More about Bosque del Cabo Rainforest Lodge
WOW a Magical Place
We just returned from 5 "magical" days @ Bosque del Cabo. The service was outstanding from the minute we stepped off the plane in Puerto Jimenez and was greeted by Kevin who drove us to the resort. The 45 minute ride was quite an experience. It was a beautiful and bumpy ride with farm, mountain and Gulf views. At the resort we were greeted by Geri who sat us right down to the 1st of our great meals. Every meal was special with great service. The dinner chefs really took pride in their meals as well as presentations. Our deluxe cabina had an amazing view of the Gulf Dulce. We had monkeys right outside our cabina. The trails were challenging and full of wildlife. We saw all 4 species of monkeys, toucans, scarlet makaws, and other animals as well. The grounds of the property were also full of beautiful plants and flowers. One day the suspension bridge was taken over by a group of about a dozen white face monkeys who were just monkeying around as we starred. They really put on a show for us. Another day there was a group of monkeys having a snack in the mango trees. Almost got knocked in the head with a mango that a monkey dropped/threw from the tree. There's plenty to do and we wished we had at least another day. We will go back without a doubt.
The Best in Costa Rica
What a marvelous hotel! The accommodations, the food, the views, the wildlife, the staff, everything here was five stars. This was the highlight of our entire trip, the place we tell stories about.
We stayed one night in a standard cabina and three nights in a deluxe cabina. Both were very well appointed and had breezy porches with hammocks and views. The main difference between the standard and the deluxe is that you get a little sitting area and a larger porch with the deluxe cabinas. The standard cabinas are very nice and we actually preferred the one we originally stayed in, Pizote, over the deluxe cabina we moved to, Gecko. The deluxe cabinas do have king-size beds instead of doubles, something to consider when sleeping in a tropical climate. We asked to be shown a couple of other rooms and Mariposa was my favorite. Even in the rainy season we were comfortable at night without a fan and there were no mosquitoes.
The garden cabins are a ten minute hike, two small hills, and a suspension bridge away from the main lodge. You will see more wildlife there, but there's less of a breeze and they lacked the ocean views that the cabinas have. There were two families traveling together when we visited; they booked the kids into a garden cabin and stayed separately in cabinas on the main property, which seemed to work out well for everyone. There is something here for couples, solo travelers, and families too, even all at the same time.
The food was outstanding. There is a wide range of choices at every meal and we found all of them delicious. One group of people went charter fishing and returned with their catch. The kitchen served some as ceviche and sashimi at happy hour and then presented a salt-crusted baked red snapper for the main course at dinner. Outstanding. They were very accommodating of all diet requests, even producing vegan pizza for one couple that drew rave reviews.
And the wildlife? At Bosque you could sit on your porch all day long and see toucans, macaws, coatis, and two kinds of monkeys pass by. Hike the trails at different times of day and you'll double your wildlife sightings. Monteverde and Manuel Antonio have NOTHING on Bosque del Cabo.
I wished I'd brought binoculars and a large incandescent flashlight, like a mag lite. The LED one that I had washed out all colors and was completely useless for spotting things at night. Once you go on the "sunset tour" that Philip leads before dinner, then you'll learn how to spot things on your own after dark. There's no need to go to Corcovado. We didn't believe this at first but you can see everything you'd see in Corcovado at Bosque del Cabo, just walking around.
Four days was the perfect length for us. The combined cost of the hotel and the flight was a bit of a stretch and we were hesitant to book it. In retrospect, we're happy we splurged because Bosque del Cabo was the highlight of our entire trip.
Monkeys, Monkeys, Monkeys!!!
This was without a doubt the highlight of our honeymoon. We stayed here for 3 nights and it could have been longer. Although a wedding had started to pour in and we were glad to get out before that. The sounds of people drinking in this environment seem really out of place. That's not to say that it is the norm. It is VERY quiet there most of the time. The grounds are beautiful and there are monkeys, birds and animals everywhere. We would sit and watch for hours in awe of the wildlife. We took a trip to the animal sanctuary which I highly recommend doing if you are visiting this area. It is a great opportunity to interact with the animals in their natural environment without fearing injury. Every night they have a communal dinner which at first I did not like the idea of and then I LOVED it and looked forward to it every night. Maureen, the chef, was really cool and makes great dinners. My favorite person at Bosque is Francini, the beautiful, sweet waitress who I looked forward to seeing everyday. They are all very sweet at Bosque and we were very sad to leave. I usually do not return to places, there are many places in the world to see, but I will without doubt return to Bosque del Cabo. 10 stars!!
