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“The Ultimate Wildlife Photography Holiday”

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Maquenque Eco-Lodge
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Boca Tapada
Certificate of Excellence
Hereford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“The Ultimate Wildlife Photography Holiday”
Reviewed 7 July 2013

We spent 6 nights at Maquenque Eco Lodge, which other guests seemed to think was an overly long stay. Our interests were wildlife photography and to be honest we could have easily stayed longer. The huge variety of birdlife, plus nocturnal inhabitants and photo opportunities around the lagoon and in the primary rainforest were amazing. The staff were exceptional and we were genuinely sad to say goodbye. The food was simple but fresh and very tasty. Sitting in the open air dining area watching the birds on the feeders was just bliss. We do hope to return one day. Thank you to Maquenque for making our Costa Rica holiday so memorable.

Room Tip: We stayed in Tucan which had great views of both the lagoon and rainforest.
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  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank brontrev
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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419 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (32)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 14 May 2013

We have been really impressed with this place. The team at the Lodge love what they do and you can tell. If you are ready to stay in a place which does not meet our usual "european" standards i.e. some bugs here and there, showers with ambiant temperature water, you will discover a place where you can enjoy and most importantly learn about nature. The crew are knowledgeable and will gladly share what they know with you. Watching a Caiman hunt from out balcony was definitely a first time for us! Make sure to have googles with you. We took the canoe trip on the river which ended up being pretty sporty and very pleasant. The food was great and a good deal of it was organic. Finally, the price was fair for what we got. Even though I use Trip Advisor a lot, I usually don't bother writing comments, but these guys deserve some publicity!

  • Stayed May 2013
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Helpful?
Thank LurkingEvil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Frankfurt, Germany
Level Contributor
15 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 May 2013

As many other reviews have noted, the lodge itself is fantastic and it is situated in a beautiful patch of Costa Rican forest. You can see great birds just walking around the gardens or at the fruit put outside the terrace (where no real skill or fancy cameras are required for amazing wildlife fotos). Be sure to try out the canoes on the lagoon next to the lodge - we saw Basilisks walking on water, Spectacled Caymans, and Boat-billed Herons, and the staff were exceptionally friendly - really everything was wonderful. The only drawback is that the drive out there is a rather grueling 1.5 - 2 hour haul over potholed gravel roads. Not a big deal if you are ready for it and take it slow, checking out the nature along the way, but rough if it comes at the end of a long day.

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Barry D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bielefeld
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 April 2013

After a nearly 2-hour-drive on a gravel road (it will be soon improved) you reach the entrance of the lodge. First you see the parking lot and the river behind. You are taken across the San Carlos River by boat walk through a nice area looking like a park and finally reach the reception. The luxurious bungalows are located near a lagoon. We were there only for one night had a tasty meal in the evening and a good breakfast next morning. While sitting in the restaurant at breakfast we could see a lot of birds and other animals. The lodge is run by a native family and they take care of their guests very well. During the day you can take part in different excursions organized by the lodge, walk on a short jungle trail on your own or just enjoy the beautiful landscape full of colourful birds.
We recommend this lodge to every nature lover.

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Herbert N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 April 2013

We had a fabulous time at Macquenque and would very much recommend it. It is well off the beaten track on an old cattle farm bordering the primary forest. The area is fascinating as a proportion of the nearby land is farmed as you can see if you go on the boat trip towards Nicaragua (recommended - we saw lots of wildlife and crocs). There is almost no other tourism in the area and so you do feel very much away from the tourist trail.  
The bird life was the best we saw on our whole trip. The variety and volume of birds visible from the dining area was staggering. We saw nesting Great Green Macaws just across the river with a youngster who helpfully pocked his (or her) head out of the nest every now and then. We also saw both blue jean and red eyed frogs. 
Food was good typical Costa Rican and, when we were there, the pool was immaculate. The accomodation doesn't sit right within the forest but in thinned landscaped gardens overlooking their lagoons. This actually made for a much better wildlife spotting experience as the sight lines are much longer than if you we're within the trees

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Barcle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ashcott
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 7 April 2013

We arrived at 8.30pm after travelling all day. We were greeted by a helpful member of staff who ferried us across the Rio San Carlos to the lodge where the owners were waiting for us with a big welcome and an evening meal they had saved for us. After a good night's sleep in our cabing we awoke to howler monkeys and a wonderful view from our verandah of wetland and forest. We started the day seeing many different species of birds and animals and after only staying for 2 nights had seen over 60 different bird species. What an experience. The owners looked after us well and provided us with a very knowledgeable guide who took us to see great green macaws. There is so much more to do than we were able to fit into our visit and we would recommend this family run lodge without any hesitation. Don't let the road put you off. The experience is well worth the drive! Barry, Tricia and Aidan (UK)

Room Tip: All of the lodges seemed well placed on the site and give privacy and a sense of isolation, which we...
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  • Stayed March 2013, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank TriciaH524
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ottery St. Mary, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 15 February 2013

Words cannot do justice to my experience of Maquenque, the family at heart of this beautiful place and Eco project could not make you more welcome. I could not look back to wave goodbye the pain of leaving was overwhelming.
Our morning bird watching around the grounds was personal and instructive, the canoe down the river enchanting.
Could not dream of going to Costa Rica without revisiting.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank merilyn_green
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Maquenque Eco-Lodge

Property: Maquenque Eco-Lodge
Address: 3kms del la escuela de Boca Tapada | San Carlos, Boca Tapada 4417, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Alajuela > Boca Tapada
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Boca Tapada
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Maquenque Eco-Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Maquenque Eco-lodge is a new 60 hectare reserve located just north of Boca Tapada, San Carlos and offers easy access to the newly created Maquenque National Wildlife Refuge, of 60.000 hectares in size. A local family, Canoa Aventura Tour Operator and a Swiss family are creating this jungle lodge to maintain and conserve wildlife habitat, while providing visitors with high quality accommodations and service in a unique framework ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Maquenque Eco-Lodge Costa Rica/Boca Tapada

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