The Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui area is famous for its private reserves and well-protected areas. Oh, and if you love some action, this is a great place to go rafting, surrounded by lush green jungle and wildlife.
This area used to be inhabited by indigenous tribes over 600 years ago. In the area, you still find burial sites, stone sculptures, and petroglyphs that show animal features, as well as human features, and geometric designs.
When you drive to Sarapiqui you might already notice the number of pineapple plantations, sugarcane, and ornamental plants. But luckily, they made lots of efforts to preserve this beautiful area. You find quite a few private nature reserves for research and education. And As you probably already guessed, this is a great area for hiking and observing animals!
Not far from the main road you find the historical Sarapiqui ecolodge Hacienda La Isla tucked away in an incredible lush piece of the rainforest. The hotel rooms boast old colonial grandeur, the hospitality is warm and welcoming, and the nature is overwhelmingly pretty. While hiking the hotels’ trails, you will be greeted by the sounds of birds and tiny colourful frogs.
There is also a lovely pool surrounded by lush jungle. So take a dip, relax and watch the birds in the surrounding trees.
Sarapiqui ecolodge Hacienda la Isla is one of our Green Circle Members hotels. We chose them because of their efforts to operate sustainably and environmentally friendly.
Hacienda La Isla’s owner, Jean-Pierre is an anthropologist with a deep interest in Costa Rica’s culture, history, and people. Just walk around, and see the many historical artefacts and references at the lodge to see this passion.
The owner’s interest does not only lie in the past, he has a strong connection with the local community. He wants to make sure this area and its rich history, nature, and resources will be preserved for future generations.
Chocolate was invented by the people in Meso America. There is evidence they started making cacao drinks as far back as 2000bc. By giving guests the opportunity to book a chocolate tour to discover the importance of cacao for the indigenous people, the lodge wants to keep the history alive.
As we mentioned before, this area is known for its private reserves. One of our favourites is the Tirimbina reserve. Here you can cross the largest hanging bridge of Costa Rica into the unspoiled tropical rainforest. As well, they provide guided tours to observe birds, mammals, reptiles, and insects with expert guides. We highly recommend their chocolate tour to learn more about the history, and process to make chocolate, and the best thing, you can taste it!.
One of our other favourite activities is Frog’s Heaven. The owner Jose Solis is an experienced guide with a heart and passion for frogs. Walk the grounds with him to find the most colorful (and poisonous) frogs in Costa Rica.
If you want some action and want to try rafting, this area is a great option for your first rafting trip. Most rapids are class II-III, so it is good for beginners and taking in the beautiful scenery.
We loved our stay at Hacienda La Isla in Sarapiqui. The moment you leave the main road you are back into the jungle, loved it. Highly recommend the raftingtour.
I stayed in Hacienda La Isla in Sarapiqui with my wife. I loved the atmosphere and friendly staff of the hotel. The green and black frogs just hop right in front of your porch!
This is a paradise for birdlovers!
Our stay at Hacienda La Isla was great. It was set right in the middle of a small piece of jungle. I would wander around the trails during my stay and saw some amazing animals like monkeys, parrots, toucans and frogs.
We went to visit Frog’s Heaven and I highly recommend it. Great stay!