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“Disappointed”
Review of Pachira Lodge

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Pachira Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed April 5, 2013

I stayed in a small lodge in Tortuguero 15 years ago and it was the highlight of my trip. I was expecting the same type of laid-back experience this time and was disappointed. Pachira Lodge caters to large group tours and was run somewhat like a cruise ship with tightly regimented meal times, tours and activities. We enquired about a private birding tour and were told that there were no birds to see! We opted out of the village tour and took kayaks out on the canal and explored the grounds near the cabins where we spotted lots of birds. We joined an early morning boat tour the next morning. Unfortunately, our guide was more interested in flirting with two young women than in spotting wildlife. He had no binoculars or bird guides and argued with us when we pointed out birds. He mis-identified several. We have taken part in a number of guided activities and have hired guides throughout our travels in Costa Rica. They have all been incredibly knowledgeable, passionate and professional. This is the first time we encountered a guide that was unprofessional. After this experience, we did not take part in any other tours at the resort.

As for the resort itself, it is OK but a bit tired. The kayaks were OK, paddles were chipped or broken. Rooms were OK; food was OK; service was odd. My friend ordered a beer at the bar and they put ice in it! The pool is nice and the grounds are nice and there is plenty of wildlife - but if it is the jungle experience you are after, I would recommend Selva Verde over Tortuguero.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank get_out_10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed April 5, 2013

This is a very unique lodging that is based in the Tortuguero National Park - each couple has their own cabin with porch and rocking chairs, and the wooden walkways are above the ground. Yes, you only get 1 small bottle of water each to refill at the main station and have to bring in your own toiletries and hairdryer (if you want) in one small carry-on, but it was quite quaint in the forest with the critters (even though we had to remove one large insect at one point) and even in February it was not too hot even though there are only screens and a ceiling fan. If you want to experience nature, this is actually an experience and you have to accept it for what it is. We did not have any theft, and the night of entertainment (music and dancing) was adequate. Small swimming pool and bar on the premises. Basic restaurant with buffet. Note: In late February it only rained during the night and did not rain in through the screens due to the slanted roofs.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank PhoebeGR
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 2, 2013

We were on the same tour as Pete. (prev. review) The theft from safes of fellow travelers was extremely unsettleing. The fact that our tour director did not address this to the group is unsettleing as well. Also,the fact that Caravan puts literaly hundreds of travelers in this lodge weekly in high season boggles the mind of the volume of money stolen at this property. Between $40-$50 per 25 rooms 3 times a week??? We were out on a river tour (2hours) which is a nice window of opportunity for the thief. This person (people) also did not take all the money so as to not raise instant red flags. If not for a woman on our tour that has a meticulous personal bookkeeping system, it may have not come to light. Most people said they thought they might have miscalculated their cash until we started talking among ourselves and realized we were not alone. Caravan needs to make this right!

Room Tip: Do NOT Use The Safe!!! Employees Have Master Key And Use It
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled on business
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8  Thank clark1754
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 1, 2013

The problem here is to review the lodge in isolation rather than the whole Tortuguero experience. The Pachira has adequate rooms. You shouldn't expect too much in a National Park and you don't get too much, No a/c, no tv, phone or window glass. No sink plug either but this seems quite normal in CR. The restaurant is quite alright with adequate choices at all 3 meals and friendly efficient staff. We really only used it as a sleeping place between boat trips in the park and I enjoyed it, especially sitting on my rocking chair on the porch of an evening watching the birdlife and listening to the Howler Monkeys in the morning. The bar was lively enough with a small band playing in the evenings but the best entertainment came from the monkeys and other animals that were in and around the lodge, eg raccoons, possom, iguanas, land crabs and various birds. Drinking water is available from dispensers around the restaurant area at no charge as is tea and coffee. Other reviers have mentioned room safes but we never had one.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank go9ers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 30, 2013

