The Serpentarium Monteverde is a 14 acre urban park in the heart of the Tilarán Mountain Range in southern Monteverde. Situated 4,000 ft above sea level, the Serpentarium is just 5 minutes from downtown Santa Elena.
The Serpentarium is a great place to get up close with some of Costa Rica’s most intimidating creatures. More than just a snake exhibit, the Monteverde Serpentarium has over 40 species of venomous and non-venomous snakes, poison arrow frogs, toads, lizards and turtles. Most of the species can also be found in the surrounding area, but are often hard to spot.
Introduction to Costa Rican Snakes
Costa Rica has 15 different species of venomous snakes, among which are the fer de lance, the godman montane pit viper, the slender hog nosed pit viper, the jumping pit viper, the bushmaster, the black speckled palm pit viper, the eyelash palm pit viper, the rainforest hog nosed pit viper, the side palm pit viper, the mute rattler, neo tropical rattlesnakes, cantils, corals, the red tailed coral snake, chinilla, and selagic sea snake.
The fer de lance is Costa Rica’s most dangerous snake, known for its speed, aggression and neurotoxic venom. The mute rattler is famous for producing more poison than any other snake in Costa Rica, while the bushmaster takes the crown as the largest venomous snake in the Americas.
Costa Rica is also home to variety of non-venomous snakes, the most famous being: false corals, mica, boas, sabanero real, zopilote and false Lora. Even though these non-poisonous snakes characteristically have no poison glands, they do carry a high number of bacteria that can cause infections, necrosis, and even tetanus, due to the contamination in their fangs. All of these species and more can be seen at the Serpentarium.
The folks at the Serpentarium have done great job of replicating the natural habitat of these reptiles while allowing visitors to safely see them, up close. Visitors can learn how to identify them in the wild, about their habitats and their habits. Other than the 40 snake species that call the Serpentarium home, there are two turtle species, two lizard species and two frog species including the black and green poison dart frog and the blue jean poison dart frog. There is also an onsite amphitheater. The Monteverde Serpentarium is open from 9 AM to 1 PM. Guided tours are available in English and Spanish.