Exploring Coffee in Honduras: Entrepreneurship, Climate Change, and Culture

May 19-26, 2020

Coffee. It’s loved around the world, and you might be someone who’s loyal to their daily cup of coffee (or should we say, cups?). We hear about fair trade coffee and we know coffee is grown in lots of different countries. But we’re so far-removed from what it takes to cultivate our daily cup. Join ExplorEquity for an incredible experience in Honduras where you’ll step in the soil that nourishes coffee trees, smell the coffee beans in your hand, feel the sun in a greenhouse where coffee is roasted and place your hands on those beans, hear the stories of the farmers and their families, and sip an afternoon cup of coffee right on the farm that grew it. You’ll participate in a coffee tasting experience with a certified coffee grader, trying different coffees and closing your eyes to try and identify what notes you’re tasting on your tongue- hmm, is that chocolate?

 

About the Honduras Trip

While exploring coffee production in Honduras, we’ll also learn about how climate change has affected the farmers. With coffee prices reaching a historic low in the last few years, and the impact of an aggressive coffee leaf rust disease affecting the coffee plantations, farmers have had to find creative ways to keep their farms working and supplement their incomes through various means including agritourism. Throughout the trip, you’ll have meaningful conversations with local farmers and entrepreneurs and hear their stories. And woven throughout every experience are opportunities to learn about the culture of this beautiful country, including the culture of the Lenca people, Honduras’ largest indigenous group. You’ll also have the opportunity to experience nature through kayaking in a channel connected to a large lake, hiking to a pond with stunning blue water that was considered a sacred place by the Lenca people, and by birdwatching in a nature preserve.


Beyond this once in a lifetime experience with coffee, you’ll be immersed in a beautiful country that doesn’t receive enough international tourism but has so much to share. Your presence will directly support the community-based tourism efforts of local entrepreneurs to showcase their rich culture and history. And your dollars will benefit the local economy as we stay in locally-owned hotels and work with local businesses and organizations. You’ll meet like-minded travelers who care about their impact and will walk away with amazing new connections.


At the end of this experience:

1. You’re going to feel knowledgeable about the themes of coffee, climate change, entrepreneurship, and culture in Honduras.

2. You’re going to have a defined personal takeaway of what this learning means to you.

3. You will feel part of a community that cares about their impact as a traveler.


Join us for this unforgettable curated experience that has never been offered before. Space is limited as this is a small-group experience.

 
 

Itinerary

Day 1: San Pedro Sula Airport – Lake Yojoa region

  • Meet & greet in San Pedro Sula Airport (airport code: SAP). Travellers should book flights that arrive to San Pedro Sula before 3PM.

  • Ground transfer to the Lake Yojoa Region. On route, local trip leader will introduce the region we are travelling to, one of the more naturally diverse in the whole country.

  • Dinner catered by IVO’s Café

  • Presentation: “Honduras: a land of contrasts” by Isis Castro, development professional & travel entrepreneur.  


Day 2: Bioparque Poza Azul and Lake Yojoa

  • Breakfast 

  • Kayaking in channel that connects to Lake Yojoa. Travelers are also welcome to skip this activity and stay in the hotel enjoying the ample natural spaces on their own.

  • Lunch (not included)

  • Walk to “Poza Azul”, a pond with extremely blue water, believed to be a sacred spot by the ancient Lenca people.

  • Dinner 

Day 3: Montana de Vida community enterprise, Santa Barbara Mountain

  • Breakfast

  • Transfer to San Luis Planes and El Dorado villages in Santa Barbara Mountain 

  • Full day with members of Montana de Vida a local community organization including a talk about their organization, coffee farm walk, cooking activities (artisanal bread making, corn tortillas, cuajada raw milk cheese).

  • Lunch and afternoon “café con pan” experience, coffee with a piece of sweet bread or pastry 

  • Transfer back to hotel (approx. 1 hour)

  • Dinner and local beer tasting at a brewery (not included)


Day 4: Lake Yojoa – La Esperanza

  • Breakfast and checkout from hotel 

  • Transfer to La Esperanza (approx. 2.5 hrs), on-route opportunity to take photos of Lake Yojoa

  • Lunch in La Esperanza 

  • Visit the town of Yamaranguila to observe a re-enactment of the Vara Alta celebration, a Lenca cultural event.

  • Walking city tour of La Esperanza with a local guide and walk to La Gruta for a panoramic view of the town. 

  • Dinner (not included)


Day 5: La Esperanza - Marcala and surrounding mountains

  • Breakfast 

  • Birding walk in the hummingbird gardens of El Consejero Private Nature Reserve

  • Transfer to Marcala (approx. 1.5 hours)

  • Lunch at Exotico’s Café 

  • Coffee tasting at Exotico’s Café Tasting Lounge

  • Check-in to hotel in center of town, walking distance to plaza, souvenir shops, market

  • Free afternoon

  • Family style dinner with Chef Alejandro. “Food in Honduras through time”: influences in the region include pre-Hispanic, Spanish colonial, indigeneous. Will include produce from local farms. 


Day 6: Marcala and surrounding mountains

  • Breakfast

  • Visit Finca Los Catadores Farm: led by the owners Yolibeth, Ivan and family. They grow coffee, process beans (honey and washed methods), produce cascara tea, fruit liquors, etc. Very creative, and the whole family is involved in the business

  • Lunch at Finca Los Catadores

  • Transfer back to Marcala

  • Dinner 

Day 7:  Marcala – San Pedro Sula

  • Breakfast and checkout from hotel

  • Visit Finca La Fortaleza, member of the COMSA Co-op and local pioneers in organic farming with bird-friendly coffee certification

  • Transfer to San Pedro Sula via Siguatepeque (approx 1 hr)

  • Lunch in Siguatepeque, buffet style (not included)

  • Transfer to San Pedro Sula (approx. 2 hours)

  • Free afternoon: to enjoy in the mini-pool and sun lounge area of the hotel

  • Farewell dinner


Day 8: San Pedro Sula - airport

  • Breakfast 

  • Transfer to SAP airport for departure flights

 

Trip Details

Exploring Coffee in Honduras: Entrepreneurship, Climate Change, and Culture

What's Included

  • Accommodations

  • Transportation, including airport transfers

  • All activities and visits

  • 16 meals

  • Local English-speaking host and tour guide

  • Pre-trip orientation materials and activities

Not Included:

  • Airfare

  • Travel insurance (strongly recommended)

  • 2 lunches and 2 dinners

  • Alcohol and snacks

Accomodation

Accommodations are double rooms, to be shared with another traveler. A single supplement is available for $299/person.


Accommodations range from a modern hotel in San Pedro Sula, family-owned cabins in a biopark in Lake Yojoa, and simple local hotels in La Esperanza and Marcala. All hotels have hot water, are clean, and provide towels.

Activity Level

We strive to make all activities and experiences inclusive of different ability levels. Therefore, most activities throughout the itinerary are considered low in terms of difficulty. There are two moderately difficult activities on the itinerary: one hiking excursion and one nature walk during a farm visit. We will make reasonable accommodations for all Explorers needing assistance before or during each activity. Contact us with any questions or concerns you have about the activity level.

Payment can be made in full or in installments. Payment plans are available. After you pay the non-refundable $500 deposit, the ExplorEquity team will reach out to you to discuss your payment schedule.