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“The perfect place to start your Galapagos adventure”

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Red Mangrove Aventura Lodge
Ranked #7 of 20 Hotels in Puerto Ayora
GreenLeadersSilver level
Long Beach, California
Level Contributor
41 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“The perfect place to start your Galapagos adventure”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 11, 2014

How can one criticise a hotel where the predominant early morning sound is of sea lions grunting gently at each other just outside our room, where the same sea lions stretch themselves on every available surface, deck chairs included, and where you have to watch where you walk for fear of treading on a small iguana as your gaze concentrates on the full size version lying beneath the table you are about to sit down at for breakfast. The view across the bay is a delight, frigate birds swooping across the sky, pelicans diving for fish or sitting in the mangrove trees, bright orange crabs crawling slowly up the lava rocks beneath the deck and a mixture of tour boats and small freighters anchored out in deeper water. Add to that clean spacious rooms, friendly helpful staff, reasonable food, Darwin's finches flitting around looking for leftovers inside the restaurant, a five minute walk into the center of Puerto Ayora and one can't but help imagining one might like to live there for the rest of your life!
This was the first of three Red Mangrove Lodges we stayed at during our six day stay on the islands and rather than trying to review each one individually I will now summarise our experiences of the other two locations. The well appointed little wooden huts on the beach on Isla Santa Maria (aka Floreana), just outside the small community of Puerto Velasco Ibarra, were so close to nature that one clean forgot about the supposed joys of "civilisation"; and the food at Chez Lelia Cruz where we had both dinner and breakfast was among the best we had during our three weeks in Ecuador. The lodge at Puerto Villamil on Isla Isabela was along much the same lines as on Santa Cruz, the food was marginally better, the rooms equally clean, spacious and comfortable and being able to walk straight out of the room onto the beach and swim with a couple of friendly sea lions was an added delight.
These three locations were our bases for Red Mangrove's 6-day Darwin's Triangle tour which included transfers between the islands on large speed boats which were actually the downside of the tour. Being sailors we rather appreciate travelling across water at speeds that enable one to enjoy all that nature can offer and going so fast that all you can do is hang on to your hat and watch the spray flying up from behind three massive outboard motors isn't our idea of fun. Speed is of course of the essence when time is limited but two hours of bouncing from the crest of one wave to another does not add to the beauty that the Galapagos presents the tourist. Having said that I do think we made the right decision to island hop rather than sleep on a large tourist boat, as we had much more opportunity to see the islands and their people as well as the most amazing fauna and flora. Our guide Yazmany was extremely knowledgeable and made sure we saw absolutely everything that our pre-arranged tour could include, plus making a few minor changes to the itinerary to maximise our experience of these extraordinary islands. All in all a very good choice especially considering how little time we gave ourselves to research our holiday.

Room Tip: Choose the superior rooms with a sea view in Puerto Ayora. This is also a must in Puerto Villamil w...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Taran H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sucorodas, General Manager at Red Mangrove Aventura Lodge, responded to this review, February 18, 2014
Dear guest,

We really thank you for your feedback, it really encourage us to work hard every day.

You are giving a good idea to undecided guest who are planning to visit Galapagos and have not made their choice to reserve with Red Mangrove yet.

We wish you many good adventures.

Sincerely
Red Mangrove Team
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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647 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (119)
Date | Rating
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English first
Iowa City, IA
Level Contributor
465 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 186 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 25, 2014

A wonderful place to relax after an 8 day yacht tour of the islands. It half a block for the entrance to the Darwin Research Center. The owners were graciously willing to cook whatever and whenever we wanted. Lovely deck where we watched pelicans and marine iguanas while sipping tea. The internet cafe was close by and we felt very comfortable and safe here.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Service
Helpful?
Thank GailCheryl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sucorodas, Manager at Red Mangrove Aventura Lodge, responded to this review, January 30, 2014
Dear Cheryl,

Thank you very much for your post, we are very happy to find out you enjoyed our services.

Please let us know if you ever need our services.

Sincerely,

Red Mangrove Team.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Clayton, California
Level Contributor
30 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 15, 2014

Pros: Good service, good breakfasts, good tour plans. Lovely properties, comfy beds, clean rooms. Very good location for walking to shops, restaurants and beaches, but with a full sense of privacy, peace and quiet.
Cons: Island Time Zone (it's a real thing, but that's okay b/c you're on vacation, so enjoy your downtime.)
Recommend: Yes, and add a day or so either before or after your official tour program to explore on your own. Definitely eat breakfast there but don't forget to hit up the street food kiosks on Charles Binford. They only open for dinner and can run out of lobsters within an hour or two of opening, so don't be shy about getting there at 7 pm.

