A word of warning to anyone planning on going rafting whilst staying in the Bouquete area. We booked with Panama Rafters and although the rafting experience was fantastic and the rafting guides could not have been better we had what could have been a very nasty experience.
When we arrived at the River Chiriqui rafting site where there is the access to the River. There was another rafting company 'Chiriqui Rafting Company' who were already there and were allowed access through the gate. There appears to have been a dispute between the land owner and Panama Rafters and they padlocked the gate after the Panama Rafters owner refused to discuss payment/access with him. We were then told that we would have to access the river another way and to follow the guides. He then climbed into the mini bus we had arrived in and drove off leaving us to get on with it. We discovered this other access was a steep 300 ft climb (no pathway) down to the river, it was incredibly dangerous. The two guides with the rafts had to cut through barbed wire to get down and we were left to scramble down the best we could. I slipped and hit my coccyx bone (tail bone) on a rock and have been in terrible pain sitting since which was 3 weeks ago. I class myself lucky as I could have just as easily have broken my leg and there would have been no way out of there other than helicopter.
I was in serious pain all through the rafting but in fairness to the rafting guides they were brilliant and the rafting was outstanding. I would suggest to anyone to make sure that this access problem has been resolved before booking with Panama Rafters. Other people in our hotel had booked with Chiriqui River Rafting and had the same brilliant time rafting without the access problem.