Learn more about life in rural Costa Rica.


What is Rural Tourism?​

For us, rural tourism means integrating our B&B with our farm and our community to give guests an opportunity to see and participate in rural Costa Rican life and helping our guests enjoy the life that rural Costa Rica provides. It’s about making tourism part of the community, rather than creating new enclaves that cater only to tourists. Casitas Tenorio B&B is a rural tourism project. We are also involved in the promotion of rural tourism and actively involved in networks of other rural tourism operators to strengthen this sector. We have participated in many trade fairs to promote this type of tourism.

The main characteristics of rural tourism

Integrates natural beauty and the daily life of rural communities Promotes productive sustainable practices within its tourism offerings Adapts itself to the dynamics of rural life and preserves the idiosyncrasies and the welcoming, relaxed, rustic atmosphere that characterize the rural areas of the country Is maintained by local initiative and participation, and strengthens local organizations, which are made up of various families or of the community as a whole Integrates the local populace in this economic activity, distributes the benefits even-handedly, and supplements farming income Promotes land ownership by the local population.

History of Rural Tourism in Costa Rica

Rural community tourism is about providing an awareness and  appreciation of the rural community.   

In 2003 an alliance of organizations for the enhancement of rural community tourism was created in Costa Rica. This alliance was between COOPRENA (Consortium of Rural Tourism Co-operatives) and ACTUAR (Costa Rican Community-based Rural Tourism Association) with these bodies pioneering and promoting rural tourism in Costa Rica.

The United Nations Program for Development (UNPD) has provided financial and technical assistance and has worked with the Costa Rican Institute of Tourism (ICT) to define and characterize community rural tourism as a national tourist product and has been involved in the creation of CantuRural, a national Chamber of rural tourism of which Casitas Tenorio is a founding member.

By passing  laws concerning rural tourism and encouraging rural tourism, the Costa Rican legislature has shown a commitment to this important sector of Costa Rican tourism and a commitment to the rural inhabitants. 

 “Rural community tourism consists of planned touristic experiences which are integrated sustainably with the rural environment and developed by local citizen organizations for the benefit of the community.’ – Costa Rican Institute of Tourism, 2005.

It’s also about maintaining communities, and allowing them to develop at their own pace, in their own direction, on their own terms and in a way that is sustainable for the future

 Some of the main characteristics of rural tourism are that it integrates natural beauty and the daily life of rural communities, adapts itself to the dynamics of rural life and preserves the welcoming, relaxed and rustic atmosphere that characterize the rural areas of Costa Rica rather than being overwhelmed by the touristic experience.  Rural tourism is maintained and promoted by local initiative and participation and helps strengthen local organizations.  It ensures that local people are included in the economic benefits of tourism which often supplements farming income and promotes local land ownership. 

Being involved with rural community tourism means you’ll have a unique -and uniquely Costa Rican -experience. With rural community tourism, you don’t have to be the only one who benefits from your trip –the whole community can!

You have the opportunity to support sustainable development in rural areas by supplementing and diversifying incomes for farming families, helping preserve local cultures and traditions and promoting conservation of natural resources.

Rural community tourism respects host communities, their guests, and the planet that we all share by including sustainable practices as well as being able to meet and interact with Costa Ricans in their daily lives and see and experience Costa Rican culture.