4 Days Tropical Cooking Holidays in Costa Rica

  • Guayabo Lodge Cooking School, Santa Cruz de Turrialba, Costa Rica

4 Days Tropical Cooking Holidays in Costa Rica

  • Guayabo Lodge Cooking School, Santa Cruz de Turrialba, Costa Rica

Culinary Holiday in Costa Rica

Given the success of their Tropical Cooking School, Guayabo Lodge proudly presents to all their guests their unique Tropical Cooking Program that combines nature, culture, and culinary art. Learn about rural dishes, turrialba cheese, and fusion kitchen. Learn how to cook typical Costa Rican dishes, learn more in-depth information on the ingredients and immerse into local culture and habits through participation in rural farms. Go on a variety of tours to learn more about the Costa Rican culture as well as discover nature's hidden treasures. The Costa Rican way of life will provide for an unforgettable experience.


  • Garden and bird tour
  • Introduction to cooking tour
  • Hands-on tropical cooking class
  • Visit the Turrialba Volcano for its renowned cheese
  • Daily breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • Canopy and canyoning tour
  • 3 nights accommodation
  • 3 days with instruction
  • English
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Guayabo Lodge offers 24 standard rooms and 4 mountain suites designed to give you the comfort you need while travelling through Costa Rica. Because the hotel is at 1500 meters, the temperature is pleasantly cool and no fans or air conditioning is needed in this area. Rooms are cheerful, light, and well decorated: each in a different way and with their own color scheme. The decoration of the rooms and of the lodge in general, is based on folk art with an emphasis on the nature that directly surrounds the lodge. Local artists have painted the murals in the social areas.


  • 26 comfortable rooms
  • Balconies with panoramic views
  • Ecological soap and shampoo
  • Hair dryer
  • Private bathrooms with hot shower
  • Table and chairs
  • Twin, full or queen size beds

Day 1 - Arrival

  • Check in at Guayabo Lodge and enjoy a free cocktail at Smoky Volcano Bar.
  • Relax and take in the beautiful scenery of the Turrialba Valley in front and the Turrialba Volcano at the back.
  • You will be given an introduction to the cooking tour you are taking and the special region you are in.
  • At 19:00, you will be served dinner at Granadilla Restaurant.

Day 2 - Bird tour, cooking class

  • After breakfast, you will participate in a short garden and bird tour, which will familiarize you with the richness of the area you are in. This will include a visit to the orchid and bromeliad garden, the nurseries with organic vegetable production, the herbs, and the small animal component.
  • Back at the lodge, you will head for the tropical cooking school, where you will start with your first cooking class. The class includes the hands-on preparation of a three-course meal with traditional cooking and fusion kitchen elements.
  • Enjoy what you prepared with a glass of the house wine for lunch!
  • The Turrialba Volcano is renowned for its cheese, which bears the same name. After lunch, you will visit a traditional farm with a guide and will participate in the milking and local cheese making process.
  • At the farm, you will enjoy a traditional coffee break with agua dulce and farmhouse goodies, typical of the Turrialba Volcano.
  • Around 17:00, you will be heading back to the lodge, where you can enjoy a drink at Smoky Volcano Bar.
  • Dinner will be served at 19:00.

Day 3 - Cooking class, canyoning tour

  • This morning, you will be exploring the rural kitchen. Your guide will take you to a hands-on class with Doa Damaris. With her, you will be making some very traditional dishes, like olla de carne, bizcocho, tamal asado, and picadillos.
  • After lunch in Damaris kitchen, you will go on an active adventure tour. Participate in the best canopy and canyoning tour in Costa Rica. Be ready to get wet! This tour includes rappelling down four waterfalls, zip lining down four canopy cables, and walking across a 132-foot hanging bridge - all giving you an unforgettable adrenaline rush! No previous knowledge or experience is necessary. If this is too much for you, you can go on another tour.
  • Dinner will be served at the lodge at 19:00.

Day 4 - Departure

  • Today, you are free to plan on a day activity to your leisure or check out and drive to your next destination.
  • If you decide for a day activity, let the reception know.

