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Reviewed July 10, 2012

What a wonderful week long experience centered at the Lodge with daily "adventures". We swam at the "falls", made chocolate, saw and touched plants with healing qualities, met and shared lunch with Mayan people at their homes, learned drumming with Garifuna people, listened to the howler monkeys and the grunting sound of the toad fish (actually a toad). Our stay was in June which is the rainy season so we experienced heavy rains during the night, coupled with an orchestra of thunder and lightning from the comfortable surroundings of our cabana.The tours we took on various farms were both educational and exhilarating. This is truly an adventure vacation with life altering impact on our twelve year old grandchild who summed up the week by saying "I have walked in other people's shoes".

Room Tip: There are 11 cabanas at Cotton Tree Lodge. We were assigned #1 which gave us a view of the Moho River as well as being close to the Lodge building itself.
  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
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3  Thank Tony S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed July 1, 2012

We booked our trip to Cotton Tree Lodge through a Groupon which made it a good deal so we were lucky for that. Overall the best parts of our time there was the trip to Eladio Pop's Cacao Farm - he is an amazing local who will tour you through his jungle farm, teach you about all the plants he works with and afterwards treats you to lunch cooked by his wife and large family of 15 kids as well as roast and grind up chocolate for you to take home - that day alone made the whole trip to Belize worthwhile! Some of the other tours offered by CTL are not as much worth the cost...we also couldn't go to any of the caves because the water was too high at the time we were there, that was a bummer. The resort also tries to get all the guests to coordinate trips which can be awkward...if you are banking on a specific day trip it may be worthwhile to arrange it in advance with CTL. The grounds are beautiful and rooms are nice - and it is definitely in the jungle - there are strange bugs, reptile run-ins, the sounds of howler monkeys and tons of mosquitos, and many kinds of tropical birds (do the morning bird walk if you like birds).

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with friends
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Thank Angie L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed June 23, 2012

The ECO-lodge is located on the bank of a gentle river which is great for a swim which is far better than in a pool. They have a huge number of staff, both locals and also foreigners who do project work in eco tourism.
We had booked a 5 days/night package. Since we had aimed for one not so popular (because strenuous) activity we had to choose another option, which was a bit disappointing. All in all 4 days would been sufficient. From the tours we especially enjoyed the two where you get in close contact with the local Maya people: the Tortilla workshop (really hands on!) with Mrs. Pou and the tour of Eladio's cocoa farm.
We stayed at the honeymoon cabana which has a nice jacuzzi bathtub; we used it not only for the laundry, but also for warming up after a swim in heavy rain. The majority of cottages are pretty close to each other. With the open building style you can hear your neighbours (and even beyond) talking and snoring. On the other hand you also hear the voices of the jungle as well; especially impressive was the noice of the howler monkeys which some people saw pretty close.
The insects were a nuissance despite all the repelant we had put on! Especially impressive was the noice of the howler monkeys which some people saw pretty close.
The variety, quality (from their own gardens) and preparation of food was very good. The atmopshere is informal with dinner being served at a large table most of the time.
We found the prices for the drinks excessively high.

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank sunshineVienna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed May 8, 2012

Amazing place! We wanted a "different" kind of vacation and got that and more at the CTL. From the staff to the tours everything was great. Food was fresh and home-made. Tours were fun and a great learning experience.
Our cabana was comfy and had a very cool rustic feel to it.
Beautiful surroundings that make you feel like you are in the jungle!
Yes we did have some run-ins with the locals in our room...1 big tarantula in our bathroom but it's all part of the experience! hahaha.
Be sure to say hi to "Mr. Miss" the Lodge Kitty. He is a cute feline that loves to be pet. We miss him!

Highlights:
Laying in bed in the pitch dark listening to the howler monkeys!
Snorkeling the "cayes". Amazing!
Learning more about the Maya culture in Belize

My only complaint is that they don't have every tour available every day. We had to skip one tour and take another.

To recap it was a great experience and if you can put up with some wildlife and no AC this is the place!

Room Tip: Get a room with a Hammock! i spent a ton of time it! super relaxing. If you're up for a wild time get the "jungle hut" it's tucked way back in the jungle.
  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled with friends
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5  Thank litespeed74
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed May 5, 2012

We had an wonderful time at the Cotton Tree Lodge! It’s a trip we’ll never forget. The jungle is beautiful. It was interesting learning about the local Mayan way of life. The adventures are fun. The people are hospitable. And the lodge itself is great. As someone else put it “fantastic for anyone slightly adventurous”

The food was really good. We did the all inclusive package, which means we eat the meals they prepare (not from the bar menu which cost extra). I was concerned since my girlfriend doesn't usually like many different kinds of food. But we both really enjoyed all the included meals. And dinner with everyone at night was fun. As someone else notes, for better or worse you get to know some of the other travelers. Also as others note, there are insects. Typically I have a pretty strong aversion to bugs, but I was really ok. We saw one or two bigger ones in our cabana, but they hid, we slept with nets, and besides, I kind of understood we are in their territory - it's not like finding one in my apartment at home. When we were outside, we used deet and wore long sleeves and pants to keep off the sun and bugs (I recommend EMS's techwick shirts and EMS pants - I found them comfortable even when it was warm).

Our trip was a blast! We loved it! I am so happy we decided to go! Thank you CTL!!!

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank David B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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