We spent three days and two nights with our two boys, aged 3 and 7. The drive from Manuel Antonio was no problem (except for an unexpected river crossing due to a missing bridge) and one of the prettiest we experienced in Costa Rica.
Baru is wonderful- peaceful, isolated and a perfect antidote to the overly-touristed Manuel Antonio area.
We arrived early for the "night in the jungle" tour and we allowed to use our cabin, even though we had not technically reserved this until the following night. Pedro, a wonderfully patient naturalist who had extensive knowledge of the flora and fauna of the area, was our guide. The children most enjoyed hearing the variety of bird and animal calls Pedro imitated and they LOVED the jungle camp and the night in the tent. The night walk was exciting - Pedro showed us a large tarantula, a scorpion and other creatures. During the hike back the next morning we saw monkeys, slothes, poison dart frogs, coati, etc. The walk was a bit much for our younger son, who needed at times to be carried, but the older child walked the whole way and loved it.
Our second day was spent enjoying Baru's trails and swimming at the beach (close in, as there are riptides). With the exception of a surfer, we were the only people on the 3 km-plus beach. My husband did a zip line tour and said the guides were very interesting and knowledgable.
The facilities are basic and inexpensive - we enjoyed having the space of a two-bedroom cottage. The restaurant is basic as well, with simple and reasonably-priced meals. The staff made a special cake for our son's birthday and presented it with a lit candle.
We highly recommend Baru. It was by no means the most elegant or sophisticated place we stayed, but we felt closer to Costa Rica there than anyplace else. It was inspiring to see what one person can do to create a refuge for Costa Rica's wildlife, and the respect and knowledge the guides have for their land was most impressive.
Our stay there was the highlight of our trip.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The lodge is located at the entrance to Hacienda Baru National Wildlife Refuge which protects 330 hectares (815 acres) of tropical forest, wetlands, mangrove and 3 kilometers of pristine Baru Beach. The refuge offers seven kilometers of well marked nature trails and a bird watching tower for a modest entrance fee. Guided tours with sharp-eyed local guides include two different types of canopy tours, five hiking tours, a camping tour and three bird watching tours. Hacienda Baru National Wildlife Refuge & Lodge is situated on Costa Rica's Southern Pacific Coast. This is a region of distinct natural beauty where forest covered mountains rise up from the dramatic Pacific coastline. The village of Dominical is just 3 km from Hacienda Baru located. Hacienda Baru Ecolodge's bungalow style cabins are large and roomy. Each one has two bedrooms, one with a double bed and the other with one double and one twin bed. Each bungalow has a bathroom with hot water shower, living room, porch, and kitchenette. For your convenience, they come equipped with fridge, coffee maker, hot plate and fans in all the rooms. They are ideal for families. In addition to the cabins, Hacienda Baru Ecolodge is now offering six new Pool View Guest Rooms. Each of these superior units has a large bathroom, a porch and ample space for beds and other furniture. Each will normally have a king size bed and a twin bed , but they can be equipped with up to four twin beds. Each has a frige and coffee maker as well. The attractive tile roofing is made from recycled plastic bags. A well ventilated design, insulation between the roofing and the polished teak ceiling, and overhead fans all insure cool comfort for our guests. All of the teak and gmelina wood used in the construction came from Hacienda Baru's own plantations. The wood for the pine beams and cypress furniture all came from plantations as well. Not a single piece of the wood used came from a natural forest. Solar heaters provide plenty of hot water for the bathrooms. The outside walls are slate and polished teak. The new guest rooms are conveniently located right in front of our new swimming pool. Our breezy open air restaurant allows you to observe the gardens and natural surroundings as you dine. We have five private ranchos for guests that want an intimate setting perhaps for a romantic candlelight dinner or a special family meal. Our menu is primarily very tasty typical Costa Rican food, but we do offer a variety of dishes for those who either don't like or want a break from rice and beans. We offer a selection Costa Rican fruit drinks known as FRESCOS meaning refreshing, soft drinks, a selection of Costa Rican beer, you must have heard of Imperial, wines and other licors. The swimming pool at Hacienda Baru Lodge is disinfected with ozone produced by an ozone generator which injects a constant flow of this eco-friendly gas into the water. This system of disinfection allows us to maintain a very low concentration of chlorine in the pool. The chlorine level is so slight that it is imperceptible to pool users. The swimming pool is open from 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM. Guests from both the cabins and guest rooms are welcome to use the pool during these hours. Bird Watching, Canopy Exploration and Ecological Tours are our specialty. Our bilingual grass roots naturalist guides will help you discover the wonders of the tropical rainforest, such as leaf cutter ants, the sleepy sloths and the nesting site of the Common Pootoo. On our tours you can experience everything from the Rainforest Canopy to Mangrove Swamps or the Jungle at Night. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Hacienda Baru Hotel Quepos
- Hacienda Baru Costa Rica/Dominical