The Monteverde region has some of the best things to do in Costa Rica and top among them is experiencing the incredible hanging bridges. Getting the chance to be completely surrounded by the rainforest here is awe-inspiring.
Most of the wildlife that draws you to Costa Rica hangs out in the treetops and can easily be missed when doing regular hikes. Exploring the jungle canopy among some of the most beautiful nature reserves in the country allows for a unique opportunity to closely observe birds, sloths, monkeys, and other tropical animals.
If you are planning the perfect trip to Costa Rica, you may be wondering what the best hanging bridges in Monteverde are. There are 4 hanging bridge experiences to choose from in Monteverde. Each has its own unique take on this jungle experience.
We’ll dive into what each hanging bridge experience offers so you can better plan your trip.
If you are afraid of heights, the bridges can be a bit scary but are well worth the experience. All these tour companies are reputable businesses that prioritize customer safety. You can feel safe and comfortable when walking the hanging bridges in Monteverde.
So let’s get right to it!
- What hanging bridges are there in Monteverde?
- Where are the hanging bridges in Monteverde?
- What does it cost to visit Monteverde hanging bridges?
- Do you need a guide to visit the Monteverde hanging bridges?
- What to expect from the Monteverde hanging bridges experiences
- What hours are the hanging bridges open?
- Are the hanging bridges in Monteverde suitable for families with children?
- What other activities are available at the hanging bridges?
- Can you visit the Monteverde hanging bridges in the rain?
- Can you see wildlife on the hanging bridges in Monteverde?
- Do you need to book the hanging bridges in advance?
- What are the best combo tours that include the hanging bridges?
- Where to Stay in Monteverde to visit the Hanging Bridges
- Other EPIC Activities to do in Monteverde
- Pura Vida!
What hanging bridges are there in Monteverde?
There are four hanging bridge companies/experiences in Monteverde:
Selvatura Adventure Park is famous for the immense scenery seen from its hanging bridges. Its location is the highest in the area and features the best views. There are 1.9 miles (3 km) of trails with 8 hanging bridges spanning over the untouched cloud forests. This may not be the best experience for young children, or those with disabilities, as the trail can get steep and the altitude can affect you during the hike.
Sky Adventures has 6 hanging bridges featured in a two-loop circuit. Here you will find the longest hanging bridge in Costa Rica at 774 feet (236 meters). The bridges have been designed to fit into nature while disturbing it as little as possible. There is also a restaurant where you can take a break from the sights to enjoy a nice hot meal.
If you want to combine adrenaline-inducing adventure with a tour through the jungle, 100% Aventura Adventure Park is a great choice. If you’re looking to see wildlife more than scenery this is the place to be, especially if you take a night tour. The forest here has been reforested in some areas and serves as a ‘highway’ for wildlife to walk among the area. There are 8 hanging bridges along a 1.9 mile (3 km) hiking trail.
Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve features only a single hanging bridge, but many hiking trails throughout the park. Even though this is the smallest adventure park in the area, it’s the most famous due to being featured in a CNN article naming it one of the most beautiful places on Earth.
Where are the hanging bridges in Monteverde?
The most common starting point to have easy access to the Monteverde hanging bridges is from the town of Santa Elena. While this town is often referred to as Monteverde, that’s just the name of the overall region.
Selvatura Park is located northeast of Santa Elena, about an 18-minute drive from town.
A slightly shorter drive, Sky Adventures Monteverde Park is located only 12 minutes from Santa Elena. It’s also on the way to Selvatura Park, so you could easily visit both on the same day. If you do feel like walking, plan for about an hour from town.
Located along Highway 619 you will find 100% Aventura. Driving will take around 15 minutes from Santa Elena. Walking here is possible and takes about an hour.
Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve
In the opposite direction of the other hanging bridges, the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve is located south of Santa Elena. The drive is about 15 minutes to this natural wonderland.
Related read: After checking out the hanging bridges, make sure to stop in for a meal at one of the top restaurants in Monteverde!
What does it cost to visit Monteverde hanging bridges?
All of the hanging bridges in Monteverde are paid experiences. Each park has a different cost associated with the activities. Some entrance fees will only get you into the park while others include guided tours of the area.
