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Hidden in the jungle of remote Piedras Blancas National Park in Southern Costa Rica, Esquinas Rainforest Lodge lies at the end of a valley and is surrounded by untouched primary and secondary rainforests. The access road, five kilometers from the Interamerican Highway, leads to a dead-end at the lodge.

Esquinas is a birding hotspot with more than 300 species. Close to 100 species of mammals, as well as countless reptiles and amphibians, have been sighted on the property.

Esquinas Lodge has 19 rooms that can be used as single, twin, or triple occupancy. It has a pool and a licensed bar.

Their story

Man with a monkey on his shoulder

Their project began with the founding of the non-profit organization Rainforest of the Austrians by the well-known classical violinist Michael Schnitzler in 1991.

Seeing their future threatened by restrictions set up by the Park Service, a group of local farmers and former loggers in the village of La Gamba decided to turn to nature tourism as an alternative to the exploitation of the Esquinas rainforest. And that is how one of the most sustainable eco-lodges in Costa Rica was born.

In 1993, the Republic of Austria decided to finance the project and appointed Rainforest of the Austrians to oversee and direct the project. The construction of Esquinas Rainforest Lodge was completed in 1994, and the lodge was purchased by Michael Schnitzler in 2005.

The ultimate goal is to prove that a small lodge, accommodating no more than 40 guests, can generate enough income to raise the living standard of a whole community. Esquinas is the largest employer in La Gamba, offering at least 15 permanent jobs. Except for management and office personnel, all employees at the lodge are from the local town.

Until 2014, the Austrian NGO purchased 43 properties within the Esquinas forest and donated them to the Costa Rican government. More than 10,000 acres have been incorporated into Piedras Blancas National Park. Thousands of Austrians have donated $5,000,000 to save the Esquinas Rainforest. Read more about them here.

Sustainability actions

Lowest impact construction and operation

High level of energy efficiency

Pioneer in waste management

Fully organic and chemical-free operation

Actively protects nature and community

Most popular activities near Esquinas Rainforest Lodge

  • Guided rainforest hikes
  • Guided boat tours in Golfo Dulce
  • Bird-watching walks to see many of the 20 Costa Rican birds.
  • Swimming
  • Occasional horseback riding tours

READ ON36 Eco-friendly Things to Do in Costa Rica (From A to Z)

Best time to visit Esquinas Rainforest Lodge

  • To avoid the rainy season, plan your visit outside May-June and September-October.
  • If you want to enjoy this place the sunniest it can be, visit in March or December.
  • The humidity in Costa Rica is high all year around.
  • Smaller showers or thunderstorms can be expected all year around, so please be prepared.

READ ONBest Time To Visit Costa Rica (Factual Data, Pros & Cons, What to Expect)



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