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Galloping Through Monte Verde, Costa Rica

- Ally

Monte Verde is not only a wonderful town high in the cloud forest of Costa Rica, but also the most beautiful place to horseback ride. When my family and I first went to Monte Verde we were instantly mesmerized by its “wild west” feel and beauty. Whenever we go away somewhere, the only way my parents get me to visit museums is if I go horseback riding first. So, that’s what we did in Monte Verde. We went to a little “mom and pop” horseback riding place, mounted our horses, and road off down a dirt road with our local guide. We were on our way not knowing what lay ahead of us. Before we knew it, we were high on a hill overlooking a vast valley below. Suddenly, wild horses surrounded us and began to spook our horses! Our instructor quickly pulled out his bullwhip and snapped it in the air making a “crack” so loud it echoed down the canyon. The sound frightened the wild horses away and marked this moment in my memory forever!

After trotting through some incredible wetlands and woods, we had a chance to dismount and walk over to a stand of trees. In these trees were two pet monkeys, Chi-Chi and Thomas! Chi-Chi was shy and stayed up in the tree but Thomas was very different! Thomas came down from the tree and climbed all over everyone in our family. He was very playful and took off our hats but, of course, always gave them back to us. This was so much fun. I loved seeing the monkeys up close.

When we got back on the trail, our guide asked if anyone wanted to gallop. My hand immediately went up and no other hands were up except mine. The guide told me to kick my horse really hard. So I did and before I knew it, we went flying down the trail. It was SO much fun! I wish I could go back soon and have the same experience.

It’s amazing how horseback riding makes vacations with the family much more fun and adventurous. Try it out!

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