The lodge earning its "eco" argument
21.11.2016 - 25.11.2016 29 °C
Ecolodge San Luis - gotta love it!
A fair warning: if you crave for Caribbean rythms, disco lights and rum, Ecolodge San Luis is not for you. You'll find other places in Costa Rica that will offer just that: one good place to look for a chill-out beach party with reggae, ganja and guaro flowing freely is Puerto Viejo de Limon. Or that's what I've been told - I only had a lunch there. Also, if you expect valet parking, a la carte restaurants, and chocolate on your pillow, you'll be better off elsewhere.
If you instead appreciate a unique nature experience in nice, rustic housing perfect for their settings, and being amongst some warm, friendly, and knowledgeable people - you just gotta love UGA Ecolodge San Luis. UGA stands for University of Georgia. The ecolodge is administered by UGA and located within the campus. To me, it was a perfect combination of science, education, and ecotourism. You find lots of accommodation in Costa Rica calling themselves "ecolodges". Mostly, I think, it only means that the place is cut into the forest, rustic, small or just greenwashed. This one, though, is the real thing. An eco-gem.
You are free to explore the entire 70 hectares area with many trails, gardens and an operating farm on the campus grounds. You also get to enjoy typical Costa Rican meals - it's full board - with the campus staff, resident naturalists, and other visitors in the campus cafeteria. The list of on-campus activities is astounding, and they are all included with your stay. You get to do as much hiking and birding - at least 230 different species recorded on campus grounds, as you wish, or just enjoy the view while snoozing in one of the rocking chairs on the porch. But you can also arrange to visit local farmers and homes with a translator provided by UGA, or one the reserves, such as the neighbouring Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve.
This blog article goes against my original idea of just writing about my own experiences and not offering travel advice or reviews. This one just had to written. If you are looking for Costa Rica travel advice, there are other, more substancial blogs I found very helpful when planning for my trip, such as
There's more good info on the web, so keep googling. And of course, there are several Costa Rica guidebooks published. Mine is the ebook by Lonely Planet.