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“Jungle Destination”

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Mariposa Jungle Lodge
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in San Antonio
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 3 March 2014

My husband and I celebrated our 40th birthdays together with a trip to Belize and we stayed at the Mariposa Jungle Lodge. As most our vacations in the past have been to ski resorts, Caribbean Islands or Kids theme parks, we wanted to try something different. We were looking for a bit of adventure while still having a relaxed vacation experience. Mariposa looked promising and ultimately proved to be a great fit. We had questions prior to booking our trip and Sharon was extremely responsive and eager to help to tailor our vacation experience to our wishes. There were so many interesting choices for the excursions, but we were able to build an itinerary that worked great for us.
After a long day of traveling, transferring flights and waiting in customs, we were greeted by our guide and driver Damian. Over the following week, we found that Damian and his brother and fellow guide Agusto were fantastic ambassadors of the country, showing us the history, culture and of course the adventure we were looking for.
Our first day trip was to the Caracol Ruins. An early morning departure time started us on our two hour journey to the Caracol ruins site. We traveled through the Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Preserve, a rugged and remote portion of the country which has an entirely unique ecosystem compared what we were used to seeing in our first day and a half in Belize. We had a brief stop at an overlook at Rio-on-Pools as well as small walking tour at Rio-on Caves. Although Rio on caves was a quick waypoint stop, it really set the tone for what we were expecting to see: incredible natural wonders that can only be seen in this part of the world.
Over the next few hours, we were able to explore the site without any boundaries. Climbing on the temples as the Mayans once did let us really experience the site. Fantastic views were provided from the top of the highest temple. There were only a few other groups at the park so except for when we were at the picnic area, we felt as though we had the park to ourselves. A close up look at a group of Howler Monkeys and great picnic lunch from Mariposa topped off our visit.
Another adventure included ATM cave. First you wade through 2 rivers during the 45 minute hike to the entrance. There is a short swim to get into the cave which was large, however I was nervous about the tight areas. I found the once in a lifetime experience outweighed the fear I had. The 2.5 hour trek in the cave had me swimming and climbing but ended with a look back at the untouched past deep within the cave. Our tour guide gave us so much information into the history of this area and the Mayan life. This excursion made the trip the adventure we were hoping for! Other trips included the butterfly farm for cocktails(interesting, but could have done without), zipplining in the trees, and cavetubing.
The Mariposa Jungle Resort delivered in every way during our trip. The food for breakfast, lunch and dinner were all fabulous dishes of the culture. The meals are customized to your likes and any food preferences can be accommodated by the wonderful staff. The bungalows are quaint and the perfect size to relax and unwind after a long day. There is a hammock on the screened in porch to see the jungle and hear nature nearby. The pool is a lovely touch as well as all the plants and flowers.
We took several strolls on the trails that lead to the bird tower and Mayan ruins on the property. It is evident that Sharon and Jim love this area and want to make sure that every visitor takes away the love of the Belizian culture and jungle.
We highly recommend this resort for the relaxation away from it all, but mostly because it is located centrally to all the attractions, the food is delicious and the hosts and their resort are welcoming. If you are hoping for adventure, you will experience it here in such a beautiful country.

Room Tip: All the rooms are the same and equally perfect. They are private no matter which one you get.
  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank karinmoore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 18 February 2014

Thank you to Sharon and her team at Mariposa, my husband and I had a wonderful Birthday weekend. A time away from the beaches of Belize to Mariposa Jungle Lodge was heaven in Belize! From our wonderful room, our own Jungle Cabana, to the amazing meals, then a great adventure to Caracol (thank you to our very knowledgeable guide Damian - thank goodness there was no quiz as we learned so much that day!). The first day we had a tour of the property with Eric, then a welcome drink at the pool, a quick hike around the property and a delightful end to the day was an amazing three course meal....Oh so good food! Day two up early to another amazing meal breakfast before our adventure to Caracol. A full day away with Damian, our guide, and so much history....of course we had a great lunch sent along for us! Then back to our lovely room for a shower and ready for dinner. Again a wonderful meal ending with "Happy Birthday" sung by all and birthday cake for me. My only regret is that we couldn't stay longer. You just can't ask for more. There really were so many small touches, on top of the exceptional beauty of the resort and knowledgeable welcoming staff, I can't hope to mention them all in this review. You will have to go to Mariposa and find your piece of heaven in the jungles of Belize. I do not hesitate to send you to Mariposa Jungle Lodge, go enjoy and make sure to book your tours with them as well....they will not disappoint.

