Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Monteverde, Costa Rica

We left El Castillo early in the morning to make our way around the lake to Monteverde. The drive is a windy road & not built for those who sicken easily. About 4 hrs later the dirt pebble roads led us to a small village called Santa Elena. We decided to have lunch here ( sushi, for a change of flavours) before continuing our drive to our Airbnb in San Luis. Monteverde is the adrenaline junkie part of Costa Rica. Everywhere you look are zipline tours, atv, superman zipline & bungee jumping.

We arrived at our Airbnb (La Querencia Farm) high up in the mountains. You need a 4x4 to get to the farm which we didn't have so we left our car in the local coffee farm below and hitched a ride up with our gear from the owner. The road up is basically rocks & steep. No car will make it. This farm is beautiful & Tim (the farmer and owner) built everything himself. Tim makes his own methane gas from manure which he learned how to do from google. After three failed attempts he got it right. His methane powers the ovens in the kitchens. He has his own power plant for electricity. He piped water down from the mountains & generates his own electricity. He also built a Tilapia pond, a swimming pool, a veggie garden, a pizza oven & an outdoor fire pit. He is in the middle of building a new house for airbnb. The weather is a lot cooler here & I am surrounded by tree's & animals. Sheep, cows & horses bellow while I am sneaking about the grounds. We are staying in a very basic bunk house. We have bunk beds, a shower & a toilet. The wind up here is something else though. During this time, New York was being hit with a huge snow storm. Tim says whenever they get bad weather up north, it creates crazy wind tunnels for them. It was pretty rough trying to sleep through the wind, it is that loud & it is that scary. I felt like our roof would come off, but saying that, I would recommend anyone staying here for its beauty & the hosts could not be nicer.

So we did this adrenaline rush called Extremo. It was pretty scary, especially coming from Sky Limit where safety was taken to another level but here it just felt like a conveyor belt of people passing through. They allowed me go on the zipline before the person at the other end was even finished. Red Flag in my opinion. All in all we did 14 ziplines, one tree drop & a tarzan swing. Farah wasn't feeling so good that day & her asthma was kicking up. We had left the inhaler at our lodgings so hiking to get to ziplines was causing a lot of pain for her. Two of our ziplines were tandem, I had never done a tandem zipline before & honestly, it was scary. I couldn't bring myself over the fear to actually enjoy it. Also, if it broke, well that would be two for the price of one. The last zipline was The Superman, you get strapped in head first and your feet are tied up behind you. It was 1km long zipline through the clouds & mountain tops. This was the scariest one for me, I guess because I was going headfirst & mostly because the guy in front of me got nervous & backed out of it, seconds after being strapped in because he felt like it wasn't safe. After this we needed a wind down so we headed for the Bat Caves in Santa Elena, unfortunately it wasn't that impressive. You need to go when the bat man is there. He knows everything about bats & we were told that makes it more interesting.

If you are wanting a nice dinner, you should head to Hotel Belmar. It's high up in the mountains near the cloud forest. They have amazing views & their food is locally sourced & veggies come from their own garden. I ordered the spinach ravioli doused in four cheese, a caesar salad & the cheesecake. I was in starvation mode from our day hiking & ziplining. It was absolutely gorgeous.

We are heading to back to the beach on our next post. We will be in Montezuma. For details of our last trip to Arenal click here. Photo by Farah Khan ( Photo by Farah Khan ( Photo by Farah Khan ( Photo by Farah Khan ( Photo by Farah Khan ( Photo by Farah Khan ( Photo by Farah Khan ( Photo by Farah Khan ( Photo by Farah Khan ( Photo by Farah Khan ( Photo by Farah Khan (