Costa Rica Has A New Tour, Improved Roads and Coming in November of 2009, Hybrid Bicycles
Mario Cordero, who coordinates our tours in Costa Rica, recently sent this update about some exciting things happening in Costa Rica.
The great news is that Costa Rica continues to enjoy a reputation as a safe, politically stable, nature-friendly destination. In the past travelers who visited Costa Rica were interested in the natural beauty of and the preservation of our rich biodiversity. As a result of government campaigns and good business practices, more and more people are also seeking to understand and learn more about Costa Rica’s culture and social diversity.
The country with no army is preparing to celebrate 200 years of independence in 2021 by becoming the first carbon-neutral country in the world. This idea is now a law and the country is already making changes to achieve this ambitious goal. Protected areas like national parks and biological reserves cover more than a quarter of the territory. Forests cover 51 percent of the country, a 10 percent increase over the last decade. Most of our electricity is produced with clean resources: hydro, geothermal and wind.
The current government, under Nobel Peace Price winner President Oscar Arias, has done a great job at building new major roads and highways and also at improving the secondary roads we use on our bicycle tours. Road conditions this year are better than we have ever seen them since ExperiencePlus! started running bike tours here in 1994. To take advantage of the improved road conditions, we have redesigned our Coasting Costa Rica Tour which rides on the San Carlos plains and around Arenal Volcano and its lake.
The tour features one night at a working hacienda on the banks of the San Carlos River. We spend 2 nights in the prosperous village of La Fortuna and at a small boutique resort overlooking Lake Arenal. The natural landscape, spectacular rivers and volcanoes, the wildlife: monkeys, iguanas and birds, the traditional farming and way of living in our rural areas are all emphasized in this week long trip.
Since we are in the land of the tropics, a hike in the tropical rainforest with a naturalist guide will give you a better understanding for this fabulous but also abused and endangered resource. And the Zip Line Canopy Tour will make your adrenaline pump as you fly from tree top to tree top!
For those who prefer to ride more miles and see more of the country, this tour allows for exciting extra rides on most days. We also have a new Coasting Costa Rica Plus! Sananeros and Beaches bicycle tour which extends the Coasting Costa Rica itinerary by 3 days and takes you all the way across the continental divide to the dry western savannas of Guanacaste, land of cattle ranching and colorful blooming trees. We’ll ride all the way to the unspoiled Carrillo Beach on the Pacific Coast.
Presidential elections will be held Sunday February 6th of 2010. We’ll also choose our congress and our municipal governments that same day. Join us on our Arenal and the Northwest Multisport tour, departing February 4th, will stop to visit a voting center at a local school near Turrialba on the morning of Election Day. This may be a unique experience that can only be lived once every four years.
Costa Rica was recently declared the fifth cleanest country in the world in a study by Columbia and Yale universities. While it is encouraging to be compared with Switzerland, Sweden and Norway, we know we still have a lot of issues to work on. Nonetheless, Costa Rica is a wonderful place to visit. We hope to see you on tour here this winter.
PS Coming Soon! Details on our new fleet of hybrid bicycles.