I stayed here and at their Isabela Lodge in September, 2013. The staff are attentive and accommodating. The rooms are very comfortable and clean, as is the property itself. The main lodge was definitely the most fun, with the roving wildlife and a full complement of staff. They always served a hearty breakfast which sets you up well for the day, and many of the day trips included a lunch or a very large, meal-sized snack. Our package included dinners as well, but other than the first evening, we chose to eat out to get a feel for the area and culture, and lobster season had just begun and we had to go off property to get our authentic street food lobster.
The tour program let us visit places we might not have gotten to on our own and I feel they included a nice variety of activities, with add-ons/upgrades available. The ages of those in my group were mid-thirties, mid-forties, mid-sixties and a child under ten, and the activities were just right. My family was grouped together with some couples and some singles who were staying either at the main lodge like we were or at the dive lodge just a few minutes away. They reported that their rooms were all very comfortable as well, although it was clear that the main lodge was the more premium option, but they felt it was all in line with the different rates they paid.
It was definitely a bonus to have all the activities and other island visits handled by someone else, transfers included. They even picked us up from the airport and we only had to pay a little extra for the return trip to the airport, which was the same price as a group shuttle. It was nice to have our own porter and not have to worry about luggage mix-ups, getting to the airport on time, or having the correct change for the ferry ride to the airport. The porter even ferried over with us and loaded our bags onto the airport shuttle bus.
We basically had door-to-door, almost white-glove, service from the moment we landed in the Galapagos. I have done almost every type of vacation, from camping to backpacking to 5-star ritzy places. Eco-lodging is a category all on its own (you can't put your used toilet paper IN the toilet!), but i can definitely recommend this place for those who like to have good service and comfort on top of their nature. Very adventurous or DIY-ers can probably get away with a less expensive prospect, but this is not a Mexico or Hawaii trip where you go to lay on the beach, so I did not want to waste precious time by not having a pre-set tours. I would go back if the opportunity comes again.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank freebyrd97
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sucorodas, Manager at Red Mangrove Aventura Lodge, responded to this review, January 30, 2014
Dear Guest,

As part of Red Mangrove, I appreciate the time taken to send your feedback, it really has information that most of our potential clients will need to know before arriving at the Enchanted Islands.

And as you mentioned our programs are offered to everyone who loves nature.

We look forward to see you in the future.

Sincerely,

Red Mangrove Team.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Austin, Texas
Level Contributor
47 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 83 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 31, 2013

I just returned from a week in the Galapagos with two girlfriends. We booked through ROW Adventures in the US (the "Darwins Footprints" tour) and stayed at the Red Mangrove Aventura Lodge on Santa Cruz and the Isabela Lodge on Isabela Island (see my other review). These are not five-star, Ritz Carlton-like accommodations. But, what the lodges lack in luxury, they more than deliver in quaint-ness, accessbility to the islands, and above all, service. We stayed in a "triple room" at each lodge, both of which were very spacious and comfortable. At the Aventura Lodge, we loved the meals each day, especially breakfast, and enjoyed the daquiris and other drinks on the deck at happy hour, just sitting outside watching the sea lions and iguanas and the boats come and go into Puerto Ayora. What a fun location! We, especially, had SO MUCH FUN on our various tours and activities and loved getting to know each of our tour guides individually. I highly, highly recommend the Red Mangrove accommodations for any trip to the Galapagos!

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank DFWgal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sucorodas, Manager at Red Mangrove Aventura Lodge, responded to this review, January 30, 2014
Dear Guest,

We really appreciate your feedback, it encourage us to keep mantaining the same quality of service.

Sincerely,

Red Mangrove Team.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 28, 2013

We just returned from a package trip and found the accommodations to be excellent at the Red Mangrove hotel in Santa Cruz and Isabella (stayed in Adventura in Santa Cruz). The rooms were excellent for the nature of the trip and the food was excellent too! We were disappointed by the lack of communication from the agent...never provided an itinerary so we didn't know about the 10 mile hike (we didn't have the best shoes for this activity). It fulfilled our "bucket list" to go!

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Sherry C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sucorodas, Manager at Red Mangrove Aventura Lodge, responded to this review, January 30, 2014
Dear Shery,

Thank you very much for your feedback, as it is very important for us.

Regarding the itinerary not provided by our sales agent, we have taken inmediate action in order to provide a complete information tour our guests.

We want to thank you for chosen Red Mangrove and wish you many good adventures.