Guayabo Lodge is a beautiful light and airy lodge at 1500 meters above sea level, set in a rich garden, surrounded by the pastures of a dairy farm. It is at half an hour from the bustling town of Turrialba. The eco-lodge is in the center of a region that offers a great diversity of tours and activities for all ages, like river rafting, visits to the Irazu Volcano and Lankester gardens, birding, hiking, the Orosi Valley, and many more.

The eco-lodge has spectacular views of the Turrialba Valley and the Talamanca Mountain range to the south, the Turrialba Volcano to the north, Santa Cruz to the east, and pastures and mountains to the west. On clear days, you can observe from the lodge three of the four highest mountains of the country: the Chirripo (3820 meters above sea level), the massif Cerro de la Muerte, with its highest peak at 3431 meters above sea level and the Turrialba Volcano (3340 meters above sea level). Although Guayabo Lodge is just a few kilometers from the Irazu Volcano (3.432 meters above sea level), you cannot see it from the lodge, but it can easily be visited.

The resort is located in one of Costa Rica's richest regions as for bird and plant species. Because of its strategic setting as a natural pathway to South America and to the north, the differences in altitudes and the abundant rainfall, the Turrialba area possesses an undocumented richness that includes species that are found nowhere else in the country, like the Guaria Turrialba (Cattleya dowiana), known as the most beautiful natural Cattleya orchid species in the world.

  • Cooking classes
  • Horse riding / rental nearby
  • Kayak nearby
  • Mountain biking nearby
  • Zip lining nearby
  • Balcony
  • Bar
  • Concierge desk
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Fireplace
  • Garden
  • Lobby
  • Luggage room
  • Kitchen
  • Restaurant
  • Free toiletries
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Hair dryer
  • Tour assistance
  • Aquiares Church, waterfall
  • Biking
  • CATIE collections
  • Coffee tour
  • Guayabo monument
  • Hacienda tour
  • Hiking
  • Horseback riding
  • Irazu volcano
  • Lankester gardens
  • Organic sugarcane
  • Orosi valley
  • Rafting
  • Rain forest and ruins
  • Santa Cruz & Aquiares
  • Schools community projects
  • Snake project viborana
  • Tortilla lesson
  • Tree planting
  • 1 bottle of wine
  • 1 cocktail per person
  • 1 tropical cooking school apron per person and recipes
  • 3 nights accommodation
  • All meals
  • Different tours and cooking classes as described in program
  • Airfare
  • Guide
  • Optional activity on day 4
  • Personal expenses
  • Transport

Driving directions from San Jos

  • Follow the road to Cartago-Volcan Irazu; at the crossing where there is a big statue of Christ, just before reaching Cot, keep on the right and follow Pacayas, Capellades.
  • After Capellades follow Santa Cruz, Turrialba. Do not turn left to the Turrialba Volcano!
  • Before reaching Santa Cruz Center, turn right in front of the cemetery, on to the private dirt road that leads to the Lodge (300m down).

Driving directions from Turrialba

  • Follow road to Turrialba, Santa Rosa, Santa Cruz. Do not go to Guayabo monument!
  • After Santa Cruz Center, turn left in front of the cemetery; to the private dirt road that leads to the lodge (300m down).

Arrival by airplane

The nearest airport to the location is San Jose International Airport (SJC).


  • San Jose International Airport (SJC) - 2 hours
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid on arrival.


  • Review by Jose C
    10 out of 10

    "It's my second time on this lodge and I still amazed with the breathtaking views of the Turrialba Volcano and Valley."

    "The lodge is managed by the owners so the service is nice and quick and they make you feel like you're a part of their family, also they serve very tasty food options and there is a good variety of drinks. It's the perfect place for couples or group trips, highly recommend!"

    Trip Advisor website, edited

  • Review by David P.
    10 out of 10

    "My wife and I were on our honeymoon and the level of service and hospitality were amazing. Cesear and Norma took care of us as the bar tender and chef. Cesear was an excellent host and telling us all about Costa Rica and giving us a guide in their garden. We really can't say enough great things about the staff, the beautiful views and the amazing food and drinks. Gracias!"

