Get off the beaten track and immerse yourself in authentic, rural Costa Rican ways of life. Get in touch with a wholesome, down-to-earth experience with an eco-friendly community to truly understand Costa Rica's culture.
On this visit to the hard-working, eco-conscious community of you’ll get the opportunity to see a side to Costa Rica that most tourists miss out on. Located two hours from San Jose and even 12 kilometres from the Pan American Highway, you’ll be travelling deep into the impossibly lush and fertile Parque Nacional Los Quetzales, to learn about and immerse yourself in the local way of life.
It’s easy to forget that there are still populations out there who have to work the very land they live on to survive. This specially curated tour acts as an eye-opener, as a way to gain exposure to tight-knit communities we don’t often come across, and as an opportunity to get stuck in with traditional practices, all surrounded by the stunning natural beauty of the Costa Rican countryside.
We start the tour at an old sugar cane mill, which provides a perfect example of these traditional methods still in practice today. These are authentic processes that have been passed down through generations, from lighting the stove to employing oxen, it’s a genuinely fascinating process that gives real insight into how the people here make a living. You’ll the process behind making two Costa Rican staples, the sugary ‘tapa’ drink and ‘sobado’, a sweet, breadlike delicacy. If you’re lucky, you might even get to try some!
Before you see how these are made however, you’ll be taken on a picturesque hike through the steamy jungle to the tropical paradise that is Salitre Waterfall. You’ll stumble across iridescent lagoons surrounded by thick, deep green forest, feel the spray from the beautifully pure water, that rises in a fine mist from majestically towering waterfalls. After all, the river basin here is the cleanest and purest in Central America.
Having worked up an appetite, you’ll arrive back at the community for an incredibly fresh, traditional lunch. Your host will show you how to make various jams, juices and salsas from the native fruits and vegetables, and then you’ll get a chance to show what you’ve learned by getting stuck in and having a go at producing your own culinary masterpieces.
Finally, you’ll visit Ana and Enrique Calderon Aguero, who run a small, rustic, coffee plantation. After an ‘old style’ tour of the plantation, where you’ll see exactly how the pair go about their day to day lives, they’ll treat you what we can guarantee is going to be the best coffee you’ve ever tasted, made fresh with beans straight from the plantation.
All in all, this day helps you escape the hustle and bustle of the tourists and crowds. It’s a leisurely paced, dreamlike kind of day, where you learn that it’s okay to slow down a bit. Finally, you’ll be dropped off back in San Jose downtown, for you to continue the rest of your travels.