For too long humans have been making decisions without being conscious of our mother earth. Now we must take her into consideration every step of the way. And that includes you planning your vacation.
We must think about how our actions affect the planet. We have been doing this since the beginning of Costa Dulce. We have always strived to do business in such a way that we reduce the environmental impact and that a fair share of the benefits remain in the local community while providing a more rewarding nature-based experience to you, our guests. A green travel experience, eco tourism if you will.
Here’s how we do it.
Eco Friendly Building in Nicaragua
We built an ecolodge. Right from the very first building we have been considering sustainability and our carbon footprint. We took care to select local, and whenever possible regenerable building materials.
And we decided from the start to design our rooms in accordance with the beautiful natural environment. Instead of going the route of creating comfort with electricity and using air conditioning, we built considering the wind, the obvious way to build a Nicaragua eco lodge. The Papagayos, almost always blowing, making our climate comfortable and our waves perfect.
Indoor/outdoor construction is naturally friendly to the environment putting you face to face with nature as well as using less material. Less is more when it comes to saving the planet.
All of our electricity is generated through solar power. No more turning on dirty gas generators when the power goes out.
We are also recycling grey water and use this to water the garden. The term “grey water” is often used to describe all the waste water from non-toilet uses such as dishwashing and laundry which is suitable for water plants.
Fresh, local, Vegan, Vegetarian, omnivore, and more.
Local and Seasonal, almost all of the food you consume at costa dulce is comes from within Nicaragua. The banana you eat, should be much sweeter than the one at home. Not just because it’s ripened naturally but because it didn’t get shipped halfway around the world. A little bit of mental sweetness. How’s that coffee? Mine is bitter but somehow sweet 😉 while still being negro.
Every year we are progressing with our garden and producing more and more food right here. Salad green, herbs, some fruits and some vegetables. Our garden isn’t quite yet at the stage where we can produce enough food for everyone. But it’s growing, our soil is improving with a strong composting program. Of course everything coming from our garden is 100% organic.
Most of our food comes from local markets and we shop only for in season foods. Guaranteeing a low carbon footprint for what you eat. Much lower than what a trip to the grocery store in North America will produce. And of course we do not consume much meat. Just a little bit of sustainable, local (just up the valley in Collado) chicken and pork. And most certainly we offer the more environmentally friendly menus/diets of vegetarian, or vegan every meal.
With our UV water filtration unit we stopped the hauling of bottled water and have a source of clean and delicious water in our faucets. Some of the sweetest water I have ever tasted. Appropriate as we are on the “Sweet Coast”.
Supporting the local community has always been one of our most important roles. Without community what are we?
Costa Dulce the retreat centre has 23 employees, which indirectly supports at least 100 people. And then if you take Costa Dulce the development into consideration we are indirectly supporting at least another 100 people. Life is definitely better with Costa Dulce for the local community. So every dollar you spend here really gets to the people that live here.
The Collado Reserve and working with Vital Actions.
Every guest that stays at Costa Dulce contributes directly to the Collado reserve. Started originally as a Costa Dulce project, and then partners and now as a silent partner the Collado reserve continues to grow under Vital Action’s efficient watch.
In 4 years of planting we (you too!) have planted 36,000 trees, which are spread through over 40 different native species. The reserve has grown to nearly 180 acres, and now supports 12 full time jobs.
Thanks to the leadership of Tim and Jamie the efficiency of this project is incredible. Planting times continue to drop. This year it was completed in half the time with one quarter of the labour. Survival rate has improved from 60% to more than 90%. Costs have dropped to just $2 a tree!
In addition to future planting and acquiring more land to grow the reserve there is an ongoing bio-diversity study, tracking and counting the wildlife in the area. We have an active animal and plant protection team as well as response. If hunters are in the area we respond. A fire crew that is on call and ready to go. We can report not a single fire crossed into the reserve area with a 100% protection rate for 2021.
And this reserve serves as a permanent home for wild rescued animals. Once they are well enough for release they have a safe place to live.
This is just the reforestation project, which deserves a blog in itself.
You also support the Turtle Hatchery, again a blog itself. Humans have pushed all 4 sea turtle species to near extinction by using the eggs as food. In 2016 Vital Actions established it’s first hatchery with the help of the hotel, right in front of the hotel on the beach. To date they have kept nearly 200,000 eggs in the ecosystem.
Please, please, please if you can’t make it here support Vital Actions here.
The best support you can offer is being a hero. Join the hero squad with a monthly donation.
The world is a beautiful place and can be explored sustainably. Take surfing for example, surfers use a resource that is completely renewable, regenerable, green (or blue) . Waves. Individual waves happen only once but we will never run out. Yoga takes nothing away from the planet and maybe turns your focus back to it. Nature hikes, horseback riding, these are activities that are sustainable and help locals and the planet.
There really is sustainable travel, you just need to make sure it’s with the right people. And thankfully the world is waking up and considering how their actions affect the planet. We just need to ask ourselves “is this good for the planet?” And it’s safe to say a trip to Costa Dulce makes the world a better place. Conscious decisions made by you will make this planet a better place to live for you and the generations after you.