Rio Celeste: location, map, and all you need to know

One of the most beautiful natural spectacles can be seen in the Celeste River, where the water changes colour. Want to know how? Let’s find out.

río celeste

Celeste River

It is in Costa Rica that the magical presence of the Rio Celeste takes place. Its source is the confluence of the Quebrada Agria and Buena Vista rivers.

It is located in the canton of Guatuso, in the province of Alajuela. Where is framed the Tenorio Volcano National Park and that keeps in its environment the beautiful Celeste River.

río celeste

The main attraction of this heavenly river is its colour, which is light blue. There are many theories and legends as to why it is this colour (see Matarraña River).

Location and map of the Celeste River in Costa Rica

The location of the Celeste River is the city of Alajuela, a province of Costa Rica, which is surrounded by the Tenorio Volcano National Park.

The Rio Celeste San Carlos is located in the Guatuso canton of Alajuela, within the Tenorio Volcano National Park, as mentioned above, how to get to the Rio Celeste San Carlos? For independent tourists, the best way to approach this river is to take a bus from San Jose to Ciudad Quesada and then another bus to Guatuso, from where you can take a taxi to Rio Celeste, which is a good place to enjoy.

The Celeste River is formed by the confluence of the Quebrada Agria River and the Buena Vista River. Both are located in a place called El Teñidero.

The place called El Teñidero is the place where the river turns light blue. This is due to the chemical processes that take place when the waters come together.

Río Celeste y Teñideros

It is here that two rivers that come down from the slopes of the Tenorio volcano, whose waters are completely crystalline, unite and change the colour of the water. It becomes the sky-blue or celestial colour from which it takes its name.

Map of the Celeste River

Below is the location of the Celeste River on the map of Costa Rica, where we can see where it is located and the route it takes.

Map and location of the Celeste River

Rio Celeste Waterfall

Another of the main attractions of the Rio Celeste is a waterfall that forms a pool at its feet with the most heavenly water ever seen. Other beautiful waterfalls are found in the Algar River.

A visit to the River Algar is a must on the way to this river and a walk through the pool of the most celestial water on the planet. Another of the world’s most beautiful rivers is the Rio Mundo.

río celeste

The jets plunge into the turquoise water with great force, creating a spectacle that looks like something out of a magical realist tale.

The Rio Celeste waterfall is about 30 metres high and the water rests in the pool that fills the cascade. It has a unique and beautiful light blue colour that becomes more intense.

Characteristics and maintenance of the waterfall

It has been calculated that this pool is about 17 metres deep.

It is forbidden to bathe in it, as in the rest of the protected area. This is to prevent the introduction of pollutants into the Celeste.

río celeste

Visitors are also warned that the currents of the Celeste River can be dangerous. Also, due to the characteristics of the Celeste River, the stones at the bottom of the river can be slippery and there is a risk of falling. Another beautiful river is the Rio Lobos.

Other main attractions

As well as the Teñideros and the Rio Celeste waterfall, there is the Blue Lagoon, where there is a large amount of colloidal silica. If the day is sunny enough, it turns a deep blue.

There is also a viewpoint from where you can see part of the Tenorio volcano. It is made up of five volcanic cones that are inactive.

río celeste

Another site called Borbollones, a thermal spring, is generated by a fracture in the depths of the Celeste River in Costa Rica.

This fracture causes the sulphurous gases to emerge as hot water. These are also known as thermal waters. Visitors can take baths and cover themselves with sulphurous mud, which is highly recommended for its medicinal properties.

Among the activities that take place in the Rio Celeste of Costa Rica are walks, excursions and trekking. They offer locals and visitors alike a show of beauty and magic in such a unique place with unseen waters.

Aguas Termales del Río Celeste

The climate of the Rio Celeste

The climate of the Rio Celeste is rainy almost all year round. The dry season is not defined. Therefore, the location of the Tenorio Volcano Park is defined as very rainy and cold.

For this reason, it is normal for the weather to be rainy at any time during the journey to the Rio Celeste.

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According to studies carried out by a Costa Rican university, it has been concluded that the light blue colour of the Celeste River is due to an optical perception of the human eye.

This is due to the presence of a whitish substance that covers the stones at the bottom of the Rio Celeste. It is found in large quantities in the waters of the Rio Buena Vista and in smaller quantities in the Rio Quebrada Agria.

río celeste

The mineral is called aluminosilicate. And it is made up of aluminium, silicon and oxygen, which, when suspended in water, reflects the sun’s rays and makes the waters of the Rio Celeste appear blue.

However, there are always unanswered questions and ancestral legends to explain these mysteries of Mother Nature.

The Rio Celeste is certainly a curiosity in itself. What beautiful gifts nature gives us. So let’s take another stroll through this magical work of art, which without a doubt should be called Pura Vida!

Parque Nacional Tenorio
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