We stayed at DuPlooy’s for four nights after Christmas, after a four-night stay at Belizean Shores (see my review of this resort too.) It was a huge contrast to go from the white, clean, sunny conditions on the beach to the muddy, messy jungle – even though we booked our trip this way, it was a difficult transition. But the lodge itself was fine: basic but comfortable – the grounds are well maintained and the rooms are clean. Internet access is available in the office for a fee. Even though we understand the conservation philosophy of the lodge, the rooms are really dim. No matter how you try to dry your wet clothes, they take days to dry (and they never do get completely dry) and end up smelling musty or moldy – so be sure to bring plenty of bathing suits and changes of clothing, especially depending on the tours you select. We lost power one morning, but it was restored in about 15 minutes. Other guests mentioned having a bat and bugs in their unit, but we didn’t have that problem. Definitely bring strong mosquito repellent and wear plenty of it during all your tours. Even fully covered with the spray, I managed to get a good number of bites during our time here.
We were on a package since our trip was around the holidays so meals were included. There’s really no place to go for meals since DuPlooys is very secluded, so we were glad they were included. We originally doubted the quality of the food on a meal plan, but we actually ended up liking the food here. Breakfasts were pretty good as was the lunch we had on site on the first day. Since we were on full-day tours for our full 3 days, we had lunches provided on those. One was a stop at a restaurant at Tikal – food was decent. Nothing too special but a huge relief after a full day of walking and climbing up steps. The bagged lunches on the other 2 tours were pretty basic (ham/cheese sandwiches, cookies or chips, juice, fruit bar) but filling enough. Dinners at DuPlooys were good. Soups and salads were usually really good, main entrees varied – chicken and vegetarian dishes were usually better than expected but lamb/pork dishes disappointed, desserts were always tasty. Service was consistently excellent, staff very friendly. They serve breakfast and dinner in the dining room and lunch in the bar which is an open walkway that leads to a lookout point over the river. This is also where they feed bananas to the adorable kinkajous that come everyday at dusk (between 6-6:30pm) and the birds (toucans) in the morning around 6am.
DuPlooys is located off of a dusty/muddy rocky dirt road about 20 minutes from the main road. This makes it difficult to get to San Ignacio unless you request a stop in town on the way to/from your tour. But everything is pretty much included in a package so they try to make things as convenient as possible for you. Be sure to book your tours at least by 6pm the day before. The office closes by 6pm, so you may not be able to sign up for anything in the evening. DuPlooys offers a good range of tours and we definitely took advantage of the activities.
DuPlooys sent a taxi cab to pick us up from Belize City Municipal Airport – he had our first and last names mixed up so when he asked the office for us, they had told him we were not on the plane. Even though the airport is extremely small, we were waiting around for more than 30 minutes before we saw each other. We included a stop at Xunantunich on our transfer from Belize City since Xunantunich is only about 20 minutes away from DuPlooys. We were lucky to get a great guide for this site – as one of the original caretakers of the site, Elfego was extremely knowledgeable.
For more information on the tours we took from DuPlooy's, see the reviews I submitted separately for:
1) a full-day tour was to Tikal with our driver Philip and tour guide Luis
2) a full-day tour to Actun Tunichil Muknal (“ATM”)
3) a full-day tour to Flour Camp Cave, which I believe is only available to DuPlooys and one other place
I had a massage by Ivy in the separate spa hut which was really nice after three days of non-stop activity! On our last morning, we explored the Botanic Gardens on the property – it was quite nice. We also asked for a stop at the Belize Zoo on the way back to the airport. The zoo is quite small so you don’t need more than an hour to see the whole place but it’s worth the stop. Among the highlights is the beautiful black jaguar.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- duPlooy's Jungle Lodge Resort, on the Macal River, an organic property since 1988, now powered by the sun, may just be the Eco-Lodge you are looking for.duPlooy's offers the original "Create Your Own Vacation' package as well as set packages for individuals and groups and custom packages which include other locations in Belize. Whatever you are looking for, we offer a great venue for your Belize Vacation for Families,Romantic Getaways and Honeymoons, Adventure Holidays and more. There is excellent Birding on and around the property as well as many on-site activities.Included with your room: continental breakfast, entrance to adjacent Belize Botanic Gardens, access to trails, use of canoes and tubes from our beautiful Macal River Beach,incredible bird watching from the deck with complimentary morning coffee, delicious meals from locally-sourced meats, eggs and produce. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Duplooy`s Jungle Hotel San Ignacio
- DuPlooy's Jungle Lodge Belize/San Ignacio