Managing NGO, country: Asociación de Desarrollo Integral de San Luis de Monteverde, Costa Rica.
Project Director: Noé Vargas
Synopsis: Branching out from Monteverde, the Pacific Slope Trail forms a network of back roads that connect lodges with properties that are being conserved or used sustainably by the communities between Monteverde and the Gulf of Nicoya. The trail route follows the Monteverde-Gulf of Nicoya Biological Corridor. Two lodges and a number of trails in the communities of Monteverde, San Luis, and San Antonio are part of the project. While hiking or horseback riding, visitors can enjoy the rural culture and the local flora and fauna, waterfalls, rivers, and views of the gulf. The trail system aims to broaden the benefits of ecotourism while having a minimal environmental impact. All earnings are earmarked for local organizations that provide social and environmental benefits to the communities. The project will include conservation easements, reforestation, ecological agriculture, water treatment, renewable energy, and ecological crafts.
Annual budget & donors: $28,000 from Dirección Nacional de Desarrollo de la Comunidad (DINADECO); Instituto Monteverde; Programa de Pequeñas Donaciones (PPD), Costa Rica – Fondo para el Medio Ambiente Mundial and San Luis community.
Principal accomplishments: Constructed approximately 12.5 miles of trails and roads within the Monteverde, San Luis, and San Antonio communities; established a community lodge that can accommodate 20 people and uses sun and wind-powered energy for lighting and hot water; offered tours that include visits to farms, a coffee processing plant, a waterfall, a recycling shop, hikes to scenic views of the gulf and valleys, horseback rides, and talks on the natural and social history of the area.
Anticipated Accomplishments: Form alliances with other community groups and local environmental organizations; investigate receiving certification from Costa Rica’s Tourism Institute; construct a swinging bridge on part of the trail over the Guacimal River; construct and place signs on 15.5 miles of trails; promote the project through events, partnerships with organizations; and make local, national, and international contacts.
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