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Rincon de la Vieja Volcano

Rincon de la Vieja Volcano, the largest volcano in northwest Costa Rica, is a remote volcanic complex in the Guanacaste Range. The volcanic complex includes the main volcano and its dormant sister cone, Santa Maria, as well as the older dormant Cerro Von Seebach.  The name of the Volcano and National Park comes from the legend of an old lady who used to live in the slopes of the volcano. Thermal mud pools, waterfall swimming areas and freshwater lakes are also available for visitor use. Rincon de la Vieja, the largest volcano in the country's northwest, comprises a remote volcanic complex in the Guanacaste Range. At least nine eruptive vents are located within a 15 kilometer wide caldera. The twin cone of 1,916 meter Santa Maria volcano, the highest peak of the Rincon complex, features an inactive crater 500 meters across.

At the top of this impressive volcano there are nine eruptive points, and at the south there is a pure water lake. The most recent eruption of this volcano was in 1991, and it continues to be active with the presence of fumaroles activity. On the skirts of the volcano, there are two interesting areas where the activity of the volcano could be seen: Las Pailas and Las Hornillas, which has hot springs, solfataric gaps, bubbling mud (Volcancito), and fumaroles. Also, the protected area is rich in many types of habitats due to its variation of altitude and rainfall. The most common species are Laurel, Bitter Capulino, Jicaro, Guanaco, Cedar, Olive, and Naked Indian, among many others. The top of the volcano is covered with ash and has little vegetation.

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