A Costa Rica zip line is basically a pulley suspended on a cable that is propelled down by gravity. It can be done high above trees, over waterfalls, from mountain to mountain and basically: anywhere you may find sufficient inclination to go down.
The concept of zip lining was created in Costa Rica, by a California grad student –Donald Perry- back in the 70s and then made into a business by the Canadian Darren Hreniuk in the early 90s.
Perry wanted to study animal reproduction high up at the tree canopy. Hence: zip lining was first known as canopy.
Zip line or canopy tours can be found all over Costa Rica and should definitely become a part of your Costa Rica Vacation Package. So finding the right company is essential to guarantee a safe and exciting tour.
Things to look for:
- Usually, look for a three point attachment to the pulley: although you may find two point attachments, they´ve been usually places at older zip line tours.
- Avoid older zip line tours unless you can verify the canopy equipment is well maintained.
The zip line tour reputation
- Always check if the tour you´ll be booking has Tripadvisor reviews or reviews by any other reputable travel information company such as Lonely Planet, National Geographic, Conde Nast and more.
The tour´s adrenaline boosting points:
- If you are serious about taking a speedy zip line tour, then you better make sure to ask: how many cables you´ll be going through, how long are they and how high are they located.
Minimum age and weight:
- If you are traveling with your family you should inquire about the age minimum required by the tour. Some tours will not receive children younger than 5 years old, some will request a minimum age of 8 years old. It will all depend on the type of canopy, the speed and the height. If your kids do not have enough weight to go down the cables they´ll get stuck in the middle.
- On the other hand, zip line tours do have a maximum weight limit.
Where to go ziplining in Costa Rica:
- Arenal and Monteverde: the true pioneers in developing the longest zip lines in the country as well as the fastest. These zip lines are super fast and may be as much as 1 km (0.65 miles) long, so most of these type of zip lines require your child be 8 years and older. You can combine a zip lining tour with a rafting or canyoning tour.
- Guanacaste: another popular area to find great zip lining tours. Though reaching each canopy tour location usually takes about 1 hour from any hotel, the rides are fun and can be combined with hot springs and a hike.
- Manuel Antonio: Costa Rica’s second largest tourist center offers canopy tours that may not offer super long zip lines but are safe and speedy.
If you need more reference on where to zip line safely and with a 100% enjoyment guarantee: give us a nod. As a Costa Rica Travel Agent we´ve tried many zip line tours precisely so that we may recommend only the best.