Welcome to Cooperative El Silencio, a place where you can truly experience the traditional lifestyle and natural beauty of Costa Rica. Tranquility….nature…Pura Vida! El Silencio is an independent cooperative based around agriculture and is comprised of various projects, including African palm plantations, a dairy farm, an organic garden, reforestation and environmental conservation projects, and a wildlife rescue centre. Coopesilencio welcomes tourists from all over the world who want to become a part of our culture and lifestyle.
We hope that this website provides all the information you need to come and discover for yourself all that we have to offer. We hope that you have an unforgettable time here in El Silencio and that this true Costa Rican experience will become a lasting memory.
The land on which the property of El Silencio rests was formerly a banana plantation belonging to the United Fruit Company. In 1955, 700 hectares of banana plantations were destroyed when the Rio Savegre flooded. Between 1955 and 1972, the United Fruit Company rented out the land. Though they had no claim to the land, the local farm workers were devoted to the region, occupying the land and farming it. After much deliberation, the government subsequently sold the land to the local farm workers, who set up the cooperative as an ecotourism project. 42 families registered as official Associates of the cooperative, living and working together for a common cause, and Coopesilencio R.L. was subsequently founded in February 1973. Since then, Coopesilencio has grown significantly, with over 80 families (approx. 500 people) benefiting from services such as schooling for all ages, a supermarket and café, offices, and various agricultural and eco-conservation projects. In 1996, the eco-tourism business was launched with the construction of forest trails and a lodge, consisting of 10 cabins, a restaurant, and bar. They have since established an animal rescue center that provides rehabilitation services for abandoned, maltreated, and injured animals in the South Pacific region of Costa Rica.
Mission: to produce and market high quality agricultural products and offer superior recreational services in agro-ecological and environmental tourism, applying eco-friendly measures and getting women and young people involved in the procedures.
Vision: this is an economic enterprise modeled on a self-managed cooperative, with a strong financial position that supports the organization and administration, thus allowing the integral development of its associates and families.
The vision and mission adopted by Coopesilencio is based around the “Law for Cooperative Associations and the Creation of the National Institute for the Promotion of Cooperatives” whereby the services provided by such enterprises are organized so as to integrate the workers into the production process. Workers thus have right to participate in the decision-making processes surrounding the cooperative’s activities and have a direct personal influence upon the final realization of the products and activities, receiving economic and social benefits in proportion to his efforts.
The cooperative management possesses a document concerning the rules and rights that have been agreed upon by the General Assembly. Each member and Associate of the cooperative has equal rights and responsibilities and should actively participate in the development of the cooperative and its community.
Community-Based Rural Tourism: Coopesilencio welcomes visitors and volunteers to experience rural life in all its richness and explore unspoiled natural areas, hand in hand with excellent hosts. Community-based eco-tourism is a very important source of economic growth for communities like Coopesilencio. It provides incentive for land-owners to protect native flora and fauna and educate the community about the natural wonders of their region. Coopesilencio`s agro-tourism model, which allows visitors to participate in farm projects, both provides more labor hands and educates about rural ways of life.