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“Don't consider this hotel if you're a serious traveler!” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Arenal Backpackers Resort

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Arenal Backpackers Resort
350 meters west of central park, towards volcano, La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park 506, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Mexico City, Mexico
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Don't consider this hotel if you're a serious traveler!”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 13, 2013

First of all, this is not a hostel. It is a 1 star hotel.

DON'T CONSIDER THIS OPTION IF YOU'RE TRAVELING SERIOUSLY, consider this if you're a spring breaker looking to get drunk and party and staying in the pool instead of getting to know this beautiful country.

It was an extremely expensive room with nothing but a bed in it. Not a single night table, nothing to hang our towels and clothes, nothing to PUT OUR CELLPHONES AND MONEY ON. We had to put all our stuff on the floor. It didn't even have a private bathroom for 45$ a night, and in other places we even got breakfast for less than that. The pool is freezing (even when the weather's hot), the staff is not friendly, bathrooms are ok, the tour was lame and the feeling you get while being there is far from being in Costa Rica.

Room Tip: Don't get rooms, get tents. You get exactly the same for half the price.
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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349 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (56)
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English first
Toronto, Canada
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2013

This was our first time staying at a hostel and I'm sure nothing else will compare.
Unfortunately it rained the majority of our stay in Arenal, so we never saw the volcano or got to try out the pool or hammocks, but there was lots of time to relax in the bar/restaurant area and mingle with fellow travellors. The restaurant was a little pricey, but really good. Breakfast for 2 people cost roughly $15, lunch or dinner cost $20-$30. One night we were a little tired of the traditional beans and rice so we ordered a burger and chicken wings and they were the BEST we've ever had. I couldn't believe that we had found the most perfect chicken wings in Costa Rica, I had to talk my husband out of ordering them for breakfast the next morning because he couldn't stop thinking about them.
We stayed in one of the tents with the shared bathrooms and thought it was a great alternative to a traditional room. We fell asleep to the sound of the rain every night and the other people staying in tents were really respectful of noise volumes - which was one of my concerns. The bathrooms were really clean and we never had to wait for a shower. It was a little inconvenient if you had to use the washroom in the middle of the night, but that's just one little thing to deal with.

Room Tip: If you go with the tent (which I highly recommend) don't be shy about asking for an extra pillow...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Sydney, Australia
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 9, 2013

This was a great place to stay for the array of activities around the arenal area. The staff are friendly (particularly Freddie - who assisted us with most of our transfers/tour needs), and everyone seems very relaxed and open to having a good time.
We had the benefit of staying here NYE which was great - there was a pinata, plenty of cheap drinks, fireworks and some great ambiance.

Clean rooms, minimal bug protection due to the need to open windows in the heat. Perhaps in times of increased humidity it would help to have the aircon on a bit more so people can get things dry?

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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South Florida, Florida
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
71 helpful votes 71 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 7, 2013

We stayed at Arenal backpackers for 3 nights as suggested by another TA member. This place met all of our needs and more. We had a great time at this hotel the entire time. We also met many other travelers, went out all together as group dancing for a couple of nights, mingled, shared our travel experiences with one-another, went to bed really late, etc. The pool is awesome, it is very clean, restaurant stays open until late and friendly staff.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edmonton, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2013

We stayed here for 3 nights just after christmas. The first 2 nights we stayed in a private room and the third night in a co-ed dorm. The property itself is fantastic. They have a really nice pool and the restaurant is very convenient. The best part about the hostel is the staff. They are incredibly helpful and knowledgable and will do everything they can to make sure your stay is enjoyable. They also have mountain bikes available to rent for $3/hr or $20/day. We took advantage of that and rented a couple of bikes for a day and toured around on bikes. They also offer various tours for a bit of a discount over what you would pay for them elsewhere.

The only negative that we found when it came to this place was that they had absolutely no where to hang anything or put anything in the rooms. We had the private room and it had a double bed and a TV mounted on the wall and that was it. No hooks to hang anything to dry, no shelves or nightstands or anything like that to put a few things. So you're just laying everything out on the floor.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
183 helpful votes 183 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 1, 2013 via mobile

This place was so fab, they organised a Great birthday surprise for my husband! The tents were great fun and overall wicked team of staff!! Thank you! BTW we were so lucky to wake up to an amazing view of Arenal!

Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
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Calgary, Canada
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 26, 2012

We booked a private room at this hostel through hostelworld and paid in full before going. We discovered that this was a smart choice as the price on hostelworld is cheaper by a couple of bucks.

Can't speak for the bunks but the mattress in the private room was not comfortable and the pillows were thin.

Very clean hostel on a very nice property. Well taken care of. Loved the pool area and the hammocks.

Also liked that there was a restaurant/bar right there. Not a place to party but definitely a good setting for meeting people. Try the hookah they have tons of flavours!

The staff were immensely helpful. All of them are personable locals with good english and extensive knowledge of the area. Ask them anything - they will give you honest advice on whatever you want to hear about.

Room Tip: Book it on Hostelworld to save $
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Arenal Backpackers Resort

Address: 350 meters west of central park, towards volcano, La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park 506, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Alajuela > Arenal Volcano National Park > La Fortuna de San Carlos
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #19 of 54 Specialty Lodging in La Fortuna de San Carlos
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 11
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Arenal Backpackers Resort Costa Rica/Arenal Volcano National Park

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