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Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserve

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The Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserve is a state owned national park in the Monteverde region of Costa Rica, near the town of Santa Elena. Roughly equidistant from the town but in the opposite direction is the privately owned Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve (non-profit administered by the Tropical Science Center). Just to the south is the Children's Eternal Rain Forest (bought through charity donations collected by school children across the globe). Together with a number of commercially operated forests (meaning tourist industry - canopy tours, zip lines, etc.) these make up a pretty sizeable expanse of forest which is guaranteed to remain forest. As this is one of only a few surving cloud forest areas in the world, that’s not a bad thing!

The most impressive thing about the forest was just how much was growing. The trees grow up, vines grow down, epiphytes live on both and everything is covered in mosses. There is not a square millimeter of solid surface that does not have something growing on it! Be warned though, it is not called a cloud forest for no reason.

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Pension Santa Elena:

During my visit, I stayed at the very hospitable Pension Santa Elena. If you don't need the comforts of a hotel with room service then it is to be strongly recommended. The staff can arrange all manner of excursions for you and also know which ones are best not just for you but for the environment too. And if you get the right room, the decorations are awesome!

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Santa Elena Cloud Forest: [Best Bits]

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Santa Elena Cloud Forest: [Flowers and things]

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Santa Elena Cloud Forest: [More Forest]

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Leaving Monteverde:

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