Tres Rios & The Zona Sur:
The real ‘eco hot spot’ of Costa Rica, enclosed by the Pacific Ocean and mountainous rainforest surroundings, buzzing with tropical wildlife. This is where jungle meets ocean. Described by National Geographic magazine as “one of the most biologically diverse areas in the world” south-western Costa Rica has a plethora of stunning (and mostly deserted) beaches and fantastic vistas. The areas beaches include the deserted Playa Tortuga, the rugged Playa Piñuelas, Playa Ventanas (named after the two huge cliffs on either side that frame this idyllic surfing beach as well as Playa Uvita and the ‘party town’ and ‘surfers hot-spot’ of Dominical.
The nearby village of Ojochal (5 minutes up the CostaNera) is one of a few local villages hosting a whole load of fine dining and fusion restaurants or if you'd prefer to relax 'at home' we can happily arrange food parcels (according to the season, fresh fish, ceviche and seafood all available) and fruit baskets to be delivered direct to the Jungle Villa.
Pura Vida Ecolodge is uniquely located between 4 of Costa Rica’s most impressive national parks:
About 40km off the Pacific coast and visible from the Jungle Villa itself, lies the Isla del Caño which is one of Costa Rica's top spots for diving, with attractions including intricate rock and incredible coral formations and an amazing array of underwater life, teeming with colourful reef fish and larger marine life such as manta rays, turtles, dolphins, huge shoals of barracuda and moral eels. Day trips can be arranged which typically include two emersions (or as much snorkelling as you like), a picnic lunch on the beach, a trek up to the national parks waterfall and then a leisurely ride back to the mainland, hopefully having spotted a couple of whales!
Just to the North lie the pristine sandy palm beaches of Marino Ballena National Park. The largest marine park in Central America and is named after a common visitor: Humpback whales migrate here to the warm waters off the coast to mate before returning up north. Olive Ridley and Hawksbill turtles can be seen laying their eggs on night visits to the beach and dolphins are regularly spotted. A protective coral reef (the largest on the Pacific Coast of Central America) makes for ideal swimming, snorkelling and diving conditions. Horseback riding, deep sea fishing and kayaking are also popular activities here, while for those of you who prefer a more relaxed pace, you can go for long walks along the coast, sunbathe on the beach and enjoy the fabulous scenic beauty and marine life that this gorgeous park has to offer.
Also to the North is the most frequently visited national park of Costa Rica, Manuel Antonio.
A walk through the park rewards visitors with frequent sightings of several species of monkeys, as well as sloth, iguanas, coati’s, and hundreds of exotic birds. Within the park are a series of crescent shaped white sand beaches, surrounded by rain forest. These beaches are easily accessed by well-groomed trails that wind throughout the park. Pack a lunch, have a picnic on one of the sandy beaches, and be sure to take your swimsuit along for a refreshing swim after a day of hiking.
Situated South of Tres Rios is world renowned Corcovado National Park; an undeniably beautiful place, considered to be one of the most important natural preserves in the Americas (considered top 3 worldwide by National Geographic), this virgin rain forest park with its amazing variety of wildlife invites superlatives from all who visit. The captivating visual beauty of its forest and coastline, with miles of uninhabited beaches and roaring cascades, draws visitors from all over the world.
On our doorstep, there are a choice of larger waterfalls and lagoons, Marina Ballena National Park and even the recently completed San Buenas Golf Resort. It also has the surfer’s paradise of Dominical and the world famous Scuba Diving site of Isla del Caño within easy reach. For the 'foodies' among you, when not enjoying the local catch 'at home', there is a wonderful selection of International fusion and gourmet restaurants just a bike-ride away (or just a short drive) in nearby villages of Ojochal & Coronado.
The Osa Peninsula (the gateway to Corcovado National Park) is under 2 hours away to the south and Manuel Antonio National Park lies just over an hour away.
HOUSE RULES & POLICIES:
The main 'House Rules' are to adopt the 'Pura Vida Ecolodge' philosophy & concept we have worked so hard to create. That means respecting nature, the animals and the magical surroundings of the Jungle Villa and it's reserve. Please remember that given the unique location, you will inevitably have some visitors from the surrounding rain forest during your stay. Whether that be congo monkeys as the sun rises, early morning visits from the the incredibly tame 'pizotes', toucans as the sunsets or even the odd bull-frog having a splash in the pool! Our main goal, as designers, hoteliers and 'conceptualists' is that you are able to leave the 'urban madness' behind and fully enjoy & embrace a unique life up at Pura Vida Ecolodge throughout your stay, whether it be just two days or two weeks, always conscious that our Jungle Villa really is 'A Retreat - A Lifestyle & An Experience.'
We do ask that guests read the welcome packs & guidebook thoroughly before arriving in Costa Rica so you can fully enjoy your Pura Vida Experience and be prepared for what the Pura Vida Adventure is all about.
We'd like to take this opportunity to remind guests that being 'off the beaten track' in this hidden corner of Costa Rica does mean that from time to time we can experience a variability of Pura Vida Ecolodge's infrastructure (such as internet connection, water pressure and power cuts for example). While largely unavoidable when they do happen, they are generally short-lived, pretty infrequent and shouldn't manage to interfere with your holiday providing you remember where you are, the ecolodge adventure you've chosen to experience and that things will not necessarily be quite the same as perhaps you are used to 'back home'. That said, our housekeeper is always just around the corner and we always have a 'plan B' up our sleeve should the need arise to ensure your trip is as comfortable and enjoyable as possible.
We appreciate that life on the Pacific coast can start early so ask guests to try and checkout by 10am with check-in starting from 2pm but we strongly advise arriving before sundown (so as to familiarise yourselves with 4WD driving and the orientation of the lodge). That said, we understand a lot of our Jungle Villa guests are indeed on an extended itinerary, often with limited flexibility in terms of transport & internal flights, so we are of course happy to try and work around your timings as much as we can - as long as we know well in advance.
Our dear friends and housekeepers, Gersan & Iliana know the area like the back of their hands and are happy to help with organising tours, trips and adventures and will even help you explore the local area on foot. They can also offer a laundry service, pick up (and drop off) various food parcels and even set up a special home-made meal for your arrival day (as long as it's arranged with us in advance.) They run a very popular 'Pura Vida Boat Adventure' and will happily supply you with all sorts of local treats up at the villa (from natural coconut oils, fruit baskets and evEn home-made 'empanadas'.
When planning your trip, we do recommend to get in touch with us direct BEFORE you arrive if interested in any adventures & excursions as some of the attractions available get booked up with limited numbers in high season and likewise there is less availability of some tours in the Green Season.
Pura Vida Ecolodge is equipped with WiFi for internet connection but we also recommend that guests purchase a Costa Rican Kolby SIM card for their mobile/cell. (They even sell them in the arrival hall/luggage collection area at San Jose airport for $5) allowing them to make restaurant & tour reservations, keep in touch with our housekeeper etc without paying expensive roaming fees - with Kolby, you are also likely to have better 'coverage' than with your home network or any other Cost Rica networks such as Movistar and Claro.
The Ocean View Suite can be set up as either a King or indeed a separate twin room, according to your particular needs and group size. Whereas the Jungle Suite room is set up as a Queen. In the open-plan living area there is also a sofa bed that can sleep a further two people comfortably - with a maximum for the entire Jungle Villa being limited to 6 adults.