Selvatura Park costs $39 USD for adults and $27 USD for children aged 4-12 with kids under 4 being free.
Entrance fees do not include a guide and will allow you free exploration of the 1.9-mile (3 km) trails. Touring the park takes about an hour and a half. If you’d prefer to hire a guide to tour you through the park, you can take a guided tour for $61 USD for adults and $43 USD for kids.
Adults can enjoy a guided tour through Sky Walk Monteverde for $41 USD. Children aged 5-12 cost $28 USD. Students with ID get a discounted rate of $33 USD.
Entrance fees include a guide who will point out all of the wildlife and tell you about the area while you walk over the bridges.
Entrance fees to 100% Adventura Adventure Park are $40 USD for those aged 12 and over. Kids between 4-12 have a discounted rate of $34 USD. If you are a Costa Rican resident, this price drops to $29 USD.
The price of admission includes a naturalist guide to tour you through the park.
Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve
The entrance fee to walk through the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve is $25 USD for adults and $12 USD for children. Parking is an additional $5 USD. This entrance fee allows access to the one suspension bridge in the park, as well as all the surrounding trails in the area. You can purchase your tickets online ahead of time, or at the ticket offices on-site. Entrance fees do not include a guide.
Related read: Exploring Costa Rica on a budget? Check out all the free and cheap things to do in Jaco!
Do you need a guide to visit the Monteverde hanging bridges?
Some of the hanging bridges in Monteverde require guided tours through the park. The entrance fees to 100% Aventura and Sky Adventures include a tour guide who will take you through the park. Selvatura Park and Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve do not include guides and allow you to tour the park at your own pace.
We really recommend booking a guide, even if it isn’t required – especially if it’s your first visit. We found the guides to be SO knowledgeable about the areas we were exploring.
They know where the animals hide and our guides helped point out so many animals we would have easily missed. We had guides shine flashlights in holes to point out spiders, teach us about the different tropical birds of Costa Rica, or point out a family of monkeys swinging in the trees.
The best part was our guide showing us a camouflaged sloth sleeping in the trees. The sloth was so green with algae that we would have easily missed it if we were on our own!
You can tour the hanging bridges in Selvatura Park without a guide. Some of the areas get really steep, so if you need to stop to take breaks, you may be more comfortable going at your own pace. There are benches throughout the park to rest at.
If you’d like to book a guided tour through the park, this Adventure Canopy Tour is a great option. The tour costs $114.50 USD and includes a guide through the hanging bridges and the chance to zipline down the 12-zipline course. It also includes my favorite activity in the park: the Tarzan Swing!
If you are looking for more adventure, this full-experience Selvatura Adventure Park combo tour will give you a taste of everything the park offers. For $165.39 USD you will start with a guided tour through the hanging bridges, zipline through the treetops, and visit the hummingbird and butterfly garden. It includes a tasty lunch at the restaurant that serves up delicious traditional Costa Rican cuisine.
The Sky Walk Monteverde is a guided tour experience. Entrance fees include a guide who will take you through the park departing at 8 am, 9 am, 10:30 am, 12 pm, 1 pm, and 2 pm. Tours are about 2 hours long and are led by a knowledgeable guide who will point out wildlife and plants along the route.
There are specific tours, like this guided tour of the Sky Walk, that include transportation, which is really handy. The 2.5-hour tour is $70 USD and along with a guide to show you the sights, you’ll also have a ride from wherever you’re staying in Santa Elena.
Combo tours are also available if you want to experience even more in the park. We loved this Sky Walk, tram, and zipline combo tour that includes transportation. For $125 USD, the tour includes the hanging bridges and a gondola ride through the park. The gondola will take you to the peak and then you will zipline through the jungle.
The $40 USD price of admission to Aventura includes a guide to take you through the park. The guided tour through the park will take you about 2 hours to complete. Aventura is about adventure as much as natural beauty, and a lot of what they offer is in their ziplining and rope courses.
If you’re wanting adventure, this $54 USD Aventura combo tour is a great option! It includes transportation from Santa Elena and is packed with adventure activities. You will be playing in the treetops doing the Tarzan swing, rope courses, ziplining, and an ATV ride.
Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve
You do not require a guide to walk through the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. This reserve includes one hanging bridge and a series of hiking trails in the area.
If you’d like a guided tour through the Cloud Forest, for $25 USD you’ll have a local guide explain the area and point out wildlife. You’ll also get a special spotting scope to look for birds like the stunning resplendent quetzal, plus you’ll get to see the beautiful hummingbird gardens. This tour doesn’t include transportation or the entrance fee to the park.
If going out after dark sounds like a fun adventure, this night walk guided tour offers the chance to see a LOT of wildlife. About 80 percent of the animals in the forest here are nocturnal, so you’ll have a better chance of seeing everything from tarantulas – eek! – to armadillos and two-toed sloths. The tour is only $35 USD and includes transportation from your hotel.
What to expect from the Monteverde hanging bridges experiences
If you’re looking for some of the best things to do in Monteverde, you’ve come to the right place! We love that there are 4 different parks with hanging bridges all located within a short distance of the town and each other. You’ll be able to choose the park that excites you the most or visit them all!
Selvatura Park has 8 hanging bridges scattered over 1.9 miles (3 km) of hiking trails. You’ll be walking through a green, mossy dirt path. The Selvatura hanging bridges range from 187 feet (57 meters) to 515 feet (157 meters) long and are between 55-111 feet (17-34 meters) tall.
You should plan to spend around 2 hours here to fully experience these hanging bridges. Keep your eyes peeled as you have a chance to see howler monkeys. As you’re walking over the hanging bridges you’ll be able to see the endless green jungle and crystal clear streams running under your feet.
If you’re an animal lover, this park is definitely for you! They have special butterfly, hummingbird, reptile, and amphibian exhibits that will allow you to get up close experiences. There is also a sloth sanctuary with rescued sloths you can tour through. If you are more of a thrill seeker, the park has some zip lines as well.
Sky Walk by Sky Adventures is one of the best hanging bridges in the area. There are a total of 6 bridges that are between 49-164 feet (15-50 meters) off the ground and 157-774 feet (47-236 meters) long. You’ll be walking along bridges that are secure but have walkways that you can see through – revealing just how high you actually are above the ground.
Tours are offered at 8 am, 9 am, 10:30 am, 12 pm, 1 pm, and 2 pm. Be sure to get here early as check-in is 15 minutes before your tour’s start time.
There are two different hiking loops you can choose from. The shorter of the two loops is perfect for those with mobility limitations. This loop takes you past bridges 3-6 only and takes about an hour and a half to do.
If you have the physical ability, I highly recommend doing the full 1.5-mile (2.4-km) loop. It will take you about 2 hours to do the large loop and is much less crowded than the shorter loop. This means you have a better chance of spotting wildlife.
Sky Adventures also offers tours that include ziplining, a gondola ride on the Sky Tram, Arboreal tree climbing, and a Herpetarium (amphibian and reptile sanctuary).
Below are the details of each bridge at Sky Adventures:
|Bridge #1||217ft / 66m||49ft / 15m|
|Bridge #2||400ft / 122m||161ft / 49m|
|Bridge #3||374ft / 114m||56ft / 17m|
|Bridge #4||410ft / 125m||118ft / 36m|
|Bridge #5||774ft / 236m||164ft / 50m|
|Bridge #6||157ft / 48m||49ft / 15m|
100% Aventura is a great option for those looking to combine adrenaline activities with their hanging bridge experience. If you want a day of adventure, 100% Aventura is just that and an ideal choice for families with teenagers. This is also one of the best parks for seeing animals on the hanging bridges.
Entry to the park includes a guided tour with an expert guide that can point out animals you may miss on your own. Walking the 1.9 mile (3 km) hiking trail takes about 2 hours and you’ll pass over 8 hanging bridges. Some bridges will have trees so close you can nearly reach out and touch them. You’ll feel fully immersed in this jungle, making animal and bird watching so fun!
The forest surrounding Aventura is a reforested area meaning the trees are much younger than others in the area. This new life attracts a lot of animals and acts as a ‘highway’ for wildlife. While the forest views may not be as dramatic, the wildlife is sure to please.
