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Reviewed 27 August 2018

I enjoyed a wonderful jungle and double beach adventure at Mariposa Jungle Lodge in June/July. The owners and staff adjusted my itinerary to fit my interests as well as suggested interesting excursions and experiences where I learned about the Mayan people and the ancient civilization, especially during an adventure to Caracol, cave tubing through sacred caves, and a night hike at Bol’s Museum Cave. I spent a day exploring San Ignacio with a special guide, Tosh, the towns first women taxi driver who introduced me to other women-owned businesses in town. At the shore, I learned about the Garifuna culture and enjoyed a private island experience where I snorkeled in the middle of the Caribbean Sea.

It was truly an unbelievable experience as a special guest of the Mariposa Jungle Lodge. Everyone gave a five-star service, the food was great, and the tour guides and experiences were unique and eye-opening.

I highly recommend the Mariposa Jungle Lodge and its partners. To read more about my experience, visit Girls That Roam.

Room Tip: Every cabana is unique and the resort owners and general manager will guide you to the best cabana and tour for your vacation.
  • Stayed: July 2018, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank girlsthatroam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 August 2018

When heading to Mariposa lodge in Belize I really didn’t know where we were headed or what to expect. A wonderful man named Augusto met us at the airport and drove us to our lodge. He shared some information about their country along the way and talked about some great attractions to see while we were there. When we arrived at the Mariposa lodge the lovely oasis they have created in the middle of the jungle pleasantly surprised us. The rooms were nice and had air conditioning! The staffs were incredibly friendly and accommodating above and beyond our expectations. Freddie and Gion were great! They took the time to get to know us and made every effort to ensure we had everything we needed. While at the lodge (NelMarie in particular) arranged an incredible adventure for us every day.

The first day we went on a zip lining adventure at Calico Jacks, which I highly recommend! The second day we went to the Xunantunich with Augusto for our guide. Heading down our walkway to leave we were treated with howler monkeys playing in the trees above us. This trip was amazing and Augusto had a wealth of knowledge to share with us. Another bonus was a hand cranked river fairy to get to our destination. On the third day we went on a cave tubing adventure near Belize City. Damian was our guide for this trip and he was incredible. He made everything interesting and above all a lot of fun! The water and caves were stunning.

Overall we felt like Mariposa lodge was truly a magical place and felt sad to be leaving! I give my highest recommendations to Mariposa for anyone interested in a truly amazing and unforgettable jungle experience!

  • Stayed: July 2018, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank AddyAnnRJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
sbrink, Owner at Mariposa Jungle Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 10 August 2018

We were sad to see you leave!

The Mariposa team loves to see their name in print, so I thank you on their behalf. It's always gratifying to learn that our efforts are appreciated.

Thank you for choosing our little piece of paradise and for taking the time to post this excellent review. We hope to see you again!

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Reviewed 30 July 2018

Our stay in Mariposa was the TRIP OF A LIFETIME for this well-travelled European family. We have memories and experiences to share for many years to come!

Before travelling to Belize, do your research. A car ride on an unpaved road is known as a “Belizean massage”! We were ok with the heat, as we are California based, but the humidity keeps you constantly in a sweat and Mom’s hair developed a frizz that she could not beat down! Clips and ponytails ladies!

Organize excursions/trips your family will enjoy before you hop on your plane to Belize! There is just too much to do and see! Put your trust in knowledgeable Sharyn Brinker, owner of Mariposa, to provide you an itinerary. She works with amazing Guides and offered up excursions for this family that always worked. She simply gets it.

On arrival to Belize Airport, we were met by Wilton, our smiling Guide, who took our luggage and drove us to Belize Zoo in its jungle setting. He was knowledgeable about the animals (rescued, rehabilitated, donated). We all loved the playful baby Tapir!

After, we headed to Cheers restaurant where you can order fries, burgers (tourist food) as well as Belizean food. Try the Rice and Beans or the Beans and Rice. Two different dishes by the way!

We spent a week at Mariposa with activities every day, bar one. On our free day, we meandered the sign-posted jungle trails on Mariposa grounds, played disc golf (Frisbee), swam in the pool and sipped on Rum Punch and Fanta! Definitely try Belikin Beer, brewed for Belizeans only! They really should share it abroad!

We advised Sharyn in advance of our trip, that we have a lactose-intolerant and a very selective eater to contend with. Chef Esan and his Assistant, Eilda, had our selective eater looking forward to tasty chicken plus delicious seasoned soups. Hallelujah. Chef Esan is experienced with selective eaters. He has changed our lives for sure. I made carrot soup when we returned home and it was consumed with lip-licking satisfaction. Thank you Esan. Our hero.

Everyone speaks English and Spanish. We found every single person at Mariposa, patient and professional. Each evening at dinner, either Nell or Sharyn explained our itinerary for the next day.

