Monday, May 30, 2011

Rio Balsa Costa Rica Whitewater Rafting

If you are looking for a great Costa Rica whitewater rafting adventure that is exciting, yet good for beginners, then I would recommend the class 2-3 rapids rafting tour offered on Costa Rica's Rio Balsa (there is a more advanced section of this river offering class 3-4 rapids as well).  My sister Lisa and I actually wanted to have our Costa Rica whitewater rafting adventure on one of the more well known rivers, such as the Sarapiqui or the Pacuare.  However, these tours departed around 8:30a.m.  For people like us, who are not about waking up early in the morning, these were just not an option.  Fortunately, I found that the tour outfitters known as Desafio was offering a Costa Rica whitewater rafting trip down the Rio Balsa that started at 11a.m.  This sounded perfect for us since we were about 3 hours away from the town of La Fortuna where they were located.

This was my sister's first rafting trip, so as you can imagine, she was somewhat nervous.  This was my third rafting trip, but ever since my mishap on a Quebec river, I must admit I myself was also somewhat afraid, despite the fact that the Rio Balsa section we would be completing was only class 2-3 rapids. During the safety briefing the bilingual guides explained what to do if we fell out of the raft, or worse yet, if we found ourselves stuck under the raft.  This information sent my heart beating about 100 miles a minute.  Still, I knew I had to get "back on the raft" so to speak, and overcome my Quebec river phobia once and for all.

As you can see from me and my sister's smiles in the pictures below (we are in the second row of the raft), we had a GREAT time on our Costa Rica whitewater rafting trip down the Rio Balsa.  The guides were friendly, spoke good English, and kept us safely in our rafts. This doesn't mean that it was boring, as the rolling rapids, large rocks and other obstacles made it fun enough all the way through.  And at one point we were all allowed to jump into the river and enjoy a little swim as well.  There were also many opporunities for wildlife viewing as we entered calmer areas and had a chance to look around to the river's banks. The 2 hour rafting trip cost $65 per person, and included fresh fruit half-way through, and a DELICIOUS lunch at the end (after changing out of our wet clothes).  We also were able to purchase a souvenier CD with all our pictures (some of which are shown below), which also included additional pictures of the Arenal Volcano and surrounding area, for $25 more.

Our rafting team and guide

All rafters on this trip, suited up and ready to go!

Paddling through the Rio Balsa rapids


Alam said...

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Bruce Eatchel said...

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john carter said...
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River Rafting said...

Thanks for sharing your essentially productive information. Now I am well versed with ideas for my holiday trips. I guess I am ready to try the water rafting and see for myself the exciting experience it brings and keep the extreme memories of fun for myself. Thanks for inspiring me!

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