Pacuare River Full-Day Rafting Adventure from San José

Pacuare River Full-Day Rafting Adventure from San José

From $115 per person

Get ready for adventure and adrenaline-pumping thrills on this rafting trip down the Pacuare River, rated as one of the world’s top rafting rivers. Experience class III-IV whitewater rapids and the spectacular beauty of Costa Rica’s primary rainforest.

About this activity

Free cancellation
Cancel up to 24 hours in advance to receive a full refund
Mobile ticketing
Use your phone or print your voucher
Duration 1 day
Starting time 5:20 AM
Instant confirmation
Live tour guide
Spanish, English
Pickup included
Pick-up at all major San José hotels is provided.
Private group


  • Raft for 18 miles down the Pacuare River, one of the best rafting rivers in the world
  • Experience the excitement of rapids including the Double Drop, Upper Huacas, Lower Huacas, Pinball, Cimarron, and Dos Montañas
  • Enjoy breakfast and lunch and all the facilities at the Rios Tropicales Operations Center
Full description
Located on Costa Rica's Caribbean slope, the Pacuare River borders the Talamanca mountain range, home to the native Cabecar people and an incredible variety of wildlife, including parrots, toucans, deer, jaguars, ocelots, monkeys, butterflies, and more. Add in the exciting class III and IV whitewater rapids and you have a full-day tropical adventure packed with memories that will last long after you return home. The Pacuare is rated one of the top rivers in the world for rafting. Experience the intimate nature of the rainforest as raft down the river from San Martin to Siquirres for 18 miles on exciting class III-IV whitewater. After an early morning pick-up at your hotel, you’ll travel by a private, comfortable bus to Rios Tropicales Operations Center for a delicious, typical Costa Rican breakfast. Change into your rafting gear, and head out on a drive to a private rafting put-in on the banks of the Pacuare River. All necessary equipment will be adjusted for the proper fit, and you’ll receive a comprehensive rafting safety talk and instructions on paddling basics. Then it’s time to launch the raft for the course that takes you deep into the heart of one of Costa Rica's most impressive primary rainforests. You'll pass through densely vegetated gorges, see cascading waterfalls, relax in serene pools and experience pounding rapids. Half-way down the course you’ll see the Rios Tropicales Lodge, the operator’s eco-lodge, where guests stay on 2, 3, and 4-day multi-sport adventure trips. Experience an action-packed afternoon running the Pacuare's biggest rapids, including Upper and Lower Huacas, Cimarron, Dos Montañas, and more. From the take-out point, you’ll have short drive back to the Rios Tropicales Operations Center, where you’ll enjoy a hearty and delicious lunch with optional drinks. Showers and a handy souvenir shop are also available. On your return drive to San José you'll enjoy views of Braulio Carrillo National Park, home to dense, primary tropical rainforest, and of the Irazu Volcano.
  • Professional bilingual guides
  • Round-trip transfers from all major San José hotels
  • All the specialized gear needed for the activity (helmets, lifejackets, paddles)
  • Breakfast and hot lunch at the Rios Tropicales Operations Center
  • Use of changing rooms and showers
    Not suitable for
    • Children under 12 years
    • Pregnant women
    • People with back problems
    • People with heart problems
    • People over 264 lbs (120 kg)
    • People with recent surgeries

    Select participants and date



    Prepare for the activity

    Important information

    What to bring

    • Change of clothes
    • Towel
    • Sunscreen
    • Water

    Not allowed

    • Pets
    • Waterproof cameras

    Know before you go

    • This tour is available from January 1 to June 30, 2020
    • River rafting difficulty: moderate
    • Class III rafting: rapids with high irregular waves; narrow passages that often require complex maneuvering
    • Class IV rafting: long, difficult rapids with constricted passages that often require precise maneuvering in very turbulent waters
    • Rafting distance: 18 miles
    • River time: 3.5 to 5 hours, depending on water levels
    • Anyone 14 years of age and older, in normal healthy physical condition, can participate. Ability to swim is desirable.
    • Recommended gear:
    • Rubber-soled shoes that can get wet (Tevas, tennis shoes, booties, or similar)
    • Swimsuit/swim trunks or t-shirt and shorts made of quick-drying material
    • Waterproof sunscreen lotion (SPF 15 or higher)
    • Sun hat or bandana
    • Croakies or straps to secure glasses
    • Clothing change (including shoes)
    • Towel
    Customer reviews

    Overall rating

    4 / 5

    based on 1 reviews

    Review summary

    Sort by

    #1 Whitewater Rafting Company in all of Costa Rica

    There are several companies that you can go whitewater rafting with in Costa Rica, but Rios Tropicales has the reputation of the best, and they easily live up to it! The company and the guides are all extremely accommodating and friendly. All of the equipment is very safe and well maintained. The adventure is amazing and unforgettable. When we stopped for lunch, it started pouring rain on us and on our sandwiches, but we were all having way too much fun to let that bother us. Our guide, Chris, was extremely personable, funny, and professional. It was an all-around excellent experience and I would recommend Rios Tropicales to anyone interested in whitewater rafting in Costa Rica.

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    May 11, 2013

    Fun, but not Pacuare River

    We booked a rafting excursion to Pacuare River but ended up in another river with less Rapids due to weather conditions the guide said; less class 3s and 4s. Wanted more time on the river but still fun.

    December 18, 2014

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    Product ID: 35544