Friday, January 8, 2016

100% Aventura Adventure Park, Alessandra Cigna

After arriving in Monteverde from La Fortuna, our group geared up for what was promised to be an exciting day at 100% Aventura Adventure Park. At 1,590 meters, 100% Aventura hosts the longest zip line in Latin America. Though this was the only component that we took advantage of, this family-owned and operated business also offers ATV and horseback riding tours.

Unlike the other attractions that we had visited up to this point in our itinerary, 100% Aventura provided transportation to and from their facility.  They were on time, efficient and gave us an opportunity to connect with some of the other travelers who would be embarking on the same adventure. Though Intrepid Travel provided the majority of our transportation throughout the trip, I appreciated this service. Especially for individual travelers who would otherwise have to organize their own transportation throughout Monteverde, this stood out to me as a very courteous feature.

Upon arrival, the manager of 100% Aventura greeted our group even before we got out of the van. He welcomed us with enthusiasm and told us exactly what we needed to do in order to get checked in. Moving inside, each rider wrote his or her name down at the registration desk, received a sticker and then proceeded to the equipment area. These employees, based upon my experience, were also fantastic. They made sure that everyone was secured in appropriate gear whilst making calming conversation. Once equipped with gloves, helmets and harnesses, we moved into an outdoor meeting space to receive instructions.

Unfortunately, my classmates and I waited for nearly an hour before being addressed by the guides. Confusion and discomfort set in as we started to question whether or not we were waiting in the correct area.  Upon asking staff, we were told that someone would assist us after additional guests had arrived. Fortunately, the demonstration did begin shortly after. I found the explanation helpful in terms of mechanics and how to control your speed but later found that the course was improperly described. We were told that guests could choose to exit at any point before line #7, but would have to continue no matter what if they elected to go past this point. In truth, participants could have continued through line #9 (Superman) and stopped before the Tarzan Swing, or stopped at #7 but joined back in for the Tarzan Swing. Although I was unaffected by this error, some of my classmates were frustrated because they felt that they missed out on a segment that they would have liked to complete.

That being said, the experience throughout the course was truly exhilarating. All who participated saw Costa Rica from a vantage point that is virtually unobtainable otherwise, especially while on the lengthy, elevated Superman lines. However, I noted the pathway up to the first Superman line as an element in need of improvement.  The trek was slick with mud, extremely steep and lacked adequate directional signage. It was light enough for us to find our way but I can’t imagine how groups with later reservations would navigate up to this platform.

In the future, I suggest that 100% Aventura Adventure Park limit group sizes to decrease wait times, describe the course options in greater detail and add lighting, signage and staff throughout the course, especially leading up to the first Superman experience. This will make participants feel more comfortable about something that is nerve-wracking in nature; in turn allowing them to fully enjoy the scenic, memorable and thrilling rides that 100% Aventura Adventure Park has installed throughout Monteverde’s breathtaking landscape.

No comments:

Post a Comment