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Barry S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 February 2014

We went here for our honeymoon and it was absolutely amazing! All of the staff and tour guides were incredibly knowledgeable and friendly. It was the perfect combination of adventure and relaxation. We hope to go again!

Highly recommend!

  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Darla F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 February 2014

My family and I took a trip to Belize Summer 2013, and I am so happy we decided to stay at the Mariposa Lodge. Our family isn't a beach family- and wanted to stay away from the Cayes. The help of the staff and owners really made this trip easy and fun! The staff went out of their way to ensure their guests enjoyed their stay. The owners made trips and recommendations based on each family's interest.

We stayed in two cabins - Puma and Iguana - and found them quite cozy and well stocked (coke, water, belikin). Even more impressive when you learn the staff built all the wonderful furniture in the room themselves! The lodge has a nice hiking trail with a bird tower, a pool, plenty of hammocks, and small gift shop with lovely locally made pieces in it. The dinners and breakfasts were wonderfully made, different and unique each day. Dinners were three courses every night. My favorite was a clear night where we had BBQ style dinner served by the pool! Meal times were good to meet other travelers at the lodge.

The tours they offer are easy in terms of organizing, just sign up! They provide water and meals (tasty ones too!) and tours remain small and personal. Our guide Damien was amazing, he is knowledgeable and in the rare instance he didn't have an answer sought it out and told us the next day! Would highly recommend going to the Happy Hour at Green Hills butterfly ranch.

My family loved staying at the Mariposa Jungle Lodge, would definitely do it again!

  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank Alisha C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 February 2014

Mariposa Jungle Lodge is very clean and well organized. The staff are second to none and the guests are treated with utmost respect. The detail of perfection given every meal and all of the rooms has not been left without care and attention. You can spend the time relaxing as much as you wish, hike the on site jungle trails, swim in the pool or book yourself as many exciting adventures as you wish to occupy your time.
Our visit was the first for us in Belize and the choice of venue was done by email initially. Responses were quick and very courteous and full of detail.
The Mariposa is a little oasis hidden under the jungle canopy and behind a thick jungle floral wall. The road to the site is a little rough as it is a government maintained public road and not the route most travelled. Well worth the trip. You will not be disappointed.
Your hosts and staff are very well versed and knowledgeable and will treat you to a superb stay.
We were here for just over a week and felt much like a small part of the happy family that treated us so well.
We were treated to a great welcome, a fun visit from the city to site and a couple of very interesting stops upon our first day in Belize.
From there on it was nothing less than perfect. If you stay here you will enjoy the best you can have in the jungle. Enjoy your stay. We did!

Room Tip: All of the Cabanas are clean and well set up. You are away from the road so noise is very minimal ot...
  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Theodore H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 January 2014

Mariposa Jungle Lodge is a very special place. My huband and I stayed there for 4 nights. It was an unforgettable experience. We stayed in the Jaguar cabin, it was very comfortable. Throughout the cabin were many touches to make it even more special. There was a bouquet of local flowers, local handicrafts decorated the room, and a beautiful blanket on the bed. There was a screened in patio overlooking the jungle, we could see (and hear!) the howler monkeys in the canopy of the trees.

Initially I had thought that the food package for breakfast and dinner at $50 per day per person was a bit pricey. WRONG!! The food was delicious, the service was excellent. The dinners were amazing. Here is an example. For one dinner we had zucchini potato fritters as an appetizer, followed by black bean soup, and for the main course coconut pineapple shrimp for my husband and coconut pineapple chicken for me because I don't eat shrimp. Hot rum bananas for dessert. Wow. All so yummy and the service was impeccable. How do they produce this sort of cuisine in this isolated location? You really do have to opt for the food package as there are no other local options. You'll be very glad that you did.

The staff at MJL were all absolutely wonderful. All of the reviews on Tripadvisor talk about Damian, and no wonder. He is a marvel. He knows so much about so many things, and is the best tourguide imaginable. It was an education to spend time with him. He does everything possible to help you and instruct you. I also want to compliment Eilda in the dining room for her excellent service. One night while we were eating there was quite a commotion coming from the jungle, a very loud screeching noise. What is it, we asked? Eilda said it's a kinkajou. My husband didn't know what a kinkajou was, so Eilda went and got a book and showed him a picture of kinkajoes. She didn't have to do that. Her job is to serve dinner,not to provide reference materials for guests. But that's the kind of attitude that you will find at MJL, they all want you to have a wonderful experience there. Another anecdote, I was in our cabin when one of the staff came and knocked on my door. There were howler monkeys in the trees and he wanted to make sure that I didn't miss seeing them. How nice is that?

