When someone tells me they’re visiting Monteverde, the first thing I tell them is to go ziplining. Seriously, if you’re considering it at all, do it in Monteverde! There’s nowhere more beautiful than the lush Costa Rican cloud forests. I’ve gone to Monteverde 3 separate times now, and each time I’ve done a zipline tour (it doesn’t get any less fun, believe me). Because there are so many tour operators, trying to decide which tour to do can be a bit overwhelming. That’s why I’ve decided to do a comparison of my two favorite zipline tours so far: Extremo Canopy Tour, and 100% Aventura.
Let’s start with the similarities. Although the two companies operate in different rainforests, both are equally stunning and appear very similar from above. In terms of scenery, you can’t go wrong here. Both tours include regular ziplining, a superman zipline, a rappel, and a tarzan swing. So in terms of itinerary, both are fairly similar here as well. Lastly, both have fun and friendly guides who make the experience that much more enjoyable. Now, let’s get into some specifics.
Extremo Canopy Tour
This was my first ever zipline, and it was incredible! The Extremo tour includes 14 cables (including 4 longer than 1300 feet), one of which can be done as a superman. Again, there is a rappel and tarzan swing included as well. Extremo is unique in two ways: first, the last cable is through a tunnel. I personally didn’t care much for this one, as I was there to see the rainforest, but some people really enjoy this. Second, you get to do a bit of hiking between some of the cables. This was a huge perk for me, as I love hiking, and just felt like an added benefit.
100% Aventura Tour
This tour boasts the longest zipline in Latin America, which is over a mile in length. In total, there are 11 cables, including superman, rappel, and tarzan swing. Some differences here: in this tour, you can do 2 superman cables instead 1. You also get to walk across a hanging bridge at one point, although this part is quick. Personally, I thought that this tarzan swing was more fun, which is a perk if you’re an adrenaline junkie like me. Lastly, Aventura is the epitome of efficiency - they’re quick, experienced, and professional, which makes the whole experience run smoothly.
Overall, you really can’t go wrong. Ziplining is always fun, even without all the bonus offerings you find in Monteverde. My biggest advice - if you’re hesitating, just do it! It’ll be one of your favorite memories from Costa Rica.
Wear or bring a jacket, as it can get windy up the mountain
Wear sunscreen if it’s sunny - you get a lot of sun on the lines above the canopy
If you have a GoPro with you, the guides can help you strap it on securely
Use the bathroom before they put the harness and gear on you
Make sure to eat before - the tour can be long if there’s a big group
Bring a snack for afterwards, as there’s usually a bit of wait time between the tour and the bus ride back (you can tell I’m always hungry)
Bring money if you want to buy photos (like the one below). It's usually $25 or so per CD
If it’s a big group, try to be near the front if possible (wait times can be a bit long otherwise)
Chat with the guides, they’re fun and friendly!