Monteverde in the northwest of Costa Rica is the perfect place to head if you’re in need of a nature break with a little bit of adrenaline thrown in. And there are so many awesome things to do in Monteverde Costa Rica due to the incredible Monteverde Cloud Forest that surrounds the town. There is no shortage of activities to keep you busy for a few days. From zip lining to hanging bridges and some of the tastiest food in the country, here are the top things to do in Monteverde Costa Rica. Hiking boots at the ready!
1. Climb The Incredible Fiscus Tree
Climbing the amazing Fiscus tree (known locally as a choking fig) is one of the best free things to do in Monteverde Costa Rica. And even though it was free I have to say it was amongst my favourite Monteverde activities. This insanely cool, and brutal tree actually grows around another tree and slowly sucks the life out of the poor bugger. Then once the first tree dies and rots away you’re left with this incredible maze of limbs that enable you to climb all the way to the top from the inside! This is definitely worth a visit, for the photos alone!
How to get to the Fiscus Tree: There is also a Fiscus Tree that you pay to visit so make sure you follow these instructions to see the free one. From the restaurant Rico y Tico head up the hill past Hammock House Hostel. Once you pass a hostel called Eddy’s Place turn right up the next street. Keep walking up the very steep hill until you see a little path that turns right into the woods. Follow the path until you see the huge Fiscus Tree that looks really easy to climb. There are a few out there so it can be confusing. The tree can also be found on maps.me and Google Maps.
Quick Facts: Cost: Free! | Time needed: 2 hours. | Verdict: Not many people know about the Fiscus Tree, making it one of the coolest free things to do in Monteverde Costa Rica.
2. Stuff Your Face At Taco Taco Restaurant Monteverde
I was literally stunned when I stumbled across some of the best Tex Mex tacos I’d ever eaten. In Costa Rica of all places! Taco Taco is a cool and quirky Monteverde restaurant serving a few select and delicious Mexican dishes like burritos, tacos and nachos all with an incredible housemade salsa. I went for the slow-roasted beef tacos with cabbage and mango salsa. Served with corn chips and salsa they were absolutely delicious and affordable too at just $2,900 CRC (About $6 USD) for two tacos and sides!
How to get to Taco Taco: Taco Taco is a little hidden but still one of the best restaurants in Monteverde. Just head to the entrance of the main supermarket and look down the street you’ll see a big sign for Taco Taco. Just follow that sign and taco heaven is not far away.
Quick Facts: Cost: $6 USD+ | Time needed: 1 hour | Verdict: Taco Taco is definitely one of the top restaurants in Monteverde Costa Rica. if you’re a lover of delicious slow-cooked meat tacos it’s definitely worth stopping off for lunch or dinner. These tacos were one of my top Monteverde things to do.
3. Sail To New Heights On The 100% Adventura Zip Lines Monteverde
The canopy tour at 100% Adventura features some of the best zip lines in Costa Rica. And two-hours speeding across these sturdy lines above the incredible Monteverde Cloud forest is definitely one of the top things to do in Monteverde Costa Rica. 100% Adventura has the longest zip line in the Latin America (1 km long) and a 30 meter high Tarzan swing with a 3-second free fall. To top this off, the two longest zip lines are Superman zip lines, where you actually feel like you’re flying over the cloud forest. I’m not great with heights so you can see how this might sound like a nightmare. However, when I got there the absolute professionalism put my mind at ease. And I wasn’t even scared, I actually had the best time on the Monteverde zip line. And I even jumped off the edge of the Tarzan swing without thinking twice. If you do one canopy tour in Costa Rica. This is it!
How to get to 100% Adventura: Like most Monteverde Costa Rica activities transport is included in the price of your ticket. Tours run at 8 am, 11 am, 1 pm and 3 pm and the transport will pick you up from you Monteverde hotel or hostel around 30 minutes prior. You can book your canopy tour Costa Rica Monteverde here.
Quick Facts: Cost: $50 USD | Time needed: Half day. | Verdict: If you’re wondering what to do in Monteverde Costa Rica the Monteverde Cloud Forest zip line should be at the top of your list.
4. Spend The Morning Exploring The Hanging Bridges At Selvatura Park
The Hanging Bridges at Selvatura Park were something I’d wanted to do since I first researched the top things to do in Monteverde Costa Rica. The images are absolutely incredible. And in real life walking the hanging bridges at Selvatura Park did not disappoint! As part of the canopy tour Monteverde, you explore a 3 km trail with breathtaking views of the canopy. And you really get to see all aspects of the Monteverde Cloud Forest; from the dense jungle; to the bushy leaves of the trees to waking on air through the clouds with the incredible forest below. Selvatura Park is also a lovely place to spend a morning. It has Latin America’s largest Butterfly Garden with over 30 species of butterflies; a Reptile and Amphibian Exhibition, with a tonne of Costa Rica’s snakes, frogs, and lizards; as well as a hummingbird garden; and their very own set of zip lines.
