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“Great welcome and very nice staff”
Review of La Baula Lodge

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La Baula Lodge
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Tortuguero
Reviewed August 19, 2013

Nice welcome with drinks, very nice and friendly staff, we felt lige very welcom guests very soon. Spacious dining- and bar area, Small but fine pool area. Rooms ok, nothing special but everything needed was there. We brought our own very efficient anf great guide (Jorge Mendez) who helped us wil all tours and transport, and whatever we needed.

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Joergen_Madsen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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120 - 126 of 268 reviews

Reviewed July 20, 2013

BE WARNED. CAUTION!
The front office staff are a bunch of cheats looking to take advantage of guests.
We stayed during turtle season and while we were initially impressed with the facilities things only deteriorated after we met the staff which checked in guests.
1. we made a reservation well in advance and recieved a confirmation. Upon arrival they had no idea we were coming. I showed them the confirmation email. They proceeded to point fingers and after sometime they then said they could make a room available. (mind you my wife and I are both fluent in spanish, so miscommunication was not an issue)
2. They asked if we would be interested in dinner buffet at $15 USD a person. We agreed as they descibed it as being very good and loads of options. At dinner they served tuna pasta salad (canned tuna in pasta salad), mashed potatoes, steamed veggies, sliced cucumber, and tilapia in a cream sauce. It was all bad. Cumbers were soggy, potatoes -flavorless, tuna salad- horrible and tilapia was undercooked. I wont even mention the dessert.
3. We booked a turtle watching trip thru the hotel. While it was more than booking it in town we figured it would be easier for transportation to book at hotel. At $40.00 a person for 2hours one would expect the hotel to make sure we had everything in hand before heading to see the turtles. Completely wrong! At the boat launch, suited up and ready to go, the same to men who checked us in told us they didnt have our tickets to the National Park. That we were supposed to buy them. Well nobody ever told us this. So here we are, its 7:45pm. the tour starts at 8:00 and we are being told we cant go. Needless to say when one books a tour thru the hotel, one would expect the hotel to set up araingments. Not at La Baula!
4. Breakfast buffet which was included in our room cost at $35 per person. The food once again - horrid!. Not even worth describing. Just imagine you most hated foods served in a buffet and the food is cold.
5. Dead cockroaches in the shower.
6. To top it all off upon checking out the same two guys who checked us in wanted to charge us for the tour tickets we never recieved.
All in all DO NOT STAY HERE! I know all the other reviews are good. But honestly this place left a very bad taste in my mouth. Its not worth the risk. Stay somewhere else.

  • Stayed: July 2013
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5  Thank LeoDorado
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 9, 2013 via mobile

La Baula is located a 3 min ($3 per person) water taxi from Tortuguero village.

The lodge is in beautiful surroundings, the rooms are clean and comfortable. The breakfast buffets and lunches were very good.

The only disadvantage is that if you plan to organize tours through the village (as opposed to the hotel) then each return trip will set you back $6 per person, so add this to your budget. Saying that the hotel organizes tours but my wife and I wanted to support the association of local guides.

Overall, I'd recommend La Baula lodge as a great base in the national park.

  • Stayed: July 2013
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1  Thank RichF004
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 14, 2013

If you need somewhere to stay in Tortuguero I can recommend La Baula. It is in a great location and short water taxi ride to Tortuguero Village. The rooms are basic, clean and functional, the beds are comfortable and the shower is powerful and hot! The big open plan restaurant is wonderful overlooking the river and breakfast, lunch and dinner is good value and not bad quality either. My children loved the swimming pool and the gardens to wonder through. The manager, Bernardo, is fantastic, helping us out with all our questions and booking up tours and transport for us. His quality customer service attitude emanates through his staff as from cleaners to restaurant to bar staff, they are all excellent. Thank you for a great stay.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled with family
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Thank AndreaBremner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 11, 2013

My wife and I spent our 39th wedding anniversary at La Baula Lodge, plus two more nights. All three nights and days were thoroughly enjoyable! Two of the three nights we were the only guests there, but you'd never know by the service and attention we received. Our room was so comfortable and clean. The maid made a cute towel design on our bed each day. The waiters provided special smoothies the next before our anniversary, a special romantic dinner the night after, and even gave us fresh fruit to take on a morning tour. This place was fantastic, at any price. For only $70 per night, it was an absolute steal! We probably will never return to Tortuguero, but if we did, we would definitely stay at La Baula Lodge again.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank JCPetty
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 24, 2013

La Baula Lodge is a nice place to stay within the Tortuguero National Park.

