I went to Hosteria El Paraiso in January, and I couldn't believe how a place could have so many waterfalls!
When we arrived, a friendly staff helped us unload our bags from our rented car. The first thing I noticed was that the floor was made of cocoa shells! Beautiful, eco friendly and great-smelling cocoa shells! We were taken to a cabin that was spacious, clean, had updated bathrooms with warm water, shampoo, and fresh towels. Even though we were in the middle of the subtropical jungle, we felt very comfortable, without taking away from the jungle experience.
Soon after we freshened up, a lady knocked on our door and gave us a long list of activities that we could book, all included! We decided to go for the waterfalls tour. Coming from Canada, we assumed a walking and pictures tour... we were wrong! They told us to wear our swimsuit, boots and bug repellent cause we were gonna get wet! We had a great guide who told us about the surrounding areas, walked us through a Palmito farm, and soon after stopped at the first waterfall. We all looked at each other, waiting to continue, until our guide told us to get in the water, find the rope attached to the rock wall, and start climbing through the gentle-flowing waterfall! I had had dreams of this, but never done it in real life! I jumped in, grabbed the rope and started climbing, feeling a wonderful sensation of water coming down my face.
We kept going, walked through lemon trees, avacado trees, and the most amazing looking flowers you could imagine. I must have counted over 30 different types of birds, and I was told that there are very rare, transparent frogs (although we never found one.)
When we arrived at the river, there was no turning back. You had to stand on top of a long, curtain-like waterfall and jump in! Once inside, the river became a long, calm pool, flowing in-between a canyon-like path, surrounded by nature. There were two very fun ziplines going through. This river/pool took us right back to the eco-lodge, and right into a magical pool, with a waterfall theme.... go figure! We had a very tasty lunch next to the pool, with music, and exotic drinks.
We were exausted and headed to our room to take a shower and rest. After a couple hours, that same lady knocked on our door and asked us if we wanted her to heat up the steam room, or if we wanted to sing karaoke or simply have dinner.
I couldn't believe it. Great service! So much to do! We will definitely go back on our next trip to Ecuador.
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