After reading about La Finca here on TA, I was sold! My friend and I took the Hummingbird Package, which is 2 nights' accommodation, all your meals, a farm tour, and one additional tour. We arrived late in the afternoon on our first night, and I really wish we had been able to arrive earlier or stay one extra night. It just wasn't enough.
We followed the directions on the farm's website and had no trouble finding it. However, please do realize that it's in the middle of nowhere and you must drive 14 kilometers on a gravel road. In some places, the gravel could more realistically be called small boulders! We had a small car and we made it, but it was rather harrowing. I would really recommend something with 4 wheel drive.
Upon arrival, we were greeted by Pablo and checked into our cabin, which was the second closest to the main lodge. The farm's horse, Trueno, lives in a pasture just outside the cabins, and he loved to come say hi. Our cabin was charming and rustic with 2 twin beds, coffee maker & refrigerator, and a shelving area for our luggage. The bathroom had a large shower with hot water, and the water in the sink was safe to drink. There was also a safe in the room, although we didn't feel the need to use it in such a remote location. By the way, I am very much a hotel snob and I found the accommodations clean and comfortable. The cabin's porch had a hammock and rocking chair, and after 5 minutes sitting there, my friend (who had not been as excited as I was about the farm) said, "Thank you so much for picking this place!" Relaxing on that porch was a tranquil heaven.
We met Ana and had a delicious first lunch which included fresh juice (we would find out they serve a different fresh juice at every meal) and hot chocolate made from the farm's own cacao. Then Pablo gave us a demonstration of how they harvest hearts of palm, and he used the fresh ones to make a ceviche for that night's dinner. Next we went on a tour of the farm with Pablo (and the farm dogs!), where he explained some of their crops and provided really fascinating information about their philosophies of farming.
Dinner was a relaxing affair where we chatted with Pablo and the other farm guests. I saw other reviewers mention that they felt like family, and it was really true for us. We loved meeting other travelers and hearing about their adventures, as well as the unique lives that Ana & Pablo lead at their farm.
It gets really dark out there in the middle of the rainforest, so we definitely needed a flashlight to get back to our cabin. And I had no idea the wildlife would be so noisy! The insects (and whatever else was out there!) were an interesting lullaby for sure. Also, the farm dogs made themselves at home on our porch (our guards for the night?), which we loved.
The next day (our only full day, unfortunately) we enjoyed eggs, rice & beans for breakfast, along with delicious strong coffee and the freshest fruit. We chose to do the excursion to Las Hornillas which I reviewed separately and we really enjoyed. That night's dinner was another enjoyable evening with the other travelers and Pablo. Pablo and Ana are just so open - they really like to share the details of their lives and their philosophies. I was sad we didn't get to meet their kids, although we did hear Pablo's good night phone call with them and it was the cutest thing.
The next morning we had to leave, and Ana & Pablo asked the kitchen to come in a little early for us so we would have time for breakfast before heading to the airport. I found that really thoughtful. We couldn't resist purchasing a few souvenirs from their shop, including earrings that their daughter Ana Paula creates.
Our stay at Finca Anita was like no other place I have ever been, and that's really why I picked it. I would love to go back and take some more of the excursions in the area and just spend time relaxing in the beautiful and pristine setting. If your Costa Rica travel plans permit, you really must book it. It's an incredible and unique experience with the warmest of hosts.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Nestled in a small valley between the Miravalles, Rincon de la Vieja, and Santa Maria Volcanoes, La Anita Rainforest Ranch is surrounded by an incredible explosion of biodiversity. Our guests have the opportunity to tour our ranch and indulge in gourmet cuisine prepared with ingredients picked fresh from our gardens. We will guide you through rainforest trails, teach you about the flower and heart of palm, fruits and much more. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- La Anita Rainforest Ranch Hotel Rincon De La Vieja
- La Anita Rainforest Ranch Costa Rica/Rincon De La Vieja