We stayed at this lodge as part of Caravan recently. The lodge is good for the jungle type setting. The cabins are run down old and in need of major upgrade. By that I mean not cable TV, Phone and AC but basic necessary things like Toilets, bedding, clean bathroom sinks, mosquito nets, room safe in working order etc. The windows only has screens, no glass window so everyone outside hear everything and viceversa. Safes dont work, you have to rely on little key, to me I guess any other key might open it, so be careful. You dont expect to get good night sleep, noise outside of people walking by on pathways, monkeys creating a ruckus early morning, masquitos and Gaekos all over. We even found Gaeko dropping on our bed or who know may be rat. I complained about that, safe & people smoking outside, no help at all. That is a bad customer service. Food in dining room so so, nothing to write home, some items were served cold. Not much positive to say even if I try hard. Try it out, you are out for a adventure anyways. For sure was expecting better from our tour company here in tortuguero. With all said, I think in this part of bay there may not be too many choices available so I'd give one more star.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank WanderingGipsy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 29, 2013

We recently stayed at Pachira Lodge as part of a Caravan.com tour of Costa Rica during March 21 , 22.

The experience was wonderful at the time, as was the rest of the tour but unfortunately a theft incident occurred at this property that left quite a few people, including ourselves, shocked in disbelief.

Personally speaking we knew that we had misplaced $40 from our money in the room safe immediately after returning from our boat trip out from the lodge, but we thought better about making a fuss about it.

In casual conversation though a few days later on the tour it transpired quite a few others had had the same issue. In fact, at least 9 other people we spoke to had lost exactly $40 from their room safe during our 2 night stay at Pachira Lodge. .

Our tour director didn't seem to want to make a big issue out of what had happened. Maybe she was too embarrassed to ask the other half of the bus, I dunno. Guess we'll never really know the true scale of what actually happened.
Most people don't want to make an issue out of a situation like this and neither did we. The whole tour was having a really good time and nobody likes being a party pooper right?

But anyway. Please be aware.

If you stay at Pachira Lodge then please do not use your room safe if you value your belongings.

They are key operated and they are most definitely NOT "SAFE". That is a proven fact.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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12  Thank Peter T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 28, 2013

Stayed at Pachira Lodge, Tortuguero as part of a package tour. The grounds are gorgeous, and the views from our room and balcony were wonderful. You are truly "in the jungle" when you stay there. Saw incredible wildlife and the vegetation and flowers were breathtaking. Staff were helpful and friendly, room clean. Food excellent and plentiful. It poured rain for most of our 3-day visit, which was frustrating, but you can use umbrellas, ponchos, and boots courtesy of the Lodge, so really helped. Only complaint was the condition of canal boats---on the trip out to the lodge from land, our boat broke down 3 times: not a pleasant or confidence-boosting start to our trip! Pachira Lodge needs to invest in better motors: it was a little scary and added quite a bit more time to an already exhausting long trip to get from San Jose to Tortuguero! Would have been 5-star excellent rating if not for the lousy condition of boat motors.

Room Tip: Being upstairs gives better vegetation views
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with friends
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4  Thank SteviBlairsden
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Pachira Lodge

Address: Across The Main Canal, Tortuguero, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Limon > Tortuguero
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 36 Specialty Lodging in Tortuguero
Price Range: $275 - $486 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Pachira Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 88
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The lodge is strategically located only 5 minutes away from the extraordinary Tortuguero National Park, and right across the main "canal" facing the town of Tortuguero. Surrounded by a network of very scenic canals, this is considered one of the most exotic regions of the world, characterized by its rich in flora and fauna. Strategically located. 88 comfortable guest rooms. 14 hectares (34 acres). 5 minutes from Tortuguero National Park main entrance. Stay at one of our comfortable rooms with private bathroom, hot water and ceiling fans. Enjoy all our buffet-style meals that are included. Let's cheers with our wine when for dinner. Be our guest at our bar and enjoy our excelent service. Let us show you this paradise with our bilingual tour guides, during the entire trip. Take advantage of our daily departures from San José, with no minimum of passengers required. Travel safety as we get you around comfortably. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pachira Hotel Tortuguero
Pachira Lodge Costa Rica/Tortuguero

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