Kasiiya Papagayo

Guanacaste, Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica Book from Book from £582 per night

An eco-resort in virgin jungle on a private peninsula, with five luxurious suites, organic food, three pristine beaches and zero environmental impact
We realized we hadn’t seen another soul for miles as we bounced along the dirt track to Kasiiya Papagayo, weaving through dense rainforest on an isolated peninsula in Guanacaste. And then a small collection of timber-framed structures peeped through the trees, overlooking three long, wild and totally secluded beaches. Built from all-natural materials, with zero impact on the surrounding environment, Kasiiya Papagayo consists of just five tented suites, all completely eco-friendly without compromising on luxury. Food is organic and locally sourced, power is 100% solar, and all rainwater is recycled. Being at one with nature doesn’t get more real than this.

You’re in for a luxurious jungle experience. Spend your days swinging from hammocks strung up in the trees, or join movement sessions in which you’ll learn to imitate animal walks. There are hiking trails, nature treks to find howler monkeys, and culinary classes to learn the art of local cooking. Or you can head down to the glistening Pacific coastline – warm turquoise sea surrounds the property on all sides. Go snorkelling or diving to spot green turtles and rays, fish off the rocks and let the chef cook your fresh catch for dinner, or kayak around the peninsula. And for relaxation, there's a gorgeous spa located in a treehouse at the intersection of two soothing waterfalls, plus a Sunset Lounge for dinner, cocktails and 360-degree views of the Pacific Rim. Total bliss, totally sustainable: the way travel should be.

Highs

  • Complete isolation, with no noise except the sounds of the rainforest and the ocean waves
  • Three secluded beaches and 123 acres of untouched jungle to explore
  • Excellent eco-credentials without compromising on luxury – all rooms have WiFi, ceiling fans, air-conditioning, outdoor showers/baths and coolers that substitute for fridges
  • Loads of watersports and activities on offer, many of which are complimentary
  • Tranquil spa offering a range of treatments using locally made oils and indigenous herbs

Lows

  • Not the easiest place to reach – the dirt path is bumpy and unpaved - but you don’t get absolute seclusion without going off the beaten track!
  • Prices might appear steep, but they include all meals and lots of activities so you certainly get your money's worth
  • Don’t expect haute cuisine; do expect healthy unpretentious fare with organic produce from local farms
  • No pool, but with a trio of private beaches at your fingertips you really don't need one

Best time to go

Costa Rica is tropical so experiences two seasons: the dry season (Dec-Apr) and the rainy season (May-Nov). While the dry season is considered high season and is the most popular time to travel, the rainy season, or more affectionately the green season, is the secret favourite among locals - flowers are in bloom and the wildlife is more active, especially whales and turtles. Note that the resort closes for most of September and October.

Our top tips

  • If you're into marine life, freediving here is incredible. It might sound extreme, but Bruno (the movement instructor) will explain that the sport is really about controlling your breathing and learning to relax in uncomfortable situations. Join Bruno on the beach for an intro session, which focuses on breathing techniques and safety, before heading to the beautiful warm water to put theory into practice.

  • Staying a minimum of three nights at Kasiiya is advised in order to make the most out of the activities and the secluded location.
  • Great for...

    Beach
    Eco
    Great Outdoors
    Romantic
    Family
    • Boutique Hotel
    • 5
    • Full board
    • All ages welcome
    • Closed: 1 September - 20 November 2020
    • Pool
    • Spa
    • WiFi
    • Pet Friendly
    • Disabled Access
    • Beach Nearby
    • Off-street Parking
    • Restaurants Nearby
    • Air Conditioning
    • Guest Lounge
    • Terrace
    • Garden
    • Gym
    • Laundry service
    • Library
    Room:

    Rooms

    Kasiiya has just five tented suites, each carefully designed to blend nature with comfort. There are three beachfront Lazy Turtle rooms located beside the cabana restaurant. Lazy Turtle 1 and 2 are larger in size, and can also interconnect, making them good for families.

    The two Laughing Whale rooms are cast atop a nearby hill for added seclusion, making them ideal for couples or honeymooners. They are slightly smaller and cheaper, but we absolutely loved having the added privacy, the panoramic ocean views and the feeling of being fully immersed in the jungle. One Laughing Whale room also comes with its very own yoga and whale-watching platform!

    All are timber-framed with canvas ceilings, floor-to-ceiling windows and wide private terraces looking directly out to sea. Inside, they are enormous and luxurious, with kingsize beds, open-plan living areas with sofabeds, indoor and outdoor bathrooms (with views) and heavy use of wood throughout. And you’re not spared on mod cons either: all have air conditioning, WiFi, fans, a cooler with chilled beverages refreshed once daily, a small library, tea/coffee and snacks.

