Arenal, Monteverde & the North
We specialize in customizing bespoke itineraries, tailored to your personal preferences and interests, as self-drives, or as individualized packages composed of hotels, activities, and transfers. To this end, we work with many different hotels, but give preference to those that are certified under Costa Rica’s eco-label certification scheme, or another, similar scheme. The hotels listed below are of differing standards, some quite luxuries, others in the mid-range. Clicking on the photographs opens up a mini-gallery for each property. Please use the menu links in the top menu to navigate between the hotel listings for the different regions of Costa Rica.
Dominated by Costa Rica’s most active volcano, Arenal, this region of Costa Rica is among the county’s top highlights. At night, the fuming mountain is especially impressive. Its slopes shrouded in the verdant green of a montane forest, with waterfalls and streams gushing forth, there are many soft adventure activities available.
Arenal Nayara Hotel Spa & Gardens
Arenal Nayara Hotel & Gardens is a first-class property situated between the town of La Fortuna and Arenal Volcano National Park, offering impressive views of the volcano. The main attractions of the area, including hot springs, waterfalls and the National Park main entrance are only a 20-minute drive away. Nayara’s grounds are beautifully landscaped and a lot of attention has been lavished on every detail. The rooms provide the utmost in comfort while maintaining a close contact with the natural surroundings. Each of the 50 spacious casitas (bungalows) are available in two categories, Deluxe, and Rainforest Villas. They feature a secluded garden with an outdoor shower and a beautiful terrace with a private, intimate Jacuzzi for two.
The Rainforest Villa’s unique octagonal design makes it comfortably spacious and allows natural light to filter from every angle. It features a king-sized bed, an oversized Jacuzzi on the wrap-around balcony that overlooks either the imposing Arenal Volcano or the lush rainforest, and a private garden with outdoor rain showers for two.
The Spring Villa is hidden in the forest and features its own private plunge pool fed by natural mineral hot springs, an expansive private garden with dual rain showers, oversized bathroom, sleek, four-poster bed, and indoor and outdoor sitting areas. Exotic touches, modern amenities, and native wood and stone are widely used to create a unique, authentic and romantic experience. The Spring Villas also come with a private host to compliment our ever-attentive hotel staff.
The resort has not one but three restaurants featuring different cuisines while staying true to the farm-to-table concept of sourcing fresh local produce, fish and meats. Additionally, there is a wine bar and a romantic dining option, in a romantic, private setting, as well as a bistro and a coffee shop. The Altamira Restaurant offers an exceptional vista of the active volcano and houses a lounge area to enjoy a drink in a stylish and comfortable ambiance. Guests can also have tropical cocktails, fresh fruit juices, and light snacks at Kali-Kali wet bar, near the pool.
The Spa offers every conceivable treatment to help you relax and enjoy the best of Costa Rica’s natural healing ingredients, from coffee to volcanic mud. There is also a Yoga space with views of the rainforest, as well as a gym.
Arenal Springs Resort
Arenal Springs Resort & Spa, located on the way to Lago Arenal, lies half a mile off the main road and thus, is a pretty quiet resort, despite its size. The 87 bungalows are set in a beautifully kept garden, facing the volcano, whose presence can be felt everywhere. The property also has a nice pool as well as natural hot springs. The proprietors run their own environmental project (Piensa Verde) and incorporate socially responsible business practices into their operations.
The bungalows are available in two categories, Junior Suites, and Master Suites. The Junior Suites are equipped with one King or two Queen size beds, air conditioning, ceiling fan, minibar, cable TV, telephone, coffee maker with complimentary coffee and tea, safe deposit box, bath amenities, and hairdryer. Each room has a lovely private terrace with rocking chairs offering a direct view of the active side of the Arenal Volcano.
Located just 7km from La Fortuna and only a 2h30min drive from San José, Arenal Paraiso Hotel & Spa is very well located. It is quite a large resort, with 120 rooms in three categories, 40 Standard rooms, 78 Superior rooms and two Villas (Family rooms). All rooms are equipped with air conditioning, cable TV, telephone, small refrigerator, coffee maker, hairdryer and a terrace facing the volcano. There are two restaurants: Arenal Paraiso Ranch, specializing in international cuisine and a Steak House. Thanks to the fact that there are hot springs on the property, there are a total of 14 pools, 13 of which are fed with thermal waters. Different pools have different temperatures. There is also a pool bar. The Spa is located next to the pool area. Apart from different kinds of massages and other wellness applications, there are also two saunas, a jacuzzi, and a mini gym. Other services include a souvenir shop, conference room, canopy tour with 12 platforms, trails, horseback rides on the slopes of the volcano, laundry service, and wireless Internet access in common areas.
