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Costa Rica adventures, ecotourism, travel, experiences

14 Feb

Ticos and ex-guerrillas of the FARC: the art of exchanging rifles for paddles

A Costa Rican rafting mission – led by the company Rios Tropicales and the United Nations – traveled to Colombia to meet with a group of ex-guerrillas from the FARC. Teaching them to tame the rapids of the Pato River, in complete peace, was the reason for the singular adventure.Alexánder Sánchezhttps://www.nacion.com/viva/cine/ticos-y-exguerrilleros-de-las-farc-el-arte-de/H2JANDJNR5EWVESKMS3JJSTTSI/story/[caption id="attachment_3726" align="aligncenter" width="800"] Pato River in the background, Rafael Gallo (front) poses with ex-guerrillas Duberney (far left) and Hermides (far right). In the center, the Costa Rican guides Max Solano (left) and Roy Obando. Courtesy of Rafael Gallo.[/caption]It's a quiet and a particularly cool night. A pair of crickets...

12 Feb

Protected: Why Raft with Us?

PACUARE RIVER RAFTING (Class III-IV)MULTI-DAY ADVENTURES (2 - 4 days)The Pacuare River is rated one of the top rivers in the world for a host of reasons. Located on Costa Rica’s Caribbean slope, the Pacuare River borders the Talamanca Mountain Range, home to native Cabecar people, pristine rainforest and an incredible variety of wildlife. Our multi-day trips treat you to an exceptional adventure vacation combining rafting with a stay at our National Geographic award-winning ecolodge alongside the Pacuare River.Warm water, cascading waterfalls, and lush rainforest with its brilliantly colored plants, animals and birds make this trip exquisite for your senses. Add in two sections of exciting Class III-IV whitewater...

07 Jan

Hundreds of Raft Guides and Kayakers Certified in Costa Rica in an initiative to promote tourism safety

By Shannon Farley.The Costa Rica Sports Association for Adventure and Paddling, which represents the International Rafting Federation (IRF) in Costa Rica, has conducted a massive certification mission in the country to certify 178 raft guides and safety kayakers with the goal of improving safety in adventure tourism.The initiative, which has the support of the Costa Rican Tourism Board (ICT) and the Costa Rican National Training Institute (INA), is the largest effort at one time in the world to certify guides in the rafting industry in guiding and safety skills.Between Nov. 27 and Dec. 14, 151 raft guides and 27 safety kayakers from all over Costa Rica were certified to IRF standards...

04 Jan

Costa Rica National Alliance of Rivers and Watersheds names new environmental award after conservationist Rafael Gallo

By Shannon FarleySan José, Costa Rica (Dec. 26, 2018) – The National Alliance of Rivers and Watersheds of Costa Rica has announced that its new environmental award will be named the “Rafael Gallo Palomo Award, Safeguarding the Future,” in honor of conservationist Rafael Gallo Palomo.Rafael Gallo is president of Rios Tropicales rafting and adventure company in Costa Rica, founder of the Rios Tropicales Rainforest Reserve, the co-founder and current honorary president of the International Rafting Federation, and author of the book “The Rivers of Costa Rica” (1988). Mr. Gallo serves on several boards of nonprofit and government organizations where he advocates for the protection of forests,...

06 Nov

Exguerrilleros de las FARC en Colombia se convierten en guías de rafting

El 9 de noviembre, un nuevo emprendimiento turístico colombiano tendrá nueve nuevos guías de rafting, gracias a la capacitación proporcionada por la Federación Internacional de Rafting (IRF) y la empresa de turismo de aventura Ríos Tropicales en Costa Rica.Es un logro extraordinario porque los nuevos guías de rafting son excombatientes de las Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC). Además, el río Pato, el lugar en el cual los guías se han capacitado y donde se operarán viajes comerciales de rafting, es una antigua “zona roja prohibida” controlada por las FARC.El incipiente emprendimiento turístico es producto de una misión apoyada por...

06 Nov

Ex-Guerrillas in Colombia Become Rafting Guides

[vc_row css_animation="" row_type="row" use_row_as_full_screen_section="no" type="full_width" angled_section="no" text_align="left" background_image_as_pattern="without_pattern"][vc_column][vc_column_text]by Shannon Farley Nine ex-guerrillas in Colombia have a new future ahead of them in adventure tourism, thanks to river rafting guide training provided by the International Rafting Federation (IRF) and Rios Tropicales adventure company in Costa Rica.The new rafting guides, who are former combatants of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (known by the Spanish acronym of FARC), will complete their training on Nov. 9 with a graduation ceremony. The accomplishment is even more extraordinary because the Pato River where they have trained and will operate commercial rafting trips is a former FARC...

05 Sep

Rios Tropicales Lodge Wins TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence

By Shannon FarleyThe Rios Tropicales Lodge has been awarded the 2018 TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence, for yet another consecutive year.The multiple award-winning Costa Rica ecolodge on the Pacuare River is also a member of the TripAdvisor Hall of Fame, reserved for businesses that have been awarded the Certificate of Excellence for at least five years in a row.“We are thrilled to receive this prestigious award from TripAdvisor based on our guests’ reviews,” said Rafael Gallo, CEO of Rios Tropicales. “On behalf of all of our personnel, we’d like to thank all of our guests who took the time to share...

27 Jul

Michael Kaye Changed My Life and the Path of Tourism in Costa Rica Forever

Michael Kaye, founder of Costa Rica Expeditions and a giant figure in travel and tourism in Costa Rica, passed away on July 12, 2018, at the age of 76. Tributes, remembrances and messages have since poured in from around the world on social media, blogs and news feeds.Michael has been called a pioneer in adventure travel, a titan of the Costa Rican tourism industry, and the godfather of ecotourism. To Rafael Gallo, president and co-founder of Rios Tropicales adventure company in Costa Rica, Michael was not only a mentor, he was the catalyst that forever changed his life.We share with...

24 Jul

La Federación Internacional de Rafting nombra a Rafael Gallo como su primer presidente honorario

by Shannon Farley Con el fin de elogiar sus décadas de participación, logros y función integral en la formación y el desarrollo de la Federación Internacional de Rafting (IRF), Rafael Gallo ha sido nominado como el primer presidente honorario de la IRF.[caption id="attachment_3430" align="alignright" width="297"] Rafael Gallo[/caption]El nuevo cargo fue propuesto por el actual presidente de la IRF, Joe Willis Jones, y aprobado por la Junta Directiva de la IRF como anexo a sus estatutos. El anexo declara que “el Congreso (IRF) puede otorgar el título de 'presidente honorario' o 'miembro honorario' a cualquier expresidente o exmiembro del Comité Ejecutivo por...

24 Jul

The International Rafting Federation Names Rafael Gallo its First Honorary President

By Shannon Farley Commending his decades of involvement, achievements, and integral role in the formation and development of the International Rafting Federation (IRF), Rafael Gallo has been nominated as the first Honorary President of the IRF[caption id="attachment_3430" align="alignright" width="297"] Rafael Gallo[/caption]The new position was proposed by the current IRF President Joe Willis Jones, and was approved by the IRF Board of Directors as an annex to the IRF Bylaws. The annex states that “The (IRF) Congress may bestow the title of ‘Honorary President’, or ‘Honorary Member’, respectively, upon any former president or member of the Executive Committee for meritorious service to rafting...