Arenal Observatory Lodge

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Hotel class: 3 stars
5 miles past Tabacon La Fortuna de San Carlos, La Fortuna, Costa Rica

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Arenal Observatory Lodge La Fortuna Reviews

ahoymatey2011 ahoymate…
8 reviews
Great View, remote location, no amenities... Apr 22, 2011
So when I booked this hotel it had amazing reviews. It does have an amazing view of both the Arenal Volcano and Lake Arenal. However, it is the farthest hotel away from everything ($30 cab ride one way to the nearest shops, food, etc.) We stayed in the "Casona" room. It is the cheapest which means it has no A/C, no Tv, no phone, and a shared bathroom facilites with 5 other rooms. This place is great for the nature lover. If you are looking for luxory this isnt it. Hope this helps.
The back view from our room
The side view from our room
Front view from our room
The Arenal Volcano from the main b…
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patrickfoster18 patrickf…
9 reviews
An Amazing Show Dec 16, 2008
From its perch less than two miles from the base of Volcan Arenal, the Arenal Observatory lodge is all about location, location, location. We stayed there for two nights in late August and were overall very pleased with our stay. The lodge is on the southwest side of the volcano and therefore is the only place to stay where you can see the lava flow at night, which is well worth the extra you may pay in more expensive room costs. A lot of people take vans or cabs to the lodge or the road into the lodge just to see the lava flow at night. Why do that when you can just watch the lava flow from your hotel room balcony?

We stayed in a standard room which as mentioned above had a balcony (though a little obscured and with little privacy) overlooking the volcano. The room was very clean and huge, probably 50% larger than a standard hotel room. The bathroom was sizable as well and had a nice shower. We had almost all of our meals at the restaurant; breakfast was free and very impressive with fresh fruit, pancakes, juices, and local staples like gallo pinto. Lunch and dinner were nothing to write home about and you pay American prices, but we weren't there for the food so it wasn't a big deal. We would have gone out for dinner but one of the downsides of the Lodge is that it is 9km from the main road and the access road is your typical rocky, pot-hole laden dirt road which makes leaving the lodge quite the ordeal once you arrive.

That being said, we found plenty around the lodge to entertain us during our 2 day stay. There are a number of hiking trails around the premises, including the Old Lava Trail which is currently closed because that is where the new lava is also flowing. Within a mile of the lodge are two small suspension bridges and a hike to a nice waterfall. The farm that you hike through to get to these places is very pretty. We were impressed with the pool and jacuzzi where you can sit and soak with a clear view of the volcano. Guided nature walks and horseback riding are also available.

We wouldn't recommend staying at the lodge for more than three nights...but if you are only going to be in Arenal for a short time this is a great place to stay. For more info about our trip to Costa Rica visit our travel blog at http://patrinadoestheglobe.blogspot.com/
2 / 2 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
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Arenal Observatory Lodge Overview

:Arenal Observatory Lodge sits in a private nature reserve in the heart of one of Costa Rica's numerous natural areas. Rich volcanic soil supports primary and secondary rainforest. Waterfalls and crystalline rivers offer sparkling jungle refreshment. A well marked and manicured trail system traverses the property and provides easy access to the breathtaking natural beauty. At Arenal Observatory Lodge, nature is bursting at the seams, tropical flora and fauna abound. And all the while, the imposing majesty of the volcano reflects in the mirrored lake at her feet, enhanced by her fiery tantrum-all this right outside your room at the lodge. Location:We are located in a private nature reserve in the heart of Costa Rica. Area:There is also a paved, wheelchair-accessible trail that extends 800 meters into the rainforest and provides excellent views of the volcano. The lodge offers daily complimentary walks by resident naturalist guides.(A reforestation project guarantees healthy forest in perpetuity for future generations)Recreation:The gardens and landscaping are extravagant with color. Natural flowering plants and shrubs were carefully chosen to attract wildlife. Jewel-toned hummingbirds dart from heliconia to oleander and brilliant butterflies adorn the blooms. Other attractions include a waterfall, just a short hike away, which cascades into the cool forest depths. A well maintained path leads guests to this magical spot. Rooms:The Arenal Observatory Lodge features 37 rooms in a four-building spread on the property. Five rooms are fully equipped for disabled travelers, with rooms, bathrooms, hallways, parking areas and even the new swimming pool designed accordingly. Most have a view of the volcano and all have verdant garden surroundings. Everywhere one feels the volcano's commanding presence. Arenal Observatory Lodge sits in a private nature reserve in the heart of one of Costa Rica's numerous natural areas. Rich volcanic soil supports primary and secondary rainforest. Waterfalls and crystalline rivers offer sparkling jungle refreshment.

Arenal Observatory Lodge Amenities

  • Parking
  • Swimming pool
  • Disabled Access
  • Garden
  • Lake
  • Wheel Chair Access
  • Shower

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