PLEASE NOTE: Finca Dos Lados Cloud Forest Retreat is located above Trojas, Sarchi. The GPS locates Finca Dos Lados in San Luis de Grecia. Trojas is one ridge to the west and in Valverde Vega, not Grecia.
The deafening Silence of Finca Dos Lados is truly unique in the bustling world in which we live. We are perched atop the Continental Divide and thrive in Paradise where I like to say we live up here in the Clouds with the Angels.
I have one room with a queen size bed, one room with three twin beds, and a third room with four bunk beds. All three rooms look out on the garden planted with flowers for the native birds. There is a large dining and meeting room and a lounge across the front of the house with an expansive view of the valley below. There are two complete bathrooms down the hall. Up on the hill above the house there is a building which can serve as a studio/study space (no bathroom yet for this one) which has a beautiful view out over our reforestation project. The hillside studio would make a wonderful writer or painter's studio for someone who seeks a peaceful place without interruptions.
We are located about 25 minutes up the mountain from the town of Sarchi, the "Cradle of the Artisans" and the center of the wooden furniture made in Costa Rica. Four wheel drive is recommended for the last 3 km of the drive, especially during the rainy season. Transportation can be arranged from the end of the bus line, about 6 km.
I have cows, chickens, ducks and dogs on the property and an organic produce garden.
I have a good clean water supply on the property with plenty of pressure for a good shower and inline gas water heaters. No cold showers up here. I have a wood burning heater made from a recycled oil drum, which warms us up on chilly evenings.
There are a couple of hiking trails maintained which go over the continental divide into the valley of the Gorrion River.with its waterfalls and more tropical forest.
Our stay with Sara at Finca Dos Lados was a dream come true. Tucked away in the mountains above Sarchi, "up in the clouds", it truly is a little piece of heaven here on earth. Finca Dos Lados was the first stop on our family's very first visit to Costa Rica and though we visited some absolutely amazing and astoundingly beautiful places, Finca Dos Lados remained everyone's favorite. In addition to the cozy, welcoming home, the delicious food cooked up by Coco, and the breathtaking surroundings, was the inspiration and restoration all we experienced. Our two children (8 & 11) enjoyed every moment rolling in the grass, playing with the dogs, exploring the grounds, and splashing in the creek. Sara's vision for Finca Dos Lados and all that she has accomplished so far are inspiring beyond words. Our only regret was not being able to stay longer. We're already dreaming up another trip; this time for a longer stay with friends and plans to dig in and work! "Sara's Place", as we refer to it now, felt like home and Sara and Coca felt like family.
We had an absolutely wonderful time on Sara's farm, Finca dos Lados! The scenery is breathtaking, the accommodations very cozy and the people with whom we shared time and space were kind and warm. We spent time hiking the grounds, learning about the history of the farm, playing games, eating Coco's delicious cooking and altogether relaxing. If we make another trip to Costa Rica, which we hope to, a return visit to Finca dos Lados will be on the itinerary. (Note: When visiting Sara, make sure to have a 4x4 as the drive to her farm is quite rugged!)
This was a fantastic time for our family. Sara is a great host. Her place is a true inspiration for achieving a dream. The journey there is also part of the adventure. I can be as quiet as you wish or as busy as you want. Great to walk in the jungles behind her house, high in the clouds or up her long 6 k drive way, not easy walk!!!!.Or you can sit and meditate ,paint or enjoy Cocco, Jose and Juans conversation. My daughter will be back with more friends, you need at least 4 full days here. 60 min from San Jose airport via Grecia bus 660 kolonas each and Sara meets you at red church. Regular busses leaving. She has turned a cattle deforested pasture into a reforested lush area.
The owner and imaginer of the Reforestation and Research Project is Sara Clark, a retired lady who loves Nature. In 2002 she bought 723 acres of cleared and eroded pastureland and so far has planted 18,500 trees. There is room for a lot more. She wants the land to be available for scientific research and as a tranquil place for retreats and study in general. She has expanded the original cabin to create a huge biological center in order to focus on the incredible biodiversity of this tiny Central American country. Being on the Continental Divide makes it easy to do comparisons of Pacific and Atlantic habitats and the Reforestation Project makes long term studies of Restoration Ecology a natural fit.
"Be the change that you want to see in the world" (Gandhi) makes a lot of sense. If you don’t like the way something in the world is, do what you can do to make it better. Caring for the precious biodiversity and helping to create more habitat for it to live in is something Sara wanted to see. She wanted to make the barren pastures a future home for some of the beautiful biodiversity that lived there before it was cleared for cattle pasture.
This place would be great for someone who is looking for a place to be creative in a tranquil environment, artist, writer, student etc.
I am particularly interested in hosting students who are doing research in biodiversity and restauration ecology. Consideration will be given to trading baseline ecological inventory for room and study site space. Volunteers in tree planting, organic gardening, general gardening, farm maintanence, upkeep are possible too.