We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Essence Arenal Boutique Hostel

Traveller (412)
Room & Suite (80)
Traveller (412)
Room & Suite (80)
Dining (20)
{"scriptFlags":null,"containerAttributes":null,"containerClass":null,"widget":{"divClasses":"prw_rup prw_ibex_photo_carousel","js":{"handlers":"(ta.prwidgets.getjs(this,'handlers'))"},"dust":{"nav_controls":"ibex_photo_carousel__nav_controls"},"name":"ibex_photo_carousel","template":"ibex_photo_carousel__widget","moduleList":["handlers"]}}
Certificate of Excellence
Essence Arenal is an incredible volcano and lake view hostel, the perfect opportunity to live a real eco experience in a familiar atmosphere. With all comforts: pool, cafeteria, Japanese heated pool, common kitchen, fire place, jungle trails, waterfall, private or shared bathroom, TV and DVD rental, Internet, Play Station, tours info. And a unique position to observe volcano activities.
Read more
Property amenities
Free Internet
Free Parking
Hot Tub
Non-Smoking Hotel
Outdoor pool
Room features
Non-Smoking Rooms
Family Rooms
Good to know
Quirky Hotels
Great View
Full view
1 km al sur de El Castillo junto a la Granja de Mariposas, El Castillo, Arenal Volcano National Park 1230 Costa Rica
Getting there
Juan Santamaria Intl Airport77 km
See all nearby hotels
Reviews & more
51Room tips
Traveller rating
  • 323
  • 135
  • 34
  • 16
  • 5
Time of year
Traveller type
  • More languages
  • Filter
  • English
Show reviews that mention
I really enjoyed my stay at Essence, everything about the place is great. The trails through the jungle, the wildlife, waking up to a beautiful view of the Arenal volcano, and of course the Jacuzzi in the evening after a long hike. I did the weeklong yoga retreat and was really
Read more
If you don’t like tourist places like la fortuna, El Castillo and essence Arenal is the place for You. Staff was heartwarming and we felt like home after minutes. Veggie food available and yummy. View is incredible! Highly recommended
Read more
This proved to be my favourite hostel during my time in Costa Rica! It’s a bit tricky to get to, perched up on the hill in El Castillo, but offers splendid views of the Arenal Volcano, especially at sunset.

You can tell the hostel itself is a labour of love: originally a cattle
Read more
Response from EssenceArenall, Gerente at Essence Arenal Boutique Hostel
Responded 27 May 2018
Dear Catherine, Thanks so much for sharing your experience and visiting Essence Arenal. for us was a real pleasure to serve you. come back soon!! Best regards!!
Read more
The place is great, the big tents are nearly up in the trees with a great view on the lake. It is like sleeping in the middle of the forest.
Nice jacuzzi to use in the evening, and a common area.
Plus the food they make is delicious!

Activities at a farm nearby (massage (amazing
Read more
The lure of beautiful views of El Arenal volcano and Lake Arenal was what attracted us to Essence and we were not disappointed. Our photos are the stuff of postcards. Though Essence classifies itself as a hostel we had a spacious, comfortable room with a private bath and a deck w
Read more
Response from EssenceArenall, Gerente at Essence Arenal Boutique Hostel
Responded 4 Apr 2018
Dear guest, Thank you very much for staying with us and shared you experience, was a real pleasure to have you here. We hope to welcome you again King regards from Essence staff.
Read more
Album Categories
All photosTravellerRoom & SuiteDining Pool & BeachFamily and Play AreasBusiness Centre & Event Rooms
Tents overlooking the rainforest and lake
Un lugar muy especial y lleno de energía con vistas al Volcán Arenal. En nuestra visita quedamos
Volcán Arenal. Blog: unachicatrotamundos.com
Vistas Essence Arenal. Blog: unachicatrotamundos.com
Hi! Im going to the hotel end of May and still dont know how to get there. How did you get from San Jose to the hotel? Im not planning on renting a car but you think I should? Thanks!
Dear Brittany, Sorry for not reply your question. We din´t see the email at the right time. apology for any inconvenience Best regards, Jairo Lopez.
0 votes
How do we get from La fortuna to your hostel?
Take the 142 west from La Fortuna. Take a left to enter Arenal Volcano National Park, which is well marked. Follow the signs to Essence. You will go through the tiny town of El Castillo. Keep going. When you think you've gone too far, and the road is in terrible shape, keep going. It's on the right and well marked.
0 votes
Is it easy to reach this accommodation if we don't rent a car. And how will we get around from this property to the volcano, waterfall etc if we don't have a car. Would you recommend this to us?
As the others have said you will need a car. I wouldn't exactly say you need a high clearance auto but it wouldn't hurt.
0 votes
Show all answers
I just need to know how to get there from the San Jose airport? Bus? How long of a bus ride? Rent a car?
I need a ride from the San Jose, Costa Rica airport to your hostel on Feb 5, 2015 staying until Sun 8th or Mon the 9th. What are the best modes of transportation and cost? How long does a bus take & do I need to make transfers or walk from a bus stop or cross road? If so, how far is that? How about renting a car? Do you know anything about that? I am running the Ultra Marathon El Castillo on Feb 7th (Sat) and want to be close to the race start. Any ideas or suggestions would be appreciated. Thank you
Hiya Did anyone answer your questions? Or what did you do to get there? I'm wondering the same thing. I am assuming i get a bus from San Jose city to La Fortuna, but then what?
0 votes
"Tents 5,6 and 7 have the best views"
"We chose a room with a private bathroom."
"Deluxe terrace tent #4 had an awesome view and a double bed"
"Tree Top Tents!"
"awesome views, yoga, organic farm"
US$ 27 - US$ 57 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
essence arenal boutique hotel el castillo
Costa RicaProvince of AlajuelaArenal Volcano National ParkEl Castillo
Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more. Claim Your Listing