Over 10 years ago, Alice and her family were working in coffee production. After pregnancy and for health reasons, Alice had to leave this business. That is when she began partnering with her husband to open a joint venture: local cabins and heart of palm production. They value the ability to be independent which comes from owning your own business. Their vision is to be able to help other families generate income and hopefully offer a better quality of life to future employees.
Jessica studied eco-tourism at a Costa Rican University, which is what first brought her to the Osa Peninsula. She came to do a practicum at a local biological station. When she learned about Rancho Quemado, she quickly became involved in a number of community activities, including the local community development association and women's group. Her organizational and leadership skills have helped her earn a lot of respect in the community and she receives a lot of local support for her bakery. Jessica is passionate about keeping the community organized and united, so that each person specializes in a trade and can share amongst one another. This will allow Rancho Quemado to use their natural resources in a sustainable self-sufficient manner.
Freddy was raised on his family farm in Rancho Quemado. While agriculture is his primary interest, he has to find informal jobs to supplement his income. His family-run pig farm supplements his work in construction, repairing motorcycles and selling palm fruit to the palm oil companies. These jobs are not reliable on their own, but together Freddy is able to diversify his work to find stability.
Johnny and Noemy have been active members of change in the community. When agriculture prices dropped and work became difficult in Rancho Quemado, most people left. Johny and Noemy stayed, believing it was a good place to people and knowing that they could be part of what makes Rancho Quemado prosper. They learned what community really meant during the difficult economic times. The sugar cane mill is called Don Carmen, named after Johnny's father, the inspiration. Don Carmen will turn 93 this year.
Rancho Quemado is located in the heart of the Osa Peninsula, one of the most biologically rich and least developed regions in Costa Rica! Here you will find an inviting and friendly rural community practicing a wide range of livelihood activities. Rancho Quemado is committed to sustainable rural tourism aimed at improving the quality of life for their residents while protecting the natural environment in the Golfo Dulce Forest Reserve.
From San Jose Take the InterAmericana Highway until you arrive in La Chacarita. From there, follow the signs directing you to Puerto Jimenez. Once you reach Rincon, you'll see signs for Drake Bay. Turn Right just before the Rincon bridge and follow Drake Bay signs until you arrive in Rancho Quemado Approximate time: 6 hours. By Bus: Take the 8:00am bus at the Lobo Blanco Company (ask for the San Carlos bus terminal) in San Jose. Ask the bus driver to let you off at Rincon. From Rincon, take the 4:45pm bus to Rancho Quemado. Approximate time: 9.5 hours. From Puerto Jimenez Head northwest towards La Palma. Shortly after you pass La Palma, you will approach Rincon. Immediately after the Rincon Bridge, take a left. Follow the signs leading to Drake Bay. After about 15km you will arrive in Rancho Quemado. Approximate time: 60 minutes. By Bus: Take a Bus which goes to La Palma. Buses leave La Palma for Rancho and Drake Bay at 11:30am and 4:30pm every day except Sunday.
Located in the heart of the Osa Pennisula, Ranco Quemada is a small friendly town with a number of local establishments. There are three lodges or "cabinas" and each has a kitchen where they cook for guests for those who call ahead of time so they are prepared. There is also one “soda” or restaurant where they serve “comida rapida” or fast food, like fried chicken, hamburgers, french-fries, etc. and a local bakery. There is one "pulperia" or general store in town where someone can buy non-perishable items. There are no banks or atms, and all transactions are done here in cash, so come prepared. Nearby town of La Palma - on the road from San Jose or any other destination around the southern region - stop in La Palma has a more sizeable grocery store and atm where you can stock up!