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Cachi, Cartago

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Beautiful old tree in Cachi Lake

The small community of Cachi sits amid the natural beauty of the Orosi Valley in the province of Cartago. Cachi is most known for the lake and dam of the same name in the community. This picturesque town is surrounded by lush forests, sprawling coffee plantations, rivers, waterfalls and other tiny communities, all of which encompass their own deeply-rooted customs and history. Travelers interested in exploring true Tico culture will enjoy the laid-back setting and small-town atmosphere of this town. However, despite the size, there are plenty of attractions and activities in the area.

Local Sites

Lago de Cachi is an artificial lake built in the 1970s. As one of the first hydroelectric projects in the country, Lake Cachi and the Cachi Dam provide power and deter flooding in the area. While this structure stands in striking contrast to the greenery it surrounds, it is a surprisingly beautiful attraction to visit - the well-crafted cement walls curve through the thick forest.

As Cachi is a small community, one of the best ways to explore it is with a bicycle. Travelers can find a place to rent one, and enjoy the scenery at a leisurely pace, or get adventurous with a challenging ride through town.

Besides the lake and dam, one of the most prominent attractions in Cachi is the Casa del Sonador, or Dreamer's House. This stunning wooden home is a unique structure unlike anything you've ever seen. Put together by the craftsman Macedonio Quesada, a world-famous sculptor and wood carver, the Dreamer's House is made completely from coffee branches and bamboo. Although he passed away in 1995, his sons now live in the home. The woodworking studio also features sculptures of all sizes, which are available for purchase by visitors. So you can take home a bit of Costa Rican history with you.

Nearby Attractions

Located in Ujarras, a small town in the Orosi Valley, Costa Rica's oldest church is a sight to see. Built in the 1560s, the Iglesia de Nuestra Senora de la Limpia Concepcion may now be in ruins, but the site offers a glimpse into the past of the region. Today, travelers will find a beautifully landscaped garden as well as remnants of traditional Spanish colonial architecture.

The Tapanti National Park features some of the most lush, unspoiled cloud forests in the region. With roughly 18 square miles of cloud forest and a portion of the Talamanca mountain range, this park is one of the most biodiverse in the country. In fact, the park consists of two life zones: lower montane rainforest and pre-montane rainforest. The park spans more than 12,500 acres and is home to an array of wildlife, including more than 400 avian species and 45 mammal species.