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“Living in the Rain Forest”

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Bergendal Eco & Cultural River Resort
Ranked #1 of 1 Berg en Dal B&B and Inns
San Diego, California
Level 5 Contributor
83 reviews
46 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
“Living in the Rain Forest”
Reviewed March 21, 2012

Great place to take participate in adventure activites. Kayaking, zip lining and hiking are all
available. No TV, phone or wifi in the rooms so be prepared to relax. The pool was amazing, the personel was helpful and the food plentiful and good. The cabins/lodges are
spread throughout the property, you can be in the forest or on the Suriname river. Lodges were large, clean and comfortable with showers and two sinks. This is a rustic resort the physically challanged will not be happy here.

Room Tip: Decide how much you want to walk as some of the cabins are a 10 minute walk from the lobby/restauran...
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank SDDots
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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121 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (19)
Date | Rating
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English first
Richmond, Virginia, United States
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed March 13, 2012

My family loved this hotel! The food was amazing, the people were so friendly and the room was great. My kids wanted to do some fishing so the front desk called a local fisherman who helped them catch a fish within minutes. We went by boat to a local village and the kids flew accross the river with a cantopy tour. I highly recommend this hotel!!!!!!

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank chiocca
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Salvador, El Salvador
Level 6 Contributor
140 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 82 helpful votes
Reviewed January 28, 2012

Chance to see the jungle with a few of the luxuries of home, all within two hours of the city. Lots of activities available like hiking, ziplines thru the trees, kayaking, night tour in the river looking for little crocodiles (caiman), and just sitting around. The pool is small and not that great, but OK. The food is standard Surinamese fare; bami and nasi and kip. Overall, een gezellige ervaring!

Downsides: although it is a luxury resort, it still has some Caribbean attributes like no one knowing who you are when you arrive, or taking three people to find the key to your room.

Room Tip: There are rooms by the river, and those set back in the trees. Get one of the ones nestled in the t...
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  • Stayed May 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Jimmy F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Level 6 Contributor
222 reviews
46 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 155 helpful votes
Reviewed October 17, 2011

Greeted by a fresh fruit juice, a local Creole lunch, and bags chaperoned to our room, this had to be a good sign of things to come. Indeed, the room - once we'd finished our enormous lunch - had 2 sinks, a comfortable 4-poster bed with mosquito nets, air-conditioning, a small veranda, and wonderful views of the Suriname River. In the afternoon, we rested by the infinity pool and grabbed some rays on the sun loungers. All was too good to be true. Unfortunately, this calm was interrupted by staff communicating to each other from one side of the pool to the other in loud voices, which completely through the guests’ out-of-sync with the surroundings as we were caught in between the noise. Basically, some staff didn't seem to think it was important to keep the calm for the guests. Anyway, that aside we still enjoyed the moments of peace. Later in the evening we had a reasonable dinner, although we would have liked to have more of a choice of fruits to eat, than just pampelmous - which as tasty as it is - is not the only exotic fruit in Suriname. At night we sat out by the river and listened to the monkeys screaming from the jungle on the other side of the river, whilst appreciating the very real juxtaposition of luxury and jungle; somewhat romantic to say the least. Overall, with a few tweaks this could be an ideal get-away experience.

Room Tip: River front room.
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  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
5 Thank Joel019
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed September 26, 2011

We, a young couple, traveled to Bergendal for a one night stay in the weekend. For Surinamese standards, this is one of the most expensive places to stay. However, if you are looking for western style furniture, luxury and adventure, considering quality and service, it is worth the money.

Depending on the type of your lodge, you will have a spacious and luxurious decorated lodge for two, three or more persons. After sleeping in a non-airconditioned room for three months, the airconditioned room with one of the best beds we've ever slept in really contributed to our Bergendal experience.

Furthermore, the food is great. Although it is possible that you will have the same meals when you stay longer, the buffet is diverse and tasteful.

