For our itinerary during our one week stay in Costa Rica, we had planned to spend 3 days in La Fortuna and another 4 days in Manuel Antonio. We hadn’t had anything planned specifically for our last day in La Fortuna, but after speaking with taxi drivers and other tourists, they highly recommended a hike to Puentes Colgantes de Arenal and a visit to La Fortuna Catarata.
Hiking through Costa Rica is literally what you imagine when you picture a jungle. I mean, I had always imagined that it would be somewhat like Rainforest Cafe-okay, I know that is so not accurate but my idea of a jungle was that it was mysterious and exotic and filled with jaguars and toucans. And frankly, Costa Rica is kind of like that. Maybe besides the cheetah part. But seriously, the hike up to the Hanging Bridges was absolutely beautiful and you are really immersed into that “jungle” experience. My sister and I actually saw a toucan though, and it was such a special moment because I’ve never even seen a toucan before in real life. I think I may have screamed and fan-girled (who fangirls over toucans?? Oh…me.) Oh, and have you ever seen those big butterflies with the bright blue wings? I remember our family friend used to have a collection of insects, and that was my favorite butterfly because it was just so beautiful, and we saw a couple of those fluttering around. In the jungle, the mighty jungle…
MONKEYS!!! I could not contain my excitement when I saw monkeys (yes, plural!!) swinging from trees to trees and ooh-ing and aah-ing at each other playfully. There is something so special about seeing animals in their natural habitat, roaming in the wild and just being in their home.
There were many bridges leading up to this final bridge, but this was taken on one of the highest bridges. You look down and your knees slightly shake from how high up you are, but you look around you and see that you’re right amongst the canopy of the rainforest, there’s a stream flowing through the base of the trees, and you see the broad range of green all around you. It’s breathtaking.
So you sit down and maybe let your feet dangle off the bridge-living life on the edge.
Many of the leaves that we saw were cut out by ants, but I thought that the pattern on these leaves were such a delicate lace pattern and quite beautiful in its own way.
After our hike through Los Puentes Colgantes, we headed over to La Fortuna Catarata. It was pouring and we were soaking before we even got to to the edge of the waterfall, and it was pretty cold. But it was kind of an in the moment thing where my sister and I decided to just go into the water. Despite the cold water and the pouring rain, it was such a pura vida moment. Ugh. Life is so beautiful.
La Fortuna, you are an insanely beautiful place. Thought I would save this picture for last because this is one of my favorite pictures of Arenal. On our last morning in La Fortuna, we woke up to see the tip of the volcano that had been previously covered by clouds for the past couple of days-the light, misty clouds finally drifted away and revealed Volcán Arenal in its entirety.
Pura vida ♥