Costa Rica is the most popular tourist destination in all of Central America. It’s super safe, ridiculously beautiful and offers a tourist infrastructure like no other country in the region. Most people end up in La Fortuna, Monteverde and perhaps on the beaches and I understand that, I also went there but that wasn’t the highlight of my time in Costa Rica, oh no. That was reserved for my four days at the Blue River Resort and Hot Springs. This place was heaven.
I had just been through Nicaragua and Honduras with some pretty hardcore backpacking, I knew Costa Rica was more about kicking back and enjoying the luxury so I planned my first four days at Blue River and it was insane. Let me break it down for guys, because this place is beautiful.
EVERY room has a private terrace with a huge hammock, overlooking the various gardens and hotsprings, that’s a pretty stellar start. Each cabana is huge too, the owners bought a massive piece of land to build this beautiflu place so pace isn’t at a premium, meaning that each guest has so much space to themselves. The rooms generally have two huge king size beds, walk-in wardrobes type areas, a massive en suite bathroom and a beautiful LED flatscreen with international channels. I have no idea how they have this stuff out in the middle of the jungle, but they do, which meant I could watch the World Cup on demand, bingo.
The entire cabanas are 720 square feet, about 70sqm – the size of an apartment in a city. After so many night buses, and flights to have that much space to myself was a perfect escape. And for the price, this level of luxury is insane.
The rooms were special, but the amenities and activites are just the best. For a start the entire place is built on top of natural hot springs, and the designers have built four gorgeous natural hot spring pools right in the grounds of the resort. Just a few minutes walk from the room, one of which is complete with an awesome water slide – never too old johnny boy, never too old.
They’ve also built a fully fledged botantical garden, and a butterfly farm on the actual grounds. Unbelievable. They have expert staff to maintain it all, and it’s free to peruse the whole time.
The spa is manned all day long, full massages available of which I obviously availled. Outside that there is a free natural sauna, and a free natural mud bath section. Oh, and on the off chance you’re feeling motivated, there’s a fully serviced free gym too, of course with stream rooms and saunas too. Unbelievable.
This is where the Blue River Resort and Hot Springs comes into it’s own. Where other resorts are often pretty boring, and you can be left counting the days before you can escape, these guys have full activities you can do every day. I was there for three days so I spent a day horse riding through the jungle one day, zip linging and canyon swinging through canopy another day and a final, amazing day floating down white water rapids on a tube – so much fun.
There’s also bird watching, waterfall hikes, trekking to the top of volcanos. However long you stay, you’re gonna have a lot to do, I promise you that.
They won me over at the start with a complimentary breakfast – good starts guys. Because you’re in the middle of the jungle the only food options you have are in the resort’s restaurant, so it’s a good job that the restaurant is bloody awesome, and great value. I eat there three times a day, for four days, didn’t order the same thing once and never broke the bank.
They have Central American food, but also foreign fare to make you fully feel at home. I looked forward to meal times every day, so they were certainly doing something right.
In the jungle, really. These guys are in a remote region of Costa Rica, right at the base of the Rincon De La Viejo Volcano – Costa Rica is often a little too touristic, but not here. You’re deep in the jungle, gorgeous mountains and volcanos all around, which makes it perfect for so many eco adventures all around the resort.
You can organise shuttle pick-ups, like I did, from Liberia. Most people will probably fly to LIberia and get picked up, I had taken a horrible bus from Nicaragua and got dropped off on the side of the street in Liberia, but the end result was the same.
I honestly can’t think of anywhere I’ve been in the world that offers these services, amentieis and luxury for the price. The Cabanas are huge, easily can fit a couple or two friends, and are often priced at 75USD or less per night, sometimes as little as 30USD per person. Really, it’s crazy. I’ve already told my sister she has to book to come here, the price is just crazy.
Four days disappeared in no time, my schedule was packed with fun activities and I can’t believe just how quickly the time went. I was fully recharged after my stay and ready to complete my mission to visit every country in Central America, and what’s more is that I had some truly amazing experiences to remember it by. Personally tubing down the white water rapids was a highlight, oh and maybe the daily massages – aaagh, I wanna go back.
TIP: These guys often put groupon deals online too, so although it’s brilliant value all year round, check out groupon for some crazy prices. A couple who were there with me paid $150 for two nights with activities, but the hotel runs promos all the time directly too so give them a call. I love this place, I miss you guys already.