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Holiday review by Karen

Name:
Date of trip: 24/01/2020
Number of people: 2
Country: Costa Rica

Overall level of Satisfaction

 
Tribes Overall: "We enjoyed every minute of our trip in Costa Rica. It lived up to and exceeded our expectations and we would recommend it to anyone with an interest or love for nature. We felt it was a very unique and magical place and it has left us with many wonderful memories that we will treasure for years to come."
 
Tribes Service: "Alex was incredibly helpful from the point of our very first enquiry, right up until we travelled. I felt that he was very knowledgable and experienced and that nothing was too much trouble. He was always very prompt to respond to my queries (and I had quite a few!) and was incredibly helpful."
 
Guides: "All of our guides were very helpful, knowledgable and informative. We felt safe and well looked after every step of the way. The one particular stand out guide that we had was in Torteguero - Cinthia - she went out of her way to show us all of the sights in Torteguero and was incredibly friendly and knowledgeable. She spent loads of time with us and made sure we knew exactly what the plan was for each day, where we needed to be and when. When we said goodbye it felt like saying goodbye to a new friend."
 
Social & Environmental Responsibility: "It is hard to say, but we felt that all of the local people and guides that we met were very passionate about looking after their country, and keen to look after the wildlife around them. Hotel staff also appeared keen to promote environmentally friendly practices."

Accommodation

 
Hotel Presidente
We had a very brief stay at the Hotel Presidente. It appeared to be in a good location. We were very keen to have a drink in the rooftop bar when we arrived late but were told we had to have a booking - we did eventually manage to squeeze in but if this was something you were keen to visit and were short on time I would recommend booking before arrival. Otherwise, the room was comfortable and clean.
 
Mawamba Lodge
The accommodation at Mawamba Lodge, Torteguero felt authentic and the staff were extremely friendly and helpful. There was a huge variety of wildlife within the grounds, including iguana, monkeys, bats, frogs, humming birds.. the list just goes on and on. The standard of food was amazing and there was a really good selection to choose from. The river trips were lead by such a fantastic guide, Cinthia - we saw a huge range of wildlife and birds - we would highly recommend the early morning optional river cruise as we saw sloths, howler monkeys, spider monkeys and white faced capuchins - as well as so many birds, cameo, crocs and river turtles. This is a very special place and we cant recommend it enough.
 
Hotel Belmar
Hotel Belmar was a beautiful hotel and in a fantastic location and we particularly loved being able to sleep with the doors open and hear all of the surrounding wildlife as we nodded off to sleep. Food in the restaurant was very nice and breakfast was fantastic - all al a carte rather than a buffet which was a really nice change and very high standard. While we were staying at the hotel we did an optional trip to their own private reserve where we got the opportunity to climb a tree, put our head out of the top of the rainforest canopy and watch the sunset before walking back through the reserve in the dark - our guide, Walter was so passionate about the forest and teaching us more about it - it was such a memorable trip. Staff at this hotel were incredibly helpful and friendly.
 
Parador Resort and Spa
A highlight of our trip was our arrival at the Hotel Parador at Manuel Antonio - within moments of arriving we saw a Sloth holding her baby, in a tree, just a matter of feet away from us - a magical moment! The hotel is very nice and is set within fantastic grounds - we saw lots of sloths here, white capuchin monkeys, howler monkeys, deer, agouti, iguana, basilisks and many birds including scarlet macaws. This was without leaving the hotel. Food within the hotel was reasonably priced and very good standard - the sushi was a particular highlight but you have to ask as it wasn't well advertised!! Tico time was good value - half price rather than the usual 2 for 1 which is great as my partner prefers to drink beer and I enjoy a glass of wine. Breakfast was a little disappointing compared to other places we had stayed and paticularly when compared to the quality of lunch and dinner and some of the information at the hotel in the room was confusing and out of date. Other than that we would highly recommend this hotel.
 
Lomas del Volcan
Lomas del Volcan at Arenal was a truly magical place and the accommodation was beautiful. Our room was immaculate and staff were incredibly friendly and hard working. We had upgraded to a deluxe bungalow with a bath tub on the terrace which had possibly the best view of the volcano and surrounding forest. You can literally waste hours watching the huge range of birds that surround you. Breakfast was good, and staff in the bar were very friendly - happy hour was very good value. We ate one evening in the restaurant and although a bit pricey the food was of a very high standard indeed. One word of warning - the hotel's nature trail was very overgrown and quite hard to navigate - we were fine but it was quite a surprise!!

Our Memories

"There are so many highlights and special memories that it is hard to know where to begin! The accommodation at Mawamba Lodge, Torteguero felt authentic and the river trips were lead by such a fantastic guide, Cinthia - we saw a huge range of wildlife and birds - we would highly recommend the early morning optional river cruise as we saw sloths, howler monkeys, spider monkeys and white faced capuchins - as well as so many birds, cameo, crocs and river turtles. Lomas del Volcan at Arenal was a truly magical place and the accommodation was beautiful. Our room was immaculate and staff were incredibly friendly and hard working. The trip to the hot springs was a particular highlight. Hotel Belmar was a beautiful hotel and in a fantastic location and we particularly loved being able to sleep with the doors open and hear all of the surrounding wildlife as we nodded off to sleep. While we were staying at the hotel we did an optional trip to their own private reserve where we got the opportunity to climb a tree, put our head out of the top of the rainforest canopy and watch the sunset before walking back through the reserve in the dark - our guide, Walter was so passionate about the forest and teaching us more about it - it was such a memorable trip. Finally, a particular highlight was our arrival at the Hotel Parador at Manuel Antonio - within moments of arriving we saw a Sloth holding her baby, in a tree, just a matter of feet away from us - a magical moment!"

customer rating

5/5 from 323 reviews

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facts and information

Time: GMT -6 hours

Flight time: The flying time is about 12 hours from the UK. There are now direct flights from the UK using British Airways. We work with all the major airlines and can offer flights from the UK or via the USA, Panama or a European hub. With the connection times you are looking at around 15 or 16 hours.

Language: Spanish is the official language. English is widely spoken throughout Costa Rica

Visas: Not required for British travellers. Other nationalities should obtain advice from their embassy.

Health: There are no compulsory vaccinations.

 

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