Tuesday, December 17, 2013

A Review of my Stay at the Arenal Observatory Lodge in La Fortuna, Costa Rica

I spent 2 weeks in Costa Rica and made my way to the area of Arenal Volcano after spending a week in Montezuma on the Pacific Coast of the Country. Compared to the rocky coastline, sandy beaches and extremely hot weather of the Pacific coast, this area of the country was a refreshing change of pace! The weather was still nice but cooler and the scenery was spectacular. I had the opportunity to stay at the Arenal Observatory Lodge which was surrounded by all this natural beauty in a remote location away from crowds and other resorts. I must say that from my arrival late at night to my departure later the next day, I was pleased with every aspect of the lodge, the service and the location. I was greeted upon arrival and offered a welcome drink and, even though I arrived late, the swimming pool and Jacuzzi was still open which was great after a long day on the road. My room was spacious, clean and had everything I needed to make my stay enjoyable...including a great view of the volcano.

I spent the next morning exploring the grounds and admiring the view of the volcano and was surprised by how much wildlife, including a number of species of birds, were around. A free nature hike was offered that morning (and I'm pretty sure it is offered every morning) which gave me the opportunity to learn much more about the birds, plants and animals I was seeing all over the place. The guide was very knowledgeable and explained everything to us. After visiting the beautiful waterfalls along the trail, we hopped on a tractor to be taken back to the resort so no backtracking in the sticky early afternoon sun. Breakfast and lunch were also fabulous with much to choose from. I spent the remainder of the afternoon in the museum dedicated to the history and observations of the volcano over the years which was very, very interesting. There are a number of other hiking trails in the area and a number of tours (including ATV tours and whitewater rafting) but I didn't have a chance to do them. I would highly recommend anyone visiting this area to stay at the Arenal Observatory Lodge.

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