Located in the Talamanca mountain range, The Durika Community takes it rightful place seated far above the clouds. Durika is much more than a biological preserve; it is a community made-up of 30 odd inhabitants from all around the world, who have come to Durika to live the rest of their lives in a mutualistic relationship with nature. Together, these doctors, educators, farmers and spiritual leaders reforested much of their surroundings, assembled a hydroelectric system, and planted a garden that provides them with all of their food year round. They are completely self-sustained in every sense of the word.

While in Durika, I embarked on a 3 ½ hour hike to the bottom of the mountain, and I could not believe what they live amongst each day. In their backyard, you can find an abundance of rivers, waterfalls, horses, and more species of butterflies than the whole African Continent. During our hike, our guide encountered a rare butterfly whose mere presence in the ecosystem meant that we were in am environment nearly free of harmful toxins. This was a true blessing and surprise for our guide, because it was discovered in an area of the rainforest that he and other Durikan’s planted with their own hands. This was a true testament of how much humans can impact the environment in a positive way.

If you want to learn more about Durika or would like to volunteer in this community, please visit

Written by Adriana Vargas


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