Where to stay in Manzanillo in Costa Rica – Congo Bongo Beach Rental Houses
Visiting Costa Rica, I stayed 10 days in the Caribbean exploring its beaches and other beautifyl things this area had to offer. Second half of my stay I decided for Congo Bongo Beach Rental Houses.
Congo Bongo is a complex of 6 rental houses just 200 metres from the stunning private Manzanillo beach surrounded by a tropical forest. Congo which in Spanish in Costa Rica means howler monkey was given as the name of the rental houses because of many howler monkeys living around. Yes, you hear me, you will have monkeys in your own garden! How cool is that!
But there are many more things I loved about Congo Bongo:
- privacy – all the 6 houses are completely private in the area of 6 hectares, no one will see what you are doing! I so enjoyed that. You can go around in swim suit or underwear and no one will say a word! In which hotel can you do that?
- the best staff ever – Daan, Marisol and Masai, the owner family, are the best! They treated me like part of the family, they were so helpful with every stupid need I had. They even invited me for lunch and juice. And I even got a present from them when I was leaving. I fell in love with them, such a nice family! And they take care of 4 dogs who didn’t have where to stay or who were injured. They even rented me a bicycle to go to visit Jaguar Rescue Centre. I will miss you, guys!
- silence – apart from the noise of the jungle and the animals living there, there is nothng else that could disturb your relax. You will get used to the animals and after a short while you won’t even notice they make noise. The same with the howler monkeys and their howling at 4 or 5 am, it just fits the place and without it you wouldn’t feel like in the middle of the jungle. It just belongs there and each time before I went to sleep, I was already looking forward to listening the howler monkeys early morning.
- wifi – as a digital nomad I can’t live without it and even though I came to Congo Bongo to properly relax myself, I still needed to go online. Daan will give you the mobile internet stick to use with your laptop in your rental house. In case your laptop is striking (like mine was) or you don’t have any laptop with you, you can still use wifi with your laptop in Daan’s office, or there use the laptop Daan offers for the visitors. The wifi there is really fast for anything you would need. And just for you to see how nice the owner, Daan, is, he even left there a mosquito repellent for me as he knows I am being eaten alive by mosquitos, bugs, ants and just any other insects that exist.
- king-size bed – yes, I had a king-size bed! To be honest I had 2 big bedrooms with big beds just for myself (is is supposed to accommodate up to 4 persons), I could have swapped the rooms every night if I wanted to 🙂
- mosquito net – around both beds. I was so thankful for this. No mosquitoes at night. Easy to get a beauty sleep 🙂
- 200 metres from the beach – just a few minutes walking to get to the beach. You will walk the private path through the tropical garden full of jungle trees, flowers, banana trees, cross a small river and see a lot of lizards and crabs who are the inhabitants of this place. I have never stayed at a place like this where to get to the beach you have to walk through the jungle! To say that I enjoyed it like hell is an understatement! And the beach is a paradise! It was my favorite beach out of all the Caribbean beaches in Costa Rica I visited. Check out some sexy photos from Manzanillo beach. I was there alone most of the time, perfect!
- hammock – there is a hammock outside at the porch and I loved reading in it.
- rocking chairs – I never knew I could so enjoy them. I spent half of every day sitting there and writing on my laptop.
- laundry – that was a super quick laundry in Congo Bongo. Every day if you want, you can just leave your dirty clothes outside in the basket and they will wash them for you. I was shocked when each time I got my clothes back within 4 hours, smelling nice and even ironed!
- porch and kitchen – my Root House got a really big porch, i.e. big open living room with a fully-equipped kitchen (electric cook, fridge, pans, plates, cups, coffee maker, toaster, etc.) I don’t like cooking, that is well-known, but in this kitchen just in the middle of the jungle, it was a very nice experience… and then eat what I cooked in the rocking chair 🙂
- safety box – there is a safety box in each room so I was not scared to leave my valuables there and leave.
- night security – Jose, the night guide, is walking around from 5 pm (it gets dark around 6 pm) so no need to worry in the jungle. He is always there when you need him.
- shower – the bathroom is big, with open shower with hot water and soap. What I loved the most about the shower was that I could take a shower watching the tropical garden. At the head level there is just a firm net instead of the wall around the bathroom. Where else can you take a showe without anyone being able to see you while you can observe butterflies and humming birds flying around the beautiful flowers of the jungle garden??
- outside shower – out of the tree there is a shower made outside the house, next to the porch and hammock. I’ve never seen such a cool idea!
- separate toilet – I just like when the toilet is not in the bathroom but it is separated. Toilet paper is provided.
- drinking water included – I drink a lot of water, which together with fresh fruit juices is the only thing I pretty much drink, when it is hot even 3 – 4 litres a day. So having free drinking water is very helpful for me. I didn’t have to walk to Manzanillo town and then back with the water bottles.
- free bottle of wine – I stopped drinking alcohol on the 1st January 2009 but for wine lovers, it is a very nice present waiting on the table of your rental house when you come. It was one of famous Chilean wines 🙂
- tours – you can book tours at the reception. Congo Bongo is working with the best ones in the tourism industry of the area. There are leaflets with tours and books about Costa Rica and its wildlife animals on the table of your rental house.
- each house is different – I really liked the idea that each of 6 rental houses was built in a different way so you can choose what suits you the best. Single beds, 2 floors or just one (like mine) etc.
- statues – there are stone statues around the tropical jungle. It just made the area look even nicer!
- you can book via internet and pay through PayPal – nowadays PayPal services or paying via emails is getting more and more popular and Congo Bongo is one of the accommodations where you can already pay via PayPal which takes a few seconds!
- you can ask about anything via emails – if you have any questions about rental houses, you can just send an email and you will get the answer the same day for sure because Daan, the owner, is very active in this which is great because some hotels never answer emails.
- nice things made out of the tyre – such as a toucan or a frog, really cute decorations!
- free towels – in every room you get 4 towels
I really enjoyed my stay in Congo Bongo. For more information, please visit Congo Bongo website.