Tapirus Lodge Costa Rica: A Naturalist’s Dream Come True.  Tapirus Lodge is the kind of place where any naturalist’s dreams could come true, even if not the cornerstone of a combo deal that leaves no outdoor thirsts unquenched. Our family is still raving about a recent stay that ranks high among our best Costa Rican experiences ever. The lodge setting and amenities alone would have made it so, but when factored into the 6-in-1 Tour Package offered by Rainforest Adventures, slices of life here don’t get much better.

As home base for a series of adrenaline-pumping and casually paced activities alike, Tapirus is situated on a 1,200-acre private reserve surrounded by lush trees, orchids, ferns, birds and animals galore. Guests are treated to a Costa Rican rainforest immersion like no other. With only 10 cabins, the lodge nestles them intimately and serenely deep within the surroundings. Each cabin offers large windows, balconies and screened-in open-air walls so all sights, sounds and sensations can be fully embraced.

big windows let you feel like you're sleeping in the jungle at tapirus lodge costa rica

Your stay at Tapirus Lodge Costa Rica includes a dedicated naturalist guide and delicious breakfast.

Yes, you read that right! During your stay, you will have the expertise of a naturalist who will accompany you on morning and evening walks. This provides opportunities for your expert guide to point out spiders, snakes, frogs, birds and fauna that untrained eyes likely would not notice. These naturalists are also qualified to share their extensive knowledge about creatures in the butterfly and orchid gardens and the herpetarium. For the all-inclusive 6-in-1 Tour participants, they also coordinate your zipline canopy tour, aerial tram flight and hanging bridge walk.

Our own guide, Jaime, got our day off to an eager start at 6:30 a.m. where we saw a wild tapir, the namesake of the lodge. Later he led us on a night walk when we spotted the rare and elusive coronated tree frog (Anotheca spinosa).

wild tapir in the jungle costa rica

Guests are treated to a Costa Rican rainforest immersion like no other.

The lodge’s spacious open-air restaurant serves hearty and delicious breakfast, lunch and dinner options. Our favorites were the American breakfast with pancakes, the lunch offerings of fresh salad and chicken, and the Caesar salad and fajitas served at dinner. At lunch, a mischievous coatimundi was high in the beams of the restaurant, but once our rowdy crew came in, he meandered back to the jungle.

My husband rated the lodge gift shop as the best he has ever seen. It provides staples like raincoats and snacks but also a large selection of unique and special Costa Rican finds.

Ariel tram tapirus lodge costa rica

Rainforest Adventures’ aerial tram tour is perfect for anyone relishing literally a complete jungle overview from top to bottom. Your naturalist guide accompanies you on the tram to point out monkeys, hummingbirds, falcons, snakes and more living in the treetops above 180 feet. Broccoli trees surpassing 200 feet sustain hundreds, if not thousands, of bromeliads, ferns and other succulents on their trunks along with all the wildlife. The ziplines include 10 cables and 14 platforms, traversing back and forth through the river’s meandering pathway. The two-line, self-braking system provides the safety you need while enjoying breathtaking rainforest views, from the surrounding understory to canopy and bubbling waters below.

Tapirus Lodge is adjacent to Braulio Carrillo National Park, just 45 minutes from San José, 90 minutes from Arenal and two hours from Limón port. Visitors can experience all or some of the Rainforest Adventures attractions: aerial tram, ziplines, gardens, naturalist-guided walking tours, restaurant and gift shop. Closed-toed shoes are a must; an umbrella, binoculars and raincoat are highly recommended.

Call for reservations (506) 2224-5961, mention Howler for discount.

Photos courtesy of Alvaro Cubero, Nicole Rangel and Rainforest Adventures