Costa Rica | Monteverde

After 3 nights in La Fortuna (see previous post) we took to the road and made our way to the Cloud Forest of Monteverde for a couple of days.  The road was very rough the closer we got to Monteverde, but it was definitely worth the trip!  First order of business was to find the ‘Strangler Tree’!  This is not a known attraction and when we stopped at the visitor centre on the way in and asked about it they would only refer me to some tours about tree rappelling.  In researching the area before our trip I had stumbled upon some forums and blogs of people who had found this tree in the forest, but the directions to find it were sketchy.  I have a thing for trees and to be able to climb up the middle of one was irresistible to me.  How fascinating that this tree takes over a healthy tree and kills it from the inside leaving this lattice and hollowed out middle.  I asked again about it at the cabin we rented and showed our awesome front desk person the pictures I had printed out and brought with me.  Turns out he knew exactly where it was and it was only 5 minutes from us.  We parked along the side of the road and took the small dirt path into the forest as instructed and after a short walk there it was!  My boys weren’t keen to climb up, but I climbed as high as possible.  I took my big camera with me and couldn’t squeeze myself enough through the narrow top without damaging me or the camera, besides my husband was also yelling at me to come down.  The climb was wonderous!

We also checked out the Frog Pond.  My youngest son and I have a love for frogs so we really enjoyed this place.  We saw our favorite Red-Eyed Tree frog again.  During the day our guide took him out of his enclosure so we got pretty close again.  We went back at night which was a whole different experience to see them more active in the dark.  It was fun walking around with flashlights and finding the frogs.

Our second day in Monteverde was high flying.  We did an early morning zipline tour with The Original Canopy Tour.  They were fantastic and I loved that they took my camera often and got lots of great pictures & videos of us.  I had wanted to go with one of the larger zipline companies there that have superman cables, but the more I looked into it I discovered that my youngest would have to go with a guide and would most likely get separated from us.  We were very happy with The Original Canopy Tour and it was still adrenaline pumping fun!  Besides the 14 cables that we rode, there was a tarzan swing, a monkey drop and climb back up through a small strangler tree and a frightening, swaying ladder.  I also loved that the platforms were all built in the treetops and not steel structures.  Great fun!

We also drove up to the Selvatura Hanging Bridges and spent an afternoon walking the cloud forest and through the bridges high above the forest canopy.  Fantastic, beautiful and serene!  I have one more post from our holiday – next up the beach.

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Inside the tree!

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Took a shot of my husband at the bottom as I climbed up.

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The Frog Pond.

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133 different species of frogs in Costa Rica.

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Ready for some ziplining.

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My husband coming down the monkey drop.

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The Hanging Bridges at Selvatura.

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Darlene McQuinn

AMAZING!!!!