

The gardens are located 20 kilometres away from Poás Volcano, one hour and a half from San Jose airport and about 2 hours from the capital city of San Jose.

The park is open all year round from 8 00 am to 5 00 pm and you have to book at least 2 hours for a complete tour.

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La Paz waterfall gardens Costa Rica Cloud Forest

La Paz Waterfall Gardens Cloud Forest Costa Rica

Exploring La Paz waterfall gardens Costa Rica

La Paz waterfall Costa Rica is a tour that can be made without any guide, but if you want to learn new and interesting things about this place you can get an English speaking guide from the entrance of the park.

The park is extremely diverse and for sure you will not get bored with it and hours spent here will flow like minutes without realising.

You will see in the same place an impressive number of animals, 5 waterfalls and an abundance of plants, trees and insects.


Costa Rica Waterfall La Paz Gardens Cloud Forest

Costa Rica Waterfall La Paz Gardens Cloud Forest


From the reception, you will receive together with your tickets a map (available in English and Spanish) with a suggested itinerary and all the things you can see in the area.

Flowing white rivers, spectacular waterfalls, birds, butterflies, monkeys, poisonous frogs and jungle cats are just some of the things which you can see in the area.

You will have the opportunity to visit the butterfly observatory, hummingbird garden with more than 25 species of birds, a beautiful Orchid garden, the Frog Pond ( a frog exhibit with many poisonous frogs) and the jungle cats enclosure.

Actually, La Paz waterfalls Costa Rica are among the largest butterfly observatories in the whole world.

La Paz waterfall in Costa Rica facilities

At the entrance of the park, you will find a secured parking lot, the reception, a restaurant, a souvenir shop and a good restaurant.

The food from the restaurant is very good and there is a wide variety of costa Rican and international cuisine that can be served here.



You can also choose to eat at the other restaurant from the area that is located inside the Peace Lodge, a wonderful retreat located in the heart of the cloud forest with spacious guest rooms and amazing views.

In the ticket fee, you have included the tour of the animals, the trails from the park around the falls and Trout Lake.

Behind the reception, there are some stairs that descend quickly into the main exhibits or if you cannot descend the stairs you can choose to take the golf cart available at the entrance.

Once you are at the bottom of the stairs a new world opens to you and a restaurant, restrooms and many enclosures with animals appear in front of your eyes.

Stay safe while you travel

  • medical safety abroad
  • medical assistance including COVID-19
  • emergency medical evacuation
  • trip interruption -up to $5.000
  • travel delay - up to $100/day

According to the owner, all the animals from these enclosures are rescued animals that have no chances to survive in the wild.

The entrance fee you pay ( about 45 USD for adults and 30 USD for children) is used to feed the animals, maintain the paths and other workings needed to preserve the place and keep the animals in good shape.


Right near the entrance to the park, you can find the beautiful resort Peace Lodge Costa Rica, awarded as the Most Romantic Hotel in Costa Rica by Honeymoon Hotspots International but once you get here you will easily understand why.

La Paz waterfall gardens in Costa Rica- the waterfalls

La Paz waterfalls in Costa Rica consists of 5 stunning waterfalls connected with a great number of trails, all very well maintained.

The most spectacular cascade is Magia Blanca because of its incredible platform from where you can take some amazing shots of the waterfall.

The other 4 waterfalls from the park are:

  • Tempo which is 25 metres tall
  • Encantada with 21 metres height
  • Escondida just 5 metres tall
  • La Paz which is 35 metres in height

After you visit the last waterfall you will get to a small shop from where you can buy a snack and some water, use the toilet and then wait for the bus that gets you back to the entrance point.


What to take with you to the park

On your visit to La Paz waterfall gardens Costa Rica, one of the most popular attractions in Costa Rica, take with you at least a bottle of water and some snacks ( they are really expensive in the park), sun cream and a bug spray as there are many insects in the jungle.


La Paz Waterfall garden Costa Rica Cloud Forest

La Paz Waterfall garden Costa Rica Cloud Forest


A raincoat and long sleeves are extremely useful as it rains quite often and the place is located 4000 feet above sea level so it is quite chilly sometimes.

Travel tips for visiting La Paz waterfalls in Costa Rica

Get here early in the day as the place becomes quite crowded, especially during weekends and dry season… plus the weather is less cloudy in the morning

Take it slow as there are many stairs and you are at a quite high elevation and you will get tired quickly

Book a night at Peace Lodge Costa Rica, as Poas Volcano National Park is just a short drive from the waterfalls and is a pity to go to La Paz and not take a tour of the volcano


La Paz waterfall gardens Costa Rica is one of the most popular attractions from the country, conveniently located just 1 and a half hours drive from San Jose capital.

The area offers a wide range of attractions and activities including the nearby Poas Volcano, a visit to a coffee plantation, waterfall, lakes full of trout and many others.

For coffee lovers can book a tour at Hacienda Alsacia, a coffee plantation owned by Starbucks and enjoy one of the best Starbucks coffees ever.

Book at least 3 days for this magnificent area as it is incredibly beautiful and don’t forget to share with us your Costa Rican experience.


Logistical tips and tricks for your trip

Book your accommodation
We always use as they have the best price-quality ratio and they offer a wide range of hotels, guesthouses, apartments, and villas to choose from.

You will find here all types of accommodations, from the cheapest ones to the most luxurious.

Don't forget travel insurance
We never leave home without HeyMondo Insurance or Safety Wings Insurance as they offer the best services and a good value for money.

When we go for longer trips around the world we get Globelink Insurance as it offers a good cover for an affordable price.

Travel insurance will always protect you against unexpected costs caused by medical events like illness, injury, theft, or travel cancellation.

We never go on any trip without travel insurance and there were many cases when we had to use it.

Renting a car
We like to explore a country on our own and a car gives us the mobility and freedom to do that.

We always rent our car from Discovercars as they have free cancellation 48 hours prior to starting date and a wide range of car rental companies and options to choose from all over the world.

Tours and attractions
When we are looking for some adventure or we simply want to break up the monotony and discover new places, we always use GetYourGuide.

We love it because we always find the most amazing experiences, with free cancellation and a large variety of activities and tours to choose from.

Airplane tickets and holiday packages
Expedia is our ally when searching for the best price for airplane tickets as it works as an aggregator for a huge number of airlines and we always find the best price for our flights.

Travel tip: use Expedia when you are searching for holiday packages as they have many last-minute offers and great discounts for hotels, flights, and even the whole holiday packages.