If you’re looking for an adventure, Hacienda La Chimba in Costa Rica is perfect for kids and adults alike. This magical hike through a huge coffee plantation is just 20 minutes from San Jose in the green mountains of Río Oro de Santa Ana. Here’s everything you need to know.
During our two-month stay in Costa Rica, our family was looking for a fun activity close to San Jose. I had heard good things about the mantra trail so we thought we would check it out. The hike leads to a giant sculpture of a hand that you can stand on and take pictures. It ended up being so much fun and gorgeous. Here’s what you need to know to do the hike with your family.
At a glance: Hacienda La Chimba
- Ages: 7 and older allowed to hike the trail
- Cost: $12 per person
- Duration: 2.5 hours
- Pets: Allowed with a leash
- Hours: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (must arrive before 2 p.m. to hike the trail)
- Contact information: Phone: +506 4052 7200 WhatsApp: +506 8452 3838
- Website: www.haciendalachimba.com
- Recommended gear: Umbrella, good hiking shoes, lots of water, bug spray, snacks
How to get to Hacienda La Chimba
Take Highway 27 heading east from San Jose. Take the Rio Oro exit and head towards the mountains. It’s super easy to find if you put Hacienda La Chimba into Google or Waze. It will take you straight there. There’s a large parking lot with a parking attendant to watch your car. Plus, you don’t have to pay for parking either. You can pay and reserve your spot to hike on the trail ahead of time or you can just show up and pay when you get there. Make sure you arrive before 2 p.m. though because they won’t let you start hiking after 2 p.m.
A little bit about the trail
The entire mantra trail is 9km or 5.59 miles. But if you want to just hike to the hand, it is 4.5km or 2.79 miles. We opted for the short option. Once you’ve reached the hand, you can take a short cut (1/3 mile) that leads straight back down the mountain down to the parking lot. We asked if we were allowed to just take the short cut up to the hand and back down but they said it wasn’t allowed.
As you hike along the trail, you are surrounded by coffee plants. It’s absolutely beautiful. The trail is easy to follow but don’t be misled, this is a steeper hike. My 8-year-old did it fine but it would be harder for smaller kids. You might want to consider leaving the toddlers home or carry them in a hiking backpack. As you hike, you will come upon four landmarks before you reach the hand: Budha, Costa Rica sign, butterfly and heart.
Tips and tricks to hiking this trail
- Bug spray: Spray your self with bug spray and bring an umbrella (if it’s the rainy season)
- Short cut: Cut through the trail when you see the Costa Rica sign. It will shorten the hike quite a bit.
- Umbrella: If you’re hiking during the rainy season, bring an umbrella. We hiked in the rain but it was still fun.
- Hiking stick: Grab a hiking stick at the beginning of the trail. They let you use them for free because sometimes it’s muddy.
- Water and snacks: This is a long hike. You’ll want plenty of water and snacks.
- Time: Give yourself plenty of time to hike the trail. It will take you longer than you think.
- Restaurant: Grab a bite to eat after your hike at the La Burra Restaurant at the end.
What else can you do there?
Aside from the mantra trail, Hacienda La Chimba offers a canopy tour with eight cables and two suspension bridges. You can also sign up for a guided coffee tour and explore the plantation and enjoy the local coffee. And finally, you can enjoy a high ropes tour which includes 11 elements of different levels.
I hope you have fun hiking the Hacienda La Chimba manta trail. We had a great time and we know you’ll love it too.
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