PRICE PER PERSON $62
Our Animal Rescue Centre, Chocolate Lady and Waterfall trip combines three of our favorite local activities. It includes: 1. Entrance and tour of the Jaguar Animal Rescue Centre located near Playa Cocles. This centre serves as a refuge and rehabilitation center for many local animals including members of the cat family, monkeys, snakes and more. 2. Visit to a indigenous lady who explains us the way of indigenous chocolate being made — demonstration of the process, from the growing of the Cacao plant to the making of chocolate 3. Hike to a beautiful waterfall 4. Transportation: pickup and drop-off at your Puerto Viejo hotel.
Jaguar Animal Rescue Centre The Jaguar Rescue Center offers shelter, treatment and protection to ill or wounded wild animals in the South Caribbean area. The Center is run by Sandro, an expert in poisonous snakes, and Encar, a biologist with a vast experience with looking after wild mammals in captivity. Sandro and Encar started the Jaguar Center with the aim of saving the lives of as many animals that come into the shelter, as well as trying to re-introduce them to their natural habitat, the forests of the South Caribbean. Their house has become a sanctuary for wild animals and they try to accommodate their jungle guests as well as they can: terrariums for the snakes, large spaces for the Congo monkeys to rest in after spending the whole day playing in the garden’s trees, special quarantine cages for the animals arriving seriously injured and also a large supply of medicine and an operating theatre for emergency surgery if necessary.
Chocolate Lady Next we will visit an indigenous family where they make chocolate from the Cacao trees growing beside their house. You will learn and see demonstrated the process by which the cacao fruit is transformed into delicious and unique chocolate. You will have an opportunity to purchase some chocolate or other indigenous made handicrafts here. Note that part of the family speaks very limited English so if you don’t speak Spanish your explanation of the process may take the form of a pantomime!
Finally, you and your driver/guide will take a short hike (about 20 minutes through the jungle where you can see local plants and butterflies) to the Volio waterfall, a 12m high waterfall in the Talamanca Mountains, where you can swim if you like. Should this waterfall be too dry, we will take you to another waterfall in the area where you can enjoy swimming in the pristine nature pools Hone Creek Waterfall. Note: Your feet might get wet while exploring the waterfall, so make sure to wear appropriate shoes or bring an extra pair for changing after the hike.
Fitness level: The jaguar animal rescue center and chocolate lady are suitable for all fitness levels although they unfortunately are not wheelchair accessible. The waterfall trail is not long but it can be steep and sometimes a little muddy so a adequate fitness level is required. The second waterfall offered is a shorter walk so should you prefer that regardless of the water level, please let us know.
Departures: 9:00 AM daily except Sundays when the Jaguar Rescue Center is closed.
Duration: Half day
Includes: Transportation, driver/guide, entrance to jaguar animal rescue centre and chocolate house.
Not included: Transportation includes pickup from hotels in Puerto Viejo. Additional transport charges for other hotels apply as follows (per booking not per person):
Playa Chiquita $15
Punta Uva $20
What to bring: Rubber shoes with traction and maybe an extra pair of shoes to change after the waterfall hike, shorts, insect repellent, bottle of water, towel, money for lunch or snacks.
Note: you should not touch the animals if you have applied sunscreen or insect repellent. We recommend you to bring these items with you instead and apply them after the visit with the animal rescue center.