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Cayuga Collection, Costa Rica and Nicaragua

National Geographic Traveler magazine recognizes this year’s leaders in sustainable tourism.

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Kayaking around Jicaro Island, Nicaragua


World Legacy Award Winner, Earth Changers: Leadership in Environmentally-Friendly Business Practices and Innovative green technologies

When the most popular tour offered at one of the world’s premier rainforest retreats is called “Twigs, Pigs, and Garbage,” it begs a closer look. The Cayuga Collection–eight ultra-green lodges nestled into diverse ecosystems across Costa Rica and Nicaragua–has set out to prove that sustainability can be at the heart of great vacation. From Lapa Rios in the wild Osa Peninsula to Jicaro Island near Lake Granada, and six other joyous locales in between, travelers are immersed in nature under the experienced eyes of local guides proud to share their knowledge and heritage.

“Green living” is intricately woven into day-to-day guest activities, including surfing, snorkeling, bird watching, and nature walks, just to name a few. “It isn’t easy to make everything we do about being in harmony with nature, but it has had an incredibly positive impact on our staff and guests, who have taken the message of sustainability into their own communities, inspired to become ambassadors for protecting the planet,” says Cayuga founder Hans Pfister. Oh, and about that popular tour: The twigs aerate the compost, the garbage feeds the animals, their waste produces methane for cooking, and eventually the pigs, well, they become fresh farm-to-table bacon–an ecologically balanced system.


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