That’s why the One Day Adventure Pass or the One Day Nature Pass really is your best bet. If you stay for several days, you can go for both! You don’t necessarily have to be a hotel guest to enjoy the One Day Pass either – you can be a day tour visitor. An extravagant buffet lunch in Hotel Hacienda Guachipelin’s restaurant is included in both passes.
One Day Adventure Pass
You can do a few or all of these top Costa Rica adventure tours. It is completely feasible to do everything if you start by 8:00 a.m.
- Canyon Canopy Tour
- Rio Negro Tubing Adventure
- Horseback Rides – choose one of many tours, or simply ride horses to get to Rio Negro.
- Volcanic mud bath and thermal hot springs at Rio Negro
The Waterfalls Canyoning Tour may be included in the One Day Adventure Pass for an extra charge of $20 per person.
The Nature Pass is a softer day of adventure, focused on wildlife and the Rincon de la Vieja area’s natural beauty. This tour package is easily realized in a little over a half-day.
- Butterfly Garden, Serpentarium and Frog Habitats
- Walk to Look-out Point
- Visit the waterfalls and mineral hot springs at Rio Negro (transport by vehicle)
Hacienda Guachipelin’s Adventure Center is open seven days a week from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. You should note that tours in the Rincon de la Vieja National Park do not include the park admission fee ($10/person), and that the park is closed on Mondays.
At the base of the Rincon de la Vieja Volcano in the northwestern province of Guanacaste, Costa Rica, Hacienda Guachipelin is a top eco-tourism hotel and working horse and cattle ranch. Three rivers crisscross the 3,400-acre ranch, with waterfalls and natural thermal springs, creating an idyllic setting in the distinctive dry tropical forest.
Article by Shannon Farley
“We’re rescuing the cultural traditions of Guanacaste,” said Fernando Camacho Mora, archaeologist in charge of the project.
Not much is known about the first native peoples to live in the area of the Rincon de la Vieja National Park. What is understood is that a tribe known as the Chorotegas migrated south from Mexico through Nicaragua to Guanacaste in about 900 AD. They lived in places along the coast from Salinas Bay south to the Nicoya Gulf, but not in the interior. Archaeological findings show that a different people – probably who spoke a Chibchan language – lived on the inner lands of Guanacaste by the volcano from about 10,000 BC, explained Camacho.
“We don’t know the name of the people who lived here because they did not have a written language,” noted Camacho.
Helping to solve the mystery are 14 archaeological sites that have been found around Hacienda Guachipelin, which date from about 300 to 800 AD. “The archaeological sites around the Hacienda did not reach the year 900 AD, so the people living there were not Chorotegan at all. They might have had some contact with the Chorotegas – the archaeological findings indicate that – but they probably were another ethnic group, perhaps a Chibchan one,” said Camacho, who has studied archaeological sites in the area for several years.
Almost all of the discovered sites are cemeteries. Camacho said he is planning to do further research to uncover the living areas of the community. Petroglyphs and tomb markers with petroglyphs, dating to about 500 AD, have been found in river beds near Hacienda Guachipelin.
The hotel’s new archaeology tour will show off eight stations that give an introduction to the history of Guanacaste and Rincon de la Vieja, and a characterization of life in the indigenous society. The walking tour will start from the hotel Reception, stopping first at the hotel’s new hydroponic garden, and then visiting the exhibit of live snakes and frogs, and the small butterfly garden, until reaching the archaeological exposition.
Walking narrow paths through the tropical dry forest to a small clearing with a life-size statue of a hunter ready with his spear and a woman kneeling on the ground grinding corn, you can imagine what life may have been like for these ancestors of Costa Rica. A recreation of a burial tomb shows a replica skeleton and objects such as jade carvings and ceramic bowls to demonstrate burial practices and beliefs about the afterlife.
The 60 to 90-minute tour will open to the public toward the end of April.
