Hiking to Cerro Dantas (Monte de la Cruz)


Hiking to Cerro Dantas (Monte de la Cruz)

Looking for day trip ideas?  Or a new hiking experience?  Check out graduate Ben's (June 2016) instructions and tips on hiking Cerro Dantas (Monte de la Cruz) in Heredia, Costa Rica.


Getting To Cerro Dantas

Departing from the parada (bus stop) in front of La Univiersidad Nacional (UNA) in Heredia, take the San Rafael – Monte de la Cruz bus. Be sure that the bus says Monte de la Cruz, there are also buses that pass through that will only go to the San Rafael centro.

The bus leaves once an hour, on the hour so it’s a good idea to get there a few minutes early, just to be safe. The bus will occasionally come a few minutes late too, so be patient. It costs around 500 colones.

Take the bus all the way to the end; it is impossible to miss the stop because it is the very last one. It is about a 30-40 minute bus ride depending on the day. When the bus comes to a stop, get out and head up the road. If the bus is full, the bus driver will drive you to the top of the hill, but he will typically tell you to get out at the bottom, so you will have to walk to the top. It will take about 20 minutes to reach the entrance by foot.

You will see the entrance to the Monte de la Cruz park on your right. Pass the entrance and keep heading straight up the road. Continue to follow the road until you get to the top of the hill. Eventually, it turns into a nice trail that you can follow all the way.



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Continue on the trail for as long as it goes. Eventually, you will arrive at a little hut where you can buy a cup of coffee or eat your packed lunch. If you want to, you can pay around 2,300 colones here in order to visit an amazing waterfall (catarata). They can give you all the details about it at the hut; they are very friendly.

The full hike can take anywhere from 1 - 2.5 hours each way, depending on the person and how quickly you are hiking. You will come back the same way you go. A round-trip hike will take you at least 3-4 hours with your short break at the café. To catch the bus back, head back to the entrance of the Monte de la Cruzpark. If there is a line of people waiting outside, the bus will pick you up there. If not, head to the bottom of the hill and the bus will pass through on the road. The bus leaves every hour. If you need any help, don’t be afraid to ask the employees; they are all very friendly.

What to bring

-Rain jacket

-Packed lunch or snacks

-Hiking boots (it can get VERY muddy … it rains a lot in the mountains)

-Sunscreen

-Water

-Some money for a coffee or visit to the waterfall


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