For this amazing Costa Rican adventure – we explore the Osa Penisula in the Cocorvado National park, one of the most remote and least visited tourist destinations on the continent. Described as ‘the most biologically intense place on Earth’ by National Geographic Magazine, we will paddle our rafts down and trek through this rainforest
This adventure begins in a rain forest lodge located on a 1500 acre private reserve at the mouth of the Pacuare River. This private reserve borders the indigenous Cabecar Indian Reserve and contains more than 40 miles of hiking trails and numerous waterfalls, streams, and pools. After two days paddling in the Pacuare river we continue our adventure to Drake Bay along the southwestern coast of Costa Rica.
Our hiking expedition takes us from the Bay along pristine coastline and through the heart of Corcovado National Park, described as “the most biologically intense place on Earth” by National Geographic Magazine. The Park is entirely contained within Costa Rica’s Osa Peninsula, whose ecology boats 13 major ecosystems including lowland rain forest, highland cloud forest, jolillo palm forest, mangrove swamp, and varied costal marine habitat. Indeed Corcovado National Park’s remote location, varied and challenging terrain and exceptional biological intensity has earned it the title of “The Last Frontier”!
COSTA RICA RAFTING AND TREKKING ITINERARY
Day 1: Arrival – San José
After arriving at Juan Santamaria (SJO) Airport, we will transfer to our hotel in the San José City. The city of San José, located in the center of the country, has served as the main hub for the exploration of Costa Rica. Attractions in San José include the National Theater, the National Museum, the Art Museum or the Pre-Columbian Gold Museum, the picturesque Central Market Place and several art cafes. Shopping also finds its birthplace in San José, from the modern malls to the little souvenir shops spread out all over the city.
Day 2: Pacuare Rafting (B,L,D)
We have an early start this morning as we leave our hotel and head to the Caribbean side of Costa Rica. We will stop en-route for breakfast and arrive at el Cairo of Siquirres to start the first part of our adventure – rafting the Pacuare River. Winding deep inside of one of Costa Rica’s most impressive primordial rainforests, the Pacuare River, officially declared a Wild and Scenic River, offers some of the finest white water rafting in Latin America. We will traverse 18 miles of remote and scenic waters that course through a wilderness of dense vegetation, plummeting waterfalls and steep gorges that rise above the riverbanks. The thick undergrowth provides shelter for jaguars, ocelots, monkeys, sloths, and numerous other species of animals and birds. We will stop on the river at the Rios Tropicales lodge where we will have dinner and stay overnight.
Overnight Rios Tropicales Lodge
Day 3: Pacuare Rafting (B,L)
Following breakfast at the lodge we start our second day paddling the Pacuare River. We will have lunch at the end of our trip before heading back overland to San José. Lunch at the operation‟s center. Afternoon departure on overland transfer back to San Jose. As we are in town, tonight dinner is on your own.
Day 4: Flight to Drake Bay and Boat Transfer to Sirena Ranger Station (B,L,D)
This morning we will transfer to the local airstrip for our domestic flight to Drake Bay. We will then head by boat to the Sirena Rangers station. This afternoon will be free to explore the surroundings and enjoy a short hike.
Overnight at Sirena Ranger Station Lodge in shared tent or dormitory rooms with bunk beds.
Day 5: Sirena Rangers – Hike (B,L,D)
We spend the day today doing an exploratory hike – so will start and end at the Sirena Rangers.
Overnight at Sirena Rangers Lodge in shared tent or dormitory rooms with bunk beds.
Day 6: Hike from Sirena Station to La Leona (B,L,D)
After an early morning start we will set out on a full day trek to La Leona (16 kilometers, 6-7 hours.) We will hike along the sandy beach with several parallel forest trails that are fairly well-marked – Two sections (Salsipuedes and Punta La Chancha) are impassable at high tide. We‟ll stop enroute for a picnic lunch. The beach trail connecting La Leona and Sirena ranger stations follows the rugged Pacific coastline. The beach winds off into the edge of the forest. Walking can be difficult as the tide rises due to dry sand. Dinner at La Leona.
Day 7: Free Day at La Leona (B,L,D)
We have breakfast at the Hotel. Today we‟ll spend the day exploring the area at our own leisure – or for those of us who found the 16km trek arduous we can simply relax at the hotel.
Day 8: Return to San José (B)
This morning we will hike (30 minutes) to Carate before taking a 4×4 transfer to Puerto Jiminez where we will get our domestic flight to San José. Upon arrival at San José, we will transfer to our hotel – El Rodeo Country Inn and can spend the afternoon and evening at leisure. If you want to visit San José town, this is a short taxi ride away.
Day 9: End of Expedition (B)
This morning after breakfast we will transfer to the airport for our onward flight home (or if you fancy an extension in Costa Rica or another Central American country, we are happy to organise this.
NB: This itinerary is subject to change – arrangements, routes and facilities are subject to variation depending on local conditions