Monteverde is a biological reserve located south west of Arenal Volcano National Park in Guanacaste. This beautiful place is best known for its cloud forest with hanging bridges.
It is located right on the ridge of Costa Rica’s continental divide and due to its altitude of 4,600 feet, it receives a consistent supply of clouds and fog, which also play into the area’s ecosystem. The moisture from the clouds clings to the tropical canopy which provides constant moisture to the wildlife below. In addition to the cloud forest, you will also find coffee plantations, restaurants, artisan shopping and plenty of great hotels. Monteverde represents a very distinct cloud forest habitat, which supports over 400 species of birds, 100 species of mammals and thousands of insects, reptiles, amphibians and plant species. The cloud forest is home to the endangered resplendent Quetzal. You can also visit Santa Elena, which is a small and tranquil village which is famous for it’s soft white cheese. The original settlers of the village were Quakers who supported themselves by farming and making cheese. Today, you can visit the Monteverde Cheese Factory.
The area has actually two distinct cloud forests Monteverde and Santa Elena. Santa Elena is a slightly higher mountain it is rumored that you can see both the Atlantic and Pacific coast on a clear day.
Popular activities in Monteverde include canopy tours, suspension bridge tours, butterfly gardens and horseback riding.
Getting to Monteverde
Monteverde is about a 5 hour drive from San Jose. You will need to take the Panamerican Highway northwest, where you will find a natural path which leads to the cloud forest.
Great Eco-Friendly Hotels in Monteverde
El Establo Mountain Hotel –
El Establo Mountain Hotel is located in the mountains and you are also close to the Butterfly Conservatory and Arenal Eco Zoo. There are 155 guest rooms with refrigerators and high-definition LCD televisions. There is also an ons-site spa, health club, outdoor pool and tennis courts. Thus, you can workout and pamper yourself at the same time. The hotel also has two restaurants, a ballroom and conference center, with a technology support staff, making it a perfect destination for weddings or business seminars.
✓ Audio-visual equipment
✓ Babysitting or childcare (surcharge)
✓ Banquet facilities
✓ Barbecue grill(s)
|✓ Beauty services
✓ Hair salon
✓ Health club
✓ In-room accessibility
✓ Laundry facilities
✓ Massage – spa treatment room(s)
Monteverde Country Lodge – $84
Staying at the Monteverde Country Lodge puts you near the cloud forest and both the Butterfly Conservatory and Arenal Eco Zoo. There are 16 guestrooms, with complimentary WIFI add breakfast included in all room plans.
✓ Restaurant(s) in hotel
✓ One meeting/conference room
✓ Audio-visual equipment
✓ Suitable for children
Hotel & Spa Poco a Poco – $133
Hotel and Spa Poco a Poco is a very nice hotel located in Monteverde and close to Butterfly Conservatory and Arenal Eco Zoo. The hotel features 32 guest rooms with DVD players and high-definition flat-panel televisions. There is also an on-site spa which provides body treatments. massages and facials. There are additional amenities which include an outdoor pool, health club, spa tub, and even a hair salon.
✓ Fitness Center
✓ Room Service
✓ Spa tub