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From the ground to your cup: Our Top 3 coffee tours
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There is a lot of effort and dedication in every cup of coffee you taste. From planting the seeds, taking care of the plants, picking up the beans, to packaging and distributing all the way to your favorite coffee shop. Costa Rica has some of the best coffee in the world, and it is no wonder why the processes are also some of the bests in the world. This is why, we have chosen three amazing coffee experiences, where you can really understand why your coffee tastes so good!
Knowing the Coffee Making Process
While we live our everyday livese, we don’t think about how our favorite products, whether we’re talking about our favorite cereal or snacks, end upon in our table. Part of the reason is because companies in charge of creating these products keep their production facilities closed to the public.
In Costa Rica, when we talk about coffee, we take pride in our production techniques. we have sustainable farms offering coffee tours to demonstrate how the beans are grown, collected, toasted, packaged, and distributed to the different supermarkets and coffee shops worldwide.
While we obviously don’t take credit on creating the concept of coffee tours, considering our coffee legacy, we are confident that in Costa Rica you will have some of the best coffee tour experiences you’ll encounter anywhere else. Considering this, we bring travelers to experience this inspiring process first-hand. From their testimonials, we have selected three of the favorite coffee tours in different regions of the country.
Doka State & Costa Rica Coffee Farm
Considered one of the best coffee plantations in Latin America, Doka state is located near the Poás volcano in Costa Rica’s Central Valley. It was created in 1940 by the Vargas family who have dedicated their lives to growing quality coffee.
Originally, in 1940, the family started their business in a very small scale, only growing and selling the raw coffee beans. It wasn’t until much later when they decided to not only grow but process their coffee beans. Their coffee growing expertise and experience has grown to the point where they are worldwide renowned coffee producers.
After all the growth that the family business experienced, in 1985 they decided to acquire the full production coffee plantation of Doka. Ever since, this coffee plantation has received both locals and world travelers offering them “El verdadero tour de café” (the true coffee tour).
Keep the adventure going
Just one hour away from the capital and so close to El Poás Volcano National Park and La Paz Waterfalls Gardens, you can easily schedule a full day of your trip dedicated to exploring these places before or after your visit to the coffee tour.
If you are looking for somewhere to eat after a long day, in the area there are lots of restaurants. Some of them even sell strawberries, which are known to be the specialty in the region. If you choose to go out of your way and do any of these activities, we guarantee you’ll have a great time.
Don Juan Coffee Monteverde tour
Monteverde was the birthplace of the first coffee producing families of the region and founders of the first and original Don Juan coffee farm. Even though the toasting techniques play a big part in the coffee-making process, thanks to the altitude where the beans are planted, the production of this coffee exceeds others, giving it a richer aroma and taste.
The coffee farm opened its doors for the first time in 2005, and begun with the tour in 2006, and travelers from all over the world have experienced .
What to expect from a Don Juan Tour?
Aside from a tour guided by an expert, who´ll teach you more in depth about the true importance of the legacy of the Don Juan family and the history of the coffee on the area, you´ll also get to experience what a high-quality coffee tastes like. When you visit the Don Juan coffee tour, one of the activities is coffee tasting, in which they use the same high-quality beans that are globally exported. If you are a coffee lover just as we are, just imagining how a coffee with that taste, makes your mind run wild.
The beauties of the Monteverde region
After taking your time enjoying and learning about coffee, it´s time to keep your travel going. Monteverde is two hours away from the capital city San José, the region has a dense biodiversity and a lush cloud-forest, parks and reserves enough to make your visit a worthwhile experience. If you’re considering planning a trip with the coffee tour, here are some extra spots that could catch your eye.
Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve
One of the main attractions, if not the main reason of your visit to the region, it might as well be on your itinerary of activities.
This place being one of the most biologically rich in the country or even dare to say in the world, a visit to this park is a must for any traveler who wants to truly experience Costa Rica in all its angles.
Monteverde Horseback Riding
What better way to get to know the lands than by riding through them. Get to know a more personal side of the country usually unknown by any other traveler. This is another great way to see the forests and the amazing biodiversity of this place, located on the Tilarán Mountain Range with two cloud forest reserves that provide visitors with a wealth of nature to explore, adventure, and the chance to enrich the knowledge about the surrounding ecosystems.
Coopedota Coffee Tour
Coopedota was founded in 1960 by ninety-six small coffee producers and families of the Santa Maria district in Dota, two and a half hours South of San José. Years later, Coopedota not only helped give a huge recognition to the Dota district, but it also became one of the biggest coffee giants in Costa Rica, offering high quality products and one of the best coffee tours for you to experience.
Living the whole Costa Rica experience
A complete tour is carried out from the coffee mill explaining the wet process, drying process, storage, and the golden grain ready for export. Along the way, the different environmental and sustainability projects are visited as well.
In the roaster, you will observe the process of the roasting, grinding, and packaging of the golden bean for local consumption. Next to the roaster station is the coffee plantation where you will learn about the productive life of the coffee plant, its care, and the benefits of the proper use of shade in the plantation.
At the end of the tour, you will taste a delicious coffee at Cafe Privilegios coffee shop, rated by Lonely Planet magazine as one of the ten best places in the world to have a cup of coffee.
Getting to know the Dota region
When you are planning a visit to the region, we highly recommend you stay a little longer and enjoy the other tourist spots that the beautiful district of Dota has to offer. If necessary, there are a vast arrange of lodges for you to spend the night and continue exploring early the next morning.
One activity that is better enjoyed early in the morning is the ´´Quetzal Search´´. This tour takes place early in the morning, right after dawn, which is the time when quetzals go to look for their food. They walk you to where they feed which can be a short walk, however the whole tour can last up to 2 hours. You can experience this activity and in the very same day go visit the Coopedota coffee tour where, at the end of it, you´ll get to enjoy a high-quality cup of exported grade coffee.
Next steps…coffee and Costa Rica
So, what do you think? After getting to know a little bit more of the process, the communities, and the families who´s hard work is behind the products that end up in your table; the next step is for you to personally come visit not only the coffee tours previously mentioned, but the regions where they come from as well. We are sure your love for coffee will be stronger, and you will be ready to come back for many more cups of coffee and adventures in Costa Rica.
Written by Juan Carlos Ramírez
Horizontes Nature Tours