Holiday review by Mr. Gary Lewis

Name: Mr. Gary Lewis

Date of trip: 22/03/2018

Number of people: 2

Sleeping though a 4.8 earthquake on the 3rd floor of our hotel, but waking up and thinking the world was about to end on the 7th!?! Being caught in a long and extremely slow traffic jam, until the police closed the opposite carriageway allowing us to use the entire dual carriageway virtually all the way to San Jose - wow, that was a weird experience. Lying in a hammock, wondering how such small Howler monkeys can make such a terrifying noise. The huge range, scale, variety and extent of the vegitation. The first time the cloud cleared from Volcán Arenal - brilliant. Zipping along 760m of steel cable at 80 kph and 200m above the Rain Forest - breathtaking! Seeing a very Resplendent Quetzal. Driving along Highway 606, just like an off road jeep safari. Standing at the foot of a 500+ year old Ceiba tree - to think it's been around since before Columbus. Seeing the Pacific for the very first time. Repeatedly seeing pairs of Scarlet Macaws flying overhead and merrily squawking in trees and then seeing a Tucan. Walking through soft sand along deserted beaches beneath palm and advocado trees chasing Blue Crabs back into their holes. Being within two metres of a juvenile American Crocodile, slowing swimming down the river, whilst we were ready to run at any moment! Marvelling at how that basilisk lizard could walk so far across the river and then back again! Watching the Dolphins play in our wake on the way to Cano Island.

  • Shawandha Lodge gardens


  • Shawandha Lodge gardens


  • Shawandha Lodge gardens


  • Garden at Trapp Family Hotel, Monteverde, Costa Rica © TEdwards

    Garden at Trapp Family Hotel, Monteverde, Costa Rica

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Tribes Overall:

We had high expectations of the holiday and it easily exceeded them.

Tribes Service:

Rory was very prompt and responsive. He listened to what we wanted and got our holiday spot on. Thankyou.


A lot depended on their profiency in speaking English, most were very good although there was one guide who knew a lot, but we struggled to understand everything he told us. Regarding the drivers there were a couple with no English and no guide to help out.

Social & Environmental Responsibility:

What impressed us the most was how everyone we came into contact with ouside of the corporate organisations showed a huge respect to the envirionment and particularly the animals.

The places you stayed

Shawandha Lodge gardens

Shawandha Lodge

Costa Rica

This was a real gem. We were uniquely situated within individual bungalows nestled within the Rain Forest surrounded most of the time by really loud Howler Monkeys. We loved the hammocks on the verandas and the swimming pool surrounded by the most amazing array of exoctic plants, it was like swimming in the palm house at Kew Gardens. The food in the restaurant was very good - I can definately recommend the steak - and the breakfasts, fresh fruit followed by eggs were the freshest we had all holiday. The pineapple was the best we tasted in Costa Rica. There's a short walk to the beach and a wonderful stroll along the beach to Punta Uva, worth checking out the Eden Beach restaurant. There is also an ancient Ceiba tree in the grounds.

Garden at Trapp Family Hotel, Monteverde, Costa Rica © TEdwards

Trapp Family Hotel


Comfortable rooms, hot shower and brilliant Lemon grass body lotion which also an insect repellent - very close to the entrance to the national park.
Not surprisingly the Cloud Forest is very wet and quite chilly, the hotel provided us with a portable heater.
We used this as a base, leaving early in the morning and getting back in the evening.