We gave ourselves the task of walking the most trails in 2 days in Monteverde, an incredible place that will never go out of style, full of secrets, evergreen forests and very nice people. So pack your things and head out to rediscover this place!
How to get there?
Take the north Interamerican highway and deviate to the right in the gas station that says, Monteverde … but still, always confirm the route with Waze.
Santa Elena de Monteverde Center:https://waze.com/ul/hd1gdty1sx
Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserve:https://waze.com/ul/hd1gdy7j25
Selvatura Park: https://waze.com/ul/hd1gdy6ex4
Sky Adventures Monteverde Park:https://waze.com/ul/hd1gdy1epu
Taste Tico: https://waze.com/ul/hd1gdtvf6c
– Santa Elena Reserve: 4km
– Selvatura Park: 3km
– Sky: 0.5km
– Ecological Farm: 3km
– Curi Court: 5km
– Eternal Forest of Children: 5km
What to bring?
Comfortable clothes for walking, light coat, waterproof jacket, trail shoes, an extra pair of shoes in case they get wet, * repellent is a must *.
Vehicle:High or 4 × 4 truck
Monteverde Tourism Chamber: firstname.lastname@example.org
Cala Lodge:2645-5626 www.calalodge.com
Santa Elena Reserve: 2645-5390 www.reservasantaelena.org
Selvatura: 2645-5929 2645-5929 www.selvatura.com
Sky Adventures: 2479-4100 www.skyadventures.travel
Orchid Coffee Shop: 2645-6850
Cost:Varies depending on the routes or activities.
We went to Monteverde on a Friday night, we succumbed to the 27th highway traffic and we continued without stopping one way through the North Interamerican until getting into the entrance before the Lagarto River (since the entrance before has a bridge in the process of reconstruction). We arrived a little past midnight to sleep at Cala Lodge to rest a bit before our weekend full of adventure.
We got up at 6 am, looked out the window of the room and found a forest so perfect that it looked like a painting … Then we got dressed up for breakfast right here in the hotel restaurant that was at an epic balcony where you could see all of the birds in the area.
After that, we went out to meet our comrade Andrés Vargas, who is originally from Monteverde and knows every soul here… this dude was our ambassador and guide throughout the weekend. Then we went for a coffee for him and then straight to our first stop: the famous Santa Elena Reserve.
Reserve of Santa Elena
We arrived at 9 am at the parking lot of the reserve and went straight to the reception where they explained to us about the history of the park and its paths. Then we started to walk to the highest part of the park, we reached a tower that goes up to the top of the trees, where we could appreciate where we were standing and admire this cloudy landscape full of greenery.
After that, we continued walking until we reached a pond, and then we went back up to go to the parking lot since we still had several places to visit.
Fun facts of this reserve:
1. The money of its visitors is for the protection and management of the Reserve, in addition to providing better quality infrastructure and services in the College of Santa Elena and the schools in the area.
2. More than 24 years ago this place was a paddock full of cows … today it is a tremendous secondary forest.
3. This reserve is located on the top of the mountain on the Caribbean side, and from your spot, you can see (hopefully) the Arenal Volcano.
We continued our way to our second park that was just 10 minutes down to Monteverde from the Santa Elena Reserve. We arrived at the Selvatura parking lot and got ready to visit this park.
There are different activities that can be done as canopy and activities to add excitement but for reasons of time, we only did the walk along the trails of the place that are truly incredible. In total there are 8 hanging bridges, one of them is 150 meters long! There is nothing more than these bridges, you really walk on the treetops and this perspective of the cloud forest is amazing.
We walked about 4 kilometers and enjoyed the trails for about an hour and a half until it made us hungry, so we went back to the center of Monteverde to have a bite to eat in a café that they recommended called Orchid Coffee Shop.
In Orchid Coffee we had a delicious lunch, we were recommended to eat the sandwiches, and the truth was that it licked your fingers clean good. Also after eating, we gave ourselves the pleasure of having a coffee to go to grab strength for the last part of the day.
For the last trip of the day we went to Sky, this place was the pioneer in hanging bridges and canopy lines 20 years ago, this makes it one of the most important in the country since this way of touring the forests was innovative for the country and currently it attracts thousands of tourists to the generating area.
It’s the one with the best infrastructure, and it also has a cable car that takes it to the top of the mountain in a matter of minutes, and this was exactly what we did. We got on the device and took us at a constant speed over the trees when we reached the top we went over the platforms that really did not look beyond 100m through the clouds.
After a little while, it started raining a bit so we decided to go down again in the cable car to go back to Cala Lodge to get ready to go to dinner at Sabor Tico where they sell the biggest pot roast on the planet, no one could finish it (it was giant!),
Monteverde is worth a visit, you can not fully know this place 1 single visit, there is always something new and different to do. We were stung with the desire to return because it really is an incredible place, so overcome the desire and go explore these beautiful eternally green mountains.
DATE OF WALK: OCTOBER 2017