Ecuador is a country that has many mountains and a generous rainfall so it should come as no surprise to find great whitewater rafting and kayaking options in the country. The two sports are quite exciting in Ecuador because of the fact that the rivers are flowing through scenic tropical forests, which are home to thousands of animals, especially beautiful birds. River trips can be combined with traditional indigenous communities in order to soak in their culture.
Rainfall is almost year round on the Andes slopes, which have a really high rivers concentration. Boulder strewn waterways are flowing from cloud forests right into rainforests, going through some lush gorges and valleys, massive trees, flora, fauna and great waterfalls. The Andes’ western slope brings in more really popular rivers that are accessible. However, water levels have to be high enough in order to enjoy rafting, which is just popular from January to May.
Rio Toachi is located in the Western Andes region. It is quite close to Quito River and offers various great routes for beginners, thus making it incredibly popular among rafters. The river gives access to class III and IV rapids. You can raft on it from January to May. Alternatively, go for Rio Mulate for Class III rapids, allowing for a great one or two day trips.
This Class III river is great in its upper part, located north of Toachi. It goes through lesser developed valleys. This is something that is perfect for most people that enjoy the activity. What is interesting is that Rio Blanco is perfect for both experienced rafters and complete beginners. The distance between the river and Quito is perfect for a two days trip. However, the river is solely navigable from the month of January to May. If you travel during another month, you can still enjoy the activity at the confluence between Toachi River and Rio Blanco. It is definitely not pristine but you will love it.
Other Rivers For Whitewater Rafting In Ecuador
Rio Napo is located in eastern Andes. It is a Class III tributary of the Amazon, going through an amazing region of tropical forests. The river is 25 kilometers long and makes up a wonderful full day trip for those interested.
If you want a Class IV river, consider Rio Misahualli. According to many, this is the most challenging and impressive whitewater experience that Ecuador has to offer. A lot of rafting experience is necessary in order to navigate on this river, which is just accessible during low water season between October and March.
On the whole, we are faced with various different whitewater rafting experiences in Ecuador. Remember the fact that the rivers mentioned are just some of those that can be considered. Many others exist and you do want to be a part of the overall experience.