Sincerely,
Red Mangrove Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
20 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 19, 2013

I stayed at both the Red Mangove Santa Cruz and in Isabela and, overall, was quite pleased. The rooms were very comfortable and clean and the lodge itself had quite a bit of character. Meals were included as part of our trip, and they were delicious. The drinks were also good, but the service was quite slow at times (you'll easily wait 15 minutes for a drink). My only real complaint lies with the one of the lodge's managers, Monica and her lack of customer service. I had been in communication with one of the lodge's reps for 2 months leading up to my time in the Galapagos. We had discussed multiple times and agreed multiple times that I would dive on our "free day" (as per the package), which was the last day of our trip. That morning and again later in the afternoon, I inquired about details of my dive and was told by the front desk staff that we would make my arrangements that evening, once our tour returned from the Darwin park. Finally, at 6pm, I was able to speak with someone regarding the logistics of my dives the next day. For the first time in months, my experience level as a diver was brought into question and I was told that the dive site where Red Mangrove was going the next day was above my diving experience level. As any diver would agree, putting yourself in an unnecessarily dangerous position is not a good idea. So that is not what is upsetting. What is upsetting is that this first got brought to my attention at 6pm the day before I was to dive, even though I had asked to have this discussion multiple times earlier in the day and week. Monica made no apologies for not discussing this earlier and, to my amazement, made not one single attempt at trying to help me remedy the situation. What resulted is me running around Puerto Ayora at dark, by myself, going from random dive shop to random dive shop, many of which were closed at this point or which had full boats, trying to find a spot to dive on my last full day of vacation in the Galapagos. I finally found a shop that would take me and ended up having a great experience and wonderful dives the next day (and spent $100 less than what Red Mangrove was charging). It would have been much appreciated had Monica helped (by giving names or making phone calls) to help me find a different alternative to diving with Red Mangrove the next day. As a side note, Monica claimed that she couldn't recommend any other dive shops on the island, but ironically, our Red Mangrove tour guide (Kekay) had said about 2 hours earlier on our walk back from the Darwin station that another dive shop was his favorite and best on the island. Monica needs to understand that tourists spend, literally, thousands of dollars to get to the Galapagos and that this trip is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Keeping that in mind will likely help to ensure that guests have the best possible experience. All of this was 100% preventable, had someone bothered to discuss the logistics with me earlier, as I had tried to do as soon as I arrived at the Galapagos. A simple apology and a willingness to help out a customer also goes quite a long way. I hope this experience helps the employees and, specifically Monica, realize the shortcomings of their customer service abilities.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
6 Thank Nicole H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary
Level Contributor
16 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 5, 2013

We stayed at The Divers Lodge and Aventura Lodge in Santa Cruz and Isabela Lodge on Isabela on a 6 day trip organized by Red Mangrove. We had the 2 top floor rooms at The Divers Lodge which were spacious and with an excellent view, and outdoor seating area. The walk to Aventure for meals was very short and easy. We also were on the top floor in Isabela, this time with a lovely ocean view. The final night we had the top floor in Aventura Lodge in an absolutely outstanding room. We felt our package paid for was extremely reasonable, and we were exceptionally well looked after. We thought the meals were excellent, although much simpler in Isabela. Staff, as noted by other reviewers, were incredible - and without exception. We were very impressed by this trip and would highly recommend it to others.

Room Tip: See if you can get the top floor in any of these lodges.
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Calgarytravelbuffs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sucorodas, Manager at Red Mangrove Aventura Lodge, responded to this review, December 9, 2013
Dear Guest,

We work hard to offer one of the best services in Galapagos, and proud to be part of this great company Red Mangrove.

Therefore we are happy, when we receive comments like yours, they encourage us to keep working with the same passion.

Warm Regards
Red Mangrove Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Red Mangrove Aventura Lodge

Property: Red Mangrove Aventura Lodge
Address: Avenida Charles Darwin, Puerto Ayora, Ecuador
Location: Ecuador > Galapagos Islands > Santa Cruz > Puerto Ayora
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Green Hotel in Puerto Ayora
#3 Family Hotel in Puerto Ayora
#4 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Ayora
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Red Mangrove Aventura Lodge 3.5*
Number of rooms: 17
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel Red Mangrove is an oceanfront hotel with the best views of Academy Bay, located in Puerto Ayora. The hotel is the perfect place for Galapagos visitors to stay considering many activities like snorkeling, hiking, beaches, swimming, kayaking, and visiting the Charles Darwin Center are just minutes away. Why else is the Red Mangrove a good decision? For those who are prone to seasickness the hotel gives you a stay where you feel just like you're on the water with the option to choose different packages with the activities mentioned. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Red Mangrove Aventura Hotel Puerto Ayora
Hotel Red Mangrove Aventura
Red Mangrove Aventura Lodge Galapagos Islands/Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz

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