Hotel Hacienda Guachipelín is an ideal place at Rincón de la Vieja Volcano to experience authentic Guanacaste culture and enjoy an active vacation. The ecotourism lodge has the best Costa Rica adventure tours. Hotel Hacienda Guachipelín is located 15.5 miles (25 km) northeast of Guanacaste’s main city of Liberia by the Pailas section of the Rincon de la Vieja Volcano.
Article by Shannon Farley
According to the 2013 World Energy Performance Index, Costa Rica is among the top 10 countries in the world with the best energy performance; and without question the northwestern province of Guanacaste has become a focal point for alternative and renewable energy.
Currently, Costa Rica produces 73% of its electricity from hydroelectric power, 13% from geothermal sources, 4% from wind turbines, and 1% from biomass, for a total of 91% of its energy generated from renewable sources, according to the Costa Rica Ministry of Environment and Energy (MINAE). Hydroelectric power, however, is climate-dependent, and during the driest months of summer it is stretched to its limits when water reserves are low.
This is where Guanacaste’s vast plains, powerful volcanoes and dry, sunny climate come into play. The second largest province in the country is being tapped for the powerful resources of wind, solar and geothermal energy.
In Guanacaste Costa Rica – one of the windiest locations in the world – international and Costa Rican companies are harnessing the power of the wind with huge wind turbine farms. There are currently 11 wind energy projects in Costa Rica, most in Guanacaste, and also by Volcano and Lake Arenal and in the Central Valley. Spanish wind engineering firm Gamesa is building a new wind farm in Guanacaste, set to be generating electricity by 2015.
Solar energy companies are rapidly on the rise in Guanacaste. When the Miravalles Solar Plant opened on the slopes of the Miravalles Volcano in November 2012, thanks to a $10 million loan by the Japanese government, it was the first of its kind in Costa Rica and the largest solar project in Central America. Now there are several solar projects in the works for the region.
Guanacaste’s North Volcanic Mountain Ridge has been ideal for geothermal power generation, tapping the Rincón de la Vieja, Miravalles and Tenorio volcanoes. The Miravalles Geothermal Field opened in 1994 and produces nearly 14% of the National Electrical System’s (SEN) capacity. The Pailas Geothermal Power Plant opened in July 2011 just outside the Rincón de la Vieja Volcano National Park and is also a key energy supplier. Last November, President Laura Chinchilla signed an agreement with the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) for a $560 million loan to build three more geothermal power plants near the famous Rincón de la Vieja Volcano in Guanacaste.
For things to do in Guanacaste, Costa Rica, look no further than the Costa Rica adventure tours at Hacienda Guachipelin. Their adventure park offers you canopy zip lines, canyoning, waterfall rappelling, river tubing, horseback riding, nature trails, natural thermal springs, and tours into the Rincón de la Vieja Volcano National Park.
Article by Shannon Farley
Costa Rica continues to be a magnet for adventure racing, high-endurance extreme sports and triathlons. Top international athletes travel to Costa Rica several times a year for sport competitions and events.
The north Pacific Guanacaste region is one of the most popular zones for extreme endurance events. In early March 2014, the International Triathlon Union (ITU) will hold the 2014 Pan American Cup at Playa Hermosa in Guanacaste. The XTERRA off-road triathlon race comes to Costa Rica also in March, staging their major international competition March 29 and 30 at Playa Conchal in Guanacaste. Costa Rica’s top triathlete Leonardo Chacon took first place at the XTERRA USA competition last year in Hawaii, and is looking to repeat his win this year.
Last year in December, Costa Rica hosted the 2013 Adventure Racing World Championships, in which 60 teams from around the world competed non-stop crossing the country 850km north to south and east to west. In June 2013, the North Face Endurance Challenge, involving 80k, 50k, 21k and 10k adventure runs happened at Hacienda Guachipelin at the rugged Rincón de la Vieja Volcano in Guanacaste.
Coming again in 2014 to Rincón de la Vieja is the second annual Rincón de la Vieja Challenge mountain biking endurance race – on Aug. 23. Held last year for the first time, the 100-mile (160 km) adventure race was the first of its kind in Costa Rica and Latin America to circumnavigate an active volcano.
