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Reviewed 4 July 2021 via mobile

Our family of 4 (parents and 2 teen boys) had an amazing adventure in the still-wild region of Indio-Maíz natural reserve at the riverside Guacimo lodge. There are simple but lovely wooden cabins that are immaculate, have private bath and a deck with views of river and lush vegetation backed by the eerie sounds of howler monkeys and unfamiliar birds. The friendly bilingual staff will arrange transportation (largely on small boats) and day trips to explore the area in depth. I would particularly recommend the ‘Community Tour’ with Gustavo in which he takes you to his remote community to see how the people make a life of subsistence farming. The people are as lovely and open as the countryside. The other tour was led by the incomparable Juan Ardilla- a canoe trip and hike through the jungle to identify plants, trees and incredible animals. He then cooks a gourmet meal over a wood fire on the river beach complete with coco-loco in ice-cold coconuts. At the end of a ln eventful day, relax on your cabin porch while Margarita prepares your locally sourced fish dinner. The entire experience allows those of us who are toxic on gadgets and packaging and processed food to get a glimpse of what an environmentally sustainable life might look like (at least on vacation).

Date of stay: July 2021
Trip type: Travelled with family
Thank Compass695967
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Lucia Barrios, General Manager at Guacimo Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 7 July 2021

Dear Lisa,
Thank you for taking the time to review your experience and for such detailed feedback on your trip to Rio San Juan. We are beyond happy to confirm you had a wonderful time, enjoyed a peaceful and comfortable stay in our lodge while exploring the outstanding Indio Maiz nature reserve and learned about the local community in Bartola. Once again, we appreciate so much for having chosen Guacimo Lodge and Rio San Juan for your family adventure. And if you ever think of visiting the country again, please bear in mind, here in Guacimo Lodge, we will be delighted to welcome you back as in your home.

all the best,

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Reviewed 28 July 2020

Such a stunning location! I truly felt like I was living in the pages of a Gabriel Garcia Marquez novel. The town, the river, the landscape... all of it felt like magical realism. The hotel was super comfortable and a 10 minute boat ride from the main town. It was its own retreat. We loved our local guide Gustavo and Manuel the owner was super hospitable. We can't wait to go back!

Date of stay: July 2020
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank Katalina M
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Manuel Bejar, Owner at Guacimo Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 29 September 2020

Dear Katalina, thanks so much for your kind words! We enjoyed so much your visit and that you enjoyed the activities and people you met. Looking forward to see you again!

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Reviewed 2 June 2020

We wanted to visit the Indio-Maiz reserve and be immersed in the jungle with some level of comfort. Guacimo Lodge is definitely the best choice.

Guacimo arranged for our transportation from Managua - San Carlos - Granada. We made some enquiries locally, but Guacimo's price and flexibility were really the best option. They picked us up at our hotel in Managua and drove us to San Carlos where we took the "colectivo" boat to El Castillo. Guacimo can only be accessed via boat so the staff can pick you up and drop you off at El Castillo for free (also during the stay). When we left, we asked to be driven from San Carlos to Granada. It was very convenient and time-saving.
Our 3-day stay at Guacimo was unforgettable. It's in the middle of the jungle with all the comfort and luxury one can ask for. We stayed at one of the standard bungalow and it is beautiful. It overlooks the river and is surrounded by trees. The balcony is perfect for bird watching at dusk and dawn. We slept so well!
We were extremely lucky that we were the only ones in the whole lodge, so had the full attention of the amazing staff. There is a common open living room where we ate and relaxed; there is a stunning swimming pool and there are loads of activities you can book either via the hotel or in El Castillo (this is what we did).
The food is really nice, and it is just sublime to eat breakfast and dinner under the stars in the jungle, listening to night creatures and the river.

We highly recommend Guacimo!

Date of stay: September 2019
Thank salomesqs
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed 1 April 2020

Guacimo Lodge is far away enough to enjoy the beautiful natural sorroundings of Rio San Juan, but close enough to arrive by boat without much of a hassle from San Carlos. We're picked up from El Castillo and 20 min later we arrived at the beatiful lodge. Even though we organised our booking last minute, Manuel (the owner) and all his staff were very accomodating and super helpful. They can even contact the boat company on your behalf to confirm your seats. Also, I'd suggest purchasing an inexpensive "Claro" sim card if you need to be reachable or send a whatsapp while in Rio San Juan. The internet signal in the area is poor.

We really enjoyed our stay here, and we even got an upgrade to the superior cabañas which are filled with small details, very romantic. The "regular" cabañas are more rustic but very charming.

You can just relax or walk around the property’s rainforest, take a boat trip down to the Rio Bartola - beautiful scenery amongst the forested river banks with lots of flora and fauna (birds, turtles, cocrodiles). We even had a swim- no crocs in the shallow water :)

The lounge area is a lovely place to relax and drink a couple of 'toñas' while watching the sunset. Food was tasty and spicy (we asked for it): river fish and prawns, gazpacho, quinoa salad, lots of fresh fruit etc. Beef isn't part of the menu as livestock ranching is one of the main causes of deforestation in the region. I also liked that local ceramics are used in all meals. Beatiful Jinotega bowls and plates.

Overall a really nice experience! Recommended.

Room tip: All cabañas have a nice view but the older ones are higher up and it's a bit steep in case you have mobility issues.
Date of stay: March 2020
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
1  Thank Caldeluna
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
María Soler Iglesias, Propietario at Guacimo Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 2 April 2020

"Thanks so much for your review and feedback. Hope that you had the chance to unwind, enjoy the nature of the place and recharge for further adventures!. Good luck and hope to see you visit us again in the future!"

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Reviewed 16 December 2019

We visited Guacimo Lodge intending to stay 2 nights, but changed to 3 as soon as we arrived! It's very isolated in glorious grounds right on the bank of the San Juan river. So quiet and still except for birds and frogs.
The staff are very helpful and arranged two excellent tours for us.
All our food was prepared to order in the kitchen right next to us and it was excellent. I had some massive "shrimp" (looked like small lobsters!) straight from the river, and fish also.
We were met at El Castillo by Jimmy who expertly handles the small motor boat which also took us on tours. We saw lots of wildlife and could watch a huge variety of birds right from our cabin window.
Spotlessly clean, and the cabins fully mosquito protected.
You may need to know that you get to the cabins up steep slopes, on good stone paths and steps. Also, it is pricey, but when you understand how isolated it is, you can see why.
Highly recommended

Date of stay: December 2019
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Thank 51francesd
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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