Lapa is the Costa Rican name for the scarlet macaw, a magnificent bird you’ll likely see during your stay at Lapa Rios. When the owners of Lapa Rios, John and Karen Lewis, first visited the property that would become their eco lodge, they spotted a number of scarlet macaws flying across the jungle that looked much like a river (or rio in Spanish) of scarlet macaws. Inspired by that beautiful image, they decided to name their property “Lapa Rios” (or “River of Scarlet Macaws” in English).

The couple first envisioned Lapa Rios as private nature reserve. They were driven by a dream that required liquidating all their assets to finance the purchase of a large tract of rainforest and build a small, sustainable eco lodge in 1993. Then in 2013, they signed a conservation easement elaborated by The Nature Conservancy and CEDARENA that ensures that this primary forest will be preserved in perpetuity. The 930-acre Lapa Rios Reserve helps buffer the Osa Peninsula’s Corcovado National Park—home to 2.5% of the world’s biodiversity—and serves as a wildlife corridor.

In this incredible environment, you can look forward to once-in-a-lifetime rainforest adventures and ocean activities. Daily guest experiences include a variety of staff naturalist-led rainforest interpretive hikes, bird watching walks and sustainable/educational local project visits. Ocean-mangrove boating trips, dolphin and whale watching, kayaking and surfing are offered by neighboring guides, as well as massages and yoga classes. Some guests choose the adventurous route with an all-day hike through Corcovado National Park (via a small plane); others find relaxing at the pool or hammock napping most memorable.

Lapa Rios is ideal for those who enjoy adventure in nature and want to be a direct part of conservation and local culture. The majority of guests are active couples, honeymooners and families (children over 6 years) looking for an active and uniquely personal experience. Come be a part of ecotourism at Lapa Rios, become a traveler who participates in real sustainable tourism. Lapa Rios is part of the Cayuga Collection of Sustainable Luxury Hotels and Lodges.

Download a copy of our Guide to Sustainable Luxury Travel in Costa Rica and Nicaragua (Apple Store eBook)