Using a zip-rail instead of a cable allows the ride called El Avatar to turn corners and sail up and down hills like an aerial roller coaster. The invention adds that “bottom dropping out from under you as your breakfast rises plunge down drops steep enough to approach a free fall” and the thrill of “all the blood rushing to your toes as you sling out to the side as the centripetal force exerted by the harness whips you around corners” to the zip experience.
Located on the rain forested hillsides of the Costa Verde Lodge reserve you can’t miss the billboards as you head down the hill on the only road to playa Espadilla and Manuel Antonio National Park. The ride lasts just over a minute and costs just over $10.
Having added curviest and hilliest to the -est list of extreme canopy zipping (longest, highest, fastest…) what I really want to know is “when are they adding the loop-the-loop?” It’s been done on roller coasters since the 1850’s and the first inverted loop water slide was opened in New Jersey over 35 year ago so why not loop the canopy zip-rail?
The inventor is introducing another innovation to Costa Rica’s treetops in the same location – the Canopy Bike which is sort of an inverted (the wheels are at the top on the cable) inside out (the frame is a cage around the outside of the riders) motorbike (the pedals are just props) that switches from cable to cable like a gondola as you sway gently through the tree-tops. You can try the Canopy Bike at the same location as the Avatar canopy zip-rail ride just outside Manuel Antonio National Park.
As you can see in the promotional photos above from the ride’s Facebook page curves both side to side and up and down (see bottom of image) to follow a convoluted path through the rain forest canopy. You can see more photos at Manuel Antonio Adventure Park Facebook page.