If I were running a school for hotel management I'd send my students to Tortuga. When we left I was sad to leave such warm and caring people. If you want a slick, chain hotel, this is not it. If you want something with a sophisticated and warm element then stay at Tortuga.
Tortuga Lodge & Gardens
Tortuga Lodge & Gardens is situated on 146 acres of private land on Costa Rica's northeast Caribbean coast. View the wildlife of Tortuguero National Park and explore its back water creeks and lagoons by boat with your Tortuguero Naturalist Guide, while staying in the comfort of your River View Deluxe Rooms or River View Penthouse Suite.
The essence of Tortuguero is slow-moving tropical rivers. Everything about Tortuguero is defined by the rivers. They are Tortuguero's roads and Tortuguero's soul. If a visitor wants to bring home the essence of Tortuguero he/she must get in tune with the rivers.
The all-pervasive presence of the water blurs distinctions. As your boat moves slowly through the forest, you are immersed in a world where the forest merges with the rivers and the water becomes part of the tree. Land and water, indoors and outdoors lose part of their meaning.
About Tortuguero and Tortuguero National Park.
There is evidence that native people visited Tortuguero during the 5 month nesting season to hunt the Atlantic Green Sea Turtle since way before Europeans arrived in the Western Hemisphere. By the mid 1800’s there was thriving trade in turtle meat, oil and shells, much of which was exported to the United States and Europe.
But it was not until 1910 that Don Walton Martinez a sea captain of Afro Caribbean origin decided to settle permanently in Tortuguero, where he planted coconut palms as way to have a year around income. Despite his Spanish surname Don Walton’s native tongue was Afro-Caribbean English and he named his new home, “Turtle Bog.”
When Don Walton died in 1941 the entire population of Tortuguero consisted of his 7 children and their families.
The Park Today
Originally intended to protect a major nesting beach of the Atlantic Green sea turtle, Tortuguero National Park now protects 51,870 acres, one of the most biologically rich and last large areas of tropical rain forests in Central America.
Eleven habitats are found in the park. Among the wild-life you may encounter are three species of monkeys (Spider, Howler, and White-faced), Three-toed Sloths, river otters, caimans, iguanas,river turtles, Basilisk Lizards, Poison Dart Frogs, as well as more than 320 species of birds including all six species of kingfishers found in the new world, three species of toucans, eight species of parrots, and other neotropical species such as the Slaty-tailed Trogon, White-collared Manakin and Purple-throated Fruitcrow.