April 18, 2007
An 8 hour drive through the Costa Rican countryside, onto rocky backroads taking us across rivers and deep into the rainforest, brought us to a real gem: the Rafiki Safari Lodge, accurately self-described as “a rainforest resort with a little touch of Africa.”
Before even making it to our tents, our gracious hosts, the Boshoff family, pointed us to the mandatory welcome at Rafiki: a refreshing plunge down Rafiki’s super high speed water slide. A great barbecue dinner followed, after which we fell into bed to the background music of toucans, tropical frogs and cicadas.
Day two at Rafiki will go down in Hirshland family vacation lore as a classic. Up (literally) at the crack of dawn, I watched the sun rise over the mist enveloped tropical mountains. The Boshoffs served us a scrumptuous breakfast, then put us on horseback — even 5 year old Lucy got her own horse — for a 5K ride up over the mountain range to the Savegre river. We made it safely to the horse-to-raft transition point and hit the rapids.
It didn’t take long for Hirshlands to join the “Savegre swim team” — in other words, bounce out of our rafts into the rapids. The infamous “Gringo eater” rapids claimed my wife Ady and Henry (11), “roller coaster” pulled out both Henry and Oliver, and “washing machine” got Henry again. After pulling over for a delicious barbecue chicken lunch, we hit some more rapids, then splashed around beneath an absolutely breathtaking tropical waterfall.
Back at the Lodge in time for beers and another spectacular dinner. All in all a spectacular couple days at Rafiki! Any of you out there planning to visit Costa Rica must check this place out. The scenery, activities, host family, food and overall experience are sensational.