The rain finally stopped by late afternoon and immediately we hightailed it to downtown area. Not only did we go there to scope out the place, but also to sign up for the next day's activities - ziplining, et. al.
I found the downtown area to resemble a small mountain town. The downtown area where the hostels and cafes and restaurants and tour offices span about 4 blocks. We found the place empty, I was expecting it to be teeming with backpackers. I saw none.
We spent the first part of the hour hopping from one tour operator office to another comparing packages and prices and walking up and down the street, poking our heads inside stores, without real interest in shopping, but killing time. The place was dead. Must be an off season? I don't know. Also in the same road is a little church, Parroquia Sta. Elena, where we visited and said a little prayer for continued safe travels.
We ended up getting our tour from Selvatura, which is the biggest operator. And also the same tour that blog pal Nomadic Pinoy used when he was in Monteverde.
Inside the parroquia.
Tired from our little browsing and walking, our little feet took us to The Tree House, which is a cafe/restaurant and hotel. It has a big tree in the middle of the structure. They built around the tree. On the ground floor are boutiques, one the second floor is the cafe/restaurant and upstairs are the hotel. I was told that the rooms go for $24/night. Hostel pricing.
A chorreador is a coffee making device used in Costa Rica in which hot water leaches slowly through coffee grounds held in a cloth filter mounted on a wooden stand, and drips into a container. [wiki]
Before you ask, I took one home as a souvenir.
I really like the cafe, too bad it was almost empty.
When dark started to set in, we took it as our cue to start thinking about dinner. Upon the recommendation of our taxi driver, the one that took us from hotel to downtown, we walked for about 10 minutes uphill to get to Sabor Tico, which is a local hangout.
We were greeted by this lovely woman, who happens to own the place and also the cook.
And she served us these mouth-watering dishes:
Nothing fancy about her dishes, but really flavorful.
The next day when we came back for another meal, we met the husband who also serves as the front man/server. They are a lovely couple.
Also on the next day we bumped into these people who stayed in Pachira Lodge at the same time we were there. They told us everyone recommends this place to travellers, especially since the food is really good.
Day one in Monteverde is over. A restful sleep is required to prepare for a day of activities.