The river beckons like something primordial, a blue-and-brown torrent rushing to the sea – ever moving, ever changing. You feel transported to another world, one so exotic it feels somehow forbidden.
On its leafy banks, a river lodge arises like a mirage. Enchanting and delightfully remote, it’s painted in an exuberant palette of pastels amid the lush green jungle. Two-story wooden buildings evoke a bygone era in a distant place.
Tortuga Lodge is an unexpected oasis in the Tortuguero region, on the northern Caribbean side of Costa Rica. Perched on a strip of land between sea, river and a vast expanse of untamed tropical forest, it’s an otherworldly destination of haunting beauty.
For all the comforts that await you, this does not feel like home. It feels like you just took a steamboat up a mysterious river to an enchanted inn, as if in an old adventure movie.
And yet … you won’t be “roughing it” here.
Beautifully appointed rooms, all with river views, feature plush pillow-top beds, elegant décor,
private terraces, nightly turn-down service and free WiFi. Sixteen new suites and a spectacular villa, inspired by the Caribbean Victorian style of architecture, have greatly expanded our lodging options.
But we remain a small, intimate property run by a local team with a passion for spoiling our guests.
Our Cuisine – The Green Turtle Restaurant
We offer a gastronomic experience that’s second to none, with novel flavors, innovative dishes, lovely presentation and fresh, local ingredients.
The Green Turtle Restaurant at Tortuga Lodge is beautifully designed with an open-air setting. There are no windows, doors or walls in the restaurant, allowing you to enjoy the captivating beauty and ambiance of the Costa Rican rainforest. Our restaurant offers sweeping views of the Tortuguero River, creating an enchanting dining experience for breakfast, lunch and dinner. In the evening, flickering candles and torches add a touch of tropical romance and allure. Savor an a la carte menu featuring authentic Costa Rican Caribbean dishes and fusion specialties crafted with passion and creativity.
Before or after your meal, or just to enjoy a casual drink with family or friends, a bar with a terrace and deck area is located adjacent to the restaurant. The beverage menu includes traditional cocktails along with specialty options crafted by the resident bartender.
The Green Turtle also offers a complimentary, all-day, self-service coffee station, featuring coffee, milk, tea, infusions and sweet treats.
Our staff of naturalist guides will introduce you to the hidden gems of this paradise, drawing on unparalleled knowledge of the plants and animals of Costa Rica. We’ll supply the walking sticks, rubber boots and umbrellas – all you need to bring is your sense of wonder.
The region is known for Tortuguero National Park, an incredibly biodiverse enclave of almost 300 sq. mi., two-thirds of which is in the ocean. Although it has a few hiking trails, it’s best explored by boat.
Tortuguero is the Amazon of Costa Rica’s Caribbean coast, a dense tropical jungle where the rivers are the only highways. You can’t even drive to here, though you can fly (but you’ll miss a great boat ride). Amid a nearly impenetrable wilderness, a network of canals supports a small human footprint of scattered ecolodges, riverside homes and a village that time forgot.
Tortuguero (“place of turtles”) is most famous for the thousands of sea turtles that come ashore to lay their eggs on the beach and bury them in a ritual millions of years old. Nighttime excursions to watch nesting turtles is the area’s most popular adventure, along with boat tours of the huge network of canals.
The birdwatching is superb, with more than 300 species identified here, including rare green macaws, toucans, hawks, kingfishers, herons, hummingbirds and woodpeckers. The region is known for a huge variety of Costa Rican wildlife, including monkeys, sloths, jaguars, ocelots, tapirs, peccary and coatis, plus dozens of species of reptiles and amphibians.