My husband and I stayed at La Leona Eco Lodge in June and it was one of the most magical experiences we have ever had. This was our second time in Costa Rica and our first time in the Osa Peninsula. We wanted to be off the beaten path and La Leona was the perfect choice for us. The lodge is very remote with a private beach and very short walk to Corcovado National Park (guide needed to enter). The views and wildlife sighting at the resort cannot be beat.
During our trip, we decided to renew our vows. The La Leona staff was absolutely incredible at helping us plan a private ceremony prior to our arrival. They went above and beyond to create us a beautiful arch and décor, champagne toast on the beach, someone to take some photos, private dinner at a private beach and even surprised us with a bridal bouquet and a decorated honeymoon casita. They respected our privacy, but were there whenever we needed them. The day was perfect, and we owe that all to the La Leona staff.
Everyone was very friendly and helpful throughout our entire four night stay, even when we needed help with bug removal on one occasion. Staff went out of their way to make sure we were happy and took time to point out wildlife for us. We especially appreciated them coming to us on several occasions to show us animals up close – a boa restrictor and some scarlet macaws. We otherwise wouldn’t have had that opportunity.
The food was fresh and delicious. Lots of fresh produce and fish, chicken or beef. Dinner always came with dessert as well. We had read reviews prior to our stay that people were left hungry after meals, so we packed an abundance of snacks. The snacks were unnecessary as we were always full after meal time. For lunch my husband and I would typically share a plate and still be satisfied. Staff was very accommodating to food preferences for us and allergies for other guests. It was fun eating meals in the common area and getting to know other guests – we met people from all around the world. Cold water and juices were always available, and the bar options were always refreshing. I am pretty sure I tried every flavor of daquiri and each was more tasty than the last. They also had beer and wine. The young bartender (I don’t remember his name) was awesome!
The lodging is nice as long as you know what you’re getting yourself into. If you’re looking for an upscale resort, La Leona is not for you. La Leona is more of a glamping experience than resort, which was just what we were looking for. I highly recommend splurging on an oceanfront room. The lodging was very clean, someone came by daily if not more than once to clean up. We had a room with the private outdoor toilet and shower which were both very nice. The shower water was pretty cold, but Costa Rica is pretty hot, so mid-afternoon showers were heavenly. There is no electricity in the rooms, which my husband was nervous about but we didn’t miss it (except next time we would bring some sort of fan for nighttime). The candlelight was romantic, and I loved when they would line the paths with candles in the evening. These do blow out though, so I highly recommend a head lamp and/or flash light. The main area has electricity and wifi at certain times throughout the day, but La Leona is the perfect place to unplug and enjoy the Pura Vida life.
Getting there is an adventure, but well worth it. We rented a car and drove down from San Jose. We are relatively fit people so I didn’t think the walk to La Leona would be too bad. After a very long day in the car and some alcoholic beverages upon arrival at the Base Camp, the beach walk was a bit rough. We tried to do the jungle walk, but couldn’t quite figure it out (maybe it was the booze) so sunny beach it was. But just when we thought we couldn’t walk anymore, we made it and were greeted by cold drinks. The check in process is very Pura Vida, no one explained how meals would work and we had to ask to be shown to our room, but we were fine with going with the flow. Whenever we asked questions the staff was very helpful.
We went on a guided hike in Corcovado, a night hike and I got a massage – I highly recommend all three. In Corcovado we were able to see some things we wouldn’t have seen without a guide – sleeping bats, a sleeping anteater…we also ended up in the middle of a family of 30+ coati who were digging up land crabs, so cool. We saw monkeys and birds. The night hike was an unforgettable experience, but don’t be fooled, we thought it was more strenuous than our Corcovado hike. La Leona has muck boots for you to wear (and you need them because you end up walking in a creek on the way out). We saw spiders, frogs and scorpions – an incredible and surprisingly peaceful experience. The massage may have been better if it were beach front, but was still very nice. I was a little worried about getting a massage with how hot it was, but I swear they had magic smells that help you cool down and stop sweating. The sounds and smells she had in the tent made it an even more relaxing experience. It was especially nice after all the hiking we did. Speaking of, we did the trails around the lodge without the guide and the view from the top of the hill was very pretty. We saw poison dart frogs and a small snake.
Bottom line, I highly recommend La Leona Eco Lodge if you are looking for an adventurous vacation far from the hustle and bustle of touristy areas. It’s the perfect place to unplug, enjoy nature and time with loved ones. Just writing about it has me wanting to book my next trip…