Many hotels in Costa Rica call themselves remote, but not all require a two-hour boat trip through mangrove swamps and out into the Pacific Ocean. Hidden high up in the jungle overlooking the beauty of Drake Bay (Sir Francis clearly enjoyed the view, too), on the southern tip of Costa Rica, La Paloma Lodge attracts mainly nature lovers who have come to discover the Parque National Corcovado and is both luxurious and designed in aesthetic harmony with the environment.
A twenty-minute boat ride takes visitors to the park office, from where multilingual guides lead parties into more than 100,000 acres (40,470 ha) of virgin and secondary rain forest. Other tours include kayaking, horseback riding, bird-watching, and a particularly unforgettable and fascinating night-bug tour—not one for arachnophobes, certainly. Cano Island, 12 nautical miles (22.2 km) off the Osa Peninsula, as the whole area is known, is an archaeologist’s dream. Perfectly round spheres, varying in size from a soccer ball to some 6.5 feet (2 m) high, were brought to the island by pre-Columbian indigenous groups. It still remains a historic puzzle.
For those who want more privacy, there are seven deluxe “Sunset Ranchos,” two-story cabins perched on a cliff top, with only the melody of the jungle and the crashing of the Pacific to disturb the silence.