River Rafting

Panama's abundance in water and geography lends itself to rafting. Take note that the river flow lessens during the dry summer months of January to April, though they could still be navigable in January. Based on this seasonality, the rivers' ranking of class 1 to class 5 can fluctuate. There are several rivers with rapids suitable for the adventure sport of rafting, as described below: 

Old Chiriquí River in the province of Chiriquí has Class III up to Class V rapids, depending on the time of year. Minimum age for children is twelve years old.

Río Grande in the province of Coclé can reach Class II and possibly Class III in certain rainy seasons. To increase the adrenaline rush, the river is usually rafted in an inflatable two-person kayak. Minimum age for children is six years old.

Mamoní River east of Panama City in the province of Panama also has Class III and IV rapids, depending on the season. You can go down the river either in an inflatable kayak or in a raft that holds four to six people. For adults only.

Chagres River has up to class III rapids at times. One of the perks of the ride is a stop at a riverside Emberá indigenous village. Minimum age for children is twelve years old.

Best places to go rafting in Panama

  • The rapids on Mamoní River
  • Tubing down Chagres River
  • Old Chiriquí: Las Vueltas Creek to Salsipuedes (meaning "Get out if you can"!)
  • Pacora River: La Chapa to San Miguel
  • Boquerón River

The stretch from Salsipuedes to Paso Canoas (Canoe Portage)

  • Sereno River
  • Old Chiriquí: Palón, Sabo
  • Chagres River
  • Old Chiriquí River
  • Esti River

What to bring

  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses with strap or cord
  • Synthetic shirts for cloudy days
  • Swimsuit
  • Kayak or water shoes

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