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“Cabinas el Castillo, Costa Rica”

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Cabinas El Castillo
Ranked #5 of 5 El Castillo B&B and Inns
Reviewed 3 November 2011

What a charming little place. In the middle of nowhere, but close to Butterfly and Serpent houses. Amazing views .of Arenal and surrounding countryside. Birds took no notice of me sitting there watching them up close and personal. Only eat once so can't comment on food, but looked nice enough. (Was only there for a couple of days.) Place was very clean. Would definetly go back if in the area again.

  • Stayed: February 2011, travelled solo
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Thank katzi1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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12 - 18 of 41 reviews

Reviewed 22 April 2011

As other reviews state, it is very basic but clean. We stayed in the two story building and rooms were very large as was the balcony. Very remote, there is one soda in town and the other choice is the hotel restaurant. The restaurant was a bit dissapointing; looking for some typical food but got a bit of an attempt at upscale version of chicken and rice which was a dry chicken cutlet and a tiny bit of beans (which were good) and a little volcano of white rice. View is spectacular; unfortunately the volcano was very quiet when we were there, local commented it had been that way for a few weeks. Oh well, can't schedule mother nature.

  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank K_J588
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 February 2011

OK., it is pretty basic. Just a spotless somewhat narrow bed and a bathroom but the view over Arenal volcano and Arenal lake as well as the village and surrounding countryside is breathtaking. If you are lucky the cabinas offer a spectacular view onto the erupting volcano. For a bit of extra you can have air conditioning but in our experience in was not really necessary. The cabinas and the hotel modest restaurant are situated on an elevation and have huge windows offering romantic evenings. Food is good if not exactly cheap, though I would not recommend their house wine; better have a bottle of your choice if you so wish. In the village 3 min. away there is a fine butterfly(+ frogs) centre set up in a lovely, overgrown garden as well as serpentarium(snakes & reptiles; we did not visit this one). Just walking through the village we spotted humming birds and squirrels. On the downside: the road leading to El Castillo is just a dirt road meaning a tedious 20-30 min. drive from La Fortuna but the village itself is quiet and still unspoiled. Better use 4x4 and do not drive at night; the sun sets at 18.00 at the latest. The staff hardly speak any English but somehow it was not a problem.

  • Stayed: February 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank kwiewiorowski
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 January 2011

We booked this hotel/cabin based on a recommendation from Lonely Planet. Upon our arrival (about 40 minutes from La Fortuna) we thought the place was great. The view of the volcano was amazing. However, we when checked into our cabin we noticed many strands of hair on the pillows, and the sheets were dirty. We asked for some new sheets and just tried to make the best of it for the night.
We were starving so we ate at the restaurant. The steak that they served us was raw, so needless to say we didn't eat there again.

  • Stayed: January 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank melis47
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 January 2011

My Husband and I stayed here for 2 nights, just days ago. The hotel is very cute, clean, and basic. The views are a.m.a.z.i.n.g. If you're coming to Arenal and want to see the lava, you gotta stay on this side, and I guarantee no one else on this side has these views for the price. For us, unfortunately, it was clouded in the whole time so we didn't see any lava or the top of the volcano at all, but the stay was still totally worth it.

Large rooms, clean, plenty of hot water, close to the park, restaurant has good food at a reasonable price. My only suggestion would be to add some more furniture. Our room just had 2 beds and 1 small table with drawers. A couple more smaller tables would have been fantastic. Also a rug or mat for when you walk in the door. It rained the whole time and the floors are tile, having something to wipe our feet on would have been great.

Also, be warned that the road here is a long, very rough ride. Its worth it though, for the views and isolation.

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank StunGunAshley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 September 2010

We read a lot online about needing to stay on the south-west side of Arenal if you want to see lava, so we booked into this place, having read good reviews. We were really pleased - the cabins are basic but good, with plenty of hot water, and the most amazing views of the volcano from the large windows. On our last night we could watch lava from our bed!

You do need a car if you're staying here, as it is about a 30-40 minute drive out of La Fortuna (where banks, petrol, car hire etc are) but El Castillo is a cute little place and much nearer all the volcano-related attractions. Plenty of parking by the cabins.

Breakfast is a bit of a mixed affair - french toast was fantastic one day and rubbish the next, and some things came out cold, but very good orange juice and prompt service. We ate in the restaurant one evening and had a really good meal. Amazing views from there too of the volcano. Regular hummingbirds flitting around too. Would definitely stay here again if we went back.

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Helliebee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 July 2010

If you prefer luxury suites or a hotel right in the middle of the action, this isn't for you. If you're looking for a peaceful, beautiful setting, or an "off the beaten path" experience, do yourself a favor -- ditch La Fortuna and stay here in El Castillo. This is a fantastic spot.

The cabinas are perched on a hillside overlooking the volcano, which you can watch from the restaurant patio or from your room . My girlfriend and I spent a great evening sitting in plastic lawn chairs behind our room with a bottle of wine watching the volcano erupt. We also spent an afternoon walking on the shores of Lake Arenal, where we saw kingfishers, vultures, a tree full of parrots, and a a group of villagers playing soccer with their kids with Arenal as a backdrop.

The room is simple -- basically a bed and a shower -- but it was extremely clean. Again, it's not the Waldorf Astoria, but we felt very comfortable there. The restaurant is decent -- certainly on par with other Costa Rican cuisine. The staff was extremely helpful, particularly a gentleman whose name I unfortunately can't remember. He suggested a hiking trail for us, arranged cabs, and helped us set up reservations for a gray line bus to Quepos.

Overall, this was a great experience. It was our favorite spot on the trip.

  • Stayed: July 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Robert55229
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Cabinas El Castillo

Address: El Castillo Village, El Castillo, Arenal Volcano National Park, Costa Rica
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Alajuela > Arenal Volcano National Park > El Castillo
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 5 B&Bs / Inns in El Castillo
Price Range: £24 - £65 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 10
Also Known As:
Cabinas El Castillo Hotel El Castillo
Cabinas El Castillo Costa Rica

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