Beautiful Bosque del Cabo
It's been a while since we have been on this trip but just wanted to say how amazing this lodge was. Service is very friendly but not overwhelming. Not sure if he's still there but naturalist Philip is a great guide on hikes as he knows a lot about the rainforest, animals and plants. There are plenty of hiking for all levels. Hike down to the gulf beach was very enjoyable since it ends in a beatiful secluded beach. Food is great and one of my most enjoyable moments was having a glass of wine in the library before we got called for dinner. We did the zipline, which I imagine not the best you can find in Costa Rica but we just wanted to try it. The rooms are spacious and has everything you would need. Outdoor showers are very refreshing. The only thing that we were unprepared for was how rough the roads were on the way to there. We were there only for 3 days and could not handle going into town for a kayaking outing etc since we did not want to do that trip more than necessary. We went during rainy season to enjoy better rates and got luck with the weather. It only rained one night when we were there.
It is difficult to come up with the correct words to describe this place. We stayed there for 7 days the last week of November as the second part of our 14 day honeymoon. The first week we stayed at another great hotel, Hotel Punta Islita on the Nicoya Penninsula. But this was better.
Although the owners (who you will meet if you stay there) have no prior training in how to run a resort, they have it figured out. The location is world-class. It sits on a 500 foot cliff with amazing views. It has the best of everything Costa Rica has to offer: Miles of deserted beaches and pristine rain forests. The wildlife viewing is constant and different every day.
Some surprising positives of this place that I didn't expect: The service is perfect. They take care of you like family. We loved eating family style and chatting with all of the other interesting people who are resourcefull enough to make it here. In the end I was sad to say goodbye to the wonderful staff members who I will probably never forget. They are all very content, happy people who didn't make us feel like they were employess, but friends.
The sounds at night are unbelievable. The crickets, frogs, and who knows what else makes this beautiful chorus that sounds like symphony.
BDC is literally "off the grid." The nearest electricty is like 30 miles away. The road is rough, but if it was easy, everybody would do it. People who drove from San Jose said the roads were a nightmare. Fly here.
The trails were amazingly maintained. It's easy to get freaked out by all of the poisionous snakes (we saw zero) that call the Osa Penninsula home and they literally rake the leaves off the trail. Be prepared to see tons of spiders. Take the nature tour as soon as possible with the resident guide, Philip. He will help you understand the web of life we all live on and how each creature is a crucial part of this web.
Phil and Kim (the owners) have done all the right things environmentally. I hope they continue to buy as much property in this fragile place as possible. I also hope they can drop the prices a little because it's kind of expensive...but once you see the lengths they have to go through to get materials all of the way up there from town, you see why. It's worth it.
One of a kind experience
We just returned from a week at Bosque del Cabo. We had an excellent time and would definitely go back.
The main reason to go to Bosque del Cabo is for the ample opportunities to view amazing wildlife. They essentially own and operate their own wildlife park in one of the most biologically diverse areas of Costa Rica. Every day at Bosque we saw something fascinating. The truly great thing about Bosque, is you don't even have to leave your cabina to see really amazing things. We had toucans, giant scarlet macaws, and capuchin monkeys come by regularly to feast on the fruit and nut trees planted around the cabins. A very short stroll will put you in the middle of packs of spider and howler monkeys, and there is a good chance you will also see packs of collared peccaries patrolling the rainforest floor.
Here are a few random thoughts and tips from our stay:
- The deluxe cabinas are very nice, rustic and open-air. Each has a great ocean view and outdoor seating areas. Note that there is no air conditioning, and the fixtures and decor are very basic but quite comfortable. They don't have a lot of electricity to spare, so the reading lights are pretty dim, and a hair dryer is out of the question. The outdoor shower was neat, and warm.
- The restaurant was quite good, and we found the breakfasts and lunches to be excellent, but had mixed opinions on the group buffet-style dinners. (I tend to get pretty tired of buffet food after a few days. It's never as good as something freshly prepared).