Then the location. Bergendal is situated on the right side of the Suriname river, about 125 km outside Paramaribo. Our reservation included transport from the city to the resort and took about two hours. The surroundings look very nice, there is nothing to see of the asphalt factory mentioned by another reviewer. Probably because the road has been asphalted about two years ago and the Chinese have moved southwards. Depending on your lodge you will have a riverfront lodge or a forest lodge.

During evening hours, a karaoke was arranged by the resort. We enjoyed it very much. Furthermore, it is very close to the Bergendal Adventure Centre, where you can enjoy numerous outdoor activities. The canopy across the Suriname river is one of the most exciting activities we've ever did.

Than the downside of the Bergendal resort. As mentioned earlier, Bergendal resort is relatively expensive. For two persons, 200 US dollar per night is required. If you want to do one or more activities at the adventure center (which is the most prominent reason to visit Bergendal), you pay another 50 US dollar per person (for one activity).

Then the handling of the reservation. The adventure center and the resort are two seperated facilities. When we arrived, we were told that the adventure center was closed for the day. This was the primary reason why we visited the resort and we even had a reservation for the canopy on the day of arrival. After we talked to the manager, we suggested that we could have a late check out the next day. They agreed. However, the next day we were asked why we did not pack our luggage and that a late check out would cost us a 100 US dollar extra. After some phone calls and waiting at the front desk, the receptionist was able to tell us that there was a mistake in communication and that there was no problem.

However, this should be something to take care of by the resort.

When you are visiting Bergendal for only one night, be clear about the activities you want to do.

  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank BarryandHeleen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aruba
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed May 15, 2011

loved it because, it was cultural the have tours and trips in to the forrest and there a lot of things to to there! The guides of the tours were really smart and nice! The resort is in a really save location and if you go whit kids the wil have lots of fun out doors, because the is NO tv or radio! Here is everything bace to bsick you wil love it! the food was excilent as well as the service! Really good idea for Honymoners!!

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Karin1234557
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Berkeley, California
Level 6 Contributor
38 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 177 helpful votes
Reviewed April 13, 2010

Admittedly, this review is a conundrum of strong pro- and con- evaluations on this hotel.

You'll find nothing approaching the luxury and svelte of Berg En Dal anywhere else in the three Guianas... it's 5-star ambitions are largely met with luxuriously appointed cottages, well-groomed grounds, and fine meals. Its location on the river, surrounded by forest, is dreamy.

I have to say: the bed is one of the most comfortable I've ever slept on. Period.

An excellent Activity Center 10 minutes down the river by canoe offers great zip-line, kyaking, hiking, mountain biking and swimming activities. Professionally run with a strong commitment to safety: perfect for family fun. There is also a small and personally tended-to museum near the Activity Center which is worth a visit.

Now for the heartbreak of this wonderful place:

I came to Suriname to explore the country's great rainforests and rivers, and to get to know more about the indigenous cultures, such as the Amerindians and the Maroon tribes that inhabit the interior. Alas, Berg En Dal left me disappointed in a number of ways:

- Nothing about the resort is "eco": there is no solar power, painfully noisy and smelly diesel golfcarts roam the grounds, gas powered weed whackers are in use sun-up to sun-down, soaps and detergents are all of the imported chemical variety, no food is locally grown, boat engines are of the polluting and noisy two-stroke variety, insecticides are sprayed in full view of guests, and we were stunned/appalled to witness frogs being openly - and joyfully - squirted with a Windex-like product as a 'pest control' measure. There is nothing suggesting harmony between this resort and its natural surroundings!

- The location for this resort was poorly chosen: its neighbors are an asphalt factory operated by Chinese prisoners on one side, and an active logging concession on the other. Paranam, Surinam's behemoth bauxite facility, is just down the road. Moving up and down the river just a little ways reveals just how decimated this area is: there is no primary forest left (no trees at all in some locations), few animals or birds are seen, and the noise and devastation of industry are in plain sight. Having seen pristine rainforest and river environments elsewhere in Suriname and Guyana, I found the Berg En Dal neighborhood nothing short of ghastly.

