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“Don't Miss This Region of Costa Rica!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of El Remanso Lodge

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El Remanso Lodge
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near Corcovado National Park, 8203, Costa Rica   |  
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Ranked #1 of 44 Hotels in Osa Peninsula
Boulder, Colorado
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Don't Miss This Region of Costa Rica!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 4, 2013

This was our first visit to the Osa and El Remanso. Our stay at this Eco lodge and this region inspired my first reviews on TripAdvisor. I simply couldn't let folks miss this spot.

If you are going to Costa Rica for the wildlife, skip the overcrowded Manuel Antonio and head right here. As a bird watcher, I spotted about 50 new species on my life list during just our three night stay. The guides were very educated and several nights we enjoyed guest speakers share their expertise regarding the local biodiversity and conservation efforts.

Getting to El Remanso is a commitment but well worthwhile and even the drive is an adventure. Arrive during the day and rent a four wheel drive because some of the bridges are very narrow and you cross some running streams on the road.

With each day, hike, paddle or tour, You will fall more and more in love with the intensity of the wildlife, biodiversity and rainforest. I have had the privilege of exploring many remote regions and the Osa rivals the best.

The lodge staff were extremely attentive and the main lodge is a wonderful gathering place to meet others and spot wildlife. Everyday spotted new wildlife, including caiman, snakes, toads, frogs, scorpions, spiders and three types of monkey's. If you can, bring very good binoculars, spotting scopes and cameras to take full advantage of the local splendor and wildlife. I highly recommend the bird watching tours, night hikes, kayak tour in the mangrove and the beach hikes. Beware, the surf in this area is very dangerous, even for experienced swimmers. Plan to use the lodge pool or swim in the jungle lagoon instead. In the end, I did not miss swimming in the pacific because the ruggedness of the beach adds to the incredible beauty and overall mystique of this amazing place.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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357 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (89)
Date | Rating
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  • English first
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English first
North Wales, PA
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2013

We stayed 6 nights total - 3 nights in La Vainilla and 3 in classic cabins. Every expectation we had was met or exceeded. The staff was knowledgeable and very friendly. Especially Gabby who handled our reservations by email and Rienaldo and Melvin were phenomenal. We saw so much wildlife - 4 types of monkeys, coati, snakes, countless colorful birds.

We signed up for an "active package" which included short hike, long hike, night hike, waterfall rappelling, zipline to canopy platform, and either horseback riding or bird watching.

This place well deserves the 5 stars it gets here on TripAdvisor. One of the best vacations ever.

Room Tip: The La Vainilla and La Guinda cabins are away from the others and have great ocean views.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Antonio, Texas
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 26, 2013

We just returned from a 13-day stay at El Remanso. My family of 6 (my husband, myself, and our 4 children ages 10,9,5 & 4) had one of the best vacations we've ever had!

We stayed in Casa Osa, which sleeps 8. This arrangement fit us perfectly...my two older sons each had his own room on the ground floor with their own bathroom, and the two younger children slept in their own beds on the top floor with us and shared a second bathroom with us. The whole cabin had 2 queen beds and 4 twin beds. We were perfectly fine with no air-conditioning--the ocean breeze kept us nice and comfortable. It is true that there are not many mosquitoes. Even so, the bedroom areas were screened in to keep out other moths, etc. The two huge covered patios were delightful to watch the plentiful wildlife and relax on (monkeys and birds were frequently in the trees off our cabin). We woke each morning to the call of the howler monkeys and went to sleep each night to the gentle crashing of waves from the beach.

It rained many of the evenings we were there, but always cleared up the next day. It never affected our activities and actually provided a better night walk than without a few drip-drops. Overall, the weather was amazingly pleasant. It was certainly not the overwhelming melting feeling that one gets in other rainforest settings.

The general grounds were beautiful. Lushly planted with native plants; the birds were prolific just there in the garden and restaurant. Daily from the restaurant, we watched toucans, scarlett macaws, several of the different monkeys, and many other beautiful birds. The restaurant had a beautiful ocean view, and a constant breeze...making it a very comfortable place to relax. We ate all our meals at the lodge. Even with 13 days, we were not tired of the food, nor ever had a complaint. Each meal was tasty and very artfully presented. In fact, I went home with several of the recipes.