In addition to the hanging bridges, Aventura offers a Zipline Canopy Tour – one of the top-rated zipline tours in all of Costa Rica! You need to be over 10 years old for this one. Taking about 3 hours, it includes 9 ziplines, 2 superman ziplines, a hammock bridge, a rappel, and the Tarzan swing. The tour costs $54 USD.
Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve
Cloud forests are some of the rarest in the world, only making up 1% of global woodland areas. This is because they can only form in certain areas where there are perfect conditions. Costa Rica just so happens to be in this goldilocks zone and has some of the most beautiful in the world.
Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve looks like a scene out of the Lord of the Rings movies. It feels as if you’re walking through a cloud while you’re hiking over the hanging bridge!
Because of the weather conditions needed for this forest, you should come prepared to get rained on. Having a waterproof backpack and poncho is essential!
Looking down from this hanging bridge in Monteverde you’ll be able to see more than 2,500 species of plants, around 100 types of mammals, 400 bird species, and 120 kinds of reptiles and amphibians. Just keep in mind that all of these animals have perfected their camouflage and can be hard to spot without a tour guide.
One thing to note is that there is only one hanging bridge in the Monteverde Cloud Forest. This experience is more about hiking and taking in the beauty of the cloud forest as opposed to walking across multiple hanging bridges (like the others are.)
What hours are the hanging bridges open?
The Monteverde hanging bridges all have an early start opening between 7-8 am. We recommend going early to beat the heat and the crowds, and see the most animals. Some hanging bridges have night walk options as well. These were my favorite! The wildlife in the area comes alive at night time.
Selvatura Park is open between 7:30 am – 4 pm daily with new entries only allowed in the park until 2:30 pm. If you book a guided tour, the tour times are 8:30 am, 11 am, 1 pm, and 2:30 pm daily.
The Sky Adventures Sky Walk in Monteverde is a guided experience. The park is open between 8 am and 5 pm daily. Tour times are 8am, 9am, 10:30am, 12pm, 1pm, and 2pm. Tours are between 1.5-2 hours long.
100% Aventura is open between 7 am and 4 pm with tours taking about 2 hours. Tours to explore the 8 bridges leave at 8 am, 11 am, and 2 pm.
Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve
The Cloud Forest Reserve is open between 7 am – 4 pm. You are able to freely wander through the park during these times without the help of a guide. If you are wanting a unique experience, we recommend booking a night walk tour. This tour starts after hours at 6 pm and will allow you the best chance to see wildlife.
Are the hanging bridges in Monteverde suitable for families with children?
The hanging bridges in Monteverde are a great outdoor activity for the whole family. The animals in the park and the natural ecosystem around you make for a great activity for kids. The bridges are all safe and should be treated as an outdoor nature walking experience. Having some physical fitness is ideal as it’s a lot of walking!
One of the best parks for families to visit is Sky Adventure’s Sky Walk hanging bridges. This park has two different loops to choose from depending on the distance you want to travel. The smaller loop still takes you across 4 hanging bridges and is more easily tolerated by kids. Taking just over an hour, the short loop will give you a great experience exploring the forest canopy.
Selvatura Park is a great option for families with older children. While the trails through the hanging bridges require a good amount of physical ability, the park offers a ton of activities your family will love. The butterfly garden and reptile and amphibian exhibit are great for families with young kids. This park also offers guided tours through its sloth sanctuary, a safe haven for rescued sloths.
Related read: If you’re traveling to Costa Rica as a family, make sure to check out our top safety tips before you go.
What other activities are available at the hanging bridges?
We really enjoyed the Selvatura Park Extreme Adventure Canopy Tour. You’ll be able to skip the lineup on this guided tour that includes 3 hours of flying through the air on the 12 zip lines.
The Selvatura Park Gold Package is a 2.5-hour adventure that will have you flying down ziplines from the 18 platforms amongst the canopy of the forest. You’ll also get a different perspective on the forest as you walk over all the hanging bridges. We like that they’ll even pick you up from some hotels in Santa Elena.
