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An ecologically focused community overlooking the Pacific Ocean in Guanacaste, Costa Rica






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Property Streams, Rivers & Falls

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A More Healthy Place to Live?



The Community

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FLB, A Sustainable Community

Community Center Construction

Green Waste Treatment (17 min)

Green Waste Treatment (3 min

Visit to El Centro Verde

Water Falls at Finca Las Brisas

Howler Monkey Comes to Lunch



Finca Blog

The Costa Rica Gringo Perspective

Is Utopia Even a Possibility?

Neighbors We Don't Know

Built to Break




Waterfalls, Beaches & Turtle Nesting

The Rains Remind Us

Another Perfect January

Finca Campout

A Lot of Work, a Little Fun

Better do it Right

The Fiesta

Travel Suggestions


Note: All videos and most photos on this site are provided by community members.

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 Views of Finca Las Brisas, a residential and eco destination community

Finca Las Brisas is a sustainable ecological type of Costa Rica real estate community located in the hills near Playa Samara on the northwestern coast of Costa Rica, in the state of Guanacaste. 

This part of Costa Rica is called a dry tropical forest with about 80 inches of rain each year. Much of the region has been used for ranching in recent decades. The landscape may remind you a bit of Marin and Sonoma Counties in northern California - rolling hills that are golden and tan during the dry season, and a lush bright green during the rainy season (May through September).

The tropical dry forest is native to the lower elevations of Guanacaste and the Nicoya Peninsula. Where we are located was nearly all destroyed as the original forests were clear cut and then burned to create pasture lands. As recently as the 1970s a "Wild West" spirit reigned in this region and pasture land was growing as quickly as the forests could be clear-cut and burned.

The wild west mentality still prevails in the region. This world view is often translated by the many gringos and internationals that have migrated to the area as, "Hey man, no rules. It is Costa Rica."

Our property clearly bears the scars of this deforestation. This remarkable property however, with its two rivers, numerous streams and over seven sets of waterfalls, has not only maintained its beauty but it is now on the path to healing and restoration. With our help, we will aid in the healing process and protect this truly unique property for future generations. 

This property (Finca or "family farm" in English) is very diverse and features ocean views, pastures, rivers, streams. waterfalls, steep hills, trails, and more level land where two rivers join and then meander as far as we have followed. A wide variety of native plants and trees call the Finca home. Monkeys, horses, iguana, exotic birds, and occasionally a person (usually on horseback) can be seen in the distance.

We have really just started in our efforts to heal the land, but this recent photo taken during the rainy season, illustrates a stark difference in the property from when we purchased it a few years ago. Nature, with a little help is working miracles. 

This photo of the Turquoise -browed Motmot taken down in our valley where our rivers join is a bird whose habitat is exclusively the dry forest. The White-throated Magpie-Jay is another such bird.

Synonyms: Tropical Dry Forest, Tropical Seasonal Forest or Tropical Deciduous Forest.

Altitude: We are 750 to 1,300 feet.

Rainfall: 80 inches. Heavy rains August and September.

Dry Season: 6 - 8 months (October through April). Trade Winds come from the NW with November typically transitioning from the rainy season. Deciduous vegetation, or leaves falling during the dry season, it an adaptation to the dry weather.

Canopy Height: 80 feet in a mature forest. In our river corridor we have a strong secondary forest.

Treats: Deforestation, human fires, unsustainable human development, pollution, hunting, US style tourism (gringolandia), farming, ranching.

The year 2011 has been declared the International Year of the Forests by the United Nations.

Most of these photos were taken before development or re-forestation began. See Property Rivers, Falls & Streams for more photos of the property.


Two of the greatest man-made disasters in history were the Dust Bowl and the deforestation of the great North American forests. When the first colonists came they wanted pasture, farmland, barns and fences. They saw nothing but trees. A natural wonder was destroyed in a just a few decades. But with western expansionism came better farmland and the farmers and ranchers moved on and they left their fields and pastures to be reclaimed by the forests. The New York Times reports in Oct. 2011, in an article titled With Deaths of Forests, a Loss of Key Climate Protectors, "By the mid-19th century, the Erie Canal and the railroads had opened the interior of the country, and farmers plowing the thin, stony soils of New England could not compete with produce from the rich fields of the Midwest. So the old fields were abandoned, and trees have returned. Today, the-growing forests of the Eastern United States are among the most important carbon sponges in the world. "

The destroyed forests of the Nicoya Peninsula today provide marginal economic value to the people living there in terms of pasture and farmland in comparison to the growing strength of eco-tourism. This is the time in history to help these forests begin to grow back. With reforestation comes year around streams and rivers as the rain percolates through the soil rather than running off the bare hills, cleaner water, and the return of many animals rarely seen today. As quickly as we destroyed these forests, we can help them start again. With the nearly year-around growing season in the tropics this will happen must faster than it has in North America.


Ocean view during the dry season when the hills were cleared each year for few head of cattle

The upper portion of our property, where our community center is located, looks down on an area where the Rio Frio, a large stream and the Rio Naranjalito, merge in a valley in the center of our property. There is a rural house structure on the west side of the property that we would like to convert into an environmental educational center.

Another former rural house is located north of the property. We peeked under this structure one day and saw thousands of bats hanging from the floor! We speculate that it is the bat population in Costa Rica which explains the absence of mosquitoes and other flying pests.

We have planted hundreds of fruit trees in order to help build a sustainable food forest model in our community living areas, we have removed the cattle and we have been reforesting the property. Because of the numerous streams and rivers the finca is rich in flora and fauna. 


The Finca is about 5 kilometers in from the main road. At about 4 kilometers is a plaza where there is a small school for about 10 young children, the school teacher's house and a soccer field. Recently we visited the school and found Alberto teaching a group of 6 boys and 1 girl in an outdoor classroom. Alberto welcomed us warmly and the children found us most interesting. We thought the high-five was a universal greeting among children but not in this part of Costa Rica. We got a list of supplies to purchase for the school and dropped off a bunch of soccer balls.

There are two or three other smaller homes in the plaza area and just past the school. There is also a back road that heads up to the mountain village of Zaragoza where they grow coffee. In January of 2007 we improved this existing road for the locals and ourselves for better access through the mountains and over to Nosara. Rafa lived at the start of this road (a caretaker lives there now) and he is the rancher who sold us a strip of land that connects our property to a public road (really just a trail at this time). He also provided us with the easement on which we put in our new driveway with direct and more easy access to the entrance of our property.

At this time there is no electricity to any of these places including the school. Currently on the finca we are reliant on solar and at times we run a diesel generator to charge the batteries.


One of several horses on the finca when we arrived



Area view of the property

Heading out on a group hike
Al shows property
Group ride from our corral area in the valley where all of the streams and rivers join
Main entrance to the finca before we put in the final 1.5 kilometer road. Brad Baxter in the distance.
White one room school house a short distance from us. The other structure is for the school teacher and family. There is no electricity, windows, and water is gravity fed from a spring.
Some of the cattle grazing on the finca when we took ownership
Pasture down by the corral. A house once stood here many years ago. Remnants of an orchard remain.
Bananas - 12 feet tall in 8 months!
Bananas after just one year growth

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Located (near Playa Samara, Playa Carrillo, Playa Garza, Playa Buenavista, Playa Guiones, Playa Nosara, Playa Ostional, and Playa San Juanilla) on the Nicoya Peninsula overlooking  the Pacific coast of Costa Rica