We went on the following El Remanso activities (we didn't feel that our children were old enough to enjoy the waterfall repelling): early morning bird tour, long hike on the ridge/botanical trail, river walk, night hike, and canopy breakfast/zip line. We also enjoyed the outside activities arranged through El Remanso of horseback riding, mangrove kayaking, and the dolphin watch. Without exception, each activity/tour was amazing. The staff and guides were wonderful with the children and explained things in terms they would understand. The guides were extremely knowledgeable; they were always able to answer and explain our questions. We were amazed by their ability to spot animals and birds! The kids even got some extra rides on the zip line to let them enjoy the thrill a bit more. :) Each hike presented a new animal/bird siting; it was like a new surprise awaited us around each bend.

We also hiked many of the trails on our own; again seeing wildlife each time. The hike down to the beach was easy, and only a little slower coming back up--this is even with a 4 and 5-yr old. The tide pools, large waterfall and lagoon were lots of fun to play and swim in. The lagoon particularly offered a nice place for the kids to play in the sand and small stream running towards the ocean.

The staff and guides were wonderful. Each day, they checked on us, made sure we were having a good time, told us what was happening next, and shared experiences with us. We were really made to feel at home. And Lola, Daniel's (the owner) German Shepherd provided the kids with wonderful entertainment. :) She is missed sorely now that we are back home!

El Remanso is truly a small bit of paradise. We were never rushed and had plenty of time to relax even though we enjoyed a plethora of organized and self-guided activities. There is no internet connection, so this trip offered us a real chance to escape the world and enjoy our family and time together. Even with the early mornings, the early sunsets allowed for plenty of sleep.

I highly recommend this trip to anyone wanting some rest mixed with the beauty and wildness of the rainforest! It is also a great place for photographers to capture some fantastic wildlife photos!

I am only attaching files of the lodge because I have entirely too many good wildlife and landscape photos to post!

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2013

This is not our first trip to the Osa, but it was our first time at El Remanso. We fell in love with the Osa years ago and when we got engaged, we knew immediately that that was where we would get married. We contacted a few of the lodges in the area and for multiple reasons, we decided on El Remanso. We reserved the entire lodge for the wedding weekend, Friday to Sunday, and that was perfect for the 30 of us.

Upon arrival at Puerto Jimenez, Gabby greeted us at the airport (it's really just a short landing strip) and transportation had been all set to get to the lodge. They are so organized and their communication with each other is so good, that everyone knows who you are by name before you even arrive. Everyone is greeted by name, the staff is so courteous, and they all work extremely hard. El Remanso is dedicated to local sustainability and that includes the local people, so they hire people from Puerto Jimenez and surrounding areas.

In terms of environmental sustainability, they are top not notch. Their power source is from 100% renewable resources from micro-hydroelectric plants, that can only be accessed by rappelling down a ravine. There are leach fields for the management of wastewater and the septic tanks. Everything is recycled, reused, and nothing is wasted. It's clear how much effort they put into leaving little to no carbon footprint. They have a CST rating of 5 leaves, it doesn't get better than that.

The lodge is set up so that there is a main restaurant, common area. The rooms are individual private cabins that overlook the rainforest and the Pacific Ocean. It's about a 15 minute hike downhill to the pristine deserted beaches. If you are like us and stop to take pictures of every mangrove crab and monkey along the way, the walk can take much longer. It is a slightly strenuous hike up back up, but well worth it, because on the beach there are amazing tide pools that are so perfectly shaped that you can't help but think that they're man-made. A lagoon and waterfalls are also accessible from the beach. There are multiple other trails on the property, and from every corner, there is a multitude of wildlife to be seen. In the time that our wedding guests and I were there, we collectively saw: all four species of monkeys, countless number of birds, poison dart frogs, butterflies, insects, agoutis, venomous, and nonvenomous snakes, a white-nosed coati, an anteater, and sloths. Unfortunately, none of us saw any large cats, which only means we'll have to go back. Always leave something undone to ensure a return trip.