If you’re looking to keep your feet on the ground but still want to experience the wildlife in Monteverde, we recommend the Herpetarium Tour. In this 1 hour guided tour you can see up to 40 species of snakes, lizards, turtles, toads, and poisonous frogs.
Another fun activity at Selvatura Park is the Butterfly Garden Tour. Children and adults alike will love learning about the lifecycle of butterflies and even be able to watch caterpillars turn into butterflies.
For more adventure and thrill seekers, the Selvatura Park Canopy Tour will get you excited. This 2.5-hour guided tour will have you playing on one of the biggest zipline courses in Costa Rica. Be sure to stop and enjoy the scenery between the zip lines and platforms which end with the Tarzan Swing.
One of the best ways to experience the cloud forest is soaring through it on a zipline. This 3-hour Monteverde Cloud Forest Zipline Tour will have you zooming across the forest to combine adventure and sightseeing in one!
If you’re looking to experience more than the hanging bridges and want to enjoy a nice lunch, this Selvatura Park Eco Adventure Tour is a great option. For $108 USD, you’ll get to walk the hanging bridges along with touring the butterfly and hummingbird gardens. This is a busy tour, so it’s great that they have a tasty authentic Costa Rican lunch included.
One of the more action-packed tours is this Full Monteverde Cloud Forest Experience. It will get you walking over the hanging bridges, flying through the zip line course, and watching the butterflies and hummingbirds. All of this, and lunch, are included for $165 USD.
One of our favorite hanging bridges in Monteverde is the Sky Walk at Sky Adventures. You can do the top three things at the park with this Sky Adventure tour. It includes hanging bridges, ziplines, and a gondola ride on the Sky Tram.
The Sky Tram offers some of the best views! Depending on the weather, you’ll be able to see the Miravelles and Orosi volcanoes and all the way to the Guanacaste plain. The tour is $138 USD and includes transportation.
The 100% Adventure Park Combo tour costs $54 USD and is jam-packed full of activities! It includes entry to the hanging bridges as well as access to the 10 zip lines, the Superman ride, the Mega Tarzan Swing, and a ride on an ATV. All that and hotel transportation for only $54 USD.
Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve
The Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve offers a variety of different tours. Our favorite tour is the Night Walk which starts at 6 pm and includes a flashlight and transportation from your hotel.
For a bite to eat, stop at Raices Restaurant for some authentic Costa Rican food. There is also a souvenir shop to pop into that features work from local Costa Rican artisans that you can purchase.
If you fall in love with the area, there are plenty of places to stay nearby (keep reading for our top picks!) so you can visit the reserve more than once.
Can you visit the Monteverde hanging bridges in the rain?
When you’re planning what time of year to visit Costa Rica, you’ll have to plan for the rainy season. Between May and November, there’s a good amount of rainfall, especially in the forested areas where the hanging bridges are.
The hanging bridges are built for these conditions, though, and are still safe to explore, even in the rain.
During the rainy season, you will often have dry mornings with rainy afternoons. I actually loved visiting the forest in the rain – it made the forest feel so alive and in its element. As soon as I accepted that I was going to get wet, I fully embraced it and didn’t even notice.
If you visit during the rainy season, be sure to pack accordingly. You will need to have a waterproof backpack and good hiking shoes that have grip as the trails get muddy! While a rain jacket is important, having a poncho is really the best option for a top layer. Bringing along a dry change of clothes to leave in the car is also really helpful.
Be sure to bring insect repellent too. The rainy season means a lot of mosquitos!
Can you see wildlife on the hanging bridges in Monteverde?
Yes! The Monteverde hanging bridges are home to a healthy and diverse ecosystem. You can expect to see many different kinds of wildlife while you walk along them. Even though nothing is guaranteed, there is a high chance you’ll see animals and birds throughout the park.
Wildlife you should keep your eyes open for range from monkeys, lizards, snakes, and even porcupines and deer. In fact, this is one of the last areas where you can see jaguars, ocelots, oncillas, pumas, margays, and jaguars in the same place.
Do you need to book the hanging bridges in advance?
