The Journey to Paradise Passes Through Carate



Lana Wedmore

Lana is the owner operator of Luna Lodge, located in the Carate River highlands.  Write her at

The Osa Peninsula rises from the Pacific Ocean, vibrating all the shades of the rainbow because of the biodiversity it holds.  There is a survey that says if you come to Costa Rica for the first time and you do not go to the Osa Peninsula, when you come back and you do go down to the Osa for your second visit you will always return.

 efarinas_carate-3If you climb into a 4 x 4 vehicle and take off from Puerto Jimenez to the south west you will travel on one of the most beautiful, eventful, scenic gravel roads you have every been on in your life.  You can see all of the four species of monkey, coatimundis, sloths, and all sorts of amazing wild life. Today our trip is going to take us to a breath-taking stepping-off point to one of the most biological intense places left on this planet.  Carate is your destination and is filled not only with the most amazing biodiversity on this planet because of the animals and plants but a similar diversity among its people.  We are a community filled with people from all over the world and all walks of life.  But we have respect for each other and work together toward a common good.  We let one another live the life each wants to live.

The people that live in Carate are strong minded and action oriented; it is too difficult to live here unless it is your goal to do so, and if you don’t have that goal, you probably won’t last.  The history of Carate is incredible, yet it seems like it has always been pushed under the rug by government officials.  The roads, the bridges, the schools, the medical services . . . where are they?

It has been pushed too many times, and now the Association of Integral Development of Corcovado in Carate, the Board of Education in Carate and the Community are working in unison for many common goals. We feel privileged to live in such a special place, so it truly is our responsibility to continue the natural state of being, which is to live sustainably.  Our first goal is to build the first sustainable school in Costa Rica out of bamboo.  This time we have pushed really hard for this common goal.  There are many people integrally involved in this endeavor.  Under the guidance of Director Mario Jimenez, INDER has helped us with a donation to build the school.  The Ministry of Public Education is another helper in this project.  Director of IDE Walter Muñoz has been a tremendous help with the government paperwork.  We have pushed for this school for over 12 years.  This year it is coming to fruition so we can continue this thread and plant the seed with our children.

As a “sustainable” school, we seek to preserve the environment and foster sustainability in the students so that the next generation will follow in these footsteps.  Together we must support long-term ecological balance for not just the next generation but for the one after that and all subsequent ones.  Our children will study in one of most environmentally hot spots in the world. Corcovado National Park is their back yard.  The local children will also have an organic garden, grow, eat and sell the produce grown here.  The Sustainable School is the first step in creating our own Global Warming Village in Carate.

Another common goal that has united the community is the conservation and protection of sea turtles. Four species come to the shores of Carate to lay their eggs.  In Feng Shui the turtle represents wisdom, endurance, wealth and long life. The Chinese believe that this animal has the secret of heaven and Earth in its body. The gently sea turtle has been alive in its present form for more than 200 million years and it is still coming to the shores of Carate.

turtlePlease join us in celebrating our 5TH TURTLE  FESTIVAL in CARATE. Come join us for the Fun on Dec 10th, 2016, starting at 9:00 am and enjoy activities including volleyball, soccer, surfing and mountain biking, plus enjoy artisan and food stands.  Our big event will be the CIRCO FANTAZZTICO.  The public is invited to come join in and participate in the fun and turtle conservation efforts!  For those interested in a stand, contact 8358-5848 by Whatsap or write, and stay tuned for Carate updates in the near future.




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