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“Great family spot”

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Leaves and Lizards Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
Brookline, Massachusetts
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Great family spot”
Reviewed January 3, 2014

We just returned from Leaves and Lizards with our two college-aged children. We all had a wonderful time at this beautiful spot. Steve and Debbie were attentive hosts, and all the people who work at Leaves and Lizards are delightful. The view outside our window at the Hobbit House was a truly amazing visual feast of volcano, jungle, pasture, bees, butterflies and hummingbirds. The horseback ride to the waterfall was a lot of fun and our guides were very informative. We saw a toucan, a sloth, a blue poison dart frog, and lots of hawks. On our last day, we saw the Leaves and Lizards cow give birth to a calf. All in all, an excellent experience for all of us.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Educat0r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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646 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (167)
Date | Rating
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English first
Boston, Massachusetts
Level 3 Contributor
23 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed January 2, 2014

We stayed 4 nights in the Monkey, Toucan, and Volcano cabins (3 families). The grounds are hilly so it required steep ascents and descents, but was so worth it (let the staff know if you have mobility issues so you pick cabins closer to the dining area). The view of the volcano from all the cabins was amazing. This is a peaceful place and the owners are wonderful and are very attentive to guests. They have an amazing staff who appear to enjoy working there. While there we went horseback riding to the waterfall. The guides were fantastic. The ride is very rugged (steep, rocky, and muddy), so not for the faint-hearted but the horses are sure-footed and so we had a wonderful experience with amazing views. The food is great in the open air restaurant and is very plentiful and we loved sitting in the dining area watching the birds feast on the bananas provided. We loved our time there and would definitely come again.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Scientist_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tucson, Arizona
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed December 28, 2013

I have stayed at Leaves and Lizards twice now, and will return again, as often as I can. The food is excellent, the people are genuine and warm, and the area is beautiful! Every morning you awake to a spectacular view of Arenal Volcano, and that is before you even get out of bed. Your breakfast awaits, but first you will want to sit outside on your private porch in a rocking chair, or lie in a hammock and sip Costa Rican coffee while absorbing the view of the volcano and the flora and fauna of the tropical rainforest surrounding you.
The rest of the day can be filled with a variety of adventures, from canoeing on the lake at the base of the volcano, riding a fantastic series of ziplines, a massage, soaking in the nearby hot springs, hike, or just sit and relax. The atmosphere at Leaves and Lizards is a perfect antidote to harried lifestyles. Do not miss the horseback rides to the privae waterfall for a swim. No matter what your experience with horses is, the professional and caring staff AND the beautiful horses will keep you safe. Luxury hotels have nothing over this cabin retreat.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
2 Thank bpagedvm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Petworth, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed December 28, 2013

We so enjoyed our time here.
We are lucky enough to travel a lot, and see some super places.
This is terrific, and worth your time and money.
Good food, nice people, fabulous ambience, really nice couple. Excellent local staff.
If yu can, go there.
Asap!

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank BoutiqueFarmer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Horsham
Level 3 Contributor
23 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed December 23, 2013

It is seldom that a hotel surpasses alll reasonable expectations, but Leaves and Lizards has been the highlight of Costa Rica so far. Stylish, well run and charming.the proprietors went out of their way to make our stay fulfilling and enjoyable, despited being so busy themselves. The equine facilities were vastly superior the the appalling factory stables I have previously experienced mainly in the UK with low grade horses and bored , patronising staff. Here, the staff were highly professionall, competent and engaging. The horses themselves were in a superior league to any other stables I have been to for a holiday ride. Food was good but beware the massive portions.Massages were excellent and the bundle of four treatments for 150 dollars represented very fair value. In summary, a highly recommended destination.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Rupert n
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ottawa, Canada
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed December 14, 2013 via mobile

Notwithstanding the crazy hilly bumpy gravely drive to the place, what a great spot. Monkey cabin was fabulous (ants and geckos and all) and in a great location. Free breakfasts were excellent and so was ($$) dinner, if a bit pricey by Costa Rica standards. The daylong horseback tour to private waterfalls was highlight of our entire trip to Costa Rica.

Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank ClaireinOttawa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, Washington
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed December 13, 2013

This place is AMAZING and the owners will go out of their way in order to ensure you have a great stay! My fiance and I loved everything about the retreat. The only regret we have is not staying longer. Debbie, one of the owners, helped set up a number of awesome activities and dined with us in the evenings. We have never had so much attention saying abroad and the staff were all very professional, attentive and very friendly. We felt like welcomed guests.

The cabin:

Did I mention our cabin was absolutely amazing! We stayed at the Hobbit House. It was super cool and the indoor/outdoor shower was very unique. Any "Lord of The Rings" fans MUST stay here! The front of the cabin has a nice big deck that is perfect for lounging or stay in bed and the view is just as breathtaking.Taking a shower while watching parrots fly overhead was truly a memorable experience. The cabin was very clean and secure. The housekeepers kept the place spotless throughout our 4 day stay.

Food:

We had breakfast and dinner everyday at the restaurant, which had a very cozy atmosphere. The food was excellent and the chef even made us a traditional Costa Rican dinner that was not part of the menu!! It was sooo good!

Location:

The views of the rainforest from our cabin were breathtaking. From our cabin we were able to view all kinds of wildlife. This is a birders paradise! We came at the end of the rainy season so we didn't know what to expect in terms of weather. Fortunately, we only had one day of heavy rain (we still had a blast!). For the rest of our stay the weather was nice during the day. the weather pattern was rain in the morning, sunny during the day and then more rain at night. We lucked out and had almost half a day with unobstructed views of the volcano!

Activities:

The retreat is the located near all sorts of activities and Debbie will help you arrange your activities, if you wish. I would highly recommend the zip-line tour, Verano Caves, Cano Negro River tour, horse training and riding and of course, the rainforest night hike with Oscar!

I would HIGHLY recommend staying at Leaves and Lizards. We will definitely be staying there in the near future. We are sooo happy that we didn't opt to stay at one of the local resorts. You will not find comparable customer service, privacy, seclusion and breathtaking views at any of the local resorts. Thanks Debbie!!!

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank John W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Leaves and Lizards Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat

Property: Leaves and Lizards Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat
Address: Meters South Of Super Kiki 500, Arenal Volcano National Park, La Fortuna de San Carlos 21012, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Alajuela > Arenal Volcano National Park > La Fortuna de San Carlos
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Top resorts Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#5 Romantic Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#5 Family Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#5 Green Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#8 Business Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This secluded resort is located on 26 acres with spectacular viewing of the Arenal Volcano near La Fortuna. Enjoy the panoramic vista of Arenal and Cerro Chato from a hammock on your porch or from your comfortable, orthopedic, queen sized beds with Egyptian cotton sheets. Meals prepared using locally grown ingredients at the Lava Lizard on-site dining facility. Guests are invited to help with daily 'chores' on this working farm. Milk a cow, collect eggs for breakfast or groom a horse. Enjoy private horseback riding, professional guide service, on site spa and 2 km of on site nature trails. The vision at Leaves and Lizards is to create the perfect blend of adventure, discovery and tranquility for each guest. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Leaves And Lizards Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat Hotel La Fortuna De San Carlos
Leaves And Lizards Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat Costa Rica/Arenal Volcano National Park

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