Built on a ridge, 350 feet above sea level, the entire lodge enjoys fabulous views of the Golfo Dulce and Pacific Ocean, sunsets can be jaw-dropping. Lapa Rios manages to effortlessly combine Costa Rican culture together with luxurious trappings resulting in an charming eco-lodge with its own 1000 acre private reserve.
Every detail is taken care of down to fresh hot coffee being delivered to your bungalow each morning. Each bungalow has a private veranda complete with outdoor shower and large hammocks. The bungalows, suites and villas are spacious and the decor tasteful, light and uncluttered. Cooling sea breezes flow through the mesh windows so you can enjoy the fresh air, the beds have mosquito nets too, just in case. Every effort is made ensure as little impact as possible on the fragile environment including a friendly request that you use the bio-degradable toiletries provided. The restaurant serves excellent locally sourced, freshly prepared meals that can be enjoyed while taking in the breath taking views. Take a refreshing dip in the salt water pool, as you would expect the views from the pool are spectacular too or enjoy a relaxing yoga class or massage.
In the centre of the dining area is an impressive spiral staircase which leads to the the canopy rooftop. Here you can enjoy sweeping 360 degree views over the rain forest, Pacific Ocean, Gulfo Dulce, and nearby beaches and farms. It's a very special viewing spot for sunsets or sunrises and you can see beautiful wildlife all around.
The activities on offer are numerous and you may be spoiled for choice. You can enjoy self-guided walks around the reserve, setting your own pace or perhaps a bird watching tour. A slightly challenging hike would be the waterfalls tour, it involves some steep inclines and some slippery parts but you will get a chance to swim under the waterfall. You could go on a guided walk and learn all about the medicinal properties of plants found in the rainforest, or take a night walk or a guided excursion into the Corcovado National park. Horse riding is available and also while here, why not have a go at rappelling or zip-lining, that should get your blood rushing. There is also the opportunity to visit a nearby school or perhaps join a football match. The 'behind-the-scenes' sustainability tour is insightful too. You could try cooking or Spanish classes, you can try out recipes on your friends back home.
Open: Lapa Rios is open all year round.
Location: A superb eco-lodge with it's own 1000 acre private reserve close to Corcovado National Park on the Osa Peninsula.
Rooms: There are 17 luxurious bungalows all built on the ridge overlooking the Golfo Dulce or Pacific ocean. They are tastefully furnished and have en-suite bathrooms with indoor and outdoor showers. The spacious balcony has a hammock and comfy seating where you can enjoy the sights and sounds of nature and the amazing views. Eco-friendly toiletries are provided. In addition there are four lapa ocean villas and two premier lapa suites. Each lapa ocean villa provides spacious accommodation for up to five guests with two en-suite bedrooms, a lounge and terrace featuring a plunge pool, outdoor shower, comfy chairs and hammocks. Premier lapa suites are similar in style and have one bedroom each plus a terrace with an outdoor shower, hammock and a sitting area. Villas and suites all have panoramic views.
Activities: There are plenty of activities to do here both on-site and in the surrounding area. Self-guided and guided hikes, waterfall hikes, visits to schools, cookery classes, Spanish classes, starfish walk, sunset and night walks, horse riding, dolphin tours, kayaking and surfing lessons, zip-lining and canopy tours. So you get the idea, there is enough to keep you busy throughout your stay.
Facilities: There is a delightful open-air restaurant serving interesting fusion dishes that you can enjoy whilst admiring the views, wherever possible fresh locally sourced produce is used. The saltwater pool offers spectacular sea views as you swim. In the centre of the dining room is the spiral staircase that will take you up to the viewing canopy. The guide hut and library is a great place to swot up on the local wildlife, alternatively you might take advantage and have a massage or join in a yoga class.
Dining: Dining is at individual tables.
Health: Costa Rica has a low risk of malaria.
Communication: There is no WiFi or TV or radio available at Lapa Rios, it's all about unplugging! You may find that you do get mobile signal here, but you are kindly asked to only use the phone in your bungalow and not the main areas.
"This was the peak of eco-lodges for us .... the whole place is "green". We had an amazing room with no walls (just insect netting) and net over the 4 posted bed; a large deck with outdoor shower and lovely views. The only downside was our room number - any room number higher than 11 means you are down the ridge from the main building. Down means in excess of 200 steps to get down/up (steps not paces) which is about a ten storey building. After the first day we learned how to plan our day and limit ourselves to 2 up and 2 down per day. The abundance of wild life and the expertise of the guides made the whole adventure worthwhile. We walked miles each day, saw spectacular birds, met lovely fellow guests and really nice staff - most of whom were proud to live and work in Pt Jimenez the local "town". The only time we left Lapa was to go on a dolphin seeking boat trip - they organised everything and it was a-maz-ing."