We stayed in room 4, the room was simple but (importantly) clean. No A/C, fan only - I usually find that quite difficult but the temperature wasn't too high in the evenings and there was always a cool breeze. The howler monkeys *will* wake you up and keep you awake for 45 mins or so from around 4.30am every morning when they do their territorial shrieking howling. This was fine because it was a novelty, also we were still adjusting to time zones from flying from UK so I was waking up around this time anyway.

The staff were warm and friendly at all times.

We stayed in late April, so not at high season and the lodge (and Tortuguero itself) was very quiet. For the first night though there was a school tour group there, the remaining nights the place was empty but for one other couple - not a great atmosphere but I'm guessing this was unusual.

In retrospect, at $150 per night ($75 per person), I don't think this was great value - based on other hotels in Costa Rica - maybe there's a premium in Tortuguero for being so out of the way I don't know.

The meals were included and are typical Costa Rican fare - they were tasty as far as Costa Rican food goes, but then I found Costa Rican food to be generally quite bland and monotonous. Breakfast was probably my favourite. There was free coffee at all times for guests which was nice.

The pool is nice but quite small. So when there are other guests it can be quite noisy, but when there's not it was nice and relaxing.

To get to Tortuguero town by taxi boat. This costs USD$3 per person. Maybe it was because we were out of season but I found the town to be quiet and unwelcoming.

Regarding Tortuguero in general, it's definitely worth a visit, but there's not a whole lot to do here so I wouldn't stay longer than 3 nights/2 days. It's also the most humid place I've ever been in my life - get used to everything being slightly damp throughout your stay - your books, your clothes, your money!

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank dylangmurphy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 21, 2013

This hotel was so wonderful. the staff is warm and generous. The rooms are good with a great fan on the ceiling that keep you cool. bathrooms are adequate as well. the food is delicious, the pool, the nature and the howling monkeys that wake you at 4:45. So worth the long boat ride from Pavona and the need to water taxis to Tortuguero.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
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Thank ruthe247
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about La Baula Lodge

Address: Tortuguero National Park, Tortuguero 70210, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Limon > Tortuguero
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Tortuguero
Price Range: $42 - $88 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — La Baula Lodge 2.5*
Number of rooms: 40
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
BAULA LODGE TORTUGUERO Tortuguero National Park, is located on the Caribbean Coast of Costa Rica, Province of Limon. This was established on November 13, 1975 and has an area of 18,946 hectares in the terrestrial and 52,265 hectares in the marina. This park comes to constitute the most important site in the Western Caribbean side for the green turtle nesting, and other species such as leatherback and Carey. Lagoons and waterways make up the National Park and are the habitat of species such as crocodiles, alligators, manatees, turtles, crabs and the millennial fish Gaspar and others. This national park was created to protect a wide variety of flora and fauna found in the area and is part of Wetlands of International Importance of the Ramsar Convention. Strategically located opposite the Tortuguero Lagoon and only 5 minutes by boat from Tortuguero National Park is La Baula Lodge, a rustic hotel, very comfortable that re-opened in June 2008 with a clear vision of providing its customers personalized service, quality and comfort in the midst of a natural sanctuary. La Baula Lodge has focused on the respect, protection and conservation of the environment and the flora and fauna of the area. The Lodge in general has a real Caribbean style, painted in vivid colors that identify with the culture of the area, beautiful exotic gardens, restaurant, pool and large bar, laundry service, experienced guides and quality service is what we offer, plus of course 45 standard rooms with ceiling fan and private bathroom with hot water. The hotel is located on a beautiful 2 acre property in the middle of flora and fauna that identify the Tortuguero National Park, where the exotic sounds will make your experience unforgettable, here you will have the first opportunity for a destination of immense natural wealth, the hotel is strategically located facing the lagoon and close to Tortuguero Town. Our Bar and Restaurant offers national and international meals and drinks, and of course Caribbean and is completely open, giving expansive views of the tropical gardens and the Laguna Tortuguero. Come on and enjoy a true natural adventure! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
La Baula Lodge Costa Rica/Tortuguero

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