Today Monica and Sebastian and I rode at the base of the very active Arenal volcano. We rode through rolling farmland dotted with cattle, who would feel the heat if Arenal were to have a major eruption. The area is pretty developed as a tourist attraction with hot springs, which we would visit, hotels, shops and even a Burger King. We stuck to the natural side of visiting the volcano, but riding around its base and then hitting the hot springs.
To ride here, is to ride among lava rocks, listen to the rumblings of the Volcano, see the smoke billowing from the top of the cone and see the lava billowing down its side, especially at night. Arenal can throw rocks the size of cars and its flow has been known to change direction.
We also visited nearby hot springs, but non-touristy ones. The heat of the springs is determined by how active the volcano is that day. On our day, the volcano apparently wasn't really, really active, though it was a sight to see, and the hot springs were still nice and toasty. As I sipped on a pina colada, I headed to the hottest spring for a dip. I was ready to relax after a long trip of riding great horses in beautiful Costa Rica.