Barva, Heredia

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If you’re looking for a richly immersive cultural experience amidst a beautiful setting, try Barva, just two kilometers away from Heredia and nestled among the mountainous slopes of extinct volcanoes. In Barva you’ll discover food, traditions, culture, and language that will stimulate your senses and leave behind an unforgettable impression of Costa Rica’s richness and variety.

Artisan Attractions

One of the first things to take in while in Barva is the variety of local artisans and craftsmen, offering everything from pottery to fine cuisine. A particular staple of Barva is locally grown coffee, cultivated right on the nearby sloping hills. Coffee from local beans is aromatic and sharp, with a flavor found nowhere else. Start your day each morning with a bracing cup, or buy enough local beans to take home for your friends.

Native Lore

Local history tells of Barvac, a local Native Indian tribal chief. Barvac is known as the last pre-colonial leader of the area prior to the introduction of Spanish colonists, and the town takes its name from the legend of this great chief. Locals will enjoy telling you of the history of Barva, and how Barvac influenced its foundation.

Full Language Immersion

Few people in Barva speak English. With the predominant language being Spanish, Barva offers a great chance for immersive language learning and practice. You’ll find yourself picking up native accents and fluency as you surround yourself with natural Spanish speakers whose vibrant language and engaging conversation give you the perfect opportunity to practice your Spanish language skills. There’s nothing better to guide you in learning quickly than a trial by fire, and in an immersion-based environment you’ll find your Spanish skills evolving more fluidly and easily to reach higher skill levels.

A Taste of Colonial History

Although Barva was occupied well before the arrival of Spain, 1561 saw its formal establishment as a village. Barva is populated by classic adobe homes, their walls low and thick and their roofs a stunning, beautiful red. These homes are arranged around the key attraction of Central Park, which contains statues donated by artists from all over the country, and the beautiful nearby white stucco church. Study the church’s Baroque-influenced style for a look at Costa Rica’s architectural history, or simply tour the national monuments to understand why this town has become a protected site with many buildings preserved by the Costa Rican government.

Extinct Volcanoes

Barva rests perched on the edge of the Barva Volcano and in proximity to the Poás Volcano, joining many other villages that make the lush, verdant slopes their home. The rich volcanic soil makes the Central Valley a burgeoning haven for flourishing greenery and locally grown crops. The richness of the soil also attracts burgeoning wildlife, and any eco-tourist or nature lover will enjoy catching glimpses of the verdant flora and fauna in and around Barva.

Local Luxury

Despite its size, Barva offers many convenient amenities — including access to nearby Heredia and San José. You can reach the village in less than 30 minutes from either city, traveling by bus or by car. Whether you choose to stay in Barva or choose to stay in the city, you always have access to the conveniences and luxuries you’re accustomed to.

So what are you waiting for? Make Barva your next destination on your Costa Rican vacation, and enjoy the luxuries of a village like no other. Book a tour, or simply add Barva to your list of destinations that you absolutely must see. With the other villages nearby, you can easily make a day of touring throughout different settlements to gain deeper insight into the nuance and depth of each village’s culture and people.