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“Fantastic kayak down the Penas River”
Review of Canoa Aventura

Canoa Aventura
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Half Day Rafting in Peñas Blancas River from La Fortuna
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Our specialty is combining paddling with an immersion into the natural Costa Rican environment. For more than 20 years, we have been guiding birdwatching trips throughout northern Costa Rica. And, for the past 14 years, we've also been guiding canoe trips in Costa Rica, Vermont USA, Canada, and Nicaragua. Enjoy nature while observing wildlife on the river banks of Costa Rica with our safari tours in your choice of canoe, raft or kayak in Penas Blancas River. Or you may prefer to enjoy a panoramic view of the majestic Arenal Volcano by joining our Lake Arenal by canoe tour. If you would you like explore the nature of Costa Rica by foot, we offer walks to very recognized natural destination tours like Rio Celeste Hike, Cerro Chato Hike, and the majestic Arenal Volcano.
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Activities for older children, Activities for young children
Smith's Parish, Bermuda
Level Contributor
27 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Fantastic kayak down the Penas River”
Reviewed 20 April 2014

This was the best kayak trip I've ever been on! It was about three hours in length and worth every penny. Jorge was our guide in what ended up being a private tour for just my husband and nine year old daughter (in one kayak) and Jorge and myself in the other kayak. We can't say enough good things about Jorge who pointed out so much wildlife that we wouldn't have seen otherwise - crocodile, oreo snake, howler monkeys, green and grey iguanas, sloth, bats and a huge variety of colorful birds.
Also Jorge spotted a Jesus Christ lizard on a rock in the middle of the river which he purposely paddled back up river so as to get a better photo op for me then proceeded to smack the water with his paddle in order for us to see the lizard "run" across the river!
Jorge also offered to take my camera to get better wildlife shots when he was in a better position than me.
This float trip (by kayak or raft) also includes a refreshment break (cheese, fruit, juice) at an old Tico homestead, a "bare bones" wooden home literally built on the dirt and without any creature comforts that many of us have come to rely on, an eye opener for sure.
In a nutshell this kayak trip is a definite recommend, with the visible wildlife and lush forest all around a beautiful calm river guided by a patient and considerate guide we couldn't have asked for more. We went at the end of March and it was comfortable on the water, not too hot and a fairly shaded paddle.
Definitely go!

Visited March 2014
Thank buccij
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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403 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
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  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
18 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Volcano Tour and Springs visit”
Reviewed 18 April 2014

The volcano trip was cool as we saw the top of Arenal for the first time free of cloud but it wasn't spectacular. The bonus dinner at the famous Springs resort was a real treat, especially watching sunset over the volcano.

Visited March 2014
Thank Jimmyfarold
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bellingham, Washington, United States
Level Contributor
165 reviews
44 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
“Beautiful Hike but very long bumpy drive”
Reviewed 10 April 2014

I really enjoyed my Rio Celeste hike for the experience of seeing the unbelievable blue water of the Rio Celeste river, the incredible waterfall, and learning the geologic reasons why this occurs. The hike is not strenuous but muddy and may be hard for older individuals or those with small children. Our guide was great...very pleasant and accomodating. There didn't appear to be that much wildlife to see on the trail which was fairly crowded. For those who suffer from motion sickness, be forewarned that the drive from Arenal region includes at least 45 minutes of off road driving and is extremely bumpy and unpleasant.

Visited April 2014
Thank Teresa T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Saint Sauveur des Monts, Canada
Level Contributor
67 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Lovely paddle with Pablo”
Reviewed 8 April 2014

Really enjoyed paddling the Penas Blancas with Pablo. Even got to see a young crocodile and enjoyed our stop at the Don Pedros. Although it was a hot day, the river is sufficiently shady that we were very comfortable.

Visited April 2014
Thank jtmh89
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Surrey, BC
Level Contributor
39 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Cano Real Negro: It all depends on the boat”
Reviewed 5 April 2014

There are several boats that are used for these tours, and we were on one that looked NOTHING like the one shown in the advertisements. Ours was low-slung, had uncomfortable bucket seats, a noisy, stinky motor, and no speakers. Only the few people near the front of the boat could hear the guide clearly. We were not supposed to stand up in the boat, so the pilot had to pull in and out of each stop repeatedly so that both sides of the boat could see the animals. This involved more noise, more exhaust, and entertained only half of the visitors at a time.

Why does this get three stars, then? Well, first of all, our guide, Jorge, was absolutely superb. Full of detailed knowledge of the area and the animals, he was a consummate professional and a friendly fellow as well. Second, the bus ride from La Fortuna to the site was comfortable and well narrated by Jorge. Third, the river is very nice: although most of what we saw were birds that I have seen in Florida, we saw three species of monkey, some up close, as well as lizards and caimans. When we weren't breathing fumes, the jaunt down the river was really pleasant. And the little restaurant / soda where the tour was anchored provided nice snacks before and a good "typical food" meal afterwards.

So in the end the tour was probably not worth the cost, but it was not wasted money either. If you can get a guarantee that you will have a pontoon boat or can get a smaller, more personal tour, this might be a nicer tour.

Visited March 2014
Thank Rileycoyotes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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