River Rafting Tours & Trips 2020

9 trips to River Rafting tours from 111 tour companies. 1,407 reviews. 4.8/5 avg rating.

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Style Style Small Group Tour Small groups are usually defined as between 10 and 24 travelers, often less. If you're the kind of person who enjoys more intimate experiences and personal service this is a good choice. All else being equal you will pay a premium for this style vs a larger group tour.
Private Guided Private tours give you the undivided attention of a guide, and often involve special access to sites and unique experiences not available to larger groups. This is a great option for families, couples, and small friend groups. Expect to pay a bit more for the extra service.
Self Guided Tour A travel company plans your itinerary and arranges all the logistics including lodging, local activities, and transportantion. You have the flexibility of a solo trip while still getting the convience and time savings of expert planning. Get 90% of the benefits of a tour, without a guide.
Group Tour Groups are between 25-60 people, typically ~30-40. Usually there will be many opportunities to split off and enjoy meals and excursions in smaller groups. This is the most economical way to travel, saving up to 40% versus booking the same itinerary yourself.
River Cruise These vessels are smaller than most ocean cruisers, limiting which amenties are available. Passenger counts can vary. One of the biggest advantages of a river cruise is the ability to dock at smaller ports and local villages.
Small Ship Cruise Small ship cruises usually have a max passenger count of 500. The primary purpose of these trips is to spend time off the vessel in local ports (e.g. Mediterranean) or experiencing nature (e.g Galapagos or Antarctica). Cabins can vary from budget to luxury.
Large Ship Cruise This is the "floating city" experience, with multiple ways to enjoy your vacation aboard the ship as much as on land. Ships are multiple floors, provide several activities, culinary, and shopping options. They often make fewer stops and have less time available for shore excursions.
Retreats Similar to a self guided tour but staying in one location only with activities and day outings included as a part of the stay.


Duration Dropdown

Travelers Age

Lodging Level Lodging Level Camping Typically involves most nights sleeping in tents (sometimes permanent tented sites) or in rustic cabins and lodges.
Basic - 2 star You'll stay in no-frills, but clean and comfortable, hotels or guesthouses. A 'Basic' trip might also involve a few nights of camping.
Value - 3 star Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Premium - 4 star 3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards.
Luxury - 5 star The highest level of comfort and service. All accomodations are in four or five star hotels, boutique lodges or high-end homestays.

Physical Level Physical Level Very Easy Minimal walking - motor vehicles available for all major parts of trip.
Easy Normal generally flat walking in urban or suburban environments.
Moderate Walking or physical activity half to most of day - no carrying equipment.
Strenuous All or most of day hiking or biking, hills included.
Extreme Very challenging all day hiking and backpacking carrying significant equipment.


Attractions & Cities Visited

Activities & Interests

Travel Style Travel Style Flexible schedule A lot of free time, with very few inclusions. Ideal for independent and/or low-key travelers and cruisers.
Full schedule For those looking to maximize their sight seeing time. You thrive on a packed day’s schedule from 8 am to 6pm, with some (but limited) free time. Most activities and meals included.
Balanced schedule You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included.

Flight & Transport Inclusions

Solo Friendly Solo Friendly Good for Singles Trips that specifically cater to travelers looking to meet other singles.
No Single Supplement Trips where single supplement is usually not required for solo travelers.

Supplier (Company)

Countries Visited

Continents Visited

Rivers & Seas Visitied

Stride Gives Back Stride Gives Back This trip visits a destination impacted by climate change. When you opt in to the Travelstride Gives Back program, we will donate 10% of our net revenue to organizations that help mitigate climate change in these destinations and across the globe. Learn more

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Highlights of Costa Rica

8 days
$ 300 / day
$ 2,399
Travel Style : Array Relaxed
Physical Level : All or most of day hiking or biking, hills included. Moderate
Lodging Level : The highest level of comfort and service. All accomodations are in four or five star hotels, boutique lodges or high-end homestays. Luxury (5*)
  • A canal safari along the pristine waterways of Tortuguero National Park reveals a stunning variety of tropical flora and fauna.
  • Enjoy splendid volcano views from the relaxing mineral springs of your Arenal resort!
  • Personalize your trip with the included guided adventure of your choice at Arenal.
  • Travelers love our resorts in Arenal and the wide range of activities available... So feel free to addd extra nights here – or at any of our fine resorts and lodges!
  • Manuel Antonio is the crown jewel of Costa Rica’s national parks... Let our expert naturalist guide reveal the many natural wonders of this pristine coastal reserve.
Arenal Hot Springs, Manuel Antonio National Park, Tortuguero National Park, Costa Rica
View Trip

Costa Rican Adventure: White Water Rafting, Zip L ...

