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All reviews gelato golfo dulce scarlet macaws outdoor shower ceiba tree bioluminescence tour local guide every meal resident biologist plunge pool pura vida incredible attention to detail italian influence london restaurant poison dart highly recommend this place to anyone beach picnic
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Reviewed 4 weeks ago

We stayed at Golfo Dulce Retreat for 3 nights as part of our 3 week vacation in Costa Rica. The country is amazing and Golfo Dulce was by far the best part we visited. This little corner of Costa Rica boasts one of the highest concentration of species in the world. The beaches of the golfo, the wildlife, the setting and its surrounding forests are absolutely breathtaking. We arrived at the Retreat late in the afternoon with an incredible sunset, dolphins swimming around the boat and the most incredible scent oozing from the rainforest. We thought we landed in paradise. The lodge itself is spectacular. Very intimate, peaceful and beautiful. We have travelled across the whole country and we can honestly say this was our favourite place. In fact it probably was one of the most magical places we have ever visited in our 40+ years of travels.

Date of stay: January 2019
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank DelafosseR
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 11, 2019

What the owners Simon and Chantal have achieved is incredible and if one considers that the place is totally off grid and with no road access, then their feat becomes nothing short of inspiring. The retreat is located in a vast jungle reserve surrounded by a stunning national park. You start appreciating the magnificence of the place the moment you approach by boat and get closer and closer to the beach. The hotel’s access to the beach is easy and the waters of the Gulfo Dulce are warm, clear and there are no riptides or current to worry about. The service is 5 star. Despite being so isolated they have managed to create a fine balance between exquisite architecture, incredible attention to detail and rustic elegance. Simon and Chantal actually live at the retreat so they know their surrounding very well and are always eager to pass on their knowledge. The food in general was excellent. We had a vegan and a celiac in our group and I am intolerant to milk and we were taken care of so well. We did not want to leave at the end of our stay and we will definitely be back. In fact we knew we wanted to go back the first time we set foot on the beach.

Date of stay: February 2019
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank lisajlisa1968
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 8, 2019

Our time at GDR was spectacular. This is not your average run-of-the-mill Costa Rican ecolodge. This is a destination with an incredible ethos and substance behind it, two amazing owners running the place in an incredibly professional manner, a wild and pristine setting like no other in Costa Rica and… beauty, elegance and good food. Thank you for inspiring us.

Date of stay: January 2019
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
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Thank Brunovoyages
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 3, 2019

We went to Golfo Dulce Retreat with high expectations and we left completely blown away. In fact we have already reserved for December! The setting of this wildlife Retreat is stunning, immersed in a vast jungle and only accessible by boat. The moment you land at their beach, jumping into the water, you know you’re up for an amazing adventure.
The tropical gardens are wild yet looked after. The adjoining rainforest is simply amazing. A few minutes walk from our cabin took us to a majestic Ceiba tree, the biggest living thing we had ever seen. Sitting under that tree was truly an incredible experience.
There was plenty of wildlife while we visited - we saw dolphins from the beach, pelicans fishing, opossums in the garden at night with a multitude of frogs (including the red eye tree frog), spectacular toucans and scarlet macaws, and a troop of howler monkeys passing through the canopy around the dining area. But the real highlight were the most incredible trees, each one supporting so many other plants and vines and lianas, each one a world of their own.
A hike into the forest with the local guide, a very knowledgable and charming man, unwraps the wonders of these trees, each with their many medicinal properties, with their crazy hallucinogenic properties, with their traditional indigenous use.
We went back home feeling truly reconnected with nature and with a deep understanding of how trees and rainforests must be safeguarded for everybody’s benefit. No wonder the owners Chantel and Simon have decided to make this pristine corner of the world their new home so that they can protect this treasure for their children and everyone else after them.

Date of stay: January 2019
  • Trip type: Traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Thank rightonhols
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 3, 2019

This was our 5th time in Costa Rica and Golfo Dulce Retreat is nothing like anything we have experienced before. We did many of the excursions on offer and each one was absolutely incredible. The first night of our stay we went out to watch (and swim!) in bioluminescence and that in itself made our time at the retreat memorable. We also went deep into a beautiful mangroves ecosystem by kayak, snorkelling near the Mogos rock formations and walking on a 6 hours trek to the largest tree we have ever seen. Each activity was incredibly well planned and organised. Chantelle made sure we were always well fed and looked after and she went above and beyond moving meal times so we wouldn’t miss anything. All the excursions were just for us which made the experience even more memorable. We are already planning our next stay!

Room tip: There are just three cabins and they are all wonderful
Date of stay: January 2019
  • Trip type: Traveled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank DSMartin65
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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