How to get to Selvatura Park: Transport is included in the price of your ticket. Tours run at 8:30 am, 11 am and 1 pm and the transport will pick you up from you Monteverde hotel or hostel around 30 minutes prior. You can book your Monteverde Costa Rica Canopy tour with Selvatura Park here.
Quick Facts: Cost: $30 + USD | Time needed: Half day. | Verdict: A Monteverde Canopy tour is definitely one of the best things to do in Monteverde Costa Rica. Don’t leave town without experiencing it.
5. Eat All The Vegan And Vegetarian Treats At Paz Y Flor
Now I’m not Vego or Vegan but I do really enjoy a good veggie feed every once in a while. It just so happened I met a lovely girl from Melbourne in my hostel who was Vegan and on the bus on the way back from Selvatura Park our driver Alberto was telling us his sister owned a vegan restaurant. Well, we decided we had to try it. And we weren’t disappointed. Head to Paz y Flores for a Vego/Vegan take on traditional Costa Rican food and some delicious juice. If you’re thinking for the top things to do in Monteverde Costa Rica add this to your list.
How to get to Paz y Flor: Paz y Flor is located down the road past Taco Taco. Keep walking and after you cross the bridge take a right.
Quick Facts: Cost: $10 + USD | Time needed: An hour | Verdict: One of the great Monteverde activities if you’re vegan or vego.
6. Hike Through One Of The Monteverde Cloud Forests
If you’re wondering what to do in Monteverde Costa Rica, a hike through one of the cloud forests is a must. There are two main options to choose from; The Monteverde Cloud Forest; and Santa Elena Cloud Forest.
Monteverde Cloud Forest Vs Santa Elena Cloud Forest
Monteverde Cloud Forest Costa Rica is definitely the most famous of the two and for that reason, it can get very crowded. The entry is also more expensive than the other two at $20 USD. However, it is the original and holds heaps of Monteverde Cloud Forest animals with over 100 species of mammals and 400 species of birds over 4,000 hectares. It also has a hanging bridge so it’s a good choice if you’re not doing any Monteverde tours.
The Santa Elena Cloud forest is slightly cheaper with the entry costing $14 USD. It’s more wet and colder than Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve Costa Rica due to its elevation. However, this means it’s so so green with moss clinging to everything. It also has a fantastic view of Arenal Volcano. I chose to go with Santa Elena National Park and had a lovely morning traipsing around the trails. I saw barely anyone which was refreshing, however, given it was October it was extremely muddy and wet so there weren’t many animals around.
How to get to the cloud forests: Your Monteverde hotel or hostel should be able to organise transport for you through both of the forests. It will cost around $2 USD each way
Quick Facts: Cost: $18 + USD. | Time needed: Half-day. | Verdict: Hiking around the Monteverde rainforest Costa Rica is a lovely Monteverde activity. However, if it has been raining it can be pretty muddy and miserable. So pick your day.
Read more about Which Monteverde Cloud Forest You Should Visit.
7. Tuck In To Monteverde’S Best Breakfast At Cafe Orchid
It’s not often you find a breakfast that could rival Melbourne cafes in Central America. However, Orchid Cafe is the perfect place for fellow Aussies to head when they are feeling a little homesick and just want a spot of brunch. And with menu items like homemade granola with cranberries and walnuts; smoky bacon crepes; and one of the best Eggs Beni I’ve tasted this is definitely one of the top things to do in Monteverde Costa Rica.
How To Get To Orchid Cafe: Orchid Cafe can be found on the way to the main bus station, about 2 minutes past the National Bank
Quick Facts: Cost: $10+. | Time needed 1 hour+. | Verdict: This is definitely one of the best restaurants in Monteverde and definitely worth popping in if you’re in need of a non-traditional breakfast.
Looking for more things to do in Monteverde? Check out this awesome 2 day Monteverde Costa Rica itinerary!
Where To Stay In Monteverde Costa Rica
From budget Monteverde hostels to cute boutique Monteverde hotels there are plenty of awesome places to stay in Monteverde Costa Rica. Here are top picks of where to stay in Monteverde Costa Rica.
Hammock House Hostel Monteverde
Camino Verde B&B Monteverde Costa Rica
Rainbow Valley Lodge Costa Rica
Chira Glamping Monteverde
Daily Budget In Monteverde Costa Rica
Costa Rica is definitely a lot more expensive than everywhere else in Central America. My Daily budget here was around $60 USD. However, you could save money by skipping the tours. But they really are some of the top things to do in Monteverde Costa Rica.
How to get to Monteverde Costa Rica
There are two buses every day from San Jose station 7/10 to Monteverde. One at 6:30 AM and 2:30 pm. The trip takes about 4 hours and will cost you about $6 USD. You can also take a direct shuttle, however, it still takes about 4 hours and will set you back $50 USD.
All Over The Top Things To Do In Monteverde Costa Rica And Want More Of Central America?
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