Hacienda Alsacia is a popular Starbucks coffee tour located near San Jose Costa Rica and is fun for all ages!
About Hacienda Alsacia
We all know that Starbucks is wildly popular almost everywhere around the world, and that they do source their coffee from Costa Rica. So it makes sense they would open their first and only public coffee plantation in Costa Rica.
The farm is located in the Central Valley of Costa Rica, at the heart of coffee country. During coffee season (November-December) you can see the actual coffee production, the rest of the year you will learn about the history of coffee, feel and experience different types of coffee beans, and try some coffee.
I have to say that while I was impressed with the beauty of the farm and the professionalism of the tours, but everything was very expensive and as much as Starbucks talks about how well their workers are treated in Costa Rica, they still only pay minimum wage. In that sense this reminded me to the Cafe Britt tours, which are also more geared towards the mass commercialism of Costa Rican coffee at the expense of the local workers.
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The ultimate list of Spanish phrases for Costa Rica with kids.
Location – Getting There And Away
Hacienda Alsacia is located at the foot of the Poas volcano, about an hour from San Jose. You’ll arrive via winding roads through some fun small towns before arriving at the huge entrance to the farm. You can’t miss it- it’s just after signs for Finca Rosa Blanca.
We went by car because we were also going to Zoo Ave (more on that below) and it was the fastest way for us. A lot of people were arriving by taxi or Uber, and since the farm is relatively close to the Juan Santamaria Airport. I saw a lot of people arriving with their suitcases if they had a late afternoon flight.
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There is a traditional Starbucks and Alsacia gift shop. You can buy coffee and snacks- it’s traditional Starbucks fare and not local food.
At the endoof your tour you’ll try some coffee that everyone deemed terrible- I think it was to make people want to go right out and buy some of the coffee brewed in the cafe.
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Tours book fast, so make sure you have a reservation before you go. You can make a Starbucks tour reservation here.
You can expect a bilingual tour guide, and the tour lasts about an hour, culminating with a taste of Costa Rican coffee as you look out over a gorgeous waterfall.
Tours cost $30, children 6 and under are free, and there are discounts for seniors and students with a valid ID.
The Zoo Ave (which we love) has reciprocity with the coffee farm, so if you go there first you will get to purchase Alsacia tickets for $17 or so.
What we did was to go to Zoo Ave first and get entrance tickets there. Then we drove to Starbucks (about 45 minutes) and used the Zoo Ave tickets to purchase the discounted tickets and do our tour. Then we went back to Zoo Ave and spent the afternoon there. It was super fun for the kids and the adults and a pretty full day.
If you are raising bilingual kids, then I highly recommend the tour in Spanish.
When you arrive you are given a cool green and white handkerchief that you get to keep- it is a nice momento from the trip since the gift shop prices are pretty high.
You can also visit the Hacienda to see the sweeping views and the property, enjoy the gift shop and use the bathroom, if you don’t want to pay for a tour.
Visiting a volcano? Check our top 7 picks for best volcanoes to visit in Costa Rica.
What to Bring
Hacienda Alsacia has really nice umbrellas for sun and rain, but it was still really sunny when we went. And hot- very little of the tour is under a roof or indoors.
Make sure to take sunscreen, sturdy shoes, and a hat. If it’s the rainy season a rain jacket is always a good idea too.
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