We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Transportation Service”

Desafio Adventure Company
Book In Advance
More Info
and up
Canyoning in the Lost Canyon
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Desafio Adventure Company is considered the pioneering tour outfitter in Costa Rica's Epicenter of Adventure near the Arenal Volcano since 1992. Desafio offers high-quality rafting, canyoning, biking, hiking, birdwatching, kayaking, stand up paddling, unique cultural experiences, transfer with tour services, incentive programs, volunteer opportunities and much more. We only have two rules: 1) Be Safe! and 2) Have Serious Fun! Look for Desafio in Downtown La Fortuna near the Arenal Volcano or take the Desafio Adventure Connections to the Monteverde, Guanacaste, San Jose, Manuel Antonio, Playa Samara and now Leon, Nicaragua! Desafio is family-owned and operated and your "one-stop-shop" for adventure travel in Costa Rica and beyond!
Useful Information: Lockers / storage, Bathroom facilities, Wheelchair access, Food available for purchase, Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Reviewed March 5, 2014

We did not use this company for adventures but for personal transportation to different activities. First off they picked us up exactly on time and were super helpful and friendly. They provided us with bottled water, A/C in the van, and free WiFi in the van. Were very accommodating to requests to take us places we had not planned in advance. They also drove us to the Nicaragua border from La Fortuna. They made sure we had everything in order (exit taxes) for the border crossing. And to make the experience even greater, our driver searched for 2 hours on the drive to find a sloth since I had not seen one yet. He found us one, pulled over, and told us a little bit about the sloths in Costa Rica. Would recommend this company to anyone!

1  Thank GlobalNurse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (3,473)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
  • More languages
All reviews
"mambo combo"
in 176 reviews
"white water rafting"
in 506 reviews
"the river"
in 543 reviews
"la fortuna"
in 504 reviews
"costa rica"
in 711 reviews
"rio balsa"
in 150 reviews
"wet clothes"
in 40 reviews
"a lot of fun"
in 156 reviews
"waterfall repelling"
in 56 reviews
in 176 reviews
in 117 reviews
"these guys"
in 127 reviews
"felt safe"
in 88 reviews
"san jose"
in 88 reviews
"always on time"
in 55 reviews
"pura vida"
in 125 reviews
"class rapids"
in 60 reviews

1,800 - 1,804 of 3,558 reviews

Reviewed March 4, 2014

First let me qualify myself, not to boast or brag, but I've been professionally involved with adventure tourism for about 30 years in Costa Rica. I've experienced most of the adventure and logistics companies in the country during that time.
This past weekend my wife, niece and myself did several adventure activities with Desafio in Fortuna, canyoneering, hiking, etc. The level of safety and professionalism is as good as gets and while you might find similar tours from other companies for a few dollars less I've seen all of them in Fortuna and none compares.
Desafio also handled our hotel reservations and in spite of the entire town being full due to an annual adventure bike event that weekend all went smooth as they are more than just a day tour company they offer a full range of services.
Just as important if not more is one's time. Nothing worse than waiting in your hotel for a late pick up worrying about whether you've been forgotten. Desafio picked us up in San Jose and never missed a beat moving us around during our visit. Every operation was executed with Swiss like precision.
The adventures were spectacular and the canyoneering will be a lifetime memory for me. The guides make it a perfect combination of support and individual exploration.

2  Thank Cocomar2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 3, 2014

My husband and I felt like we were on The Bachelor while we were canyoning and rafting. I stayed at Tabacon and the hotel recommended the Pure Trek company for canyoning. Having read tripadvisor, I decided to book directly with Desafio. We were picked up at our hotel where we were then taken to the Lost Canyon site. We decided to go on the 7 am tour and only had 4 people total in our group. The 11 am group had a lot more people. The experience was so much more amazing with a small group. The canyoning consisted of 4 rappels, two were small and the other two were high. The last one was about 220 feet and was called big daddy. It was half rappel half zipline. It was a lot of fun and my husband who is not the biggest fan of heights enjoyed it as well. You have to hike between the four rappels, this includes walking through knee deep and chest deep water and going down some rocks. Everyone in the group loved the tour, but this is not a stroll through the park, for those averse to more strenous hikes. The guides were magnificent and we had a photographer along the way capturing all of the fun moments with a professional grade camera. It was well worth the $25 for the pictures.

After canyoning we were provided with a light breakfast and then got into a van to go to the Balsa river for rafting. It was about a 45 minute drive from the Lost Canyon. We went on the class 2 and 3 rapids. I had never rafted before and felt safe the entire time. I could have definately done a more intense river. We stopped about 3/4 of the way down and had some fruit and could float in the river if we wanted. At the end of the river we were provided showers and bags to put our wet clothes in. We then were taken to a restuarant which was once owned by an old president. We were given a costa rican bbq lunch and our tour guides along with some of the staff played music for us! We then were taken to a sugar cane farm on the property and were shown how sugar is made the old fashioned way. This was all unexpected and a cool bonus. I wish I could remember our guides names but they were ALL really wonderful, fun, and very knowledgable. Do not hesitate to book the mambo combo. Pura Vida!

2  Thank Lara A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 1, 2014

Our group of eight planned five days of activities with Desafio, three days in Monteverde and two days in Arenal. Janet (in the Monteverde Desafio office) helped us pick activities and we had a great time every day. Our guides were friendly, helpful, and informative. We loved Costa Rica and hope to go back some day - and when we do, we will use Desafio again.

Thank LRM464
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
See more reviews
Reviewed February 28, 2014

We visited CR 13 days, and by far our best day was this one. Not only was the rafting wonderful, but the meal at a large plantation was incredible afterwards. It gets better, they had a fruit feeder out near where you dine that had incredible birds coming. I couldn't get enough of watching them. They sang for us, served us food, shared photos of the rafting with us, and then gave us a sugar cane demonstration. Tasted the sugar cane candy, and took pictures. They picked us up on time, dropped us off, answered all our questions, showed us wildlife when we weren't busy paddling through the rapids. Our guide Frank was a true gentleman, and he had to work so hard with our group (all 4 seniors) and we had so much fun with them. I might add that safety is number one with these guys - be safe and have fun. Great time, great food, and great guides. Thank you so much all of you.

Thank margie70745
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Desafio Adventure Company also viewed

La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park
La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park
La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park
La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park

Been to Desafio Adventure Company? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing