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Machaca Hill at Laughing Falcon Reserve, Punta Gorda

Editor's Pick
Laughing Falcon Reserve
Near Punta Gorda
Tel: 501 722 0050's insider take:

One of the few places on earth where you can say "as far as the eye can see" without hyperbole, Machaca Hill defies you to spot anything but dense rain forest in any given direction. An 11,000-acre private reserve in the southern district of Toledo, this former fishing lodge recently reopened as a soft adventure resort with 12 wooden (mostly stilt-borne) rooms, where the average day goes like this: You wake up to the calls of the resident, name-affirming howler monkeys; watch the mists—and birds—rise from the forest canopy over breakfast; head down to the river and canoe or kayak while blue morpho butterflies flirt, kiskadees and toucans argue, and iguanas high-dive off tree branches into the lily-filled water below. After lunch, you head to the neighborhood Mayan ruins, which—though admittedly not as majestic as Xunantunich and Caracol—are beautifully intimate, crumbling, and on the verge of being reclaimed by the jungle.

Information may have changed since the date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.