The Best Zip Lines in Costa Rica

Zip across the emerald canopy of Rincon de la Vieja National Park
Zip across the emerald canopy of Rincon de la Vieja National Park | © Agefotostock / Alamy Stock Photo
Jenn Parker

Zip lining is one of Costa Rica’s most popular adventure activities and you can do it in different national parks, reserves, and thick forest canopies all around the nation. Experience the rainforest and cloud forest from a unique perspective – while also learning about the flora, fauna and conservation efforts of the area you’re zipping through. Here are the best spots to get your zip-lining fix.

Join Culture Trip on a nine-day adventure through Costa Rica, which includes zip lining through the Monteverde Cloud Forest plus many other thrilling activities, led by our Local Insider.

1. Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui, Heredia

Forest

A suspension foot bridge over the Sarapiqui river allows further exploration of the rainforest biodiversity in Tirimbina Biological Reserve.
© Kim Hammar / Alamy Stock Photo
In Sarapiqui forest, in the province of Heredia, you can tackle nine zip lines from 11 different platforms. The biggest cable crossing is right at the end where you cruise 900ft (275m) over the Sarapiqui River canyon. You’ll need to take a guided tour in order to familiarise yourself with all the equipment and safety measures.

2. Arenal Volcano National Park, Alajuela

Park

Arenal volcano in Costa Rica on a sunny day with blue sky and rainforest in the foreground.Arenal Volcano National Park, Alajuela province, Costa Rica
© Adam Major / Alamy Stock Photo
In the Arenal Volcano National Park, there are 11 zip line cables linking 12 platforms dotted through the Arenal River canyon. You’ll feel immersed in the rainforest here, and on a lucky day you may even spot monkeys swinging in the trees as you whizz past. The views of the volcano are spectacular and – regardless of your age – zip lining will get your adrenaline pumping. Arenal Paraiso is also a fabulous hotel to stay at and they offer a great selection of other tours in the area, too.

3. Monteverde Cloud Forest, Puntarenas

Forest, Hiking Trail

Tourist on a canopy cable ride, Monteverde, Santa Elena, Costa Rica, Central America
© Jan Csernoch / Alamy Stock Photo
Selvatura Canopy Tour has one of the longest zip lining tours in the country. With 15 cables and 18 viewing platforms, this tour offers two heart-racing hours of zip lining in the magical Monteverde Cloud Forest. For the real adrenaline junkies in the group, there is an optional Tarzan swing – and there are also eight suspensions bridges if you’re interested in spending more time in this lush and lively forest setting. A captivating natural history tour is also offered for those interested in learning more about the unique flora and fauna and cultural history of the region.

4. Puerto Viejo de Talamana, Limón

Natural Feature

Costa Rica, Limon Province, Caribbean coast, Gandoca-Manzanillo national wildlife refuge, , Playa Punta Uva beach
© Hemis / Alamy Stock Photo

Costa Rica’s lesser travelled Caribbean side combines dreamy white-sand beaches and resplendent rainforest where you can take a hair-raising zip line tour, departing from Puerto Viejo de Talamanca. Eight cables and 10 platforms stretch across the length of the forest – the longest measuring 270m (886ft) in length and 80m (262ft) in height. After your zipline canopy experience, you’ll travel to Moin Town for a canal boat ride to the coastal settlement of Tortuguero. Your eagle-eyed guide will be on the lookout for wildlife like howler monkeys, sloths, toucans, bats, aquatic birds, iguanas and crocodiles as well as exotic plants.

5. Playa Matapalo, Guanacaste

Natural Feature

Diamante Eco Adventure Park, Guanacaste, Costa Rica
© Carl DeAbreu / Alamy Stock Photo

Experience Costa Rica’s longest ocean-view dual zipline, just a short drive away from Playa Matapalo in the Guanacaste Province. The Superman zip line stretches almost a mile over the coast – and you can ride it with family or friends by your side. Not only that, but you’ll also get access to a Tarzan-style swing and cross a hanging bridge that dangles over crocodile-infested waters. This zip line tour includes admission to Diamante Eco Adventure Park.

6. Sámara, Guanacaste

Natural Feature

Beautiful palm fringed white sand Playa Carrillo, Carrillo, near Samara, Guanacaste Province, Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica
© robertharding / Alamy Stock Photo

Located in Costa Rica’s blue zone on the Nicoya Peninsula, Wing Nuts Canopy Tour is a family-operated business that aims to educate visitors about the unique plants, animals and conservation efforts in the area. Tour the canopy using a series of zip lines and platforms to get the best view of the dry forests – you’ll also be able to spot Playa Sámara, a tranquil beach town with a wide variety of other activities available.

7. Manuel Antonio National Park, Puntarenas

Park

Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica - beautiful tropical beach
© Simon Dannhauer / Alamy Stock Photo
The rainforest and beaches of Manuel Antonio are pinch-me beautiful. When you picture Costa Rica, the image that springs to mind most likely depicts this national park. The Original Canopy Tour is a thrilling way to experience the rich tropical rainforest. There are 18 platforms, 10 cables, a suspension bridge, and even a Tarzan swing if you’ve the stomach for it. Zip line guides are also experienced and knowledgable naturalists, so your tour will include a wealth of information about the forest and its inhabitants.

Josh Taylor contributed additional reporting to this article.

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