La Finca El Ocaso is not the kind of place you stumble across. Located way down a Quindío stone-studded dirt road on the way to nowhere, it helps to have a dollop of faith that it really exists. It also helps to have one of the coffee region’s ubiquitous Willys—a kind of Model T-esque jeep—to navigate the bumpy course, though not strictly necessary.
But whether on a day trip or planning to spend a night, it’s hard not to appreciate the tranquil solitude of Twilight Farmhouse, as it translates, once you’re there. The 20-hectare property is crowned by the farmhouse itself, a classic red, green and white two-story with a wrap-around porch that invites you to spend the afternoon dozing under the shade of its overhang.
Time is also well wasted lounging in the nearby shaded lookout, which looks out over a mini-valley planted with half a dozen private homes and thick groves of eucalyptus, banana and bamboo. But it’s not all lazing around, at least for the residents.
The farm produces some 50,000 kilos of certified organic coffee a year, in a full-cycle process that uses manure culled from an onsite hog yard and fields cross planted with plantains and flowering bushes. The helpful if reserved Raúl, who manages the farm with his wife Sandra, will show you exactly how it all works in a 45-minute tour for about US$3.50. You’ll even get a steaming cup of the product at the end.
Should you become enchanted, rooms go for about US$12.50 a night. There is space for up to 7 couples, but they only fill during winter and summer holidays. Meals cooked and served by Sandra come extra.
While stumbling down unpaved roads won’t yield many unpleasant surprises in Quindio–the department is home to a healthy number of army bases–the best way to find El Ocaso is to ask in neighboring Salento. Locals should point you to the nearby cemetery, from which a bumpy road punctuated an occasional sign for the farm and plenty of other turnoffs departs to your destination. Keep your patience–the few kilometers will take some time.