Set just outside Manuel Antonio and Quepos, the Villa Vanilla Spice Plantation grows an assortment of spices, medicinal plants, and exotic fruits. On this half-day tour you’ll explore the plantation and experience how vanilla is grown, harvested, and cooked with.
- 4 hrs
- Available Days:
- Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri
- 9:00 AM, 1:00 PM
- Hotel Transport Included
- Mobile Ticket Included
- Offered in English, Spanish
The Villa Vanilla Spice Plantation is set 10 miles (16 km) east of Quepos and overlooks the Manuel Antonio National Park. The plantation includes 27 acres (10 ha) of agricultural production and 125 acres (50 ha) of primary and secondary rainforest. The plantation grows vanilla, true Ceylon cinnamon, cocoa, black pepper, allspice, turmeric, and a variety of exotic fruits and medicinal plants. The plantation also has a collection of epiphytes (airplants), including orchids, bromeliads, and tilandsias.
Vanilla is the major crop here. It’s one of the most popular flavors in the world, and is the second most expensive flavoring agent due to its labor-intensive cultivation and processing methods. Native to Central America, vanilla is fertilized by hand during the pollination season. While on this tour visitors will learn how to pollinate vanilla flowers.
This half-day tour is offered in either the morning or afternoon. The tour begins with a visit to the post-harvest warehouse where the spices are dried, processed, and packaged. You’ll then enjoy a gentle walk through the “Epiphyte Trail,” which winds through the plantation and gives you good looks at these incredible plants.
You’ll pass a fish pond and end up at a lookout that boasts beautiful views. While here you’ll also experience the “Flavors of the World” tasting—a pastry chef will prepare a variety of drinks and gourmet treats for you to sample. All of the items are made on the farm and use as many ingredients from the plantation as possible. Taste the flavors of the rainforest and be inspired to try new recipes at home!
The last stop of the tour is at the Spice Shoppe, where you can stock up on vanilla beans and extract, chili-infused hot chocolate, and other products grown on the farm. These make great gifts for friends back home.
What to Bring
Comfortable shoes, hat, sunscreen, and camera.
Guide and "Flavors of the World" tasting.
Many of our tours and activities offer transportation pick up & drop off options from several locations and destinations. Options vary by tour, see “BOOKING REQUEST” for full details.
Absolutely loved this tour ... I didn't get the name of the guide but she was absolutely great. Very knowledgeable answered all questions stopped along the way and show us different flora of Costa Rica and explained why each plant was helping the farm to grow organically and not having to use and insecticide. None of the by products were going to waste how everything was recycled with a purpose to improve the soil and put the nutrients back into the soil. After touring the property we when to the outlook and did some sampling of wonderful things made with the spices grown on the plantation. The was great started with cinnamon cold tea, vanilla cheesecake, vanilla ice cream on a cocoa cookie and then vanilla cinnamon chocolate chip cookie. Then to the store and they had plenty to pick from. I did alot of shopping here fresh the smells were wonderful waiting to do some cooking at home.
This was really amazing! The walk through the variety of plants and trees growing on the property is amazing. The education on the vanilla, cacao and other spices like cinnamon and turmeric is eye opening; never consider the amount of work it takes to produce these products! The tour guide was lovely and really good at her job!
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