Our Servers at Mariposa were Freddy for dinner, Gian for breakfast and lunch. Two well-mannered, patient souls. Freddie makes killer Rum Punches with Belizean Rum. Mom is hooked! Freddie also made both our kids much-anticipated and “lit” smoothies every evening.

Shirley Bol is a licensed Massage Therapist who also multi-tasks at Mariposa. She gave this Mom her first-ever Swedish massage. Hand on heart declaration - Shirley has the hands of an angel.

We enjoyed our “Belizean Massage” to the jaw dropping Rio Frio Cave and then on to Caracol Mayan site (blows your mind), followed by a packed Mariposa lunch. Homeward bound, we swam at Big Rock Falls. Augusto, our licensed guide, is like a walking Wikipedia! He pointed out Howler monkies, native birds as well as enlightened us about the 50-year Mayan Drought, Mayan sacrifices, their temples, and their amazing civilizations. Epic day out.

The family took a half-day jungle horseback ride and loved everything they learned from Guide José and his young son, Christopher, who chatted up a storm with our 11 year old. They had a blast.

Another day, under the guidance of Gilroy, we visited a local Mayan site near Mariposa and saw how the jungle consumed Mayan structures. We then headed off on a road trip, hiked into the jungle and visited unnamed Waterfalls. We were the only humans present. We climbed the Falls and took a dip in the tepid-water ponds followed with a Mariposa packed lunch! Gilroy carried a machete to trim back the trail overgrowth! He was taught as a child by his Mayan parents to keep the trails clear. He does this with pride and without payment!

After dinner one night, we went on a jungle night hike, in long sleeves, pants and flashlights/couple headlights with Gilroy. It was a surreal experience. A Margay (wild cat) checked us out from a safe distance! When we got to an elevated point, Gilroy talked about the stars. We could easily see the Milky Way.

We spent a perfect day on a Pontoon River Boat with Lazarus – a man deserving of a PBS documentary! He dug out, by hand, an enormous pond in front of his home for fish to sell at market. He also leveled, by hand, a jungle area with scenic views for a Helipad that accommodates two Helicopters!! He has the hands of steel! We sailed on calm waters where Vaca Dam turned the Macal River into a lake. The kids wore life vests, were pulled behind in a raft float, while Dad and Mom trailed their legs in the clear water. We got to jump into the lake from a rope on a tree and sailed right up to a waterfall to be drenched by the spray. We were the only souls on the whole river. Not a speck of litter in sight. Lazarus pointed out a large Iguana in a tree, bats on a rock and oh yeah, a crocodile! Damian, our guide and brother to Augusto, cooked us all an amazing BBQ on the Pontoon.

We visited San Ignacio on a Saturday for the Farmer’s Market and moved easily among the locals. Souvenirs are cheaper here than in stores. We had lunch in an air-conditioned nearby restaurant where we watched coverage of the World Cup (Soccer) in Spanish. Thereafter, we crossed the Mopan River on a hand-cranked ferry to Xunantunich with our Guide, Augusto. Wonderful history. Beautiful views. Just magic. Following, we visited a Belizean Chocolate Factory/Store (yum, yum) and then headed to an Iguana Sanctuary where we got to hold and feed over twenty big and medium-sized banana loving Iguanas.

Selwyn, another experienced Guide, took us on a canoe trip through Barton Creek Cave. His Mayan parents instilled a love and respect of the earth. He felt confident when both kids asked to go in their own canoe as our thirteen year old learned how to kayak recently at a summer camp. Mom hesitated. Selwyn never flinched and he was right. Both kids confidently handled their own canoe.

Our Mariposa Cabana was very comfortable with aircon and fans. We also had a big bathroom, a fridge and safe. We enjoyed the hammock in a screened in porch where we watched parrots and toucans. The grounds are peaceful and well kept. Mariposa provides pool towels. They supply them also for water excursions.

We never got one mosquito bite in the jungle. Keep your bug spray for the lower elevations where the mossies will seek you out!

Needless to say, Mariposa is a must for your stay in the Belize Jungle. Enjoy watching your children absorb life and appreciate the world through Mariposa’s Guides (tip in Dollars).

We were so pleased to be so active on our first week in the Belizean jungle. Our second week was a little quieter in San Pedro, at Sunset Beach Resort, under the care of Juan Carlos, the Concierge. Another Belizean gentle soul.

Room Tip: All the Cabanas are on well lit paths.
  • Stayed: July 2018, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank fumbally8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
sbrink, Owner at Mariposa Jungle Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 5 August 2018

My words are inadequate to express my appreciation for this amazing review. Jim was spot-on when he complimented your exceptional communication skills. Thank you so much for taking the time to write such a detailed and thoughtful report.

After more than a week together, we felt like part of our family had left us, but you left fond memories. We'll send B some soup recipes.

I'm sure your substantive comments will be helpful to future guests of Mariposa Jungle Lodge and we cannot thank you enough. We wish your family a lifetime of health, happiness, love, and adventure!

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Reviewed 5 July 2018

The rooms were well-appointed, comfy mattress & pillows, but the upper bed frame holding the mosquito net was on the flimsy side. The on-demand shower was very slow to heat up but it was not much of a bother as long as you didn't mind wasting water in the process. We found that some of our towels were frayed, the wall mounted fake fire place didn't work and the fridge was noisy. No big deal...just little things.
The grounds were manicured to a tee and well lit at night.
The working staff on the floor were friendly and they worked hard to please the guests especially Freddie and Jian that were two nice young men that we felt are the needed youthful face of the place. Good positive energy from those two guys.
Our excursion to Caracol and points beyond with Agusto was epic and the highlight of our visit to Mariposa. Agusto was professional and knowledgeable about "everything"... every plant, bird, nut and Mayan historical fact was explained in perfect detail. Augusto is a smart guy and a BIG asset to the place. The lunch on the excursion was probably the best meal we had while staying at Mariposa. The breakfasts & dinners on-site were well-presented but the portions were very much on the light side for us.
It's a nice place for a couple nights and is good for families with younger children.

  • Stayed: July 2018, travelled with friends
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank Vin S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
sbrink, Owner at Mariposa Jungle Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 6 July 2018

While I thank Vin for this detailed review, I will address a couple of things. Of course, we appreciate the positive comments, especially about our excellent staff members. But I'm both confused and concerned about some of this guest's perspectives.

As an eco-resort, we made an extra investment in on-demand, individual hot water heaters to save water and energy by providing instant hot water only when needed. They do this.

It is definitely below our standards to present frayed towels. I am reviewing our guest towel inventory with our housekeeping staff to remove any towels showing signs of aging.

The "fake" fireplace is an electric wall fireplace that offers ambiance and some optional heat. We were not aware there was an issue. Electronic devices are vulnerable in our jungle environment and we realize the remote control devices are not always reliable. We cannot address problems if they are not brought to our attention.

I apologize if the vibration sound from the mini-frig disturbed our guest’s tranquility. This happens from time to time. We will do our best to fix it or replace it.

As to meal portions being on the light side, our General Manager personally asked this guest and his party for feedback on meals, and specifically reminded them they were welcome to ask for larger portions or seconds. This review is our first notice that our guest considered the portions inadequate. Given the desire to avoid waste, we offer what we consider European rather than U.S. portions but do our best to convey to guests that more is available on request. We encourage our guests to keep us informed of anything we can do to improve their stay and I regret we failed this guest.

Overall, we appreciate the guest’s comment that these little things were “no big deal” and we welcome learning about areas where we can improve our quality service. I only regret that we were not made aware of the issues while he was here, so we could have addressed them and earned more than this 3-star review.

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Reviewed 10 June 2018

Nel and her husband Esau and their children are wonderful at what they do and, moreover, are very hospitable. Esau is a trained chef and each meal was fantastic. Nel was a wonderful organizer and made certain that everything was planned in advanced and that we had lots of great ideas for safely experiencing Western Belize. Her sister is a superb masseuse, and we recommend getting the Mayan Massage. 90 minutes that were so cleansing and relaxing!
Freddie and Geon are the bartender/servers and are very detail-oriented. They were very warm and engaging and made us feel special the entire trip.
Wilton was our tour guide. A trained tour guide who knows his stuff, but also is very kind, warm and engaging. He made our excursions very fun.
We visited Bol's cave (a must see private cave with Mayan artifacts), one of the nearby Mayan ruins, went Ziplining (through the gorgeous jungle, I might add), made chocolate the way of the ancients, shopped at a local market and visited an iguana sanctuary, where you can hold and feed over twenty iguanas.

The rooms were very nice and in a jungle setting and there is a very nice pool and poolside area. miles of nature trails through the jungle are well kept by Wilton, Freddie and Geon when they are not attending to guests. We saw and heard many Howler Monkeys during the trip. They were wild and just playing and eating up in the trees around the lodge.

Overall a perfect setting with clean, nice cabanas and a skillful and warm staff with a personal "family" touch.

I highly recommend these trustworthy folks to be your guide to the backwoods of the Belizean rainforest!

Room Tip: We loved the Iguana cabana because it is built around trees and is sort of like a "treehouse"
  • Stayed: June 2018, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank jimjirjis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
sbrink, Manager at Mariposa Jungle Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 12 June 2018

Thank you, Jim, for adding another wonderful review to our TripAdvisor collection. As always, I'm delighted to see my exceptional staff recognized and appreciated by name. It means so much to us all. The Mariposa crew makes guests feel special because we believe you ARE each special and deserving of VIP treatment. We appreciate your choice of staying at our little piece of paradise and your taking the time to post this thoughtful review. We wish you a lifetime of good health and great adventures.

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