Fodor's Expert Review Rio Tico Safari Lodge

3 km (2 miles) south of Ojochal on Costanera, turn off just before bridge in Punta Mala near Km 179, 4 km (2½ miles) up winding dirt road to Vergel de Punta Mala, Punta Mala, Puntarenas, Costa Rica

You may feel as though you're on a luxury safari when you step inside one of these spacious South African tents perched on sturdy wooden platforms cantilevered over a rushing mountain river. There's lots of headroom, electricity for reading lights and fans, comfortable beds, and—even more civilized—a private, spring-fresh bathroom with hot shower just a zippered compartment away. You can enjoy bird-watching and river views from your own veranda, hike forest trails to a nearby waterfall or follow the stepping stones to explore the other side of the river, bask on a sun-baked rock in the middle of the river, or go horseback riding. This campers' paradise is the creation of an energetic, eco-minded Dutch couple. Breakfast is excellent—tropical fruits and Dutch pancakes are highlights—served in a stylish, open-air lodge with Wi-Fi connections. For guests who prefer to stay in the lodge, there are three comfortable rooms. Tea and coffee are available, along with healthy snacks and light lunches. There's no dinner, but Tilapias El Pavón is just a short walk down the road.


  • gorgeous natural setting
  • dry and airy tents
  • helpful hosts
  • luxury tents


  • steps to climb up and down from main lodge to tents
  • no air-conditioning
  • no a/c
  • no dinner restaurant




Phones: -4000–0680 | -8996–7935


12 rooms
Rate Includes: Free Breakfast

What’s Nearby