We took advantage of all their activities, including waterfall rappelling, zip-lining, guided hikes, daytime and night hikes, and some outside activities including dolphin watching, horseback riding, a visit to the Wildlife Sanctuary, and kayaking. Their guided hikes are with their in-house naturalist guides, Gerardo and Rinaldo.

Because the nearest town is a 45 minute drive away, all meals are inclusive and they are delicious. Everything is so fresh, prepared that day, and comes with impeccable service from the staff.

We cannot wait to go back and re-new our wedding vows there and to find that elusive puma!

Room Tip: We stayed in La Guinda, which was beautiful. But we had the luxury of seeing every room while we we...
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aberdeenshire, Scotland
Top Contributor
132 reviews 132 reviews
40 hotel reviews
Reviews in 63 cities Reviews in 63 cities
58 helpful votes 58 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2013

The lodge sits in it's own private reserve, so the wildlife is outside your door, dining room, swimming pool all the time. I was also very impressed by the low environmental impact at El Remanso. As tourists we are very privileged to be able to visit countries like Costa Rica and I believe it is our responsibility to use lodges and local services which give a high priority to minimizing the impact they have on the local environment - and I am happy to pay the price for that - that only seems right.

Having said that, I don't think the Lodge is very expensive, given that you get a prime location, excellent fresh and local produce, a very friendly and welcoming staff and staff/guides who are very knowledgeable and helpful when advising on and delivering tours, tips on where to go and where not to go.

This area is great and we saw so much wildlife here with very knowledgeable guides.

I really could not fault this place - go there, you will not be disappointed.

Thank you for such an enjoyable stay.

Room Tip: I think they are probably all good.
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Columbia, South Carolina
Top Contributor
56 reviews 56 reviews
24 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2013 via mobile

First of all, if you are a nature lover, the Osa Peninsula needs to be at the very top of your bucket list! This tiny corner of Costa Rica is home to an amazing amount of the world's biodiversity. It is a small part of our planet that remains virtually unspoiled by humans, and the occupants of the region (including the folks at El Remanso) have been extraordinarily successful in keeping it that way. The lodge itself is a series of cabins spread out across an enormous property that also includes miles and miles of hiking trails with beautiful waterfalls, a deserted beach, tide pools, a lagoon, and much much more. The accommodations are open-air luxury cabins with terrific food and excellent service. When we were in our cabin (La Vanilla), we felt like we were the only people on the entire property. The staff is absolutely first-rate and includes three ecologists/guides who are extraordinarily knowledgeable. We took advantage of the wildlife explorer package which included a long hike, a short hike, a night hike, a canopy observation breakfast, a bird watching tour, and a dolphin watching tour. Every one of them was outstanding and worth doing. This is by no means a zoo... you are literally in the middle of the rainforest, and nature is totally unpredictable. So, what you see is what you see. However, in our time there we saw four different kinds of monkeys, dozens of species of birds, a cayman, a fer-de-lance, and even a boa in the process of eating a coati. We spent 5 nights there which felt just about right for us.

Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
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London
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
27 hotel reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
41 helpful votes 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 30, 2013

A short flight from San Jose takes you to this small paradise on the Osa Peninsula. Every 'Chalet' is quite separate from its neighbour and our own had a clear view over the forest to the Pacific. The Guiding by Gerardo is exceptional and our three hour 'hike' passed in moments....ending in a warm but heavy downpour that gave us a true touch of the green season. Macaws, Raptors, Toucan and a host of birds make this a very worthwhile trip for the 'Birder' with Snakes, Iguana, Coati plus...Howler, Spider, Squirrel and Capucin monkeys all on display. Don't miss the night-walk and, if you are as lucky as we were, the Spurlings Gliding Frogs mating by the hundred. Walks both inland and along the sea shore gain sightings of Halloween Crabs as well as the Green and Black Poisonous Frogs. Food and wines are excellent and abundant. Don't miss having a massage under the sky with the sound of the sea and birdcalls adding to a highly recommended experience.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about El Remanso Lodge

Address: near Corcovado National Park, 8203, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Osa Peninsula
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 44 Hotels in Osa Peninsula
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 9
Also Known As:
El Remanso Hotel Osa Peninsula
El Remanso Osa
El Remanso Lodge Costa Rica/Osa Peninsula

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