- I also found that after a few days of group dining, I was all "small-talked out". Fortunately, you can request a private table, as we did for our last two days at Bosque.
- Beware: you will be living with insects, if you like to read at night, use the bug screen around the bed. We had a volkswagon sized roach hop into bed with us. Mosquitos were not a problem at all.
- Despite being surrounded by ocean, Bosque is not a beach destination. The closest, safely swimmable, beach, is about a 1.5 hour walk away.
- I found the payment and booking process quite inconvienient. They want a US funds cheque from a US bank to make a 50% deposit. As a Canadian, I was required to send a cheque to a private individual in the United States, related to the owner of the property. I noticed that there were very few non-Americans staying at Bosque (perhaps one out of every twenty groups was non-American). I suspect the payment process might be the cause of this. For a hotel that regularly has 20-40 guests, I was surprised that they didn't have better arrangements for this sort of thing.
- On the whole an amazing place. Perhaps even a one-of-a-kind opportunity for comfort and diversity of wildlife offered.
If you can make it there, you'll make it anywhere
A truly enchanting place if you enjoy rustic luxury. I would not say that Bosque del Cabo is for everyone, but for those who commit to venturing to the most remote area of Costa Rica, I can't imagine a more suitable place to stay.
We missed our flight from Quepos to Puerto Jimenez (DON'T LET THIS HAPPEN TO YOU) so we hired a driver with a 4-wheeler (a requirement to get to Bosque) to take us on what became a 9 hour adventure. I know for a fact he had no idea what he was getting into -- and we certainly didn't. The roads during the rainy season are treacherous -- if you get lost or stuck in the dark, there is no cell phone service and no one around, but somehow the adventure was still fun. When we finally arrived, we were graciously greeted and taken to the Casa Blanca, one of the casas which can accomodate up to 6 or 7? people. It was dark, so we had no idea what a treat we would be waking up to the next morning with a view off the HUGE wooden deck of a heliconia garden and the ocean below.
Meals were consistently spectacular, as was the service we received at them. The warmth of the staff was unparalleled, with the smallest details remembered (I liked pineapple jam, so that was brought to me each morning at breakfast in addition to whatever other option was being served).
Everyone we worked with on planning activities suggested wonderful things for us to do. The highlights were surfing with the adorable! instructor, Oldemar (who just wouldn't quite fit into my suitcase to bring home with me), the dolphin tour on Bosque's boat, which included towed-behind-the-boat swimming with them (an experience that goes on the list of all time best life experiences), and the wildlife sanctuary across the Golfo Dulce on a beautiful black sand beach, where we held monkeys, saw eagles, macaws, a baby sloth and a rehabilitated kinkajou. It was truly magical. Whew!
As for the cons, I suppose I would say that the Casa could have had better sealed doors and windows, as it makes for more communing with the bugs than some of us would have liked. But again, you're in the jungle, so there are certain things you concede. And nowhere else could you really feel more like you are IN the jungle. I would prefer to stay in one of the more intimate and romantic little casitas for my next visit, but this wasn't that kind of trip.
I would also pay more to come in the dry season next time, because the rain made some things more of a challenge -- getting there being #1, but it does get to be a bit of a drag being wet all the time, wearing a rain jacket, carrying umbrellas (provided by the hotel) and hiking the trails when they're slippery. Also, some of the wildlife hides during the rain - but we saw quite a bit in between downpours. And although the trails and grounds at Bosque are fantastic, I think on my next trip I will venture into Corcovado, which just wasn't feasible during our short stay.
Make sure you do your research before you come to Bosque or to Osa for that matter. It is not for the high-maintenance (no hair dryers allowed, no tv, no phones etc.), but it is perfect for those of us who don't miss those things for a while.
This is really the kind of place you return to again and again, which really says something considering how difficult it is to get there.
This was a fabulous place to start our honeymoon, three days of which we spent here at Bosque del Cabo in wonderful seclusion. It was the rainy season which meant we had the place almost to ourselves (just three or four other guests most of the time), however the weather was generally excellent.
The lodge has a wonderfully low key style, and manages to provide excellent service without much pretention. The lodge's naturalist (Philip) is excellent, and there is plenty to do on the grounds; we also enjoyed a day at the beat and waterfall rapelling nearby. The food was also a treat (from surfer chef Maureen). Would absolutely come back.