Final day: White water rafting!

I have to be honest. I've overcome a lot of fears and been out of my element several times over the course of this trip, but no other experience was I more nervous for than white water rafting. I knew it was going to be the last day of the trip. I knew it was going to be a 2 1/2 hour long experience. I knew it was going to take us an hour and a half of anticipation on the bus to reach the mouth of the Sarapiqui River. I knew it could also be very dangerous as the river is your guide, and nothing else. However, I didn't know how absolutely refreshing and exhilarating white water rafting was going to end up being!

For the past 24 hours I was kind of a nervous wreck. I kept thinking about white water rafting, asking questions from our guide, looking up reviews of the company we were going with (Aventuras Sarapiqui-- they were phenomenal!), and trying to get a grasp on what was going to be happening because I had never done it before. I couldn't really even eat breakfast this morning because I was so nervous!

The Sarapiqui River is primarily a class III river, but there are a few class II spots to rest on it. When we reached the place where we'd be entering the river, our guides were so knowledgeable and so committed to helping us prevent falling into the water as much as possible, so I did begin to feel very safe. Oh man. Once the raft started going and we started paddling, I had this completely surreal moment like, "Am I seriously white water rafting in Costa Rica right now?" The scenery was so lush, the water was so refreshing; there were scarlet macaws and toucans flying overhead, but most importantly was that we were having an absolute blast. I can totally see why people get hooked on rafting! We all worked as a team and no one fell overboard (although we did get pretty drenched with waves toppling over us as you'll see in the pictures below).

It's hard to pick what the best experiences of this trip have been so far. For me, a lot of what has been my favorite have been the things in which I had to overcome fears or nerves; things I've never before done in my life, and things in which I really grew as a person because I pushed outside my comfort zone. Gliding in the air at 5,000 feet up; rafting down a class III river; riding horses on peaks and slopes of mountains; hiking to the crater of an active volcano... I would take this tour again in a heartbeat!

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