Great Value Vacations
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
8 days
$ 187 / day
$ 1,495
From : $ 2,029
The strike-through price reflects either the high season trip price or the average price a traveler pays for a similar itinerary when the components are booked separately.
Travel Style : Array Relaxed
Physical Level : Walking or physical activity half to most of day - no carrying equipment. Easy
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value (3*)
  • Pacuare River white water rafting and lunch
  • Half-day Sky Adventures Park (Zip line)
  • Evening Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve Tour
  • Half-day Catamaran Ocean King Tour, with lunch
Monteverde, Costa Rica
View Trip

Rafting on the Ganges

Sky Vacations
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
3 days
$ 158 / day
$ 475
Travel Style : Array Full on
Physical Level : All or most of day hiking or biking, hills included. Moderate
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value (3*)
  • 2 nights’ accommodation
  • All meals including evening tea
  • Expert guide throughout the program
  • Rafting, hiking and yoga
  • Visit to Rishikesh
  • Twilight Aarti Ceremony
  • Roundtrip transfers
Delhi, India
View Trip

New Zealand Explorer

12 days
$ 3,750
Travel Style : Array Full on
Physical Level : Normal generally flat walking in urban or suburban environments. Very Easy
Lodging Level : Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value (3*)
Auckland, Christchurch, Pacific Ocean, Queenstown, New Zealand
View Trip
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Top River Rafting Attractions & Experiences

Top River Rafting Experiences

    Rafting through Raft Badger and Soap Creek rapids of Grand Canyon

    Hiking to explore the Grand Canyon which can only be accessed from the river

    Seeing beautiful Kackar Mountains while rafting Coruh River in Turkey

    Stopping to camp at a sandy beach

    Gathering around campfire and listening to river legends

    Spotting amazing wildlife and beautiful landscapes

    Seeing monkeys while rafting through Sun Kosi River of Nepal


1,407 River Rafting Tour Reviews - Summary 98% Recommend

4.8 out of 5
Excellent 1,177
Great 204
Average 17
Disappointing 6
Terrible 3

Tour Reviews Write a Review

Tortuguero was amazing and worth

  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

Tortuguero was amazing and worth the long trip to get there.. We enjoyed the atmosphere at Mawamba Lodge.. The trips by small boat into the national park allowed us to see three kinds of monkeys and lots of reptiles and birds in their natural habitat. Dennis was a knowledgeable guide. Si Como No at Manuel Antonio was a wonderful hotel with excellent rooms, staff and food

Read more
Operator Alexander + Roberts

Amazing Adventure with Teens

  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

A wonderful couple of weeks focusing principally on the wildlife of Costa
Rica. We went at the start of the rainy season and were lucky with the
weather, but don't think you'll be suthbathing (much) as Exodus keep you
My thirteen year old son told me that the Pacific coast beach we visited was
the most beautiful place he'd ever seen.

Excellent, excellent, excellent.

Gio has an exceptionally calm, professional and efficient manner. He's also
incredibly knowledgeable and endlessly enthusiastic about his country. On top
of that, he understands the importance of group dynamics and ensured that we
formed a happy group.

I really don't think we could have asked for a more thoughtful, organised and
all-round nice guy to lead our holiday!

Two things -
1. If you're travelling in the rainy season, ignore the advice to travel
light as you cannot dry clothes (everything is constantly damp)
2. Ignore Exodus's terrible and costly advice to take dollars. You need
enough dollars to get you to a cash machine, then withdraw local Colones and
use them everywhere - otherwise you will be ripped off by terrible dollar
exchange rates offered in shops and restaurants.

Read more
Operator Exodus Travels

Wow, wow, wow!!!

