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“perfect rainforest experiencew” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Las Cruces Biological Station

Las Cruces Biological Station
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Las Cruces Biological Station
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| San Vito, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Brussels, Belgium
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
“perfect rainforest experiencew”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 20, 2014

We stayed here for 5 nights, walking the trails without a guide (I wonder if the commenter below who complained about not being able to do this unaccompanied may was properly equipped?). The trails ARE potentially dangerous if you're not fit, or if you've never walked in rough conditions in this heat before, or if you don't gave proper boots, but we and our 16 yr old daughter found them strenuous but very doable. We were there to do voluntary research, so we had 2 mornings of trail surveying, and I did another morning of pollinator observation, and was stalked by a humming-bird. The wildlife in the gardens is terrific, and the birds in the nearby forest as well as the primary rainforest further out made the trip from Europe worthwhile. The rooms are very comfortable ('basic' in a comment below is ungenerous), we stayed in spacious and well furnished en suite cabins, cleaned every day, with a private balcony. The food was outstanding, they cater effortlessly for vegans and veggies as well as meat-eaters, and in 5 days we didn't eat the same meal once. The local town of San Vito is a bit of a frontier place, but has all the basics and extras anyone could need, even fabric shops.

  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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13 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (5)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
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English first
Milwaukee
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2014

Las Cruces is run by the Organization of Tropical Studies, and as a Field Station, offer great accommodation: clean, simple and nice. But you're not coming here to stay in your room, the real deal is the Wilson Botanical Garden, and the great diversity of birds. They also have an observation tower, so is a dream place for birdwatchers. Meals are simple, but delicious. It's a little expensive, considering is a field station, but you a supporting a great cause, a NGO worldwide known by the contribution of knowing the world diversity.

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Auckland, New Zealand
Top Contributor
86 reviews 86 reviews
42 hotel reviews
Reviews in 51 cities Reviews in 51 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 21, 2014

Our room in this tropical research and education centre was basic but comfortable. There was plenty of space and the balcony made this seem more so. Meals were included in a refectory-style community dining room. They were generally very good and gave us a chance to try many local dishes. The centre is situated in the gardens established by the Wilsons and designed by Burle-Marx which feature many ferns, palms, bromeliads, and orchids. The 10-ha gardens are surrounded by 235-ha of forest which feature an incredible diversity of animals and birds accessible by the many trails. Staff were helpful and friendly, and committed to the conservation and educational ethos of the centre.

  • Stayed April 2014, 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
    • 4 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.
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 19, 2014

Las Cruces Lodge, set in the Wilson Botanical Garden, is wonderful. Rooms are clean, tidy and spacious and within easy distance of the communal dining room. There is a real, communal feel here within the genuine, eco-friendly environment. Brightly coloured birds abound and the grounds are packed with wildlife, rare plants and trees. A guided tour is well worth taking as there is so much to see. Our tour only spent one night here, but I could easily have spent many more days here to take in all that this wonderful and simple lodge has to offer. I loved it.

Room Tip: Any rooms here will be good.
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Monteverde
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 24, 2014

Las Cruces is clearly a great birding location. Unfortunately, the folks that run it and Wilson Botanical Garden are making it difficult to bird. First of all, their rule is that you cannot walk the trails unless you are an overnight guest--costing $90 per person per night ($180 per couple per night). Secondly, they are now telling you that even overnight guests are not allowed to walk the trails without a guide (costing $50 per person) for a mediocre birding guide for 2 hours. The excuse for not allowing you to walk the trails without a guide is that "it is too dangerous." After walking the trails I realized how absurd this statement is--especially during the dry season. The trails we covered were gentle and easy to walk. I can only conclude that they trying to make more money for themselves or for their guides or both.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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San Rafael
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2013

Las Cruces more than met my expectations for a place to stay to discover even more bird species in Costa Rica. Beautifully warm during the day and super cool at night. The number of colorful tanagers alone made this well worth the visit! Welcoming friendly staff and the comradery of plenty of other birders and scientists onsite. Meals were fine and the large beds super comfy. This was a wonderful place and will always be remembered as the place I saw my first Blue-crowned Mot mot.

Room Tip: the room named Ginger is excellent
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reading, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
117 reviews 117 reviews
36 hotel reviews
Reviews in 71 cities Reviews in 71 cities
99 helpful votes 99 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 21, 2012 via mobile

Lovely place to stay up near San Vito at 1200m so its nice and cool. Wildlife and excellent array of plant species are abundant and they have a new canopy viewing platform to take in the extent of the reserve! Nice rooms, very eco friendly. Amazing chorus day and night and you may get to interact with some of the active researchers. Lovely hidden paradise on the Costa Rica - Panama borders.

  • Stayed December 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Las Cruces Biological Station

Address: | San Vito, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas
Hotel Style:
Ranked #129 of 252 B&Bs / Inns in Province of Puntarenas
Number of rooms: 12
Also Known As:
Las Cruces Biological Station Costa Rica/Province Of Puntarenas

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