    Features include:

    • Air conditioning
    • Bathrobes
    • Beach bag
    • Beach towels
    • Coffee / tea making
    • Fan
    • Minibar/fridge
    • Mosquito net
    • Safe box
    • Terrace
    • Toiletries
    • WiFi

    Eating

    Dining takes place in the wooden, open-sided cabana that gazes out over the beach. All meals are included, and the menu changes daily according to what’s in season at the local food markets. Most of the food you eat at Kasiiya is organic and locally sourced, so expect lots of juicy fruits and fresh seafood. We tucked into amazing fish tacos, avocado and pea gazpacho and the signature parfait that celebrates Costa Rica’s two seasons: cocoa crumbs for dry season and sweet mango for rainy reason.

    There’s also a chef’s table for more formal dining and a stunning Sunset Lounge at the top of the hill for dinner and drinks (wine, local craft beer and tropical cocktails in jam jars). Our octopus starter and beef tenderloin steak (and dauphinoise) main were succulent and perfectly cooked.

    Features include:

    • Breakfast
    • Coffee / tea making
    • Minibar/fridge
    • Restaurant
    • Room service
    Eating:
    Activity:

    Activities

    • Go for a treatment at Kasiiya spa, located in a treehouse in the jungle. Treatments include massages, scrubs and Reiki, and are tailored to individual needs. Oils are natural and locally made.
    • Borrow a kayak or stand-up paddleboard and explore the waters surrounding the peninsula. Guided trips are offered free of charge, and there are plenty of snorkelling spots to stop off at.
    • Dive or snorkel in the shallow waters. Punta Gorda is one of the best spots in the area and is teeming with tropical life, including rays, turtles, ming parrotfish, starfish, jellyfish and sea urchins.
    • Join a complimentary hiking tour of the 123-acre property. Start at the Sunset Lounge and head down to Laguna or Portuguese Beach and into the jungle, looking out for howler monkeys, the Turquoise Mot-Mot and all manner of wildlife.
    • Go on a surfing trip to Tamarindo, located approximately one hour from Kasiiya. It’s known for having an excellent surf break and a lovely beach town.
    • Join a movement or yoga class in the jungle gym and learn the art of the Crab Walk or Lizard Crawl.
    • Go on an Ocean Discovery day trip into the Gulf of Papagayo to see breathtaking marine life – perhaps manta rays or whale sharks. There’s also an opportunity to refuel with a picnic on a deserted beach.

    Activities on site or nearby include:

    • Birdwatching
    • Boat trips
    • Cooking classes
    • Fishing
    • Hiking
    • Kayaking
    • Plantlife / flora
    • Private guided tours
    • Scuba diving
    • Snorkelling
    • Surfing
    • Swimming
    • Trekking
    • Well being
    • Whale watching
    • Wildlife
    • Yoga

    Kids

    There are no specific facilities for kids, but older, outdoorsy children will love it here. There are wide, sandy beaches to play on, shallow seas for swimming and snorkelling, kayaks and paddleboards to borrow and lots of wildlife to spot - including baby turtles in hatching season. Sofabeds and baby cots are available on request.

    Best for:

    Children (4-12 years), Teens (over 12)

    Family friendly accommodation:

    Lazy Turtle 1 and 2 are best for families as they're larger in size and can interconnect. All suites have sofabeds that can accommodate one child. There's one rollaway bed that can be added to Lazy Turtle 2.

    Families Should Know:

    All rooms are raised on timber-framed platforms so if you're bringing small children be wary of steps. The design of Kasiiya is semi-open-air so you're sharing the space with wildlife. The coast is wild so be careful with children around rocks.

    Distances:

    • Airport: 60 minutes
    • Hospital: 45 minutes
    • Supermarket: 45 minutes
    Kid Friendly:

    Location

    Kasiiya Papagayo is found on the coast in rural Guanacaste. It's in northwest Costa Rica, a four-hour drive from San José.

    By Air:
    Fly into Liberia (48km away), or fly to San Jose Juan Santamaria International (394km away) and take a connecting internal flight.

    From the Airport:
    We recommend booking a transfer with the resort (free if you're staying more than four nights).

    By Car:
    If you want to drive, bear in mind that some of the roads are rough and can be very irksome, particularly in the 'green' season. We'd always recommend choosing a four-wheel drive when hiring a car - see our car rental recommendations.

    Detailed directions will be sent to you when you book through i-escape.

    Airports:

    • Liberia 48.0 km LIR
    • San Jose 394.0 km SJC

    Other:

    • Beach 0.2 km
    • Shops 21.0 km
    • Restaurant 25.0 km

    Our guests' ratings...

    Based on 1 independent review from i-escape guests

    10/10
    Room
    10/10
    Food
    10/10
    Service
    10/10
    Value
    10/10
    Overall

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