  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

Costa Rica is a fabulous country and well worth the long flight. We went as
a family of 5, parents of nearly 50, my mum in her early 70s and 2 girls aged
10 and 12. We were looking for a change from the usual pool / beach holiday
and gosh, it was different!!!
The wildlife is nothing short of phenomenal. We saw spiders, snakes, macaws,
crocodiles, lizards, fantastic birds, frogs etc...... the list just goes on.
The plantlife was great - plants we have at home in pots in the house growing
tens of feet high in their natural habitat - it was quite something to see.
It was also very educational, not just seeing plants and animals in their
natural environment, but also other experiences such as the trips to the
chocolate / cacao plantation and the sloth sanctuary. And it was great fun,
especially the white water rafting and the zipwiring in Arenal.
It was however, quite exhausting. I must admit we were not quite prepared
for the pace, the early mornings and the long coach trips, but, in
retrospect, they were all for a reason and all worth it for the sights and
sounds and experiences in each location.
And of course, I must mention our guide Glenda and our driver Mauricio who
were quite simply, marvellous. Their professionalism, efficiency and
enthusiasm for their country made the holiday very special for us.
I think we all enjoyed the quiet boat trip in Tortuguero - how Glenda managed
to find a waterway all to ourselves given the amount of traffic on the main
river I will never know. But the chance to see turtles, crocodiles, various
birds including toucans and macaws, monkeys, lizards etc in their natural
habitat with the added highlight of the 2 dolphins was marvellous.
The white water rafting and zip wiring were such fun and we all enjoyed the
adrenalin rush!
And seeing something new almost at every turn was great. Traipsing back to
our room one afternoon we came across an armadillo, seeing a coati in the
grounds of the hotel, howler monkeys moving across in the trees above the
swimming pool... etc. I could go on.......

Nothing short of fabulous. Glenda was so knowledgeable and her telescope
managed to pick out things that we could not even see with the naked eye.
Mauricio was always there incase anyone wanted to finish a walk early and his
keen eye also spotted other treats hidden in the trees.

Glenda's enthusiasm for her country and her willingness to share this with us
was much appreciated. Our experience of Costa Rica would not have been half
as good without her...

It is hot and humid in August and clothes all get very damp. Anything that
gets wet, stays wet. So pack clothes in ziplock bags and keep them zipped
wherever possible. Dry-wicking clothes are perfect and do not bring anything
that cannot dry easily.
A ball or something for the kids to play with in the pools is a great idea.
And test your waterproofs before you travel. These need to be industrial
strength as when it rains I mean it really rains!! Stand in the shower for
15 minutes on full blast and check those seams!!!
If your kids are remotely travel sick - think about travel bands on their
wrists as the roads are windy and bumpy.
Connecting or family rooms are rare however if you have young kids the rooms
normally have 2 double beds so you could all sleep together although it might
be quite tight!
A zoom camera is a must and maybe, as we did, another soft bag to throw in
the washing and / or hiking boots when these are not being worn will keep the
suitcases relatively clean and organised.

Come with an open mind - this is not a five star country and yes it does rain
- loads!! However, the experiences are well worth the early morning starts
and the requirement to pack up and move on every 48 hours.
It is, admittedly, quite daunting. The concept of spending 2 weeks in close
proximity with 3 or 4 other families and hoping the kids get on and the
parents find common ground. However I feel we were incredibly fortunate on
our tour and met some lovely families. The kids had great fun together and
the parents did too! Looking at other reviews this seems to be a common
theme, so do not delay and book today, you will not regret it!!

