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“Delightfully Unique "Camping" Experience” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Rafiki Safari Lodge

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Rafiki Safari Lodge
2.5 of 5 Lodge   |   16 Km from Pacific Coastal highway, Rio Savegre, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Milton, Massachusetts
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Delightfully Unique "Camping" Experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 28, 2014

The comfortable tent comes with luxurious bathroom and spacious covered porch; excellent meals and well-stocked bar at the nearby main house, which overlooks a beautiful landscape filled with gardens and birds. Hummingbirds galore! The nearby whitewater rafting on the Savegre River was SUPER fun, with a stop at a waterfall for a backrub! Could it be better? Yes, to know that your money supports the owners' efforts to reestablish the endangered tapir in the valley, as well as provide work for local families. They can tell you about their very concrete conservation application (and many other great stories - ¡muy amable!)

  • Stayed May 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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221 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (33)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 25, 2014

The accomodation is fairly basic, but with electricity a built-in shower and hot water - pretty posh for a tent! The grounds are fantastic - with exotic flora and birds in abundance. The lodge itself, with thatched roof and open-to-the-elements dining and bar area, provides a breath-taking view across the lake with the mountains as a backdrop. We went for a hike and jumped into a waterfall (of which there are a few), experienced whitewater rafting and went horseriding in the mountains. The people (Carlo, Jannel and their staff) couldn't have been more friendly and helpful. The food too was excellent. We stayed five nights, and even though we did get some rain (as we'd expected) we loved every minute of it.

  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
Tarpon Springs, Florida
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2014

Very cool accommodations. The real Costa Rica. Water slide is a hoot. Great hospitality and amazing views. You can easily spend 3-4 days here. The food was great and the number of activities that are available are great.

  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
warby007
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 15, 2014

Well as a family Rafiki Safari Lodge lived up to our excitement and expectations. The surroundings were wonderful and the hospitality and food were excellent. We stayed in Tent 1 which I would highly recommend with a view over the water to dream about. We stayed for 2 nights. The first day we all went white water rafting, my daughter and I rode to the set off location by horse my wife and son got there by truck. The whole event lasted over 6 hours with lunch at a halfway house. The second day we all went on the Aqua hike which again was a wonderful experience. Would Highly recommend a stay here!

Room Tip: Tent Number 1
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  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
Grand Rapids, Michigan
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 30, 2014

This review is very late in coming...we stayed there 18 months ago and I had always intended to write a review, I just never got around to it. I came across our pictures from our trip today and decide to take a moment to write a review. We visited with another couple, it was our 2nd vacation trip to CR but my husband's 100+ trip to CR as he has traveled to San Jose monthly for work for the last 15+ years.

If the descriptions and reviews of Rafiki Lodge have you intrigued, just go, you won't be disappointed! I came across a website for the Rafiki Lodge 4 years ago while planning our first family trip to CR. We ended up going to the northern area of CR so we did not stay there, but I kept thinking about it. Two years later we went for a week with another couple and headed to southern CR and I jumped at the chance to spend 3 nights at Rafiki lodge. We LOVED it! I plan to bring the kids back one day.

A safari tent in the jungle with a full plumbing, modern bathroom, a deck overlooking the gorgeous view, monkeys and iguanas in the trees, a cool pool with a killer waterslide....what more can you ask for in an adventurous, but not primitive, Costa Rican adventure! The owners are incredible. They made our stay amazing. The food was great, we enjoyed the white water rafting even though it was the dry season and the river level was low. He even helped (did all the work actually) change a flat tire on our 4 WD rental.

I would highly suggest the rafting. The guides were very experienced and took our safety very seriously. We enjoyed a wonderful picnic lunch at a stopping place that had real bathrooms which was wonderful! We also did the horseback ride to the river...I have ridden horses quite a bit and if you have experience riding, I would skip it. The ride was just along the road to the river, not through the jungle. I literally had an old grey mare who was very skinny and I was afraid she was going to keel over any second. She proved to be quite spunky though and instead of trotting for a bit with the group, she hightailed it and ran full speed down the road. I had her under control and slowed her down and it was a fun ride for me, but the horse guys didn't understand that I had riding experience and they couldn't understand much English when I tried to explain I was fine, so they made me ride tethered to the guide's horse for the rest of the ride...my husband and friends found it hilarious. I was a bit humiliated, but it ended up being a funny memory and the old grey mare ended up being the spunkiest of the bunch!

I could go on about our fantastic stay at Rafiki Lodge, but instead I highly suggest you go and experience it for yourself. And while you're there, ask about their secret recipe for liquid salt...

Room Tip: Ask for a tent that overlooks the valley.
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 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.
Elkhorn, NE
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2014

We had so much fun! Our family of 4 stayed for 3 nights. The views are spectacular. We met families from 3 other countries. The food was all made from scratch and delicious, but you don't have many options (although I am certain they would try to accommodate you if you were super picky). The staff was super friendly and great to talk to either about things to do or teaching us some basic Spanish. Very family friendly (our boys loved playing with the owner's 4 year old!), but also would have been fun for adults traveling without kids looking for a little more adventure. Our 8 year old boys probably would have been happy if they had done nothing other than the water slide (it is fast and fun!). The guide for our white water rafting trip (day 2) and aqua hike (day 3) was awesome and we had a blast while learning about the country. As a mom NOT into camping, sleeping in these tents allowed us to be "close to nature", but still have a plumbing and electricity! Perfect! We would definitely go back!

Room Tip: Views of the lake with the first 2 tents are awesome!
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  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Georgia
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2014

My husband and I are quite the adventurists at times. We stayed off site in Manuel Antonio; the Rafiki Safari Lodge Whitewater Rafting Experience was so much fun!!! All of the guides are incredibly educated about the surroundings and very professional. We enjoyed the horseback riding to the white water rafting. Our guide even stopped so that we could see one of the local waterfalls. It was absolutely beautiful! This is definitely worth the long trip down the unpaved road (Costa Rican Massage). My husband even tried the water slide at the lodge - only for the brave of heart - and he loved it! As our guide would say, the entire experience is the epitome of "Pura Vida!"

  • Stayed May 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Rafiki Safari Lodge

Address: 16 Km from Pacific Coastal highway, Rio Savegre, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #26 of 451 Specialty Lodging in Province of Puntarenas
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Rafiki Safari Lodge 2.5*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Rafiki is a sustainable adventure lodge located in the Savegre Valley of Costa Rica. The lodge sits on 840 acres of tropical forest. Rafiki specializes in custom white water rafting, horseback riding and hiking trips. Guests sleep in imported luxury Safari Tents which feature hydro electric fans and lights. Each tent sits on a raised hardwood platform, has a deluxe bathroom with glass showers heated with fire. The units also have a private porch with rocking chairs looking over the Savegre Valley. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Rafiki Safari Hotel Province Of Puntarenas
Rafiki Safari Lodge Costa Rica/Province Of Puntarenas

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