This nice, midsize hotel is located d 7 kilometers west from La Fortuna and 800 meters from the main road. It is set around the La Palma River, which provides an ideal refuge for all kinds of birds, butterflies, some mammals, and lizards, The grounds are beautifully landscaped with a wide variety of plants. Set amidst this idyllic setting are 80 Junior Suites, laid out so that each one offers you a panoramic view of the volcano. All rooms are equipped with two queen-sized beds, air conditioning, satellite television, private bath with hot water and a hairdryer, telephone, terrace with a view of the volcano, refrigerator, safe-deposit box, and coffee maker. The lodge is adjacent to real Costa Rican Farm, and a visit to the complimentary visit to the farm is included in the room rate. The hotel services include a restaurant, two swimming pools, Jacuzzi, wet bar, souvenir shop, Internet access at the reception, and laundry service.
Arenal Volcano Inn
The Arenal Volcano Inn is located 7km from the busy little town of La Fortuna and has great views of Arenal Volcano. The hotel is set amidst a beautifully landscaped grounds and has good access to all the major sights and points of interest in the area. There is also a pool area with two pools, one for adults and one for the kids as well as an outdoor jacuzzi, and a little restaurant offering simple but tasty standards such as pizza, right from the brick oven.
Lomas del Volcan
Lomas del Volcán is a lovely property with sweeping volcano views. This is indeed a quiet place that has proven in the past that beneath its calm surface the Earth remains a living planet. You will enjoy seeing toucans and hummingbirds foraging. It is a fabulous little place to recover and relax, and it’s just a couple of minutes away from the village. Truly a serene and relaxing place!
The Northern Lowlands
The area between the northern Pacific and the Caribbean is incredibly varied. The hinterland of the Caribbean is characterized by low land rainforest, with a tangle of waterways running through, and stretching all the way to the Nicaraguan border in the north, a region teeming with wildlife, that can be observed especially well in the Caño Negro Wildlife Refuge bordering the San Juan River. Other notable protected nature reserves and National Parks of the region include Braulio Carrillo National Park, Tirimbina and the La Selva Biological Station. Due to its strategic location between the Arenal region and the Caribbean, Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui has developed into a little hub for visitors to this region, which is characterized by tropical vegetation, rainforest, and agriculture. It is a great place to learn where your coffee and chocolate comes from.
Maquenque Eco-Lodge (Boca Tapada)
Maquenque Lodge is a little gem, off the beaten track that is situated within the 60-hectares Maquenque National Wildlife Refuge in Boca Tapada, in the Northern lowlands of San Carlos. Strung along a riverbank and surrounded by tropical vegetation, this lodge has 14 beautiful and spacious bungalows with private bathroom, ceiling fans and a terrace overlooking the lagoon, and 4 tree houses. The amazing Tree House Bungalows are located more than 12 meters up, supported by strong trees in the middle of the rainforest, providing a birds-eye view of the surrounding nature. The rooms are equipped with two double beds and offer a private bathroom. Simply a spectacular feeling and truly unforgettable experience!
Pedacito de Cielo Lodge
Situated close to the San Carlos River, close to the Nicaraguan border, Pedacito de Cielo Hotel is a real gem for nature lovers. The Costa Rican run nature lodge offers Tico hospitality and its restaurant serves mostly Costa Rican cuisine. The nature guides are locals (Spanish speaking). The lodge can be reached by land or by boat. The nature reserve lies only about 2 km from the lodge. The hotel has 12 bungalows and all offer ample room and lush views of the tropical forest and the gardens. The rooms are equipped with queen or twin beds, ceiling fan, closet, and a furnished terrace. This is another excellent spot for birdwatching and wildlife observation.
Sarapiquis Rainforest Lodge
Sarapiquis Rainforest Lodge is located in La Virgen in Puerto Viejo de Sarapiquí, next to the Tirimbina Reserve, in the colorful province of Heredia.only 85 km from San Jose. This, very comfortable lodge is built in the style of a pre-Columbian indigenous village, enhanced by modern eco-technologies, like solar power, and a waste-water treatment system. The lodge comprises 40 spacious guestrooms, clustered in five palenques, large traditional indigenous structures with thatched roofs, overlooking the rainforest canopy or the gardens. Each room features ceiling fans or A/C (8 rooms), a safe deposit box and telephone. Outside every room, a covered terrace invites each guest to enjoy the natural surroundings.