Read more
Operator Exodus Travels


  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

This was a really memorable holiday. Costa Rica is an extraordinary country
with a plethora of fantastic birds, animals, and flowers to see - and the big
appeal of it when travelling with children is that on any expedition you
ALWAYS see something. Hotel gardens themselves are places where anything can
happen - I had one of the most exciting bird sightings (a trogon) in the
garden of our hotel in Dominical - where we also saw a boa constrictor in the
stream by the hotel. It really did feel like an adventure - the itinerary
packs so many experiences into a short space of time. It was great for our
11 year old daughter to have other children in the group to make friends with
- that made her braver and more tolerant of some of the long journeys and
physical challenges of so much torrential rain. What makes it all work is
the style of the tour - yes, there is a busy itinerary but our guide always
sought to offer choices of places to eat and things to do, so it felt quite
organic and we never felt over-managed or regimented. Her deep local
knowledge, and that of the driver made a huge difference. Costa Ricans are
friendly, efficient and proud of their country and that made this trip
special too.
My daughter and I loved the rafting trip at Sarapiqui - which was the
"floating safari" rather than the white water version as we felt too nervous
to do that. In fact, because of heavy rain the night before the water was
quite stirred up so it was actually quite thrilling. The guide on this raft
was wonderful - he made it really fun. She also loved the zip wiring at
Sarapiqui, and we all enjoyed the hot springs at La Fortuna - absolutely
magical in the twilight. But the stars of the show were all the animals we
saw - especially sloths and monkeys, and endless iguanas!

Katia was one in a million - so knowledgeable and such a brilliant
communicator. Long journeys were broken up with really good background on
where we were and what we were seeing, and she gave us really good
historical, cultural and social background too. - As a birdwatcher I really
appreciated her willingness to take us on 6am bird spotting strolls. I would
never have seen half so much if she hadn't shown me it - and her passion for
flora and fauna is infectious. I will never forget her detailed description
of the social organisation of the leaf cutter ant! She is a born leader -
always managing to make things feel organic and informal, while doing masses
of contingency planning behind the scenes. She also treated us all as
individuals and sought to offer options that would appeal to each of us. Her
local knowledge of restaurants was invaluable - she gave us choices and took
us to great places.

We went in the rainy season - and boy, did it rain. Not just an hour or two
a day, but torrentially for hours on end, especially on the Caribbean side
where it rains more or less all the year round. And when it isn't raining it
is more often than not very overcast. Once we got to the Pacific side the
weather was much better - sunshine for at least half of every day. So be
prepared for the weather - it can be demoralising. Others have mentioned the
difficulty in drying clothes out - our guide was ingenious and took us twice
to local laundrettes where a service wash was efficient and far cheaper than
in the hotels. Returned either same day or following morning. Hotels are
simple - but we liked the simplest one, at Cahuita, the best because you
could hear the ocean from the garden. We had a miserable time on the
optional turtle trip at Tortuguero locally run, not organised by Exodus. We
had to walk through rainforest to get to the beach and, because of heavy
rain, floodwater was nearly up to our knees - the pitch dark and the warnings
about going single file because of the risk of snakes resulted in our
daughter being absolutely terrified. We did see turtles but by this time she
was unable to enjoy and just wanted to feel safe again. It felt very
overcrowded and not really in the interests of the turtles. But the river
trips made going to Tortuguero worth it.

Do consider doing what we did: we booked a hotel on the Pacific coast and
stayed on for five more nights after the tour relaxing, swimming and whale
watching. Really worth it - after travelling all that way.

This is a really good way of seeing fantastic wildlife and visiting a
tropical country very different from our own, with children. The
organisation and the guide take all the stress out of this kind of travelling
leaving you all free to get the most out of the experience. The Caribbean
coast is wetter but it is really fascinating and shouldn't be missed - its
Afro-Caribbean heritage making it very different from the rest of the

Read more
Operator Exodus Travels

Excellent intro to Costa Rica - outstanding guide Edward

  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

Wow, just back from our 2 week adventure. I don't usually do reviews but this
one is definitely worth a few lines!

Firstly, our guide Edward absolutely made the trip for us. Enthusiastic,
unfappable, great with kids. Very knowledgeable about all aspects of the
country, particularly wildlife and specifically birds (Edward is a trained
and expert ornithologist and took keener members on a couple of early morning
twitching trips). Edward gauged the needs of our diverse group really well,
and made just the right number of decisions for us to keep it relaxing
without being constraining. A special word for how he dealt with a favourite
cuddly toy being left in a hotel (when we noticed about 200 miles away).
Edward's connections, organisation and determination led to a reunion the
next day!

Costa Rica, generally, delivers exactly what it says on the tin. Amazing
wildlife and landscapes.

