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San José, Costa RicaRiver rafting

Our most recommended San José, Costa Rica River rafting

From San José: Pacuare River White Water Rafting Day Trip

1. From San José: Pacuare River White Water Rafting Day Trip

Raft along the Pacuare River on a guided excursion from San José and feel the thrill of floating past cascading waterfalls. Experience class 3 and 4 rapids, perfect for beginners and experienced paddlers alike. Enjoy a roundtrip transfer from your hotel and discover the world of whitewater rafting. After an early pick-up at your San Jose area hotel, we will drive to Cartago – Costa Rica’s historic capital city – and through small towns and countryside to the rafting hub of Turrialba. We’ll stop for breakfast (included) and afterward head to the Pacuare River put-in. At the river, your guides will outfit you with rafting equipment and give a paddling explanation and safety talk. Then the fun begins! We’ll paddle 18 miles downriver through class 3 and 4 rapids like “Huacas,” “Rodeo,” “Pinball,” “Cimarrones,” and “Dos Montañas.” Along the way, we’ll stop for a riverside picnic lunch. After finishing rafting, you’ll be able to change into dry clothes before driving back to San Jose. Our Pacuare River Rafting 1 Day tour includes breakfast, picnic lunch, 5 hours of rafting, professional river guides and a safety kayaker, rafting equipment, and transportation from and to your San Jose area hotel.

Rafting Class 3-4 "Jungle Run": Río Sarapiquí, Costa Rica

2. Rafting Class 3-4 "Jungle Run": Río Sarapiquí, Costa Rica

Take an exciting break during your travels to your new vacation destination! Bring on the adrenaline and enjoy the "Jungle Run" on the Sarapiqui River. This is the perfect rafting trip for adventurous paddlers! Get piked up from your hotel and travel through small Costa Rican villages to the quaint town of San Miguel de Sarapiquí. There, your professional rafting guide will give you the 101 on rafting including safety tips and technical instructions before heading on your 2 hour journey down one of Costa Rica’s most exuberant rivers! During your descent down the river, you will experience over 30 exciting rapids along 10 km of lush, vibrant rainforest. As you make your way through exciting rapids like "The Pipeline," "The Terminator," and "Dos Locos", you will get your adrenaline pumping! About half way down the river, you’ll stop and watch the rapids from the shore, while enjoying refreshing tropical fruit and relaxing with the rest of the group. Then, after the second leg of your rafting journey, you’ll finish the day with an unforgettable homemade lunch before heading to your next vacation destination!

San Jose One Day: Sarapiqui Class 2&3 Rafting Adventure

3. San Jose One Day: Sarapiqui Class 2&3 Rafting Adventure

The Sarapiqui River is famous for its lush rainforest scenery. Enjoy it up close rafting down the Jungle Run – a section of river that is home to monkeys, iguanas, and other amazing Costa Rican wildlife. Start with pickup from select hotels and travel to El Roble de Sarapiquí, where the adventure begins. Your guide will fit you with the proper gear and go over safety instructions before hitting the river. Duck, dodge, paddle, and laugh your way down the river. Along the way, the "paparrazzi" photographer will be around to catch the best action shots as your Costa Rican river adventure unfolds. About halfway down the river, stop to enjoy a refreshing tropical fruit snack, take a swim, and relax. This area is known for its variety of birdlife, so keep an eye out for interesting tropical species.  Finish the rafting adventure at the Red-Eyed Frog Restaurant, located right next to the river. Savor a traditional Costa Rican meal before heading back to your hotel in a comfortable, air-conditioned van with free WiFi. Photos are available for purchase from the local provider after the tour.

San Jose Rafting Class 3-4 with Connection to La Fortuna

4. San Jose Rafting Class 3-4 with Connection to La Fortuna

Bring on the adrenaline and enjoy the “Jungle Run” on the Sarapiqui River, the perfect rafting trip for adventurous paddlers. Join the tour on your way from San Jose to La Fortuna or from La Fortuna to San Jose and spend the day taking on challenging rapids and admiring jungle wildlife.  The day beings with pickup from select locations in San Jose or La Fortuna. Travel through small Costa Rican villages to the quaint town of San Miguel to start your rafting experience, passing La Virgen and finishing up in El Roble de Sarapiquí. Here, your professional guide will give you the 101 on rafting, including safety tips and technical instructions before starting your 3.5-hour journey down the Sarapiqui River on a full-day rafting adventure. Experience over 40 exciting rapids along nearly 22 kilometers of lush, vibrant rainforest. Make your way through exciting rapids like “The Pipeline”, “The Terminator”, and “Dos Locos”, that will be sure to get your adrenaline pumping.  About halfway down the Sarapiqui River, you’ll stop and watch the rapids from the shore, while enjoying tropical fruit and relaxing with the rest of the group. Then, after the second leg of your journey, take out right at the Red-Eyed Frog Restaurant, located on the Sarapiqui River. Savor a typical Costa Rican casado (rice with beans, plantain, and meat) and some gourmet coffee. After lunch, take advantage of the showers and changing rooms on-site before continuing on your journey.