La Selva Verde
The Selva Verde is a beautiful little eco-lodge close to Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui, within the private reserve of Selva Verde Rainforest, which protects more than 500 acres of primary and secondary rainforest. This is a heaven for nature lovers, birdwatchers, scientists, photographers, students, and for those who like an adventure. This reserve is a key link within San Juan Biological Corridor, which is part of the Mesoamerican Biological Corridor, which links important wildlife habitats in a continuous chain of protected areas, from southern Mexico and Belize to Panama. The lodge buildings are incorporated into the rainforest on elevated wooden platforms and walkways that blend in with the natural surroundings. The covered walkways allow guests to stroll and observe wildlife while staying dry during the rains. The lodge has forty rooms joined in blocks of four and accommodates one to four guests with two double or queen beds, and 7 Bungalows.
Celeste Mountain Lodge
Celeste Mountain Lodge, located on the northern side of the Tenorio Volcano at an altitude of about 750 m above the village of Bijagua, enjoys a pleasant mountain climate. Only 5 km away from the Tenorio National Park’s entrance, this Eco-Lodge has a stunning, modern yet very natural design. What stands out about are the floor-to-ceiling windows that create the feeling of continuity between the inside and the surrounding outdoor environment. Celeste Mountain Lodge is dedicated to the concept of sustainability and many of its interior design elements are ‘up-cycled’ giving the lodge a truly unique ambiance.
This small little lodge is a great place to get away from it all. Located between the Tenorio and Miravalles volcanoes, at an altitude of 1,640 ft. this hotel only has 12 bungalows, which gives it a very intimate, family kind of feel. This area is part of The Agua y Paz (Water and Peace) Biosphere Reserve, created by UNESCO, which incorporates eight protected areas including the Caño Negro Wildlife Refuge, four biological corridors, and an indigenous community. Spread around 17-acres property that has been partially reforested, the lodge offers plenty of opportunities to explore and observe wildlife. There are two natural ponds and several trails, and of course, the nearby volcanoes. A great place for birdwatcher – more than 420 species have been recorded in this area.
Monteverde is part of the coastal mountain range that rises along the Pacific. It is located just on the other side of Lake Arenal. It is popular with visitors for its amazing hanging bridges and zip-line tours. The cloud forest, with it humid atmosphere and lush epiphytes that drape the majestic trees, has a special appeal. It is also very rich in biodiversity, attracting many exotic birds, especially hummingbirds, as well as plant species, such as orchids, insects, and butterflies.
Monteverde Lodge & Gardens
The Monteverde Lodge is located at the heart of the Monteverde Cloudforest area, 1km from Santa Elena and only 5km from the Monteverde Cloudforest Reserve. A gorgeous, luxurious eco-hotel, set in magnificent tropical cloud forest gardens with its own trails that are brimming with hummingbirds and other wildlife. The rooms at the Lodge are designed to make you feel as though you are in the forest whilst protecting you from the mist and strong wind common in the area. Some have a balcony or a patio but remember, you are in the cloud forest, don’t expect sweeping views! Instead, the upper floor balconies will put you at eye-level with some of the wildlife higher up in the canopy. The rooms are immaculately appointed and spacious and very comfortable with solar heated hot water and private baths. They either have two full-sized beds or a king-sized bed (only in 4 rooms), a safety deposit box, a coffee maker, ceiling fan, hairdryer, reading lamps and free wireless internet. The dining room features delicious meals including vegetarian options. There is also a little solar heated pool.
Fonda Vela is very nice, relatively small Lodge, located only 1km from Santa Elena and 5km from the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. It is set in a 30-acre property of lush forest and gardens. From its perch at 1400m above sea level, the views over the Gulf of Nicoya are spectacular. The hotel’s guestrooms are offered in two categories: Standard Rooms and Junior Suites, all of which have large windows, bringing you closer to nature outside, even from within your room. Rooms are equipped with cable TV, telephone, coffee maker and mini bar. The more spacious Junior Suites have a small refrigerator. There are two restaurants on the property, the elegant Galleria, seating 80 people featuring large windows for beautiful, tropical views, and the cozy Fireside Restaurant, seating 30 persons, with a more intimate atmosphere. Additionally, there is The Canopy Bar, a nice cosy place to relax with a drink after your day’s adventures. Or, you could take a vitalizing dip in the indoor swimming pool, or one of the two Jacuzzis. The hotel also has internet access. internet access.