Like in 2013, elite riders from all over the world will test their stamina and skill riding around the Rincón de la Vieja Volcano, the largest in Costa Rica’s northwest at 6,286 feet tall. The route travels over roads of gravel, red clay, smooth white calcium rock, and on single track, river and volcanic rock trails – with a total elevation gain of 10,862 feet (3,311 meters).
“One of the interesting aspects of Rincón de la Vieja for adventure racing is its different terrain and microclimates,” commented Hacienda Guachipelin owner Jose Tomas Batalla. “There is savannah, tropical forest, desert, and cloud forest, and the weather changes as you go up in elevation.”
Explore Rincón de la Vieja on your own adventure at Hacienda Guachipelin eco-lodge. The first-class lodge, right next to the Rincón de la Vieja Volcano National Park, offers guests and visitors a complete adventure center with canopy ziplines, canyoning, waterfall rappelling, river tubing, horseback riding, mountain biking, nature trails, and natural volcanic hot springs.
Article by Shannon Farley
According to data from the Costa Rica Bureau of Immigration and the Costa Rica Tourism Board (ICT), during the first six months of 2013 about 44,000 Canadians flew into the Daniel Oduber International Airport at Liberia (LIR) – representing 49% of all Canadians entering Costa Rica during that time. Approximately 30% of all tourists from the USA to Costa Rica – about 143,000 visitors – also preferred to arrive in country via Liberia rather than the Juan Santamaria International Airport in Alajuela (SJO).
While the Juan Santamaria International Airport still receives the lion’s share of international arrivals – flights to 43 destinations operated by 24 airlines – the Liberia International Airport is steadily growing in popularity for visitors seeking the Guanacaste Province’s legendary sun.
Guanacaste is known as the “sunny side” of Costa Rica. The northwestern province is named after Costa Rica’s national tree, the Guanacaste. The nearly-always sunny climate is dry and hot, creating its unique dry tropical forest habitat. Vast rolling plains, foothills, low coastal mountains and the towering Cordillera de Guanacaste mountain range create an interesting topography and micro-climates rich with biodiversity.
Guanacaste has quickly changed from a forgotten corner of Costa Rica into one of the most visited areas in the country by national and international tourists. The region is home to seven national parks, and the Guanacaste Pacific Coast is known as the “Gold Coast” or “Costa Rica’s Riviera” for its spectacular beaches.
Discover another side of Guanacaste at the Rincon de la Vieja Volcano
The beautiful forest, waterfalls, rivers, natural volcanic hot springs and bubbling volcanic mud pits of the very active Rincon de la Vieja Volcano are a top attraction in Guanacaste. Located right near the Las Pailas entrance to the Rincon de la Vieja National Park, in the midst of all of these natural wonders, is Hacienda Guachipelin Hotel.
Hacienda Guachipelin is a working horse and cattle ranch and an eco-tourism hotel for adventure travel. They offer thrilling canopy ziplines, canyoning, waterfall rappelling, river tubing, horseback riding, nature trails, mountain biking, thermal springs and an authentic experience of Guanacaste culture.
Article by Shannon Farley
I read once that in Costa Rica the best “all-terrain vehicle” for navigating the country is a horse. Costa Ricans love horses and their riding traditions – their equestrian roots coming from the Spanish who brought horses with them to Central America in the 16th century.
The heart and soul of Costa Rica’s equestrian life is the northwestern province of Guanacaste. Here, vast rolling plains run up into towering volcanoes and mountains of the Guanacaste Range. The sunny climate is dry and hot, creating the unique dry tropical forest habitat. For decades, Guanacaste has been dedicated to working the land, and cattle and horse ranching. Even though the region’s main economic activity is now tourism, the traditions of “sabanero” (cowboy) folklore, customs, music and dance are deeply rooted in the communities.