La Fortuna: Jungle Safari Float Sarapiqui to San Jose

5. La Fortuna: Jungle Safari Float Sarapiqui to San Jose

Turn your day of travel into an action-packed adventure with the Safari Float Adventure Connection! Come see the abundance of nature and wildlife that Costa Rica has to offer! This Costa Rica Safari Float is a smooth, two-hour paddle down the quiet, lower section of the Sarapiqui River. Your bilingual nature guide will paddle and steer your boat as you float down the river and point out all of the exotic wildlife such as birds, frogs, insects, and monkeys in the Costa Rican rainforest! You'll be picked up at your hotel in La Fortuna's Area and travel to a beautiful waterfall on the Pozo Azul River of Sarapiqui. Here you and your family can enjoy nature and the cool crystal clear water that the waterfall offers you. Then, head towards the Red Eye Frog restaurant located in El Roble of Sarapiqui while getting yourself ready to fall deeply in love with the 2-hour Jungle Safari float. Your eagle-eyed guide will show off Costa Rica's amazing wildlife as he points out a wide array of plant and animal species. You’ll float next to the Mesoamerican Biological Corridor (San Juan La Selva Biological Corridor) where there is a good possibility of seeing sloths, howler monkeys, lizards, and even black river otters. This area is also famous for the incredible amount of tropical birds such as ospreys, boat-billed herons, parrots, kingfishers and the great green macaw which is on the endangered species list. For those who want to be even closer to nature, you will have the chance to get out of the raft and into the river and refresh yourself. The Jungle Safari Float is great for nature lovers of all ages! To finish your day, return to the Red Eye Frog Restaurant to have a delicious traditional Costa Rican lunch called a “Casado” along with some amazing Costa Rican gourmet coffee. Following this, drive to your next vacation destination in a comfortable air-conditioned van with free WiFi.

Eco-Adventure Rafting and Zipline Combo

6. Eco-Adventure Rafting and Zipline Combo

Your full-day eco-adventure begins with a drive to the river that takes you through the majestic flora of Braulio Carrillo National Park. Your certified tour guide will tell you about the sights along the way. On arrival, your guide will give you a briefing on safety and paddling commands. You’ll also receive all the professional equipment you’ll need for the rafting adventure. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced rafter, you’re sure to get a thrill from this wide class III+ river with its continuous rapids, huge splashes, and deep holes. Halfway through the rafting trip you’ll stop to enjoy a colorful buffet of tropical fruit on the river bank. After 2 hours of intense white water activity through more than 20 class III rapids, you’ll head to the Rainforest Aerial Tram, where a delicious hot lunch awaits. You’ll have a chance to re-energize before flying over the Sarapiqui River on an exhilarating canopy zipline tour. The route that takes you along the lush rainforest canopy includes 10 lines and 14 platforms, giving you the opportunity to see the beauty of the rainforest from up high.

From San Jose: Adventure Combo Canopy & Rafting Pozo Azul

7. From San Jose: Adventure Combo Canopy & Rafting Pozo Azul

Costa Rica provides White Water Rafting experiences that take your adrenaline to top levels and fascinating Canopy Tours going high above the treetops. Now you can enjoy the two activities in an extraordinary way. Discover the natural marvels of Sarapiqui; an extensive territory located in the northeastern area of the country, with a variety of crystal clear rivers, an abundance of beautiful tropical forests and villages inhabited by friendly and laborious people. Leaving San José the tour traverses the majestic scenery of Braulio Carrillo National Park and arriving at Sarapiqui we will enjoy two adventurous attractions: the Canopy Tour in the middle of a secondary forest with trees of high altitude and after lunch the White Water Rafting in the agitating waters of the Sarapiqui River. The Canopy Tour takes about one and a half hour. We go through nine cables of different lengths, stretching over the forest, with the last one crossing the Sarapiqui River. The rafting at Sarapiqui River has different levels between class II and class III, presenting a vibrant scenery to those who want to participate in this exciting activity. Nine miles of unexpected rapids in combination with calm and relaxing intervals makes this an unforgettable experience for bird watchers, nature, and adrenaline lovers. In lieu of the white-water rafting, you may opt for a horseback riding tour.

San Jose Rafting Class 2-3 with Connection to La Fortuna

8. San Jose Rafting Class 2-3 with Connection to La Fortuna

Your experience will begin as you are picked up from your hotel in La Fortuna town. From there you will travel through small Costa Rican villages to the quaint town of San Miguel to begin your rafting experience. There, your professional rafting guide will give you the "101" on rafting, including safety tips and technical instructions. You will then head out on your 3.5-hour journey down the Sarapiqui River on a full-day rafting adventure. During your Arenal rafting trip, you will experience over 40 exciting rapids along nearly 22 kilometers of lush, vibrant rainforest. You will make your way through exciting rapids such as “the Pipeline,” “the Terminator,” and “Dos Locos”, all of which are sure to get your adrenaline pumping. About halfway down the Sarapiqui River, you’ll stop and watch the rapids from the shore while enjoying refreshing tropical fruit and relaxing with your group. Following the second leg of your rafting journey, you’ll step out of the river right at the Red-Eyed Frog restaurant located right on the Sarapiqui River. The venue comes complete with changing rooms, showers, and a cool Caribbean vibe. There you will enjoy an unforgettable homemade lunch, before heading to your next destination in a comfortable air-conditioned van.

Frequently asked questions about San José, Costa Rica River rafting

What are other things to do than River rafting that are worth visiting in San José, Costa Rica?

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What people are saying about San José, Costa Rica

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 16 reviews

Excellent experience, with a bit of action that opens the doors to try level 2 and 3. Our rafting guide, David, was very professional, with an exceptional attitude that made us spend the whole moment in an unforgettable way and very well cared for. .

Desafio is an amazing company to be able to go rafting with. The guys were amazing and real pros. It was an amazing experience and the lunch they serve is the best I have had in Costa Rica.

We really loved the whole experience and the team was very professional,helping and explained us a lot about the river and wildlife.The lunch on riverbank was a truly magical experience.

The guides ensured we had an amazing experience. The rafting is a must do when in Costa Rica!

Our group convinced us to do 3 and 4 it was a lot of fun, the crew was professional and fun!