Explore Costa Rica on Happy, Healthy, Horses, Trained in Parelli Natural Horsemanship!

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Thursday, July 24, 2008

Ride through the Spectacular Costa Rican Mountains and Rich Tropical Rain Forest to the Beautiful Pacific Coast Beaches

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Day 1: Pick up from SJO airport and drive for one hour to Santiago de Puriscal nestled in the mountains above the bustling and crowded central valley of San Jose. Arriving at the Barking Horse Farm let freshly made juices and delicious vegetarian cuisine help you rest, relax and recover from your flight. Learn first hand about the principles of sustainability by experiencing a day in the life of our family farm.

For detailed information about the farm and more information and photos of this trek visit:

If you arrive early there are rivers and waterfalls nearby to explore.

On this day you will also meet your horse. We take the time to assure a good match between horse, rider and equipment. You will try them out in the ring to assure a perfect match for the journey.
This is also when we can examine detailed maps of the route, discuss the trip and answer any questions that the riders might have

Day 2:
Leave the farm and travel through mountainous farm land. Ride through fields of sugar cane and visit a traditional "trapiche" which is where brown sugar is made. This is an age old practice of extracting the juice from the sugarcane with a large press and boiling it for many hours in cauldrons until enough liquid is evaporated to produce a delicious brown sugar
Traveling through a private farm we climb to 3600 feet where on a clear day you can see the ocean in the far distance. From this vantage point we begin to descend through villages stopping for lunch in the small town of Perdonal.

Continuing on after lunch to the settlement of Candelarita where we will spend the night with a rural family. Here you will have the opportunity to experience true Costa Rican hospitality. Our bilingual guide will be present to facilitate a rich cultural exchange.

Day 3:
In the morning we start out early heading towards the rainforest of Mastatal.

The terrain is rugged, ascending and descending through the steep mountains.

crossing rivers and passing cascades and small waterfalls along the way.

We have lunch with a rural farming family. Every one loves having lunch with Betty and her family. She will teach you how to make hand made tortillas while she cooks lunch over the wood stove. Lunch always includes her home made cheeses.

We arrive in the evening at Villas Mastatal

This Costa Rican family run guest house is located at the base of La Cangreja National Park They offer a variety of tours through the park and to nearby waterfalls.

Day 4 Is a day of rest for the horses and a day of fun for us. Here in the last virgin rainforest of Puriscal County we can discover the beauty of the La Cangreja National Park. Take a walk through 500 acres of unspoilt jungle, along the well groomed trails, past towering trees, lush jungle and rushing rivers.

Or we can visit Rancho Mastatal,, an environmental learning and sustainable living center. Take a walk around and admire their lovely and innovative buildings made from renewable rainforest resources.

Or visit Iguana Chocolate,, a family run chocolate farm. See how cocoa beans are processed to make rich dark chocolate. Take some samples to nibble on during the ride!

Day 5 We enjoy an easy day riding along country roads that rim the valley of the Scarlet Macaw Corridor. We are heading to the town of Salitrales, at the very head of the Corridor.

Here we will stay the night in the home of our guide Eduardo Sandi and his family.

Day 6 Is a special day as we descend into the Scarlet Macaw Corridor framed by the National Parks of Carara to the south and La Cangreja to the north. We will be traversing private farms on trails cut by hand out of the mountians by our guide Eduardo. We will visit two pristine waterfalls. Far from the main roads and towns you will be awed by the astounding beauty of the Costa Rican wilderness.

That night we will treat ouselves to a little luxury. The jungle retreat center, VerdEnergia will provide us with comfortable, artistic rooms and great wholesome meals. You may choose to cool off from the tropical heat in their swimming pool. Visit for more information on their environmentally friendly projects
Day 7:
The ride takes us onward through rolling hills and tropical rain forest. We cross many small rivers where the horses enjoy a refreshing drink. The climate is warmer and more humid. Along the way macaws are spotted and tropical flowers and butterflies are in abundance.

We spend the night with an elderly widow who has supported herself for years providing meals and lodging for traveling salesman. She is a wonderfull cook and a fun hostess with lots of stories to tell.

Day 8:
Finds us following the route of the Rio Tulin to the sea.
We ride right up to our ocean front hotel The Pelican Beach Hotel

Day 9: ride the horses along the beach and play with them in the surf!

From here riders can continue their Costa Rican adventure or take a shuttle to SJO international airport which is about 2 hours away.

Cost for this spectacular ride is $200 per day per person.


Unknown said...
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Parelli Central said...

Just found your blog and new website. The pictures are just spectacular....

Petra Christensen
Pareli 2Star Junior Trainee Instructor
Parelli Central

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful ride it was. I can imagine how much you have enjoy your vacation. Such a beautiful experience.