The big highlights for us were the additional paid-for trips. White water
rafting was exhilarating, with just enough thrills to feel edgy for our 9 and
11 year olds, whilst feeling completely safe and in control. Zip wire near
Arenal volcano was similarly exciting. As someone with an intense dislike of
heights (I feel wobbly in thick socks - and seriously, struggle to stand on a
step ladder) I'd encourage anyone like me to go for it. The start and interim
platforms are deep in the trees, so don't feel at all exposed or high. And
the "zippy" bits are, yes, high above the valley, but high enough for the
drop to be abstract and so fast there's no time to look down! The only
slightly tricky bit for me was the walk (down a spiral staircase - think of a
fire escape) at the end.

- Everyone accepts dollars, and debit cards work everywhere too (including
all the restaurants).

- It's wet in August! (as everyone kept reminding us - it's a rainforest...).
Doesn't interfere with the enjoyment at all but anything that gets wet, will
stay wet and then smelly. If we went again we'd take 7 days worth of clothes
and get them washed (i.e. and also dried) at a couple of hotels. This was
fast and efficient when we tried it.

- We travelled 1000 miles on fairly slow roads (so, a bit more than 20 hours
in total) over the 2 weeks. For younger kids, bring activities for the coach.

Feedback for Exodus (other than the obvious "it was all great and Edward is
Cahuita didn't really do much for us and also featured the weakest of the set
of hotels. Nothing specifically bad about it (so don't worry, prospective
bookers!) but maybe drop that (and the 2 long-ish transfers) for more time
around Arenal?
The last 36 hours felt a bit flat/wasted. Maybe have an early start, drive
straight from Dominical to the airport on the last day, and have an extra
night in Dominical?

Overall, and excellent trip, well worth the money, and we'll be back for more
in the future!

Read more
Operator Exodus Travels

Costa rica family adventure

  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

What a fabulous experience only made possible by our wonderful guide Glenda
Araya, our fantastic driver Mauricio and 3 families who met as strangers and
ended the 2 weeks as one big, happy family. It may have rained every night
(and when it rains it really rains) and we may have witnessed some of the
most amazing thunder and lightening I have ever seen, but that didn`t
detract from the scenery which was stunning and the wildlife which was up
close and fascinating.

Every day involved a new experience whether it was gliding slowly on a boat
through the deserted waterways of Tortuguero ( made possible by Glenda`s
expertise in managing to capture a quiet time of day) or chewing on raw cacao
beans on the chocolate tour then sampling the finished product or white water
rafting, something I always said I would never do but somehow it seemed right
to be brave and give it a go.

You lose track of the days of the week and really it isn`t important- just
let go and enjoy the experience as everything is organised for you.
Gliding slowly though the waterways of Tortuguero National Park with no other
boats around us- just the forest,the water and us. Glenda, our guide, and
Jeffrey, our boatman, helped us spot dolphins, turtles, a host of birds and
iguanas. Magical.

Glenda was approachable, fun and also had an extensive knowledge of her
country and it`s flora and fauna. Armed with her trusty telescope she allowed
us to capture amazing videos and pictures and spotted wildlife which, quite
frankly, I would never have seen had she not been with us. She was very
patient even when the group were dithering about the rafting and what grade
of river we would be on as some of our insurance didn`t cover certain grades
of river. She made several phone calls to try and clarify this for us and
found out the information and came with us for the experience.

Bring a poncho ! Bring lots of quick drying underwear as nothing dries if you
wash it. There is a laundry service in most hotels the cheapest was at
Montechiari at Arenal. Everyone took suitcases - I only mention this as I was
unsure when it said `pack light` whether it meant rucksacks or not though
you still need a day rucksack, and definitely bring walking boots or shoes.

If you are wanting a relaxing holiday to put your feet up by a pool this may
not be the best trip for you. If you want to see this wonderful country and
pack as much as possible in and still have a few afternoons or mornings to
relax then this is the best way to do it.

Read more
Operator Exodus Travels

All River Rafting tours, cruises, and adventure trips. Find the best guided trips and expert planned vacation and holiday packages. Average rating of 4.8 for all River Rafting trips.

9 trips from 111 tour companies with 1,407 reviews

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