Elevation: 1,670 (5,479 ft.)
Spanish: Volcán Arenal
Is an active andesitic stratovolcano
In north-western Costa Rica, around 90 km northwest of San José, in the province of Alajuela, canton of San Carlos, and district of La Fortuna.
The Arenal volcano measures at least 1,633 meters (5,358 ft.)
It is conically shaped with a crater spanning 140 meters (460 ft.)
Geologically, Arenal is considered a young volcano and the age is estimated to be less than 7,500 years.
It was formed from the extinct and adjacent Mt. Chato.
It is also known as "Pan de Azúcar", "Canaste", "Volcán Costa Rica", "Volcán Río Frío" or "Guatusos Peak".
The volcano was dormant for hundreds of years and exhibited a single crater at its summit, with minor fumaroles activity, covered by dense vegetation.
In 1968 it erupted unexpectedly, destroying the small town of Tabacón.
Due to the eruption three more craters were created on the western flanks but only one of them still exists today.
Since October 2010, Arenal's volcanic activity appears to be decreasing and explosions have become rare, with no explosions reported between December 2010 and October 2012.
Arenal in November 2006→
On Monday, July 29, 1968 at 7:30 AM, the Arenal Volcano suddenly and violently erupted.
The eruptions continued unabated for several days, burying over 15 square kilometers with rocks, lava and ash.
When it was finally over, the eruptions had killed 87 people and buried 3 small villages – Tabacón, Pueblo Nuevo and San Luís – and affected more than 232 square kilometers of land.
At the height of its ferocious activity, the volcano flung giant rocks – some weighing several tons – more than a kilometer away at a rate of 600 meters per second. These explosions would go on to form three new active craters.
As the three towns were destroyed on the western side of the volcano, a town by the name of El Borio on the east side was untouched and unharmed. After the volcano ceased to erupt, El