Awards & Community

It has always been Desafio's goal to provide the safest operations, exceed our clients expectations, and at the same time be involved in local community projects and step lightly on the earth.

We believe this is why we have accomplished many things we are proud of. Here are some examples of our achievements and the community projects we have been involved in:

Desafio's Sustainable Practices for Tourism

Tour Operator or Tour and Transport Provider

We operate a variety of our own, exclusive, high-end tours, such as rafting, canyoneering, Stand Up Paddling, Kayaking, Mountain Biking, hiking, cultural excursions, volunteer projects, among other unique experiences.

: Our Adventure Headquarters is located in La Fortuna de San Carlos at the base of the Arenal Volcano, with Centers of Operation in Monteverde, Tenorio/Guanacaste and Playa Samara.

Our company is focused on the triple bottom line philosophy – we believe we can only be a profitable company when we contribute to the environment and our local community.

We call our program:

Desafio Adventure Company Awards

As part of our program of our company performs the following exclusive activities:

Development of our reforestation project called "Adopt a Tree" with students from diverse schools near our operating centers in La Fortuna, Monteverde, Tenorio and Playa Samara.

Desafio Adventure Company Awards

: We engage local community schools to participate in a school contest that requires students to gather as much recyclable material for six weeks, to encourage sustainable practices and the importance of recycling.

Each Easter Sunday, we do an activity consisting of hiding plastic eggs with surprises inside for children to look for them. This activity brings together the children of the community as well as tourists to provide some entertainment and transmit messages about caring for the environment. Moreover, we involve all of the companies in our community as they provide sponsorship for the surprises for the eggs and at the end of the activity, we do a coloring contest for the children with the theme "Imagining a Better Community." These drawings are framed and placed in hotel lobbies or agencies to provide a positive image to the tourists visiting the area.

Every Christmas, various government partners, community leaders, local businesses and even tourists buy gifts for underprivileged children. We then organized a party in which the children and their families receive educational messages about caring for the environment and the promotion of the common values.

of our waste materials at all of our facilities.

We have the most-modern fleet of vehicles in order to prevent environmental pollution arising from the emission of gases in older vehicles.

We only use products for our kitchen (such as fruits and vegetables) that are sourced locally from regions near La Fortuna and from our own gardens.

We support government and community projects related to children, youth and seniors, such as the farming project at the San Francisco School and the traditional dance group at the Cerro Alegre school.

Although we are lucky our rivers are generally clean and generally originate in forested, reserve land, some refuse accumulates on the shores from time to time. We schedule clean ups with the local schools near the rivers to help beautify their communities.

: We only work with suppliers with the same philosophy as we have towards the environment and community.

We provide several programs in support of our workers and free passes to the gym, sponsoring their participation in sports events, language classes and training programs among other things.

Reinforces values of honesty, safety, leadership, efficiency and encourages our employees to feel comfortable taking the initiative in the decision-making process.

Contributes to the environment and education to the community and surrounding schools.

Strengthens our company image.

Creates alliances among local businesses

Promotes environmental conservation as part of our corporate culture.

Tourism Declaration from the Costa Rican Tourism Board (Certificate of Sustainable Tourism "CST")

Desafio Adventure Company Awards

Virgin Holidays Award "Best Tour Operator for Local Economies"

Desafio Adventure Company Awards

TripAdvisor's Certificate of Excellence Award

Desafio Adventure Company Awards

Kutoa's "Best in Combining Environmental, Economic & Social Projects"

Desafio Adventure Company Awards

Recognition from the Costa Rican Ministry of Environment on the Desafío Adopt a Tree Program

Desafio Adventure Company Awards

La Fortuna-based Desafio Adventure Company won first prize for Best Tour Operator for Local Economies 2010 at the international tourism trade show World Travel Market 2010 in London.

See the original Press Release from .

Desafío Adventure Company was nominated by tourists among more than 1,700 other companies worldwide for the Responsible Tourism Awards, sponsored by Virgin Holidays. The Awards recognize individuals, companies and organizations in the travel industry that are making a significant commitment to the culture and economies of local communities and are providing a positive contribution to biodiversity conservation.

Desafio Adventure Company Awards

"It's an honor to be recognized on an international level for such a prestigious award," said Suresh Krishnan, owner and founder of the pioneering adventure company in the Northern Zone of Costa Rica. "Over the past 18 years, we've worked hard to develop a sustainable and responsible business model and continue to give back to the community by creating opportunities for our staff," Krishnan said.

The Responsible Tourism judges commented on Desafío Adventure Company's commitment to the "Triple-Bottomline" philosophy which expands the definition of a company's profitability to take into account ecological and social performance, as well as financial performance.

“Costa Rican adventure tourism operator Desafío Adventure Company is awarded for an investment in local people that goes beyond the benefits to their tourism business. Desafío supports their staff in their own local entrepreneurial initiatives — for example, helping their guides buy photographic equipment to start their own businesses, drivers to buy vehicles and supporting the office manager in developing her own website. They show that benefits of local tourism can have lasting effects on local livelihoods."

"It was humbling to be nominated among so many other companies from around the world who have a strong commitment to their local communities," said Krishnan. "We felt an incredible energy being in the same room with all of those other companies that are doing amazing things. We learned a lot, but it is also very rewarding to know that our business approach is unique and that we have been successful in creating micro-businesses that continue to flourish over the years."