Settled in the golden savanna at the base of the Rincon de la Vieja Volcano, Hacienda Guachipelin Hotel is a working horse and cattle ranch, in addition to being an active eco-tourism hotel. Originally founded in the 19th century, the immense Hacienda ranch once stretched from the tip of the Rincón de la Vieja Volcano all the way to the Pacific Ocean. Since 1975, Tomás Batalla Esquivel, a renowned cattle rancher and purebred Spanish horse breeder, has kept the ranching legacy alive with his family.
Today, the property measures nearly 3,400 acres. Hotel Hacienda Guachipelin set aside 1,730 acres for the conservation of tropical dry forest, 1,025 acres are used as pastureland, and 625 acres are being reforested with endangered native tree species. Three rivers crisscross the ranch lands, creating an idyllic setting.
Hacienda Guachipelin offers seven different horseback riding tours riding the trusty ranch horses on scenic forest trails to the Rincon de la Vieja National Park or waterfalls or natural thermal springs. There is even a “Cowboy for a Day” tour, where you help out the real ranch cowboys in the stables and corral, milk cows, saddle and ready the horses, and ride out to herd cattle or other horses.
Hacienda Guachipelín Hotel is an ideal place to stay at Rincón de la Vieja Volcano to experience authentic Guanacaste culture and enjoy an active vacation. The first-class ecotourism lodge has a thrilling adventure center offering canopy ziplines, canyoning, waterfall rappelling, river tubing, horseback riding, nature trails, mountain biking and thermal springs. Hotel Hacienda Guachipelín is located 15.5 miles (25 km) northeast of Guanacaste’s main city of Liberia by the Pailas section of the Rincon de la Vieja Volcano.
Article by Shannon Farley
Here’s a bit of a different Costa Rica vacation for you: Travel the entire country from coast to coast and north to south, but only under your own steam on mountain bikes, kayaks, rafts, zipline cables, and your feet. Sleep under the stars wherever you may be – mud, sand, grass field, rocky stream bed – but only for a few hours at a time. Brave the thrills of mosquitoes, venomous snakes, crocodiles, rain, boiling sun, and sweltering rainforest. Do that for about six days straight with three of your friends, but with the added adrenaline surge of trying to outrace 64 other groups like you all trying to get to the same final destination first.
Sound like fun? Maybe not for the average person, but if you are one of the world’s best endurance athletes, it’s right up your alley … or trail, as it were.
This unforgettable “vacation” is actually the 2013 Adventure Race World Championships (ARWC), coming to Costa Rica from Nov. 29 to Dec. 12. Sixty-five teams from 26 countries will compete for more or less 140 hours non-stop on adventure challenges, covering over 700 km from the Pacific Ocean to the Caribbean Sea and across Costa Rica border-to-border from Nicaragua to Panama. Teams of four competitors will traverse a wide variety of terrain, from long beach walks to high ascents over rugged mountains. They will raft, kayak (ocean and river), mountain bike, trek, climb and rappel, and cross canopy ziplines, among other events. Race organizers estimate that it will take the winning team approximately 120 hours in five to six days to finish. The race will be open a total of nine days (216 hours).
The epic adventure is also the fourth Adventure Race Costa Rica (ARCR), which joined the Adventure Race World Series (ARWS) in 2010. The AR World Series is an international circuit of premier adventure races that since 2001 culminate every year in the AR World Championships. To get to the ARWC, teams have competed all year long in eight adventure races in different countries, leading up to the finals in Costa Rica.
Costa Rica is known for its beautiful beaches and rainforests, and is also gaining international fame for endurance sports. The “La Ruta de los Conquistadores” (The Route of the Conquistadors) top world endurance mountain bike race celebrated its 20th anniversary Oct. 24-26 in Costa Rica. Hundreds of the best mountain bikers and endurance racers have been crossing 192 miles (310 km) from the Pacific to the Caribbean over these three days.
In June, Hotel Hacienda Guachipelín, at the Rincón de la Vieja Volcano in Costa Rica’s northern Guanacaste region, hosted the international North Face Endurance Challenge. Competitors ran 80k, 50k, 21k and 10k races over rugged ground at the volcano. The eco-hotel then staged the 100-mile (160 km) Rincón de la Vieja Challenge mountain bike race in August. The adventure race was the first of its kind in Costa Rica and Latin America to circumnavigate an active volcano.
