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We received this wonderful review from our tours from a group of journalists, and we wanted to share it with everybody
Outings are easily arranged with the local tour operators who eagerly welcome bookings at the lobby. Then there are those amiable tour reps who like to hang by the beach practicing their English as they ask what country you are from.
One day local tour operator Swiss Travel took us to Rincon de la Vieja, the largest active volcano in the country’s northwest and the closest to the beach. It’s part of a national park of the same name, which translates roughly to “old woman’s nook.”
In the morning we rode horseback through lush tall grasses bearing spiny Pochote trees. This stretch of heaven is the remnant of volcanic activity eons ago but the region is still very active. Guanacaste is located like much of Costa Rica in a volcanic zone. Just around us nine craters are visible.
Locals call this place “Little Yellowstone” because of the rich biodiversity and its numerous boiling mud pots. It emits an otherworldly ambiance as the sulphurous fumaroles cast small mushroom clouds over the terrain in some parts.
By the Rio Negro (so named due to the black lava rock), we bid the horses adios then resumed the next leg: white water tubing.
Churning around and around, laughing in hysterics the entire way, I couldn’t get over myself. I mean I’m no shrinking violet when it comes to battling rapids. A Niagara Falls-born gal I am, so hitting the infamous Niagara Gorge in a turbo jet is done on a lazy afternoon (okay I was a passenger on that one, but still) and splashing around rapids outside Ottawa I’ve done in a day.
But this one was like nature’s amusement ride. It helps its dry season from December through April so water levels are low. Still the turning action as I spun around this tempest in a teapot got my heart pounding as I twisted and turned through this jungle canyon.
Giddy with excitement, I snuck my neck inside the tube like a cautious turtle bracing myself for the unknown. Instead as I looked above a heavenly blue butterfly fluttered watching over me.
That night at the resort we laughed and reminisced on how we conquered the Rio Negro.
Boy would I do it again. ”
Our adventures are popular in the Guanacaste area. The closeness to the beach and the fact that the volcano is active makes the area a popular destination. Adventures for all ages , plus nature and lots of volcanic activity makes the area the place to change the pace.
Here is a nice comment from a recent visit posted on the Costa Rica forum .
Yes, we called Guachipelin in the morning right after they opened and got there soon after.
We have amazing pictures and videos of my daughter’s adventures! I’ll make sure and show them to her when she’ll become a mother and worry about her kids! All those “Tarzan swings” and upside-down ziplining….good thing I didn’t know anything about them at the time they were happening!:-)))
Adventure Tours from Hacienda Guchipelin has recently been awarded with Level 4 in sustainability. This is a great recognition for the effort to be more sustainable in all of our practices and all of our work. The best part of it is that the staff has a new way of looking at things.
According to the the Ministry of Tourism of Costa Rica in the web site:
Sustainability, as a model of development, seeks to meet the current demands of society without compromising the rights of future generations to meet theirs. That is to say, the development of the country cannot be based on the unbalanced exploitation of resources (natural, cultural, social, etc.) to meet the demands of society (food, housing, health, employment) because these are the only resources we have, and that future generations have, to meet our and their own needs.
The most visited National Park in Guanacaste is Rincon de la Vieja Volcano. Every year around 70.000 visitors enjoy the wonders of this national park.
The most visited trail in Rincon de la Vieja National Park is Las Pailas. The trail has a total distance of 3.5 km. The hike lasts around 2 hours.
The main reason to visit is the secondary volcanic activity, not to mention the waterfalls and the pristine rivers. The volcanic activity is manifested as mud volcanoes and fumaroles, a roaring little crater, hot springs, boiling mud pools, sulfur springs, lagoons full of boiling water. Other attractions are the 200 bird species, large mammals like the tapir, smaller mammals like howler monkeys, capuchin or white faced monkeys, spider monkeys, and more. Here are some recent pictures of the flora in the park.
Some important regulations to follow are:
The admission $10 per person. Las Pailas is open from Tuesday to Sunday. The entrance is open to visitors from 7:30 am to 3:30 pm, but the parks closes at 5 pm.
The park was created by Law in October, 1973. Its has an extension is of 14.083.9 hectares. It is divided into two sectors: Santa Maria and Las Pailas.
There is a little convenience store at the park’s entrance. Things like bug spray, water, beer, ponchos, sunscreen, and snacks are sold. Free WIFI is also available. Very convenient to stay connected.
Rincon de la Vieja Volcano is slowly becoming a renowned birdwatching destination. Hacienda Guachipelin has sponsored several bird counts. This year’s event will most likely take place in October.
Birds are now becoming another reason to visit the area.
Here we will share a bird list provided the naturalist guide Cesar Güell. Cesar is a professional guide graduated from a Costarrican official training program for naturalist guides. What Cesar most enjoys is to share his knowledge with visitors. He really enjoys a day full of nature in the park or in the surroundings. The bird count in the area exceeds the 200 mark, but Cesar in his past year has registered 65 birds in his own personal list. Come to Rincon de la Vieja and experience the wildlife of Costa Rica with Cesar.
We are proud to have received from Trip Advisor a certificate of Excellence for this 2012. Our staff has worked hard every day to do the best effort to satisfy the guests in every possible way. Hacienda Guachipelin has been in operations since 1988 and Trip Advisor has been an important tool since the beginning. It would be almost impossible to inform clients in their own languages about the Hacienda.
The more involved we get with Trip Advisor, the better results that the Hacienda gets.
We are happy to know that 118 TA users have rated Hacienda Guachipelin as excellent. We take our reviews in a very serious way. Our costumers are the ones that evaluate us and remind us of the things that we should improve and the areas where we are good at.
Trip Advisor has been for us a great tool and ever since we started to seriously look into it, we have experienced guests reserving direct through our reservations office.
Despite all challenges, Jessica Gallant was able to hike Rincon de la Vieja. Not to the top, since there has been serious activity on the top, but to pristine waterfalls and through trails.
According to The Edmonton Journal 29 Team Diabetes members had raised more than $228,000. That is a lot of money. We are really happy for the Canadian Diabetes Association.
According to the article, Jessica mentioned “It didn’t matter. I had no idea I could hike six hours on rugged trails with two new hips and a wonky knee.”
Rincon de la Vieja Volcano is a magic place. We are proud that Jessica chose this destination for her challenge.
Hacienda Guachipelin has been expanding the range of activities for years. Our idea is to have have activities available for everyone, no matter age or physical condition. One of the activities that can be practiced is mountain bike. The are many trails with different levels of difficulty within the property. So if mountain bike is on your to do list for your next vacation in Costa Rica, get in touch with us.