This Horseback Riding and Rafting combo tour takes you paddling down the Balsa River through light rapids, includes time for a swim break, lunch at a local restaurant and is followed by a relaxing horseback ride through a private cloud forest reserve. While in the Arenal area this special mix of outdoor adventures is sure to create lasting memories of time spent in Costa Rica.
On the morning of the tour, you will be picked up from your hotel and whisked away to the Balsa River with its class ll and class lll rapids. This is an easy going rafting experience and a great option for first-time rafters. Upon arrival at the river you will receive lifejackets and paddles from your bilingual guide before heading out on the water. As safety is always the number one priority, your guide will go over all safety rules and paddling instructions before launching your inflatable raft into the river and helping you get started.
You’ll be paddling as a group two to three hours down the Balsa River, experiencing the fun and thrill of light rapids combined with moments of leisure to explore your jungle surroundings. About half way through, you’ll pull over to the side of the river where a snack and drink will be provided to keep you energized. Here you can take the opportunity to go in for a swim. When you return from your rafting trip, transportation will be waiting to take you a local restaurant where you can change into dry clothes and enjoy a delicious “typical” lunch.
Prepare yourself for more fun as you arrive at the stables to go horseback riding through Costa Rica’s beautiful mountains and cloud forest. You will receive a helmet as your guide matches you up with a well-trained horse according to your level of experience. These gentle horses know the way so if you have limited or no riding experience, you do not need to worry. In fact, some people on this tour have found themselves learning to trust these large animals for the first time and left feeling like they developed a deep bond with their horse. This is a reflection of the way these horses have been trained by their handlers using respect and kindness.
You’ll ride for approximately 1.5 to 2 hours within a private cloud forest reserve and over open fields with stunning views of the Balsa River. You’ll discover a hidden lake and spend time admiring the majestic Cacique mountain. Crossing rivers and streams, you’ll be surrounded by old growth trees and lush vegetation. Your guide will help you look for and identify any wildlife that may be hiding in the trees, like sloths, howler monkeys, toucans and other exotic birdlife, plus interesting insects and reptiles.
Transportation is included from La Fortuna and certain areas near La Fortuna. Also included in this tour are bilingual guide, admission fees, all safety equipment for boating and riding, lunch, snack, drink and loads of fun. One way transport can take up to 2 hours depending on the distance of your hotel to the Balsa River. Total time of this full day tour including round trip transportation can take between 7.5 and 10 hours. Please wear clothes that can get wet and enclosed shoes for rafting as well as for horseback riding. Bring a bathing suit, towel, a change of dry clothes including long pants for riding after lunch, plus sunscreen, bug repellent, rain gear and a camera. Some restrictions may apply for persons weighing over 225 pounds.