On this multifaceted guided cultural tour you’ll visit an award-winning coffee plantation, an ornately designed historical church, and the artisan town of Sarchi, known for its excellent craftsmanship of sustainable hardwood furniture as well as creative souvenirs.
This fun filled day will begin when you are picked up in an air-conditioned van and driven along the Pan-American highway to three beautiful, green mountainous areas of Costa Rica.
Your first stop will be at the Doka Coffee Estate, a family-run and internationally recognized coffee plantation. This coffee has been awarded the “World’s Best Coffee” for two years in a row and the estate has become an increasingly popular tourist destination. You will be shown every aspect of how coffee is produced from bean to cup.
Have you ever seen a coffee cherry before? Coffee beans actually grow inside a red cherry, which needs to be harvested and peeled before the bean can be roasted and ground. It is quite an intensive process, which is why artisanal coffee is not cheap. You will be served a piping hot cup of coffee brewed in the traditional way, then if you like, you will have a chance to purchase a bag of beans to take home.
At the next stop you will visit a famous church in downtown Grecia. This church is well-known for its intricate metal architecture rarely seen anywhere else in Costa Rica or even throughout Central America. The beautiful ornate sculptural details, high ceilings and stained glass windows are highly cherished by the locals and have brought many tourists to Grecia to see this remarkable church.
For your next adventure, you’ll hop back into the van and head to the colorful town of Sarchi. Here you will find a community of artists creating handmade furniture, incredible art pieces, and traditional crafts. The most famous and iconic art object you will see is the brightly painted oxcarts and oxcart wheel. The oxcart is a national symbol of the Costa Rican worker and almost ever community has an annual oxcart parade. The vibrant, colorful patterns are well-loved by locals and visitors alike. You may even see the artists at work and have a chance to ask questions or purchase a souvenir from them.
At some point during the day, you’ll stop at a local restaurant to enjoy a traditional Costa Rican meal called a “casada” and a beverage. Casada means “marriage” and the meal is typically a marriage of beans and rice, picadillo, salad, meat or veggie choice, plus fried plantains.
Today’s tour includes a bilingual guide, all entrance fees, lunch and transportation from hotels in Alajuela, Heredia, and San Jose. One way transportation typically takes from 1 to 2 hours depending on the location of your hotel. Occasionally heavy traffic conditions can add to travel time. Combined time of visiting the three cultural sites, lunch, plus round trip transportation is typically between 6 and 7 hours. You might like to bring extra spending money to purchase souvenirs.