August 31, 2018
Are you afraid of speed? Are you less of an adrenaline addict and more of an adrenaline avoider? I can relate!
My name is Lauren, and recently I was told I’d be going on a jungle ATV tour with one of Tulemar’s trusted tour companies. My first thought was “No, thanks.” My second thought was “Carpe diem, Lauren. You got this.” My final thought was “You don’t really have a choice, so stop thinking so much and just go.”
I’ve always been afraid of ATVs. I don’t like feeling of being out of control, I don’t like speed, and to be honest, I’m a terrible driver. I had never been on an ATV and I figured learning to drive one in the middle of the Costa Rican jungle with other tourists in tow was probably the worst idea ever. What if I want to go slower than the rest of my group? What if I can’t get the hang of it? What if I accidentally get hurt, or hurt someone else?
As the tour day rolled around I woke up nervous for what to expect. I was picked up at my font door, shuttled to the main office to sign some paper work, then whisked off to the jungle to begin the ride. I was immediately in awe of the surroundings: A picturesque river filled with giant birds and cows with lush palm trees in the background. The area was beautiful which helped to calm my nerves, and I thought at the very least I’ll get some great photos.
To begin, the tour guide asked if everyone knew how to drive an ATV. I sheepishly raised my hand and told him I had never been on one and that I was, quite frankly, terrified of doing the tour. He grabbed me a helmet, situated me on my ATV, and slowly showed me everything I needed to know to drive safely and have fun. He then brought me out to a field by the river to “test” my skills. This would help him determine how fast he could go during the tour to ensure I was safe and enjoying my time. This also gave me a chance to practice driving and get familiar with my vehicle.
By the end of my “test” I was already feeling more confident and we headed off to begin our tour. I wasn’t sure what to expect: Would we be driving through rivers? Would we be driving on roads? Would we be driving through thick mud? Will I have to go down steep hills? Turns out, the answers to all my questions was ‘yes’!
During the tour we drove on wide gravel roads and flat terrain, we drove through shallow rivers, we went up hill, down hill, through massive palm tree plantations, and we gained quite a bit of elevation so that we had incredible views from the top. The best part? I was never scared once. We went fast enough so we could actually end the tour on time, but we went slow enough that I always felt in control. Not to mention, the constant change in landscaping and scenery kept me in awe throughout the entire tour.
Half way through the tour we stopped at two gorgeous waterfalls. We had the option to walk across a suspension bridge and get photos, and also to jump in a natural pool at the base of the falls to cool off. Afterwards, we stopped for a delicious arroz con pollo (chicken fried rice) meal, which was included with our tour. From there, we had a quick and easy thirty minute ATV ride home.
I have to admit, by the end I was hooked and already looking to book my next tour! I had a blast and can’t even remember what I was afraid of to begin with. If you are one who is also afraid of ATVs, I highly recommend looking into a tour. Your personal concierge will be happy to answer any questions and to get you booked on the best tour for your needs.
I hope to see you on the trails!