If you want to go for a day or just a few hours there are trails to accommodate you here in the cloud forest. Covering over 10,000 hectares, it offers elfin woodlands on exposed ridges, swampy terrain in poorly drained areas, clear rivers and waterfalls and of course the tall moss and vines covered trees of the rain forest. The varieties of animal and plant life are endless. The well marked trails cover a large area of the reserve and it would take several hours to walk them all and enjoy the sites and sounds. Two of the trails bear the names of two men responsible for the establishment of the reserve, that being scientist George Powell and long-time resident Wilfred Guindon.
Monteverde Reserve is about 7 km from Santa Elena and can be reached by taxi (about $5.00) or by public bus (c550 - $1.10). Beware though some websites give bus times as every hour starting at 7:00 and last return bus at 6:00 pm. In reality the buses going are at 6:15, 7:20, 9:20, 11:20 am and 12:20 pm. Return buses are 9:45, 11:00 pm, 12:00, 2:00 and 4:00 pm. Prepare for a bumpy ride! Park is open from 7:00 am until 4:00 pm. daily. Entrance fee is $15.00 USD for adults with children and students less. Guides are available for an extra cost.
Point of Interest: Although Costa Rica is home to hundreds of varieties of mosquitoes, the guides at Monteverde told us that they were not a problem at the reserve. It was a moist damp day when we were there and even though we didn't use insect repellent neither Rob or I were bitten.
Entrance to the Park
The trail we took on our trip to Monteverde Cloud Forest
Well maintained trails make for a pleasant walk, majestic vegetation enhances the experience.
It's not only birds that make this area interesting. These two little creatures where
battling for position on this leaf.
Ferns, vines, mosses and tall trees all dwell together.
Bird watchers paradise
Suspension bridge crossing a gorge allows you to see the tree
tops hundreds of feet below.
View from the lookout on the Wilfred Guindon Trail, Lake Arenal in the distance with the
mountains of Arenal behind it.
This Coatimundi decided to wonder through the visitor's center.