All of the parks allow you to book your hanging bridge experience in advance. We booked our trips in advance online, and I am glad we did!
While you can buy your tickets at the entrance gate at Selvatura Park and the Monteverde Cloud Forest, buying beforehand is preferred.
Sky Adventures does accommodate last-minute entrances at the door if space allows but it is a risk. If you want to ensure a spot, we recommend booking in advance. 100% Aventura should be booked in advance as well.
What are the best combo tours that include the hanging bridges?
There are so many combo tours available, these are easily among the best tours in Costa Rica to choose from! Our favorites are:
100% Aventura Park Combo tour includes 3 hours of fun for $54 USD. You’ll zipline, rappel, ride an ATV, cross the hanging bridges and ride the Mega Tarzan Swing and the Superman zipline.
The Hanging Bridges Sky Tram, Sky Trek Combo tour at Sky Adventures is one of our favorites. The gondola ride on the Sky Tram was one of the highlights of our visit! You will then fly down the Sky Trek zipline course and have a guided tour through the hanging bridges. This tour costs $125 USD and includes transportation.
At Selvatura Park, the Full Monteverde Cloud Forest Experience is a great combo tour. For $165 USD you will get access to the hanging bridges and zipline course. It also included my favorite activity: eating! The lunch included was delicious and made it so I wasn’t hangry while walking through the park.
Where to Stay in Monteverde to visit the Hanging Bridges
With the hanging bridges in Monteverde earning a spot on your bucket list, now all you need is a great place to stay. Monteverde may be a small tourist town, but there are a surprisingly large number of great hotels in all budget ranges.
If you’re a budget traveler or backpacker, there are lots of nice hostels to choose from. If you like modern features and outstanding facilities, Selina Monteverde is the best option. The hostel is beautiful, has great reviews, and lots of activities including yoga. The only downside is Selina is a high-end backpacker hostel. You can book Selina on Booking.com or Hostelworld.
For the more budget-conscious, I recommend the Monteverde Backpackers which is almost half the price and includes breakfast. You can book Monteverde Backpackers on Booking.com or Hostelworld.
For those well past their backpacking days who can spend a little more, I love Camino Verde B&B Monteverde Costa Rica. This boutique hotel has beautiful rooms, a deck with magnificent views, and includes breakfast. It’s a comfortable hotel that comes at a great price.
If you’re a luxury traveler I highly suggest choosing what we call a “destination hotel”. These hotels are an attraction in themselves because of the unique experience they offer. In Monteverde one of the best is Chira Glamping Monteverde which offers luxury camping with the option to have your own private hot tub surrounded by nature.
Other EPIC Activities to do in Monteverde
Night walk – One of the best tours in Monteverde happens after dark! Experience the wildlife nightlife with a Monteverde Rain Forest Night Walk. Almost 80 percent of the animals in Monteverde are nocturnal, so nighttime is the perfect time to spot them. You could see everything from sloths, porcupines, snakes, lizards, frogs, birds, or one of the many felines that call the rainforest home.
Go bungy jumping – Bungy jumping is one of the fun Monteverde attractions you have to try … if you’re brave enough! The Extreme Bungee Jumping in Monteverde Tour has a daring jump from over 460 feet. That’s the highest in Costa Rica and all of Central America!
Horseback riding – This is a great way to give your feet a break and explore the Monteverde Cloud Forest on horseback! This Monteverde Cloud Forest horseback riding tour lets you cover a lot of ground as you trek through the farmland and surrounding landscape in Monteverde. Keep an eye out for toucans, parrots, monkeys, and other critters as you experience the rural side of Costa Rica, far from any crowds or traffic.
Monteverde was one of our favorite areas in Costa Rica to explore. After visiting all 4 of these spots with hanging bridges, I can confidently say that no matter which you choose you will have a great time! I hope we’ve helped you decide which Monteverde hanging bridge to visit on your next trip.
Thanks for stopping by – come back after your trip and swap stories with us! Before you head out to make your own memories in Costa Rica, make sure to check out our other in-depth guides including:
21 BEST Beaches in Costa Rica that You’ll Love
Ultimate Guide to Guanacaste, Costa Rica, and Fun Things to do