Our last stop on our romantic escape through Costa Rica was the El Silencio Lodge in Bajos Del Toro. We took a quick 15-minute flight on Nature Air from Quepos into the major airport Juan Santamaria International Airport. At this point, we had spent 8 days in Costa Rica and decided we were ready to venture out on our own with a rental car! It ended up being an awesome experience. We were able to slow down and take in the Costa Rican culture while driving through all the small towns we passed on the way. We rented a “Hot-Spot” from the rental car company and used the navigation from our iPhones, which turned out to be the way to go. The hour and a half drive took us through the mountains and villages with ease.
El Silencio Lodge is located in the Bajos del Toro region, and the beauty of mountains, clouds and rivers is difficult to describe in words. We arrived in the afternoon with such an amazing welcome from the staff. Our bags were taken to our room and we were given a rundown of all the fun and adventurous activities El Silencio has to offer, maps of the premises, dining schedules, and introductions to the management team and staff.
El Silencio has a fun and unique way of showing all the activities planned for the day, a giant chalkboard sits near the front entrance, the chalkboard is updated every morning with a long list of the activities offered and when they start. These activities range from hiking, zip lining and horseback riding to cooking classes and a class on the history of making Costa Rican coffee. El Silencio offers their guests every opportunity to take full advantage of the beautiful surroundings and grounds.
We were excited to check out our room as we were staying in the Riverside Villa which offered a private Jacuzzi. When we got into our room there was a note from the manager thanking us for choosing El Silencio and the staff had heated the Jacuzzi for us to enjoy. Our villa was nestled up against the Rio Gorrian River which runs through the property, the relaxing sound of the rushing water plays throughout the day and night, and lush greenery covers the mountainside, it was absolutely one of the most peaceful places we have ever been to.
Just a few steps from our villa was a charming bridge with handmade wooden signs leading to a hummingbird garden. We thought there may be no better way to start our stay than by exploring the grounds of such a stunning resort. As we started down the trail we found ourselves stopping every couple of feet to take pictures, first of the bridges and river, then of the amazing rainforest hillside that surrounded us.
The hummingbird garden was a short hike away. After just a few minutes we arrived at a beautiful garden surrounded by a white picket fence, inside was rows of tall bushes that sprouted small lavender flowers. Hummingbirds surrounded us, there were so many and they were so close it felt as if you could touch them or at least get one to land on you. It was the closest we had been to so many hummingbirds at one time. For such a simple hike it ended up being a very memorable experience for us.
We continued to tour the grounds and discovered how organic El Silencio really was, a pond with wild trout and a chicken farm are just the beginning, there is also a 5,000 sqare foot greenhouse where they grow their own vegetables, herbs and spices. These are just a few of the examples of El Silencio’s farm to table experience. Exploring El Silencio’s grounds was an adventure in itself and left us hungry and ready to eat!
We headed out to dinner that evening and were excited to taste the fresh organic food at La Ventana restaurant in the main lodge of El Silencio. La Ventana is surrounded by panoramic windows that allow you to take in all the scenery while dining. At dinner we opted to share two entrees because it was way too hard to pick just one, it was a great idea, both were absolutely wonderful, we could taste the freshness in every bite and we were completely satisfied and ready to go enjoy our private Jacuzzi!
The next day was our last full day in Costa Rica and we wanted to go out with a bang, we decided on zip lining. I am extremely afraid of heights, so I found the idea of this to be a challenge, but I was excited to conquer my fear. I figured there may be no better place to do this than the rain forest of Costa Rica! I was immediately put at ease when we met our guides, so knowledgeable, encouraging and FUN! Four different zip lines crisscrossing the jungle awaited us. The longest course stretched 1,000 ft. The views and fresh Costa Rican air were exhilarating. Zip lining in Costa Rica is a must.
After we finished, we hiked back down with our guides and learned some unbelievable details about the plants and animals of the rainforest that surround El Silencio. We got back to our room and our private Jacuzzi was calling our names yet again. We relaxed for a few hours before heading out to our last dinner in Costa Rica.
Our server Carlos really impressed us throughout our stay, he went above and beyond our expectations. Our last dinner was no different. He had us laughing and wishing we had more time to enjoy El Silencio. After dinner, we sat at the bar to enjoy some of El Silencio’s signature cocktails and our new friend Carlos. We had to call it a night earlier than we wanted to because we had yet to explore the hiking trails and hidden waterfalls which we planned to do the next day before our flight.
Our last morning in Costa Rica was bittersweet. We were excited to get home to our kids but knew we were going to miss the pure beauty of El Silencio and Costa Rica. We figured that hiking the trails of the Costa Rican rainforest would leave us with a lasting impression and boy were we right. El Silencio offers a waterfall tour hike that takes you to 3 different waterfalls all within about 30 minutes of the lodge.
The 3 waterfalls were all uniquely different, one after another they seem to grow in size and tranquility, but with each remaining breathtaking in their own right. The trail is perfect for any age, we chose to jog and challenge ourselves on some of the stairs, but you can go at your own pace and rest on the benches provided at and between the waterfalls if needed. The third and final waterfall had a small sand and rock area at the base of the sky high waterfall, almost like a beach. Staggered all around the beach were individually stacked towers of rocks created by guests and hikers. We decided to make our mark amongst the creations and built one ourselves.
As we stood in awe of what laid before us and looked back on the last 10 days, we couldn’t help but feel blessed. We knew this amazing time was coming to an end so we slowly made our way back to El Silencio, trying to take in as much as we could along the way. We said our final goodbyes to the beautiful resort and staff. We could not have ended our tour at a more inspiring resort. El Silencio offers such a sense of peace and relaxation, it allowed us to unwind and explore all in one. El Silencio is perfect for the enthusiast or a family trip, El Silencio absolutely caters to guests of all ages and enthusiasts of all types!