Costa Rica: Zarcero, Naranjo, Sarchi, San Carlos | 7 days | Jan 28 - Feb 3, 2017 | $3,999

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Detailed Itinerary

Journey of Purpose and Discovery Costa Rica

Leader Spotlight:  Mariana Faerron

​Mariana Faerron is an international professional from Costa Rica with extensive knowledge and experience in Agricultural Economics, international development and trade. She holds a degree in Agricultural Economics from University of Costa Rica, and a degree in Business Administration.

After spending several years in the micro lending, consumer goods and biotech industries, she moved to the Bay Area to start her current venture, Tico Coffee Roasters  ( based in Campbell, CA. Tico Coffee Roasters is a boutique company that specializes in unique and exclusive coffees and the finest teas from around the world.    

Mariana Faerron has contributed and donated her time to The Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose, Global Women Leadership Network to support women development and leadership around the world. She is part of the California Program for Entrepreneurship (CAPE) from the Leavey School of Business in Santa Clara University where she serves as a mentor and a judge for the annual program. She is also actively involved in the Latino community to develop educational programs for the Latino Youth. She is part of the Specialty Coffee Association of America.

Mariana loves outdoor activities, traveling, dancing, cooking and coffee!


​What's Included

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You are invited to become part of a once-in-a-lifetime experience: Make new friends while immersing yourself in local Costa Rican culture.  Learn about Costa Rica's coffee culture as you explore a number of small to medium sized farms with your journey leader Marian Faerron. Meet with Mariana's personal friends and business partners and participate in the coffee harvest. Join a local family for a traditional cooking lesson; fly high above the canopy of the rain forest on ziplines up to 550 meters long; relax in the geo- thermal hot springs and go beyond the tourist guide books as you experience Costa Rica through the eyes of a community.


Day 01: Depart for Costa Rica
Depart from San Francisco Bay Area today and make your way to Costa Rica. Arrival into Juan Santamaria International Airport, San José, Costa Rica, Meet your local private guide, and then travel aprrox. 1 hr 45 minute to the San Gerardo de Dota area. Enjoy your welcome dinner and overnight at Taragon Lodge.

Overnight:  Trogon Lodge (or similar)

Meals: Dinner

Day 02: Coffee & Community
Spend a full day with Mariana and your private guide visiting a small to medium coffee plantation. You will learn about the process of growing coffee in the country, the production and harvest seasons. Explore where Tico Coffee Roasters sources its beans and chat one-on-one with the plantation owner.

Giving back is a key component of traveling with Nanda Journeys, today you will participate in a community project that supports the local coffee farming community. 

Enjoy dinner in the “El Quetzal” restaurant. Trogon has a hydroponic farm that produces lettuce, spinach, leeks, chives, chard, parsley, thyme, rosemary, sage, oregano, celery, arugula, and coriander. Trout is grown in their trout ponds and preserved fruit and marmalade's are made from local products rarely found in other parts of the country. 

Overnight:  Trogon Lodge (or similar)
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 03: Handicrafts & Cheese

Depart after breakfast for Sarchi, home of the world renowned oxcart, or carretta, originally created in the 19th Century to carry coffee beans from the inland highlands to the Pacific Coast. Meet with a local artist and learn first-hand about Sarachi’s history and culture.

After spending some free time in Sarchi and maybe indulging in a little shopping {Sarchi is after all the birthplace of oxcart handicrafts} head to Zarcero, and visit a dairy farm that specializes in producing cheese. The Alfaro Ruiz region is famous for a specialty cheese -  just ask Mariana!

This afternoon a unique cooking lesson has been arranged for you with a local Costa Rican family. Learn how to cook a typical Costa Rica dish from the region.

Journey not to Chayote Lodge, a boutique inspired entirely by coffee culture. Each nook of the property resembles a piece of the coffee picker’s story and their lifestyle. Moreover, Chayote Lodge’s architecture and design integrates the most noteworthy elements of the coffee culture. For instance, the bungalows will resemble the traditional Coffee Receiving Stations known locally as “Recibidores”.

Overnight:  Chayote Lodge (or similar)
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 04: Coffee Culture and Hot Springs
This morning leave with your local guide and Mariana and visit another coffee plantation to continue learning the process of the coffee harvest and production.  Learn how local farmers are partnering with universities to utilize the pulp, by-products from coffee production. 

Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant following which you will visit Termales del Bosque a hotel and biological park immersed in an atmosphere of peace and relaxation.

The hot spring water is filtered at the skirt of Platanar Volcano, it warms up above the lava underground ducts, reaching temperatures of 50 °C. The pools vary in temperature and depth and have varying levels of mineral content. Relax and enjoy the and tranquility of the rain forest and dine in this exquisite location this evening. 
Overnight: Chayote Lodge (or similar)
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 05: Coffee Culture & Canopy Tour
After breakfast, visit the San Luis Adventure Park for an exciting Canopy Tour. Fly high above the virgin forest on cables between 50 to 550 meters long and between 3 – 106 meters high.  Take in the stunning scenery and various vantage points along the Cataraticas River. Lunch included in the park.

In the afternoon visit coffee plantations in the area to compare and contrast the different techniques and business models of local independent farmers.

Each day during the February harvest, coffee pickers bring their cherries to be measured – be part of this unique experience and see first-hand how a days’ hard labor is measured.

Return to Chayote Lodge for dinner in the Quelites Restaurant which offers some of the most beautiful views in Costa Rica; from the Central Valley and its volcanic range, to the Gulf of Nicoya in the Pacific Ocean and the green mountains surrounding the property to the Northwest. Quelites Restaurant really does have a breathtaking view with a warm and inviting atmosphere. The restaurant is very popular among locals (Tico’s) so you are sure to make new friends and see why Costa Rican’s claim to be the happiest people in the world!​

Overnight: Chayote Lodge (or similar)
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

​​Day 06: Community Life
Depart in the morning with your guide for a visit to La Paz Waterfall Gardens. 

When you think about Costa Rica, you probably imagine lush tropical rain forest, flowing white rivers, spectacular waterfalls, birds, butterflies, monkeys, hummingbirds, snakes, felines and frogs.

At La Paz Waterfall Gardens, you are guaranteed to see all that and more! In the facility you will have the opportunity to see both Rain and Cloud Forest – visit the Serpentarium where you can see snakes and frogs indigenous to Cost Rica. Enjoy a buffet lunch of typical Costa Rican dishes and international cuisine. The restaurant has received a 4 Fork Rating (the highest possible) from the Costa Rican Tourism Council. 

Return to Chayote Lodge for a farewell dinner. 

Overnight: Chayote Lodge (or similar)
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 07: Time to say goodbye!

Time to say goodbye to your new friends (Tico’s) and return to the U.S.A to promote the good word about Costa Rican coffee! .

Meals: Breakfast

Please note: All itineraries are subject to change based on availability of hotels, flights and hosting organizations at the time of finalization of booking. Comparable meetings and activities will be arranged should an itinerary change be necessary. 30 days before departure, a finalized itinerary will be available and reflect final details.​​