COSTA RICA  |  Cartago, Costa Rica Travel Guide
Monday, July 22, 2024

Cartago, Costa Rica

A view of the Irazú Volcano near Cartago, Costa Rica (cc)


Cartago lies about a half-hour by bus (less by car) and 23 km/14 miles east of San José via the Inter-American Highway. It was the original capital of Costa Rica for 300 years until it lost the power struggle to San José. An additional obstacle to its capital ambitions is that the town rests at the base of the Irazú Volcano, which makes it prone to sporadic temblores, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions. Its elevation is 1,440 meters/4,737 feet. When President Kennedy visited Costa Rica eight months before his assassination in 1963, Irazú welcomed his Alliance for Peace efforts with an eruption that blanketed Cartago and San José with thick volcanic ash. Kennedy left earlier than planned.

Last updated November 25, 2010
Posted in   Costa Rica  |  Cartago
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