Not an endurance athlete, but still looking for an adventure vacation in Costa Rica? Hacienda Guachipelín, a first-class eco-lodge, is a prime destination for adventure and nature lovers – offering canopy ziplines, canyoning, waterfall rappelling, river tubing, horseback riding, mountain biking, nature trails, and thermal springs – all on a working horse and cattle ranch. Hotel Hacienda Guachipelín is located 15.5 miles (25 km) northeast of Guanacaste’s principal city of Liberia.
Article by Shannon Farley
Costa Rica is a popular, easy and fun destination for Friends’ Trips, especially for adventure travel enthusiasts. Planning a bachelor or bachelorette party? A guys’ trip? Girlfriends getaway? Or simply looking for some place different to go with your group of friends? Costa Rica delivers all you could want for a no-stress exotic vacation.
Get your friends, get your tickets, and escape to Costa Rica!
Top 5 Adventure Tours for a Costa Rica Friends’ Trip
1. Canopy Zip-Lines
2. Rafting Trip
3. Waterfall Rappelling / Canyoning
4. Jungle Hiking
All five of Costa Rica’s top adventure tours can be enjoyed at Hotel Hacienda Guachipelin at the Rincón de la Vieja Volcano. Only 15.5 miles northeast of Guanacaste’s principal city of Liberia, the first-class ecotourism lodge is a leading adventure and nature tours vacation destination.
Article by Shannon Farley
Along with the rest of the world, Costa Rica is actively exploring clean energy options that are sustainable and not harmful to the environment. Luckily, Costa Rica has many resources for energy – hydroelectric, wind turbine, geothermal, and now there are investigations into hydrogen energy.
Costa Rica currently produces about 90% of its electricity from mostly hydroelectric projects. However, hydroelectric power is weather-dependent, and during the driest months of summer it is stretched to its limits when water reserves are low. There is a plentiful resource however that is largely untapped – volcanic geothermal energy.
Geothermal power uses underground steam from volcanoes. The energy is harnessed by drawing hot water and steam from within the Earth’s crust, and then cooling it to move power turbines. An advantage of geothermal power is that it is continuously generated, and not dependent on weather conditions.
Costa Rica has plenty of volcanoes, and so far, the North Volcanic Mountain Ridge in the northwestern Guanacaste region has been ideal for geothermal power generation, with its Rincón de la Vieja, Miravalles and Tenorio volcanoes. The Miravalles Geothermal Field has been producing electricity since 1994, and the Pailas Geothermal Power Plant opened in July 2011 at the Rincón de la Vieja Volcano.
“Pailas” means cauldrons, and a hike in the Rincón de La Vieja National Park will show you why this 600,000-year-old volcano is so popular for geothermal energy; steam pours out of fumaroles, sulfur lagoons boil with minerals, and volcanic mud pits bubble and spit.
Costa Rica’s Legislative Assembly currently is debating a bill that would allow exploration and production of geothermal energy inside the Rincón de la Vieja National Park. The Pailas Geothermal Power Plant is just outside the park’s boundaries.
When you visit Rincón de la Vieja Volcano, stay at Hotel Hacienda Guachipelín. Located just 10 minutes outside the Pailas section of the Rincón de la Vieja National Park, the first-class ecotourism lodge is a leading center for adventure and nature tours, on a working horse and cattle ranch.
By Shannon Farley
Situado en la provincia de Guanacaste, en el Pacífico norte de Costa Rica, se yergue el Rincón de la Vieja. Es el volcán más grande en la región noroeste del país. Con una altura de 1.915 metros, la caldera posee 15 Km. de ancho. Es un sitio considerado como lugar místico y sagrado según la antigua tribu curubandé. Asimismo, el parque nacional circundante fue declarado Patrimonio de la Humanidad por la UNESCO en 1999.
