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soil conservation


Santa Rosa

Santa Rosa - Centre for Ecotourism and Scientific Investigation

Fundacion Golondrinas has as one of it’s principal aims the conservation of the Cerro Golondrinas Cloud Forest, a zone as rich in floral species as fauna biodiversity and of which many are endemic, belonging to part of the Andina del Choco mountain range. This area comprises approximately 80 % of primary cloud forest and the lower region of secondary forest, which has been destroyed by the indiscriminate felling of cloud forest and by the inadequate techniques of soil management.

The organization manages the reserve of the protected forest, Cerro Golondrinas of approximately 1400 hectares, however its main objective is the conservation of the whole area surrounding the Cerro Golondrinas, some 25,000 hectares. This area is already of great importance for the water resource that it possesses which allows communities such as Las Juntas, Espejo 1 and 2 and Gualchan among others to benefit from the water, which can be obtained from the zone. This is why the Fundacion Golondrinas strives for the protection of this area, which is made up of idle land, the reserve and farmers terrains. It is for these reasons that the organization is developing environmental education programs aimed especially at the local people to capacitate the farmers and achieve the total protection of this zone, whilst at the same time helping them to develop their terrains with techniques adequately adaptable to their crops.

Within this context and with the sponsorship of the Rolex Award for Enterprise and the UICN, the Santa Rosa Centre for Ecotourism and Scientific Investigation has been established within the secondary forest part of the reserve. This has been formed to offer tourist services and technical assistence to the farmers, public and private organizations, NGOs, educational centers (national and international), researchers and visitors.

This space which has been opened will not only provide the chance to rest and enjoy being in contact with nature, but will also contribute to one’s knowledge about the protection and conservation of the natural resources that we possess. This in turn will demonstrate to the local communities examples of practical alternatives that can be made use of without destroying the forest, and by doing so reach equilibrium between man and nature.

Within the ecotourism center there will be a working museum, which itself will consist of a botanical garden utilizing medicinal plants, ornamentals, vegetables and fruits, with the aim of demonstrating to the local people and visitors the benefits of traditional medicine. From the ecological point of view this will also help attract birds and insects that in turn will allow us to benefit from a greater choice of resources that nature can offer us.

Among the projects and programs that are offered in the Santa Rosa ecotourism center are;

Volunteer Work

  • Preparation of pathways
  • Signposting of pathways
  • Plant collection for the botanical garden
  • Identification of plants for the botanical garden, with their respective characteristics
  • Making model replicas of the region
  • Photographic work of Flora and Fauna species
  • Identification of Fauna species that can be found in the zone
  • Construction of fencing for the animals
  • Working with native plants in the tree nursery

Information about volunteering with Golondrians


  • Design and preparation of the photographic museum
  • Studies into the search for alternatives within the cloud forest
  • Develop areas to visit for Ornithologists, Entomologists etc

Information about scientific work with Golondrinas


There is the opportunity to do hikes and excursions within the Cerro Golondrinas project, starting from the village of Guallupe, with a visit to the demonstration farm at Pena Negra. Afterwards one can go up to the reserve and visit our ecotourism centre, where one can enjoy the different opportunities available to them there.

We continue with our 4 day trek in which one can experience and enjoy three zones of vegetation, high grassland plateau, cloud forest and subtropical land, see the different changes that exist in the northwest region of the country and, see and understand the activities that our organization is developing in order to alleviate the problem of the destruction of natural resources.

The services that we offer are the following,

  • Ecotourism
  • Excursions to the Cerro Golondrinas
  • Excursions to the El Pailon waterfall
  • Excursions along the ´Pathway of the birds
  • Camping
  • Agro tourism
  • Visit an organic, medicinal and fruit garden
  • Scientific tourism

Information about tourism with Golondrinas

With a visit one can contribute to the conservation and protection of the Cerro Golondrinas forest and support the continuation of environmental education courses of the local people.


More informations by our   Contact Form.

Fundación Golondrinas es una organizacion no gubernamental sin fines de lucro, fue creada, con el Acuerdo Ministerial. # 213 del 26 de junio 1996-MAG/INEFAN.

© Fundación Golondrinas 2008

(C) 2008 FUNDACION GOLONDRINAS, /Gualupe - Ecuador