Residents of the two nearby towns of La Central and El Retiro were briefly evacuated.
Authorities said there was no immediate threat of a violent eruption and that no lava flows were likely to occur.
Turrialba last produced an eruption in 1856, which sent ash falling as far away as Nicaragua, according to historical records.
The mountain has become increasingly active since it began to rumble again in January 2001.
Photo: Government of Costa Rica