Esta zona sirvió de escenario para la prueba de ciclismo de montaña «Rincón de la Vieja Challenge». En dicho evento deportivo, el representante de Portugal, Luis Leão Pinto, se coronó ganador. La competición inició desde el hotel Hacienda Guachipelín (en las cercanías del área protegida) y concluyó el pasado domingo 24 de agosto. En total, tuvo una distancia de 100 millas (160,9 kilómetros) y fue la primera de su tipo en América Latina. Según sus organizadores, es el único recorrido que da vueltas a un volcán activo.
En medio de este entorno, un grupo de ciclistas internacionales pusieron a prueba sus habilidades y resistencia, atravesando cinco tipos de microclimas. Recorrieron desde planicies áridas, bosques nublados exuberantes y ríos; hasta el famoso volcán Miravalles. Por ese motivo, se incluyeron pistas de tierra, caminos de barro rojo, senderos de roca volcánica y tramos en suave piedra caliza.
Pese a esas circunstancias tan complejas, Pinto aventajó a los demás concurrentes desde el primer momento de la competencia. Durante la mayor parte de la prueba el luso estuvo lado a lado con Deiber Esquivel. Sin embargo, luego de los primeros 15 kilómetros el portugués tomó la delantera, haciendo a un lado las dificultades climáticas y físicas que debió hacer frente.
En declaraciones al diario costarricense La Nación, el europeo declaró: «Sabía que había puntos claves en la competencia en donde podía hacer diferencia y a eso aposté, sufrí mucho pero sabía que iba más fuerte que él (Esquivel) y yo vine a ganar, para eso me preparé».
Finalmente, se hizo con el primer lugar tras obtener un tiempo de 6 horas, 38 minutos y 45 segundos. En segunda posición quedó Esquivel (6:47:37), el tercer puesto lo tuvo José Montoya (7:15:21) y el cuarto fue de Federico Ramírez (7:23:03).
En la rama femenina, la vencedora de este desafío fue Adriana Rojas, quien logró completar el circuito en 8 horas, 14 minutos y 57 segundos. Luego fue el turno de Nancy Amores (9:06:39); Milagro Mena (9:19:42) y Cinthya Coto (9:49:10).
Y es que Costa Rica ha ganado notoriedad internacional para competiciones y deportes de resistencia. En ese sentido, el hotel Hacienda Guachipelin también fue sede del North Face Endurance Challenge el 22 de junio, con trascursos de 80, 50, 21 y 10 kilómetros en la misma área.
El país también fue elegido como sede del Campeonato Mundial de Carreras de Aventura de este año. En este varios equipos internacionales harán lo propio para superar las 140 horas de duración de evento. Se realizará a partir del 29 de noviembre y hasta el 12 de diciembre de costa a costa y de frontera a frontera. En él se incluirán diversas disciplinas: carreras, senderismo, ciclismo de montaña, rapel, barranquismo, piragüismo, balsismo y «coasteering».
Claro está, que no se puede hablar de actividades extremas en Costa Rica sin hacer mención del antecedente más antiguo: «La Ruta de los Conquistadores». Es uno de los acontecimientos deportivos más importantes. Cada año reúne a cientos de ciclistas de todos los rincones del planeta. Los corredores de resistencia se dan cita en los terrenos más escarpados de esta nación centroamericana. Es un trayecto que cruza desde el Pacífico hasta el Caribe en solo tres días. Este año se desarrollará entre el 24 y el 26 de octubre y habrá celebraciones especiales por ser su edición número 20.
Por eso, los amantes de la adrenalina se sentirán muy a gusto en la zona de Guanacaste. Específicamente el hotel Hacienda Guachipelín es el lugar para alojarse en las cercanías de Rincón de la Vieja y disfrutar de unas vacaciones activas. Situado 25 Km. al noreste de Liberia, la capital de la región, resulta ideal para vivir la aventura en medio de la naturaleza. Las actividades son variadas aunque con un factor común: un ambiente propio de hacienda ganadera costarricense.
Por: Andrés Figueroa Vásquez.
La aventura en Costa Rica le está esperando con muchos de sus tours de un día en los alrededores del parque nacional Rincón de la Vieja