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“Best part of our trip to Costa Rica”

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Leaves and Lizards Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
Reviewed 15 October 2013

My only regret about our 2 week trip to Costa Rica is that we only spent 3 nights at this wonderful retreat. It was hands down our kids' favorite part of the trip, too. The hospitality was wonderful, and I mean every single employee we encountered as well as the owners. It was wonderful to get up in the morning to milk the cows and collect eggs, which then turned up in your breakfast. The horseback riding excursion to the waterfall was preceded by a long, leisurely lesson on communicating with your horse, which made my anxious 10-year-old (and her 13- and 14-year-old siblings) so much more comfortable about the experience. My only caution would be that the dinners weren't my favorite and were rather expensive compared to local Tico restaurants, so you might want to explore other options. On the other hand, the food is plentiful and the dining hall is fabulous, full of beautiful murals and opening onto a spectacular view of the volcano. Overall, truly the best part of our vacation!

Room Tip: We were in Heliconia, which is the oldest cabin and the only one with air conditioning. Theoretical...
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  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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Thank TravelingMom40
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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238 - 244 of 652 reviews

Reviewed 14 October 2013

My boyfriend and I were lucky enough to spend 3 nights in the Hobbit House, which is a beautiful room built into the hillside, with a sumptuous bed looking out a spectacular view of the volcano. The owners, Debbie and Steve, are very hospitable, and helpful in booking up guided trips. The food is beautiful. Eating breakfast whilst watching a vast array of birds feed was especially memorable. Plan your time to include plenty of time to kick back and enjoy the views.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Jackie S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 October 2013

I can not express in words how remarkable this place is! you are surrounded by beautiful costa Rican wild life while staying in a rustic yet incredibly stunning room with views of Arenal witch you are blessed to wake up to every morning. ok so the cabin is great most places you stay have nice rooms what sets this place apart from every other hotel in the world is the feel! I first stayed at Leaves and Lizards with my family in the end of july, i feel in love with it the the people the views and most of all the horses! Debbie who co runs the place with her husband took time out of her busy schedule and spent hours with me and the horses! I had not been so happy in years! when it was time for me to leave Debbie mentioned that they will be having an Epona workshop in about a mouth. So i by myself traveled back to Leaves and Lizards to find that the retreat had only grown with new items on the menu and more horses in the barn! over all if you are planing a family trip to Costa Rica and want it personalized this is the place to go! i feel so blessed to have found this spot it truly changed my life for the better! Steve and Debbie thank you for being who you are so so so amazing!! oh and the guides and staff are not so bad ether intact they are remarkable!

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank Anna C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 October 2013

I believe this is the fourth vacation to Leaves and Lizards! Every time I go I'm more and more excited to go back. They have a new menu, the food is even better then last time! A beautiful new cabin called the Hobbit house! The view from each cabin is spectacular. From the hobbit house you can see the horses grazing at night. Steve and Debbie do everything they can to make you feel like your on a vacation with so much adventure and still so much time to reflect. Truly you must make this a destination.

Room Tip: My choices are the Hobbit House, the Monkey Cabin, or the Hummingbird. Realize every cabin has a vi...
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with friends
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1  Thank Shelley R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 October 2013

Leaves and Lizards is set in beautiful surroundings facing out towards the Arenal volcano. The cabins are beautifully built and maintained - ours with choice of indoor or outdoor shower! Debbie and Steve are amazing hosts who have built great links with their local neighbours. I had the joy of riding the horses on an Eponaquest week and it was truly amazing passing through rainforest, grass fields, crossing rivers and swimming in the pond and at the waterfall! I highly recommend it!

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank Heather B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 October 2013

We were on our honeymoon in Costa Rica and after spending a week in other areas doing the lying around the pool thing and hotel excursions, I had booked a week at Leaves and Lizards as a surprise for my new bride as she loves horses and never gets to ride them back home in Oregon. I really didn't know what to expect and had never ridden horses myself at all. We were attending an Eponaquest workshop (google it) which was basically hands on horse riding in a group setting. I won't go into the actual workshop itself as there's too much to explain and I wouldn't do it justice, but I will say that everyone came out of this better off in many aspects. The accommodations are wonderful, we were lucky enough to stay in the "Hobbit House", food great, and views amazing, but above all it was the real Costa Rica with real people. Debbie and her husband Steve are so warm and caring. Vacation of a lifetime.

Room Tip: Hobbit House :)
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  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank DarenB68
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 September 2013

I attended and assisted in teaching an Eponaquest 5 day Workshop experience in September here, which occurs twice a year. We rode Leaves and Lizards horses for 3 days through the rain forest, swimming in the waterfall pools, traveling through rough rocky terrain into beautiful lush open fields of tall grasses, riding along with the resident farms steers and horses.
A fabulous experience for anyone interested in seeing the real Costa Rica without all the 'tourism' attached to it. Spending time at a real dairy farm, and herding horses with the Costa Rican cowboys.
Leaves and Lizards was a very welcoming, extremely accomodating place. Debbie and Steve, the owners, were warm and friendly every minute of the day. Every meal was excellent and carefully prepared by their wonderful kitchen staff. Each cabin was distinctly designed with it's own personality to match its name. (We stayed in the Toucan.) And the view every morning out our huge picture window of the Arenal Volcano was amazing.
I could not recommend this place enough to anyone who wants to see the real Costa Rica, and would love to see it by horseback. The horses are fabulous and take good care of you, although I recommend some horse experience for a 3 or 4 day trek.
I do plan to return again, as it was a place of warmth, welcoming, true enjoyment and transformation for me.

Room Tip: The Hobbit is the most creative of all the cottages, but they are all very unique and delightful. T...
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  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled on business
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Thank Marilyn K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Leaves and Lizards Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat

Address: Meters South Of Super Kiki 500, Arenal Volcano National Park, La Fortuna de San Carlos 21012, Costa Rica
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Alajuela > Arenal Volcano National Park > La Fortuna de San Carlos
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Top resorts Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#5 Family Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#5 Romantic Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#5 Green Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#8 Business Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
Price Range: £126 - £126 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This secluded resort is located on 26 acres with spectacular viewing of the Arenal Volcano near La Fortuna. Enjoy the panoramic vista of Arenal and Cerro Chato from a hammock on your porch or from your comfortable, orthopedic, queen sized beds with Egyptian cotton sheets. Meals prepared using locally grown ingredients at the Lava Lizard on-site dining facility. Guests are invited to help with daily 'chores' on this working farm. Milk a cow, collect eggs for breakfast or groom a horse. Enjoy private horseback riding, professional guide service, on site spa and 2 km of on site nature trails. The vision at Leaves and Lizards is to create the perfect blend of adventure, discovery and tranquility for each guest. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Leaves And Lizards Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat Hotel La Fortuna De San Carlos
Leaves And Lizards Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat Costa Rica/La Fortuna De San Carlos

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