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Santa Elena, Monteverde's larger neighbor and primary provider of goods and lodging

As in the majority of Costa Rica, the official and most-spoken language is Spanish. However, due to the presence of Quakers and 3 schools taught at least partially in English, one can expect a fair deal of bilingual Costa Ricans.


The population of the Quaker-dominated area of Monteverde proper has between 250 to 750 residents.  The more developed Costa Rican-dominated town of Santa Elena has 6,500 permanent residents as of the most recent census. Quakers still form a considerable population alongside an increasing number of Costa Ricans.

Due to the acclaimed rain forests and cloud forests in the greater Monteverde area, Monteverde has become a major part of the Costa Rican tourist trail - despite difficult access. It was recently voted one of the "7 Wonders of Costa Rica" by the Costa Rican newspaper La Nación. Of Monteverde's total 250,000 annual tourists, around 70,000 tourists visit the reserve.

The bulk of Monteverde's rain forest and cloud forest can be found in the Reserva Biológica Bosque Nuboso Monteverde, a private nature reserve created in 1972 by scientist George Powell and Quaker Wilford Guindon. The area around the park entrance is the most visited, though camping deep in the reserve is possible with reservations. Nine main trails, which total 13 km, are well-kept and easy to access. The reserve features a large network of less accessible trails and a number of rustic research stations, two of which house 10 persons each, as well as one research station that can house as many as 43 persons, though these can now only be used by researchers.

To the West of the town of Monteverde lies the Bosque Eterno de los Niños conservation area, a project funded by schools and children from all over the world. The Bosque Eterno is the largest preserve in the area with 22,000 hectares (55,500 acres). Most of the Bosque Eterno lands surround the Bosque Nuboso lands to the North, East, and South of the smaller Bosque Noboso preserve. Bajo del Tigre, a small section of the Bosque Eterno de los Niños, is known for birdwatching and night hikes.

Still farther north, past Santa Elena, is the Reserva Santa Elena. This area is visited less frequently by tourists than the Monteverde Reserve, but offers a rustic station and views of Arenal Volcano.


Belcruz Bed & Breakfast

75 mts Norte de la Iglesia de Caņitas, Monteverde, Costa Rica

Tel (506) 2645-5295 Cel (506) 8301-7037  / info@belcruzmonteverde.com