This rustic and elegant hotel is located on a hill between Santa Elena and Monteverde Reserves, in the province of Puntarenas. Most of the rooms have beautiful views of the Gulf of Nicoya. Belmar is a mountain eco-chalet, located next to the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve and not far from other protected areas such as Santa Elena Reserve and the Children Eternal Rainforest. This hotel has recently been renovated and now offers a much higher standard, as well as a very personalized service in a relaxed atmosphere. Its 25 comfortable rooms come in many different categories: Peninsula Rooms, Superior Peninsular Rooms, Forest Rooms, Canopy Rooms, Forest Superior Rooms, Sunset Room, Sunrise Room, Nicoya Suite, and Nicoya Penthouse Suite,
All rooms feature locally crafted and hand carved wooden furniture, safety deposit box, telephone, a well-appointed minibar, and hairdryer.
Peninsula Superior Rooms are located mostly on the top floor of the main building. They offer a king-size bed and have a balcony with views of the Nicoya Peninsula and the neighboring valleys.
Forest Rooms are rustic yet elegant – the style of this upscale room category. The rooms of this type are located on the first floor of the adjoining chalet and radiate a cozy atmosphere with plenty of light and wood. All of them offer a king-size bed, spacious bathrooms, and balconies with beautiful views of the giant trees of the forest.
Belmar Rooms are located on the first floor of the chalet and offer a gorgeous view of the Nicoya Peninsula through large window walls. They have a king-size bed, an open bathroom with a panoramic view, a separate toilet and a very inviting whirlpool.
Canopy Room is the perfect room for nature lovers who still like it comfortable. It is located in the penthouse of the Chalet and features a large balcony and an inside Jacuzzi and offers a stunning, almost 280° view of the surrounding nature through its large panoramic windows. It has a king-size bed, an extra queen-size bed can be accommodated. A unique and relaxing holiday experience!
Forest Superior Room is just like the Forest Rooms, this room is located in the adjoining Chalet and features floor to ceiling windows and a terrace with stunning views to the cloud forest. It offers a king-size or a king- and a queen-size bed, an ample living area, and a glass enclosed Jacuzzi.
Sunset Room has floor-to-ceiling windows featuring the best views of the Pacific Ocean and the neighboring valleys in the distance, as well as the mountains of the Monteverde Cloud Forest. A grand terrace with an outdoor whirlpool Jacuzzi, as well as a spacious bathroom with porcelain tiles, a double marble vanity, and a large shower with forest views.
Sunrise Room is another unique room and the counterpart of the Sunset Room and located on the other side of the second floor of the chalet. It is also is very spacious and comes with a 30 m2 balcony as well as an inside whirlpool in the bathroom area. It is equipped with a king-size bed.
Nicoya Suite is perched atop the highest peak of our lush cloud forest property. They are secluded and offer maximum priviacy – but that means that they are some distance away from the lobby and three floors up, in another building. They feature a large bedroom with hardwood finishings, with a king size bed and lounge area, ample closet space, and double exposure floor to ceiling windows with views of the forest and the Nicoya Peninsula. This room also comprises a fully furnished living area with a private bar and writing desk; as well as a spa style bathroom with a forest view shower, a small indoor garden, an adjacent sitting area, and a double vanity. This suite also features a 25 sq. mts terrace with a full-size daybed and a whirlpool Jacuzzi.
Penthouse Suite is located on the top floor, now boasting our most expansive views yet of the sunset over the Gulf of Nicoya. This suite grants all the beautiful features of our other suites as well as double exposure windows offering 270 Degree prime views of the Monteverde Cloud Forest Preserve, surrounding valleys and Pacific Ocean. Like the Nicoya Suite, this suite is also 100m away from the lobby and Designed to offer maximum privacy for our guests, please note that these suites are located on a three storey walk up in a separate building.
In the Restaurante Celajes and Bar (also open to the public), guests will enjoy a fresh and inventive farm to table meals inspired by the Monteverde region, while enjoying magnificent views of the Pacific Ocean. All of the rooms are kept 100% toxin free using gentle and biodegradable cleaning products made in Costa Rica and water is heated with solar panels. Belmar has recently been awarded the highest sustainability distinction possible in Costa Rica – 5 leaves in the Certificate for Sustainable Tourism (sponsored by the Costa Rican Tourism Board). This certification is highly praised as it acknowledges Hotel Belmar’s thirty years of passionate commitment to the conservation of Monteverde’s natural environment and resources and also its social commitment.
This upscale resort hotel is located 7km from Santa Elena and 4km from Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. It offers distinguished luxury in a park-like setting. With 155 rooms and suites, it is quite large, but the rooms are spread on different levels over the hillside. This hotel not only provides a most comfortable stay with all creature comforts but also has a lot of sports facilities such as two heated swimming pools, a tennis court, a basketball court, and a soccer field, as well as a gym and a spa. But that’s not all – this amazing place also has its own primary forest with hiking trails and a 16 cable canopy zipline installation!