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by Martinsin from Guatemala
    10 out of 10

    "I took my family to this unique hotel located very close to the Turrialba Volcano, the lodge its very nice, amazing country sight, awesome garden, comfortable beds, yummy food! We had a delicious meal! I highly recommend it! Thank you all - Don Pedro, Roxanna, Cesar, and Juliana for make our familiar trip very special, we hope to come back in the future."

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by Robert Z
    10 out of 10

    "Very nice, quiet, wonderful setting overlooking valley. Lobby, room, and bathrooms were all fine and priced in medium range in Costa Rica. I am resident of Costa Rica so I have seen it all. Dinner of trout was great. Breakfast which was included was good. The owners and the girl from Germany who welcomed us were all very nice along with rest of staff. Only problem was the Turriblabla Volcano was not open so you should check on that before the trip, but Irazu Volcano was close and great experience to see. This hotel is very nice property to experience."

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by a traveler from California
    10 out of 10

    "We visited Guayabo Lodge last Saturday, December 5, 2015, and arrived after dusk. The lobby is colorful and welcoming. The staff made us feel welcomed and comfortable right away. Our room was spacious, clean, and quiet. The dining area is simple and the menu is small but they easily accommodate the menu to your needs in order to serve fresh dishes. They had a nice table for us and that made us feel wonderful. Costa Rican breakfast was included: fresh fruits like pineapple, papaya, and bananas, gallo pinto, scrambled eggs, fresh Turrialba cheese, bread, coffee, tea, and juice.The garden around the property has full of exquisite collection of flowers, birds, butterflies, and curious insects. Far and near, the views are beautiful. This place is a perfect spot to spend the night between Cartago and Turrialba, and to be located close to touristic places such as Volcan Irazu, Parque Arqueologico de Guayabo, Volcan Turrilaba, river rafting in the Pacuare (all of them 30 - 45 minutes from here).You can perfectly spend 2 or 3 nights here if you are planning to visit the national parks in the area and avoiding staying in Turrilaba Town (where parking is difficult)."

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by Julie D. from United States
    10 out of 10

    "My family (2 adults, 2 children ages 9 and 12) spent three nights at Guayabo Lodge. We were in a room on the second floor with gorgeous views of the valley. We flew into San Jose and drove to the lodge. We had a GPS so the lodge was easy to find. Pedro and his team were excellent hosts! We ate breakfast one morning and dinner all three evenings we were at the lodge. The meals were fresh and tasty!We booked our activities prior to leaving for Costa Rica, but Pedro provided additional insight and we were pleased that we had booked with his recommended tour operators. All in all, Guayabo is a wonderful lodge. The room was clean, beds were comfortable, the views were amazing - a great place to call home while we were in Turrialba. Thank you Pedro!"

    Trip Advisor website, edited

  • Review by a traveler from Canada
    10 out of 10

    "It's a very well located lodge with a great view of the valley and the volcanoes. Many rooms have balconies overlooking the valley."

    "The rooms are spacious with modern bathrooms. It has nice common areas to relax and read. The dinner menu choice is however limited. Overall, it's a very pleasant stop-over during the long journey across the mountains to travel from the Caribbean to the Pacific coast."

    Trip Advisor website, edited

  • Review by a traveler from Costa Rica
    10 out of 10

    "Our 2-night visit to Guayabo Lodge last March 2015 was extremely comfortable and welcoming. From here our objective was easily reached to tour the Pre-Columbian Guayabo village dig site, a national monument, the only real such ancient site in Costa Rica and an education in itself. Read up on it beforehand or employ the services of a guide at the park entrance. Another highlight was a morning's visit to a hidden-away very Tico restaurant, owned by friends of don Pedro, the kindly host at Guayabo Lodge, where doa Rosa and familia gave us a lesson in making fabulous corn tortillas and a great Tico lunch!! The WiFi didn't work in our rooms unfortunately but we will return!"

    Trip Advisor website, edited

Santa Cruz de Turrialba, Costa Rica

Guayabo Lodge is a mountain hotel in Costa Rica that motivates sustainable tourism. It is situated on the Turrialba volcano.

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4 days / 3 nights

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