- The nearby Maroon village can be visited: we floated by on a night canoe ride and were told by our guide that this was an area of intense carnage during political conflicts in the 80's and 90's. The rendition didn't warm me up to the 'indigenous culture' theme, and I was thankful I'd had other experiences to balance this one out.

- The lodge's senior management has been recruited from mass-tourism destinations such as Cancun and Costa Rica, and their commodity travel sensibility is everywhere to be seen, from the 'pina colada' welcome drink to the bus-'em-in, bus'-em-out mayhem at the reception area to the reported plans to put sports TV's around the bar and reception area. (really!??)

Some additional nitpicks
- Wireless internet (free) available only in the main reception area.
- Stairs to hillside cottages are unsafe without anti-skid tape and handrailings. Some pathways are not adequately well-lit.
- Morning activities at Activity Center will extend beyond 'lockout' time if you are leaving on the same day... prepare to return to your room (well before checkout time) to find yourself locked out.
- There can be confusion about when to show up for activities: our group missed TWO separate excursion departures due to misinformed Berg En Dal staff.
- On departure day, guests are denied access to the lunch buffet and are instead given a white-bread cheese sandwich to eat on the bus home. A highly ungracious end to an otherwise posh experience.

Worthy praise for the presence of a filtered water dispenser in the dining area for those of us who carry our own Kleen Kanteen containers to minimize plastic waste. These dispensers should be in every room, too, and all plastic bottles should be banned (Suriname has no way to recycle plastic bottles)

I must say that we found the staff at Berg En Dal to be absolutely lovely people, without exception. Most of them seem very new to the place, so we hope they soon find their stride.

If your goal is to enjoy some leisure and recreation time and you can afford this incredibly posh resort, Berg En Dal is unlikely to disappoint. But if you are focused on nature and culture - especially if you have already visited the pristine interior of Guyana, Suriname, or French Guiana - you may find Berg En Dal unsatisfying.

In the end, the "No" recommendation is a reflection on the resort's failure to operate anything remotely resembling an "eco" lodge (despite their name), and the poor environmental conditions that surround this otherwise stunningly-gorgeous facility.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled on business
    • Value
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Helpful?
15 Thank MRMinSF
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Bergendal Eco & Cultural River Resort

Property: Bergendal Eco & Cultural River Resort
Address: Domineestraat 36 38, Berg en Dal 597, Suriname
Location: Suriname > Brokopondo District > Berg en Dal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 B&Bs / Inns in Berg en Dal
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Bergendal Eco & Cultural River Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 44
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
On the banks of the Suriname River in the midst of the Amazon Rainforest, Bergendal offers you countless opportunities for revitalizing relaxation, adventurous activities and luxurious indulgence. Bergendal Eco & Cultural River Resort is a unique resort with 45 luxurious lodges along the river and on the hills and attracts tourists that are mainly interested in the natural, cultural and historical treasures of the area.The resort is characterized by quality service, well trained personnel and offers a restaurant, bar lounge, swimming pool, two piers, banquet and conference facilities and a convenient booking office capable of arranging travel plans, tours and activities of any nature. Bergendal Adventure Center is the ideal location for visitors in search of a fun-filled, physically active day. This unique new tourist attraction, the first of its kind in Suriname, provides visitors thrilling adventures such as the exciting Canopy zip line and kayak excursions. Bergendal aims to provide its guest with the best quality eco-cultural experience in an environment where good sustainable tourism practices are given top priority. Bergendal has received the international Travel Life Gold Certificate. This is the highest award for environmental friendly and sustainable tourism. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Bergendal Eco & Cultural River Hotel Paramaribo
Bergendal Eco And Cultural River Resort

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