Sabalo Lodge, Costa Rica
Name of Lodge or Ecotourism Project:
Location: Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica - access by boat from the town of Sierpe.
Year Established: 1999
Tourism activities: Activities range from adventurous to educational and cultural.
Tours to Corcovado National Park can be made, while nearby
Cano Island offers excellent diving and snorkeling.
Dolphin & whale watching tours (season dependent),
horseback riding tours,
Nearby Playa Blanco offers a day at the beach.
can be arranged in addition to mangrove tours and local fruit farm tours.
Ecolodge / Accommodation details: Sabalo Lodge accommodations are sustainable in design. All facilities
are open air and made from tropical hardwood with screened
windows. The ecolodge grounds are located on eight open acres of
grass and shade trees surrounded by rainforest and mangroves.
The main lodge has two guests rooms with separate bathroom and
shower facilities just steps away.
The Deluxe Rainforest Cabin is isolated against the rainforest for the
ultimate in privacy and has itís own bathroom and shower facilities.
This cabin is spacious and private accommodating up to 4 people.
There is also a
front and back porch.
The rainforest cabin is also set against the rainforest but closer to
the main lodge. The bathrooms and shower facilities are
shared and just steps away. This cabin also comes with a front
There is a 400 square foot rancho near our stream and a smaller
rancho as well for guests to enjoy.
Responsible tourism practices. How is impact upon Costa Rica's local environment minimized?: Sabalo Lodge runs off a robust solar power system for electrical
needs. The ecolodge has installed 100% low voltage florescent bulbs, a
timer switch for the refrigerator and biodegradable soaps are used. A grey water system is in development. This area will have raised sides with
banana plants and sweet potatoes growing. These two plants help
filter the water and the grey water helps us grow food.
The ecolodge has special recycling waste baskets in each room. They separate
the recycled trash and bring it into the nearest recycling center in the
town of Sierpe.
Sabalo Lodge does a lot more and a comprehensive overview of
ecotourism policies can be found on their website.
How is the local community involved?: Sabalo Lodge donates 5% of itís profits from tourism to the local school in the local
community of Sabalo. The lodge sources out fresh produce and fish within a
25 mile radius of the lodge to help give back to the community. They
have developed and continue to look for interesting tours that involve
the community as well. We use local tour guides and local boat taxis.
Does the presence of ecotourism leave a positive impact upon Costa Rica's local environment and community? If so, how?: Yes. Sabalo Lodge only allows 12 guests at a time to minimize the
impact on Osa Peninsula's environment and the local community. Guests are given
ecotourism guidelines on how to respect the local
community and interact with them. The community of Sabalo has no
real commerce so they hope to help a few familyís with new
opportunities brought about by tourism. There are no other lodges in this part of the Osa Peninsula of Costa Rica.
Who owns the lodging facilities (ecolodge)? Is it communally, or individually owned?: Privately owned.
Further information: Sabalo Lodge has been instrumental in protecting the environment
around the ecolodge. They brought in the health department at our own
expense to shut down an illegal foreigner owned pig and chicken farm
that was polluting part of the Osa Peninsula. They also reported another foreigner that
illegally cut some trees down in the Osa Peninsula.