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Pacuare River Rafting

Pacuare River RaftingGet ready to get wet on one of the world’s wildest rivers. The Pacuare River, or the Río Pacuare, flows 108 kilometers (67 miles) from Cordillera de Talamanca to the Caribbean Coast. Named one of the top 10 river rafting spots in the world, the Pacuare is a favorite destination for kayakers and river rafters who enjoy braving the rapids. Tempting tourists from afar are the surrounding rainforests that provide refuge to jaguars, monkeys, ocelots, and birds. The river is also backdropped by the beauty of Costa Rica’s mountains, forests, waterfalls, and rivers.

Due to the isolation and remoteness of the Pacuare, two-day trips are recommended for maximizing this adventure. One-day trips run 17 miles through lush vegetation and cover the lower section of the river. Two-day trips are much more relaxing and include the bonus of camping on the riverbank or overnighting in a rustic bungalow. The extra day also allows time for relaxed swimming, exploring tributaries, hiking canyons, and rafting beneath the falls. Be sure to bring a waterproof camera to take pictures of sloths and toucans.

One of the most difficult, and picturesque sections of the Pacuare is the 18-mile stretch from San Martín to Siquirres. Densely populated with wildlife, these gorges provide some of the best whitewater rafting in the world. The Pacuare runs extremely fast from October to December and the water level drops slightly from March to April.

Pacuare River WaterfallThe Pacuare River flows through the two provinces of Limon and Cartago. Traveling from the mountains to the Caribbean sea, the river is located in the Atlantic slope that borders the Talamanca range.

How to Get There
In Turrialba are many skilled white-water rafting outfitters. You can also arrange for pickup and transportation by tour companies based out of San Jose.

Rafting among the Canyons and Forests
Take a short one-day rafting trip or plan an overnight trip through Class III and IV rapids with a stop at a river lodge or tent camp, hosted by your tour company.

Lodging near the Rio Pacuare
Good hotels are available in San Jose, throughout the province of Cartago, and in Turrialba, which is a main drop-in point for Pacuare River tours.

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