Is Lapa Rios for me?

Over the years, we’ve found that a stay at Lapa Rios is a very special experience for very special people. Our satisfaction index is at 99 percent and most of our guests are referred friends and family who’ve stayed at Lapa Rios. All nature lovers will find themselves at home in our 1000 acre rainforest reserve, but we’ve included a few testimonials written by specific guests—a honeymoon couple, a retired couple and a young family with children (the minimum age for children at Lapa Rios is 6)—to give you a sense of what to expect.

For independent reviews, please visit our TRIP ADVISOR page. Take a look at some of Costa Rica’s best Itineraries.

NOTE: We need advance notification regarding any inability to climb steps. Our bungalows are situated on the side of three ridges with beautiful views. Guests climb up the stairs on a lush path to get to the dining area or meeting point for activities. While this is a wonderful adventure where you’re sure to see all sorts of wildlife on your way to a meal, it does mean that you must be comfortable climbing stairs.


ROMANTIC TRAVELERS

Name: Jane and Patrick McGovern
Age: 29 (Jane), 32 (Patrick)
Profession: Software Engineer (Patrick) and Financial Adviser (Jane)
From: Palo Alto, California, USA

Jane: When trying to decide where we wanted to go for our honeymoon, we were looking for a different type of vacation experience, one that was a little bit more “us”.

Both of us are well traveled and accustomed to the backpacking: after college, I taught English in Japan and backpacked throughout Southeast Asia for a year, while Patrick had spent a good amount of time working as a scuba diving instructor in Australia. For our honeymoon, however, we wanted something a little bit more grown up? We wanted to feel pampered, but still wanted to have the opportunity to explore nature and a different culture.

Patrick: Lapa Rios Eco lodge was the perfect destination for us. I don’t think I could have handled sitting by a pool and sipping on cocktails all day long. We were able to do so much: go bird watching, take surfing lessons, hike through the rainforest and more. It was a truly amazing trip. We also visited a nearby primary school, which was an incredibly enriching and rewarding experience. In fact, since we knew ahead of time that we would be visiting the school, we were both able to get our coworkers to donate toys and supplies that we hand delivered to the kids.

Jane: The sustainability efforts of the hotel are incredible; we really felt that we were contributing to the nearby community in so many ways (supporting conservation, providing employment opportunities to local residents and so much more). On top of it, we were so well taken care of! The employees were so warm and welcoming, and the service was really top notch. Waking up to toucans perched on our private deck was truly amazing. We also had incredible massages overlooking the nearby ocean.

Patrick: And the food was great! We like to eat at fairly upscale restaurants in San Francisco, and could not believe we were eating so well in the middle of the rainforest. We were so surprised.

Jane: We would recommend Lapa Rios Eco lodge to anyone who is looking for a truly unique and authentic honeymoon. We had an absolutely unforgettable time and can’t wait to go back.


SOPHISTICATED MATURE TRAVELERS

Name: Susan and Arnold Perloff
Age: 68 (Susan), 74 (Arnold)
Profession: Retired Sociology Professor (Susan) and Retired Pediatrician (Arnold)
From: Hartford, Connecticut, USA

Susan: Since we’ve retired, we’ve been traveling a good deal. Last year, we went on a safari in Kenya and the year before we were in Europe

A friend of ours recommended Lapa Rios Eco lodge to us (he found it through Andrew Harpers Hideaway Report), so we decided to take a chance. Neither of us had been in the rainforest before and we were dying to see it.

Arnold: Lapa Rios was absolutely magnificent. The wildlife was incredible: we saw scarlet macaws, monkeys, sloths and so much more. I am an avid birdwatcher and was truly in heaven. The nature guides were some of the more knowledgeable guides with whom I have ever traveled, and the fact that they were all locals added a great deal to the experience. I took some amazing pictures on that trip.

Susan: I would consider Arnold and myself to be fairly well traveled individuals, so it was shocking to be so blown away by a travel experience. But we were! I was so impressed with the history of the lodge itself. I spent a considerable amount of time sitting on our private deck just reading about how owners John and Karen Lewis came up with the concept. It was so refreshing to see our travel dollars being spent responsibly, aiding local communities and the surrounding environment. I loved the nightly chats on conservation efforts taking place in the nearby community, as well as the opportunity to learn how to make tortillas for breakfast. And the staff was so lovely! We couldn’t have had a better time both exploring the rainforest and relaxing in our luxurious bungalows.

Arnold: I would say that Lapa Rios is a must-see for any nature lover. We have traveled all over the world and this was truly a unique place. We have already told our children about it, who promise to take our grandchildren as soon as they are old enough to appreciate and remember the experience.


FAMILY WITH CHILDREN

Name: Michael, Annie, Ethan and Michael Owens
Age: 43 (Michael), 39 (Annie), 10 (Marcus), 8 (Ethan)
Profession: Real Estate Broker (Michael) and Journalist (Annie)
From Chicago, Illinois, USA

Michael: We wanted to take the boys on a trip that they would remember for the rest of their lives. Both Annie and I feel that both travel and nature are an important part of life

As a result, we were looking for something that would expose our boys to both. Lapa Rios Eco lodge was really great. You should have seen the boys’ faces when they saw their first monkey! This was a truly life changing experience for the kids, as well as for Annie and myself.

Annie: The kids had recently read The Jungle Book in school and, as a result, were really excited to visit the rainforest. They knew all the names of the insects we were going to see before we even got to the lodge. Lapa Rios Eco lodge truly exceeded their expectations, as well as ours. We loved driving up to the lodge in the “safari” cars and hiking around the rainforest. I was really impressed by the staff, especially in the way they paid so much special attention to our kids. The nature guides even took the kids on a special hike just for them while Michael and I were able to relax by the pool.

Michael: One of the receptionists even invited the kids to play soccer with kids in the local primary school. Our boys truly connected with their new friends, and continue to keep in touch as pen pals. Lapa Rios Eco lodge really did an incredible job of connecting our family with the staff and local community. We cannot wait to go back.

Annie: Lapa Rios is an ideal destination for families; it is the perfect combination of comfort and adventure, education and fun. While I would recommend that children be old enough to appreciate the experience, I wouldn’t hesitate for a second to recommend Lapa Rios to any one of my friends with children. The accommodations were children friendly without taking away from the experience for Michael and me. We loved every second of the trip.