Settled first by Indigenous peoples, later by small numbers of Costa Ricans, and finally by Quakers in the 1950´s, Monteverde has justifiably garnered worldwide attention as a premier destination for naturalist travelers.
Located in the Tilaran Mountain range of Puntarenas Province, the area above the local communities features an unusual type of rainforest protected in a private reserve open to the public. Known as a cloud forest due to frequent cover by clouds along the upper reaches of this mountain forest, the vegetation is unusually lush and characterized by massive trees covered by small plants including mosses, ferns, bromeliads and orchids.
Popular among nature travelers for its beauty and mountain fauna-including seasonal visits by the Resplendent Quetzal which nest here between Feb and July-this forest reserve is also the site of much international research on tropical ecosystems. Several rural communities in the area have grown over the years to serve visitors with a variety of complementary attractions such as canopy tours (one even offers a “Tarzan swing”), horseback riding, birding tours, night tours, and even a miniature jungle train ride. People who enjoy nature photography will especially enjoy visiting one of the area’s butterfly gardens and the orchid garden.
One day Trips:
The most studied of the cloudforest in the world is home for the sacred bird of Central America, the Resplendent Quetzal.
Other bird species seen in Monteverde are : Emerald Toucanet, Keel-billed Toucan, Golden-browed Chlorophonia, Spangled-cheeked Tanager, Black Guan, Orange-bellied Trogon, Blue-crowned Motmot, Three-wattled Bellbird, Long-tailed Manakin, Azure-hooded Jay, Gray-breasted Wood-Wren, Collared Redstart, Slate-throated Redstart, White-eared Ground-Sparrow.
Among hummingbirds: Purple-throated Mountain-gem, Violet Sabrewing, Green-crowned Brilliant, Steely-vented Hummingbird, Green Violet Ear, Coppery-headed Emerald and Magenta-throated Woodstar.
Other animals that may be seen in their natural habitat are: Kinkajou, Olingo, White-nosed Coati, Agouti, Howler, White-faced Capuchin and Spider monkeys, Two-toed sloth, Collared Peccarie, Red Brocket Deer, Mexican Porcupine, Central American Woolly Opossum and Gray Fox.