Monteverde translates from Spanish into Green Mountain, and is rightly named so. There is plenty of jungle and water around. It’s a bit of a touristy place, with lots of tourist bars, hotels, and activities. However, it’s not that easy to get to – the locals don’t allow any paved road to be built to get there. This is purely so that the place doesn’t become so mainstream that it’s overrun by tourists.
From the bottom of the mountain to the top where the town is, it takes a good hour or two up the bumpiest dust track I can recall being on in a long time. Once there, there is plenty to do. You can go for all kinds of guided forest walks at different times of the day to see different things. If you are into insects and butterflies, snakes, monkeys, birds, or whatever else, there is a guide willing to take you to go see them. As for the more adventurous activities: there is zip-lining, rock climbing, abseiling, dirt-motorbike tours, ATV tours, and forest canopy tours. When I heard about the zip-lining, I thought that was pretty interesting so signed up for it, as well as an ATV (all terrain vehicle or quad bike) tour.
The zip-lining was heaps of fun, zooming from tree to tree on a wire with only yourself to blame if you are going too slow or too fast (and crash into the tree at the end of the line). Here’s Mikey zooming along.
Me getting harnessed onto the line.
At one point they did the harnesses up so that we were lying face down, and could take up a “super-man” flying position, where they would catch us at the end. I didn’t get a photo, but that was one of the highlights. The biggest highlight though, was this crazy tarzan swing. Check out the video, it’s of Mikey. I swear it’s one of the most terrifying things I’ve ever done, way more terrifying than paragliding or whatever because you just feel like you can’t trust the thin-looking wire to hold you!
Next up was the ATV tour, which I loved. I’d never ridden an ATV before, so didn’t know exactly what to expect, but the bikes they had were not toys, and had some serious power. It was so much fun darting through the trails between trees and ducking for low-hanging vines. The guide took us out to a nice look-out point.
We had a little mishap with one of the bikes, the wheel fell off! I was right behind the guy when it happened, it was absolutely hilarious. Not to worry, it was because the lock-pin for the nut had fallen off or broken, so I found some wire from a nearby fence and used that to fix it.
Our stay at Monteverde was great, at night with some good food and good bars, and we even went to a salsa club one night, although I didn’t salsa dance because I suck, especially compared to the locals who are just amazing.