Finca Sura: Tourism and Organic Farming in Costa Rica
Welcome to the third post of the blog series about ecotourism and rural tourism in Costa Rica. Simone, blogger and member of the Ethical Influencer Network, writes about Finca Sura and the exquisite agricultural products it has to offer.
I’m going to be totally honest. I had no idea where I was going. I had freed myself of all expectations and had given everything up to faith and trust. Trusting my guides Jose Pablo and Felipe’s passion and experience for delivering authentic and truly connected travel experiences.
As we drove further away from San Jose I watched as the jungle started to wrap around us, towering verdant walls lining the winding roads and undulating layers of green in the distance, the ever cheerful Jose Pablo pointing out waterfalls in the cracks and sloths in the tallest of palm trees.
We arrived under moody skies at Finca Sura, an absolute hidden treasure of organic farmland in amongst all that jungle. Where the Gomez family welcomed us onto their property, nine hectares of estate, lovingly tendered by their small team of five. The main production at the farm is organic pineapples, but wandering around we experienced a variety of gastronomical and remedial plant wonders, such as: vanilla beans, peppercorns, annattos, lemongrass, cinnamon bark, turmeric and sugar cane. Finca Sura specialises in organic farming in Costa Rica.
The beautiful thing about the farm was how everything was in symbiosis with nature. The natural way of doing things, to allow everything the space, time and nutrients it needs to grow. The sentiment echoed when we threw up alarm at the pineapples that had been eaten by birds and foxes and wondered what the farmers do to prevent such an intrusion to their fruit. The farmer soothed us with “there is enough for everyone.” They simply let the animals take what they need.
Conventional pineapples are gassed to hasten the ripening process but here at Finca Sura it is left up to nature. It may take a year for the organic pineapple to reach full harvesting potential and they come in all sizes, but the result is the juiciest, sweetest pineapple you will ever experience. As a rain storm poured down over us, we stood there, relishing the freshly picked gold flesh in a moment of pure joy.
We also experienced the fresh pressed sugar cane, squeezing it our selves through a traditional press, spiked with organic ginger and leaving syrupy layers on our tongues.
I adored their outdoor kitchen. Every meal offered up an authentic family cooked, farm-to-table meal rich in Costa Rican delights and of course, organic ingredients. Yucca and plantains and pure pineapple juice and amazing salads and little pineapple candies and… I could go on but really, just everything 100% natural and served with love.
One evening we enjoyed slow food at its very finest – homemade hot chocolate. Earlier that day, wandering around the farm, we pulled down some cacao pods, cracked them open and sucked the sweet flesh from around the seeds. That night we found the heady aroma of cacao coming from the kitchen. Before long, everyone was hovering around the open fire stove watching the roasting beans. In a team effort, we peeled the hot beans ready to be crushed. It was like a soothing meditation, as well as having that perfect comradely, fireside storytelling vibe. After pressing the beans over and over through a hand grinder, we watched as the cooks transformed it for us into delicious hot cacao and bars of chocolate.
To wander around this farm was to feel a little lost in paradise. Sensory overload delivered by way of the brightest, boldest red flowers, the humidity on your skin, the smell of something plucked from a tree, crushed and handed to you to inhale – cinnamon bark, peppercorns, citronella, ylang ylang. The toucans flashing their fluoro splendour through the jungle canopy, the teeniest of frogs, well spotted only by the farmer who knows where to look, vivid in colour and shy in spirit.
And then we had to go. Ushered out of this concentrated ecosystem of natural wonder and guided to our next destination by Jose Pablo and Felipe, again following, fully trusting but now the bar of expectation had been raised. They had delivered the goods and I may still of had no idea exactly where I was going, but I knew it was going to be great.
About the author:
Simone writes about ethical fashion at The Ethereal Edit and at Mochni.com. She is also a member of the Ethical Influencer Network – a global community of writers and creatives committed to promoting conscious consumerism. See more pictures from the trip on Instagram: #ethicalinfluencersxsumaktravel
How to do it:
Finca Sura offers accommodation, excursions, workshops and more. If you are planning to visit Finca Sura on your own, you can contact Rodolfo at firstname.lastname@example.org (in Spanish). If you are looking for a tailor-made tour in Costa Rica, you can visit our Costa Rica holidays page. Lastly, don’t forget to subscribe to our quarterly newsletter to make sure you never miss blog posts like this one in the future!
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