Why Go on a Costa Rica Adventure with Rios Tropicales?

Rafting Costa Rica with Rios Tropicales

06 May Why Go on a Costa Rica Adventure with Rios Tropicales?


Whether it’s rafting, kayaking, mountain biking or staying at their award-winning rainforest ecolodge on the Pacuare River, Rios Tropicales delivers authentic Costa Rica adventures backed by over 34 years of experience, safety and service excellence.

Rafting with Rios Tropicales

by Shannon Farley

When planning an adventure tour in Costa Rica, choosing which tour company to go with is one of your most important decisions. Not only do you want to be sure you’ll always be safe, you also want to have an awesome experience.

When you go rafting – or kayaking, mountain biking, hiking or horseback riding – with Rios Tropicales adventure tour operator in Costa Rica, you have 34 years of experience, service excellence and an impeccable safety record backing you.

Operating since 1985, Rios Tropicales was named the No. 1 Outfitter in Costa Rica and one of the Best Outfitters on Earth by National Geographic Adventure. Also, the Rios Tropicales Lodge on the Pacuare River received the prestigious National Geographic Geotourism Award for environmental sustainability.

Ecotravelers – you want to give back wherever you go and leave a small footprint. Rios Tropicales shares both of those desires and actively engages in rainforest reforestation, river conservation and community projects – they have the awards to prove it! The company differs from the competition with its authentic experiences, positive impact on the environment, and its actions and commitment to safety and excellence.

Rios Tropicales operates Costa Rica adventure tours in the Caribbean region, Arenal, Guanacaste, and Manuel Antonio. These unforgettable trips, full of all the little details and luxuries that make all the difference, will be the highlight of your time in Costa Rica!

Read on for why you should choose Rios Tropicales for your adventure tours in Costa Rica.

Rafting Costa Rica with Rios TropicalesWhy Choose Rios Tropicales?

  • 34 years of experience, service excellence and safety (since 1985)
  • Best Outfitters on Earth and No. 1 Outfitter in Costa Rica by National Geographic Adventures
  • National Geographic Geotourism Award for the Rios Tropicales Lodge on the Pacuare River
  • Rafael Gallo, founding partner and CEO of Rios Tropicales, is an Advocate Inductee to the International Whitewater Hall of Fame (2009) and is now a member of its Board of Governance. He is a founder of the International Rafting Federation (1997) and now an Honorary President. He is also a member of the prestigious Explorers Club of New York since 1995.
  • Rafael Gallo co-authored the official guidebook on The Rivers of Costa Rica – A Canoeing, Kayaking and Rafting Guide.
  • All Rios Tropicales guides are trained to U.S. standards and guidelines for rafting and safety and are certified by the International Rafting Federation.
  • All Rios Tropicales guides are fully bilingual in Spanish and English.
  • Winner of multiple national and international awards for conservation, reforestation and community initiatives, including the International Ecotourism Society Innovation Award, Pioneers for Prosperity Award, and the Costa Rica Certificate for Sustainable Tourism.
  • Winner of Costa Rica’s Blue Flag for Rivers and Blue Flag for Natural Spaces, both with the highest level of three stars, for protecting the Pacuare River, Terciopelo Creek and the Rios Tropicales private rainforest reserve.
Rios Tropicales 2019

The “Ferrari’s of the river world”! Rios Tropicales adds brand new Sotar rafts to its fleet in May 2019!

Safety First

Rios Tropicales has followed and applied U.S. rafting standards since their beginning in 1985. These are the strictest standards historically for rafting in the world.

Rios Tropicales rafting guides maintain their International Rafting Federation certification up to date, as well as first aid and CPR training. All trip leaders are trained in swift water rescue and advanced first aid. At least one safety kayaker accompanies every rafting trip, without exception. Depending on the number of rafts on a trip, there may be more than one kayaker.

Rios Tropicales has a very clear and strict protocol on high water levels and does not hesitate to cancel rafting trips when river water levels are unsafe. Guests staying at the Rios Tropicales Lodge on the Pacuare River have multiple hiking routes to leave if water levels are too high to continue rafting. All guides are trained in evacuation routes along the Pacuare River in case of an emergency.

Safety First – Every Day:

  • Water levels at each river to be rafted are checked every morning, along with meteorological reports and weather forecasts.
  • All equipment is properly checked before every trip to ensure it is functioning 100%. Rios Tropicales has in-house personnel to provide maintenance for all equipment and they do regular inspections.
  • Communication is constant between the guides picking up guests and the Rios Tropicales Operations Center on any special issues – children, people absent, special needs or considerations.
  • At the river, all equipment given to guests – life jackets, helmets and paddles – are thoroughly checked a second time.
  • Guests are given a comprehensive safety talk by a river guide before beginning rafting. Once guests are assigned to their specific raft, their raft guide will again review all safety protocols along with paddling instructions. Immediately upon entering the river, they practice those instructions.
  • Rafting trips are well-coordinated. All rafts maintain a strict order, safe distance and visual contact with one another, following the instructions of the trip leader and safety kayaker.
Rios Tropicales Lodge Pacuare River

You can have a real Costa Rica adventure staying in the rainforest at the National Geographic award-winning Rios Tropicales Lodge on the Pacuare River.

What’s Included on Rios Tropicales Rafting Trips

  • Round-trip, comfortable, private transportation from San Jose (also Arenal, Cahuita and Puerto Viejo) to the rivers with door-to-door pick-up and drop-off at major hotels.
  • Full guide service from start to finish by certified, friendly and bilingual guides. Rafting guides are certified by the International Rafting Federation.
  • State-of-the-art rafting equipment; inspected daily to be in top condition.
  • Delicious, traditional Costa Rican buffet breakfast with Doña Gloria’s famous omelets at our Rios Tropicales Operations Center (Reventazon River trip not included).
  • Large men’s and women’s changing rooms with showers and private secure lockers.
  • Hot buffet lunch at the Operations Center; or River Picnic Lunch (in dry season) on a scenic riverbank.
  • On multi-day trips: accommodation, delicious meals, and adventure activities (extra charge may apply) at the award-winning Rios Tropicales Lodge on the Pacuare River. Secure, dry transport of your luggage.

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