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“Pricey but lovely slice of jungle overlooking Isla de Ometepe”
Review of Totoco Eco-Lodge

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Totoco Eco-Lodge
Ranked #1 of 7 Balgue B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed July 23, 2013

We found this place to be overpriced but the food was excellent and the cottages very pleasant. The view of the volcano was spectacular and there was abundance of wildlife, including a non-poisonous snake (looks like a coral snake) that found its way into the guidebook in our room.
The generator and electricity did not work properly in Ometepel where we stayed, but we appreciate that this is a well-managed off grid resort, and had a lovely stay. We enjoyed the opportunity to talk to the manager/owner who was extremely knowledgeable, warm and down to earth.

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank maracujagirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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116 - 122 of 355 reviews

Reviewed July 21, 2013

We stayed here last year with another couple and thoroughly enjoyed our stay. The food was interesting and tasty with lots of vegetarian options. We are interested in seeing examples of places that really run off the grid, so we spent a lot of time looking at the infrastructure and were quite impressed.

Room Tip: Bring a flashlight!
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  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled with family
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Thank SharonVonk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 10, 2013

Both the common area and my cabana had a gorgeous view of Volcan Concepcion, making it quite easy to spend the entire day lounging around in a hammock. The rooms were very clean, spacious, and although they didn´t have AC, it always stayed cool and had a cool breeze at night.

I especially liked how you had a lot of privacy (the lodge only has 8 cabanas), but you don´t feel alone. At night most of the guests gather in the common area for dinner and drinks creating a nice community feel. The food was delicious (I especially liked the Indian dish we had one night) and the drinks were reasonably priced. I also pretty much had the infinity pool to myself most of the time and got to watch the sunset in it which is an unforgettable image.

The Nicaraguan staff were friendly and happy (they were always giggling amongst themselves in the kitchen which I found amusing). The service was slow at times, but at a place like this, time moves at a slower pace anyway and I didn´t mind.

The only downside was the poorly paved, steep road leading up to the lodge which made hiring a 4x4 taxi necessary and a costly $50 each way. Because of this I ended up just staying at the lodge the entire time (which I actually enjoyed quite a bit). But if you want to check out any other part of the island definitely invest in renting a 4x4. Another option is also hiring a horse which I did one morning and loved.

Some reviewers complain about the compost toilet but they´re actually very clean and the staff cleans them out twice daily so you never get a foul smell. It was a unique experience to say the least.

My bill for two nights with food, drinks, and tip came out to just over $400.

I highly recommend this place.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank Azi777
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 12, 2013

A group of 3 couples, one seasoned Nica traveler and two not so much. We stayed for 2 nights and could not have had a better time - it is peaceful, beautiful and very well kept. I recommend ordering off the menu rather than the meal plan - but the food was good and service warm and attentive. The road in is rugged, but worth the drive the views are truly spectacular. The owners are warm and very helpful.

Just a magical place on a magical island.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank john s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 31, 2013

The trip to the island with a car on the ferry was chaotic as you may expect in a third world vista.
The drive to thehotel was paved roads with the excpetion of the last 3.2 km. The last 3.2km was very rough over the first half and would really require a four wheel drive with high clearance.This place has great views , food and staff. The room was very nice and presented views of both volcanos. This place sits in a high altitude so is refreshingly cooler. There is a negative edge pool that has terrific views and is very inviting.nthere are trails for nature walks and the sound of hollar monkeys in the distance is really cool.
Martin , the manager and owner is very helpful and we really enjoyed this place.

One note of caution is the toilet situation. In an effort to be Ecco friendly the toilets are composting toilets and there is a funnel involved and saw dust . Suffice to say this element is more like camping. The bathroom though with outdoor shower is completely its own room. It bothered me more than my wife, as the high hanging funnel was not a challenge for her. It was part of the overall experience ,so will not hold it against the place. Now I appreciate actual toilets all the more, so guess it was a good thing.
We do recommend Ecco lodge as a place to experience the island with creature comforts.

Room Tip: Ask fr one of the newer cabins as there have been some recent additions.
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank ComfortCreatures
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 8, 2013

Totoco Eco-Lodge is a very interesting establishment. I've given it a 4.0 rating, which I see as an average. If you love nature and the outdoors and are willing to "rough it," Totoco merits a 5.0; if you are more of a city person who likes cushy accommodations, Totoco deserves a 3.0.

Pros: an incredible mountaintop setting, with amazing views of Concepción Volcano; a friendly and helpful staff; fresh, simple, well-prepared fare (don't expect culinary fireworks); and great hiking, both at the property -- it's right on the slopes of Maderas Volcano (Marlon is an excellent guide) -- or within driving distance, like the San Ramon waterfall (about 90 minutes away; not that far distance-wise, but the roads are awful).

Cons: the mountaintop setting is hard to reach, up a very rocky road (you need to hire a four-wheel-drive vehicle to get you there); the compost toilets are not for everyone (ugh, I was not a fan); the swimming pool is a bit chilly; and you are surrounded by nature, which has its downsides. (One night our room was invaded by ants, although they mysteriously vanished after we went to dinner and came back.)

If you are a fan of the ecolodge experience and know what you are getting into, I would definitely recommend Totoco.

Room Tip: We stayed in the Nim lodge, which has an amazing view of Concepción Volcano.
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank David L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 6, 2013

The staff is really friendly and welcoming. They try really hard to accommodate the guests but there are occasional glitches (the internet reception is bad but I don't think it's the hotel's fault). The composting toilets are surprisingly clean. I am giving this place 5 stars in the context of an eco resort in Nicaragua. The property is gorgeous and well done. You will find food, drinks and some other services are slightly more expensive vs else where.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled solo
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1  Thank AnastaciaNYC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Totoco Eco-Lodge

Address: Maderas Volcano, El callejon publico la palmera, Balgue, Isla de Ometepe, Nicaragua
Location: Nicaragua > Rivas Department > Isla de Ometepe > Balgue
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 7 B&Bs / Inns in Balgue
Price Range: $112 - $180 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on the edge of a pristine biosphere nature reserve with an abundance of wildlife and a cloud forest above you, the Totoco experience is pure comfort in pure nature. Guests can stay in one of our custom designed private lodges all made using local materials and labour. Each lodge enjoys a private garden setting and offers spectacular views of Lake Nicaragua and active Concepcion Volcano. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Totoco Eco Hotel Balgue
Totoco Eco-Lodge Nicaragua/Isla De Ometepe - Balgue

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