Sharon and Jim are fabulous folks. They care about the local people and the environment. They do everything possible to make your stay with them memorable. They are knowledgeable about the local area and will provide you with guides and transportation for wherever you want to go. ATM is quite an experience, but be warned, it's only for the physically fit. Tikal was unforgettable, don't miss it. But do it as a day trip, you don't need to stay overnight in Guatemala.

We loved our stay at Mariposa Jungle Lodge. If you are going to be visiting Belize, be sure to include a visit there.

Room Tip: Loved the Jaguar cabana.
  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank CenterMtraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 January 2014

My wife and two adult children stayed at Mariposa Jungle Lodge for 4 nights. Though 7 miles down a dirt road and in the jungle, we always felt at home. The cabana had room for 4 of us, a bath with shower and a small porch with hammock. It was kept remarkably clean, especially given the mud the unexpected rains created. There was opportunity to have laundry done by the staff. Meals were excellent. Each meal was prepared by the staff with attention to any allergies we had and the fact that one of us was vegetarian. The meals served were excellent with local flavor. Usually, in the evening, the staff would discuss with us the following days foods. The staff of Mariposa is truly wonderful. They are very skilled at all of their responsibilities and extremely friendly and helpful.

So helpful, in fact, that when my son said he would like to see a tarantula, Damian went into the jungle and brought one back for him to see! One of our concerns on this trip was having a tour guide for much of the trip in that I have usually driven myself. Damian is a registered tour guide and put us at ease immediately. His kindness and extensive knowledge of local animals, plants and geography made our trip all the more special.

There are a few trails on the grounds and a bird watching tower. My wife watched a monkey from the tower one morning.

Sharyn and Jim Brinker, the owners have not only designed a lovely lodge but are very helpful in arranging tours. Damian guides and transports at most of the Belize sites. Due to weather, all the Belize Mayan sites were closed and we went to Tikal. Arrangements were made and the trip went very smoothly. It is important to note that when traveling in Belize and Guatamala, there would often be other drivers or people involved with the tour besides Damian. On one occasion the tour guide we needed for the cave did not drive so he had someone else drive the car that took us to the cave. Be sure to take enough cash for tips. Sharyn was helpful in knowing what would be appropriate.

We went Zip lining and explored a small cave at Calico jacks. Great fun and quite safe despite sailing through trees way above the ground. The butterfly ranch should not be missed. It is minutes from the lodge. Go in the morning when the butterflies are spreading their wings for energy. It is amazing. We explored crystal cave which is 2-3 hours of rock climbing underground and not for the deconditioned. Quite beautiful and well worth the exercise. Our day in Tikal was great, mainly for the coatamundi that run about as well as the pyramids. My wife visited the iguana hatchery in San Ignacio when the rest of us were caving and had a fun day there. Augusto (Damian's brother) was her guide and very helpful, friendly and knowledgable. Finally, DO NOT MISS the Belize zoo either on way in or out.

We had a wonderful time at Mariposa Lodge and were made to feel like family. Some writers have said it is not the Hilton. That is true, but no hilton staff is this friendly and I doubt there are many places this warm and hospitable that allow you to feel safe in the middle of a jungle. This is the jungle and the dirt roads keep you about an hour from a major city despite relatively short distances. Nonetheless, we would come back in an instant.

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank Cleveland_OhioDave
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Mariposa Jungle Lodge

Address: San Antonio Road, San Antonio, Belize
Phone Number:
Region: Belize > Cayo > San Antonio
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in San Antonio
Price Range: £160 - £206 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Mariposa Jungle Lodge 3.5*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This boutique eco-resort nestled under the jungle canopy of San Antonio, Belize, offers six luxury cabanas with air conditioning and wifi, mosquito-netted canopy beds, private screened porches with hammocks, and comfortable sitting areas for relaxation. Enjoy local and international cuisine, full bar, and the library with an eclectic book collection, games, and array of international art and memorabilia. Mariposa is well-located for tours to regional Maya archaeological sites, waterfalls, caves, and rivers. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Mariposa Jungle Hotel San Ignacio

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