You are flying through the cloud forest, with your arms outstretched, feeling the brisk air on your face, a bird’s eye view to the lush forest below. You’re not dreaming, you’re doing the Superman cable, the last one of 16 zip lines at the Tree Top Canopy Tour inside El Establo Mountain Hotel.
During a recent visit to El Establo Mountain Hotel I was fortunate to experience their canopy tour. (Read more about Night Walk they also offer here.) One of the hotel’s minivans picked us up outside our building and drove us inside the grounds to the start off point for the tour. This is where we met our guides, two young Monteverde locals who displayed their playfulness and personality straightaway, making us feel at ease. We started off at main building, where we were set up with all equipment, helmets and given some security tips. It was just the four of us, so you couldn’t get more personalized than this.
Once the first couple of lines had been mastered, I felt more relaxed and able to enjoy the views and beauty below as well as focus on doing what I needed to do safely. As we walked along the trails and hanging bridges from one tower and starting off point to another, I asked the guides what they loved most about their job. The people for sure they said, they had been fortunate enough to provide this experience to children, elderly adventurers and people with disabilities. They said the look of awe, joy and glee in their faces is tremendously rewarding. They try to be as accommodating as possible, and depending on the situation, kids can be strapped in with their parents, disabled folks strapped in with guides, and they said they did have a 96-year-old lady do the entire zip line by herself and have a blast.
The tallest tower, standing over 150 feet tall, has an amazing 360-degree view of the cloud forest, the hillsides and the Gulf of Nicoya and its islands below. Stand up tall and breathe in the air, observe and take in your surroundings. The last line you can choose to do Superman style, so you’re strapped in and your feet lifted up so you feel like you’re flying. The guide who always goes ahead is waiting for you at the end of the line and is responsible for slowing you down and braking you on the way. This guide was also nice enough to snap photos and videos of us the entire way. By this line I felt so safe and relaxed I was able to enjoy the flight thoroughly and visualize my entire surroundings, absolutely spectacular. I thought this was the end of the adventure, but alas no, there was still the Tarzan Swing to enjoy. After a few meters’ free drop you swing about reminiscing your childhood and laughing your head off.
Our guides were very attentive experienced and fun, and it is certainly an experience not to be missed while visiting the Monteverde area. What a luxury being able to have such an experience steps away from your lovely hotel room at El Establo Mountain Hotel.
Article by Katie Widdowson