Los Jardines Hotel
Cerro Plano 350 northwest from Cerro Plano Public School, Province of Puntarenas 00506, Costa Rica
More about Monteverde
Looking out over the Cloud Forest, on a sunny day.
about to fall 25 feet.
We are going to be in Monteverde at the end of December and would like to go ziplining while we are there. Is there a specific company that we should look into? Should we make a reservation in advance since it is high season? Any other suggested activities? We will be there for two days.
Check Skytrek, it it definitely the best and safest, I just did it back in June. Is is the most expensive but it is worth it. Yes , make a reservation and try to go at the earliest hour so it is not clouded and you can see the volcano, it is gorgeous, good luck, oliviababe
ps. make sure you walk to the humingbird garden where the shuttle arrives at the Skytrek station.
We did the canopy(zipline), the bridge walk, the hummingbird garden at Selvatura, We had a blast. Highley recommended. I'm deathly afraid of heights but managed to get through it & would for sure do it again! We didn't book until we were there but doing so in advance would be better, especially if you are there for only 2 days. The zipline & all the other goodies Selvatura has to offer is pretty much a whole day as you don't want to rush it.
We also did a guided walk of the Santa Elena Rainforest (saw 2 Quetzals! What a thrill!) & the night tour of the ecological farm.
Here is Selvatyra's website for more info.
Also while in the area, check out the frog pond & snake exhibit. They are both located on side streets in Santa Elena. The frogs are best seen at night. Your ticket for the frogs is for all day so you can go in the daylight & at night.
I've also tried Selvatora, It's the calmest of the best 3. Sky Trek, Extremo, and Selvatora. I've heard bad things of the rest. The snake exhibit is ok, (it's just a bunch of snakes in cages) if you like that sort of thing check it out. I didnt think it was worth the $10. Check out the Cafe Monteverde coffee tour. By far the best of the Coffee tours.
I did the Selvatura zip lining in June, and it was better then the ones I did in Argentina and South Africa. It has everything. Some beautiful walks through the forest to get from one station to another. Amazing views over the cloud forest.When you come out the hummingbird garden is right there and I loved that. They are wild birds that come down to feed at feeding stations put there to attract them. Probably the only chance you will ever get to see these birds up close.
Travel Tips for Monteverde
Costa Rica is a country of rainbows
I think I saw at least one rainbow each day in Costa Rica and many days we were treated to multiple rainbows. Not surprising, since water and light will usually produce a rainbow and it seems to always be wet somewhere in Costa Rica. The pot of gold at the end of the rainbow was the next adventure that inevitably led to the discovery of new and fascinating wildlife.
Small rucksack for your day trip in the cloud forest Bring light cotton cloths, a sweater or jacket for the nights, good walking shoes, and a raincoat. Don't forget your sunglasses and head protection. Insect repellant with DEET, good protection for the intensive sun (factor 20).
Medical precaution: hepatitis A and B.
We didn't bring anything against malaria. Bring lots of films or memory cards and a big zoom lens (min. 300mm or 10x optical zoom) for those wildlife shots.
Don't forget your video camera for all those rain forest sounds and active wildlife Bring a flashlight because at night it sometimes happens that there is no electricity for short periods Bring an adaptor if equipment is not 110 Volt and american standard.
Make a copy of your passport and drivers licence and keep the originals in your hotel safe during day trips.
Hotsprings in Monteverde!
Okay, so you need to take a 45 minute shuttle to get to them.. but they are owned by a Monteverde Hotel...?? Sooo worth it, nothing but virgin forests and pools of different water! Call the Hotel El Sapo Dorado for an excursion, they don't smell either! The attendant fed us fresh fruit from the surrounded trees, and we watched monkeys in the trees above... great time...
My first howler
I've been fortunate enough to see apes and monleys in the wild in Asia, but never before had I seen a New World primate (other than humans) outside of a zoo. On the drive from San Jose to Monteverde our peerless driver, Jorge, spotted a troop of howler monkeys far up in the treetops along the left side of the highway. We stopped and got out of the van to gawk at the monkeys. We slowed traffic and got some curses from other drivers who were probably late for their Christmas dinner. I paid them no heed because I was excited at seeing my first American monkeys.
Monteverde Biological Reserve - Reason for Going
The Monteverde Biological Reserve is definitely the biggest attraction in the area. Undoubtedly it will (and should) be on any itinerary.
Getting There: There are regular buses from in front of Banc Nacional, with the first at 6AM. The same bus leaves the reserve entrance at similar schedules. These schedules are posted at the tourism office in town and at the admission booth at the reserve.
Another alternative is to take a taxi from town. Most drivers speak English and many even advertise this on the taxi. They are lined up along the street just after the church. Just go up to one of your choosing and ask how much to go to the Monteverde Reserve. It should cost about $5 (2,500 colones in 9/05). Agree to a price and get in for the fairly short ride.
In There: When you pay the admission the ranger will ask how long you want to spend in the reserve and will point out routes on a map. The reserve is effluent with tropical life. Within 30 meters of the entrance, I spotted a large spider monkey in the trees. The paths vary between some with embedded blocks, wooden steps, concrete steps, and totally natural ground. The variety of trees, plants, and flowers are overwhelmingly beautiful.
If you are lucky, you may spot the wonderful quetzal. Unfortunately I did not see the bird, but did hear a couple of them. I did see other birds, including a set of small quail-like birds. The numerous butterflies were also enjoyable.
Because of the off-season, I was mostly in the reserve alone...only seeing about 6-7 other people the entire time I was there. It was quite peaceful and relaxing. I also enjoyed the path (Sendero Brillante) that led up to the continental divide. There is a marker denoting the altitude of 4,662 ft. I found this amusing as my home is higher than this and the divide in the Rockies is much higher.
The reserve is an absolute must for every visitor to the area. It is nearly impossible for you not enjoy yourself while hiking through here.
Popular Hotels in Monteverde