Costa Rica Rainforest Whitewater Rafting and Conservation CME ​Trek

Pura Vida!

Get ready for a some WILD CME! Join us for a trek to the Rios Lodge, located in the rainforest on the Pacuare River in Costa Rica. This unique location will allow for a hands-on, immersive educational experience. Through a partnership with Rios Lodge, the Rivers and Forests Alliance, and the local guiding community, participants will have unprecedented access to one of nature’s best classrooms.

2024 Dates

  • November 4-7, 2024
  • Optional Swiftwater Rescue Course November 7, will extend stay at the lodge an additional night
  • Participants must arrive in Costa Rica November 3, can depart beginning the 8th, or stay longer for additional adventures


  • Nov 3th: Arrive in Costa Rica. Lodging on your own, Recommended: Parque del Lago Hotel San Jose.
  • Nov 4th: Pick up early AM at Parque del Lago Hotel San Jose, bus ride and then raft to Rios Lodge
  • Nov 5th: CME Lectures and exploring
  • Nov 6th: CME Lectures and exploring
  • Nov 7th: OPTIONAL: 1) ACA L3 Swift water course OR 2) Lodge Activities OR 3) Raft/ Travel to San Jose for 3 night trip (Note do not plan to fly out until 8th)
  • Nov 8th: OPTIONAL: 1) Lodge Activities OR 2) Raft/Travel to San Jose for 4 night trip (Note do not plan to fly out until 9th)
  • Nov 9th: Raft/Travel to San Jose, (Note do not plan to fly out until 10th)

Participants will be responsible for their own transportation to and from Costa Rica. You will be picked up by bus in San Jose, where the course will begin with a bus ride to the river. During the bus ride, your faculty and local guides will introduce the you to the history of conservation in Costa Rica. Participants will then take a raft trip down exciting class II-III rapids to the Rios Lodge. During their trip, faculty will begin instruction of wilderness medicine skills, and give riverside presentations on relevant medical topics.  You will also learn fundamentals of river safety and swift water rescue.

​Once at the lodge, the participants will have an evening lecture after getting settled into their rainforest accommodations. The following 2 days will be filled with a variety of educational programs, including lectures and hands-on workshops on wilderness and emergency medicine topics related to tropical and river travel. Participants will also have sessions on ecology and conservation. They will participate in a tree planting event and learn about climate change and health. 

On the fourth or fifth day at the lodge, students will have the option to either raft or hike out to continue their own adventure in Costa Rica, or catch an earlier return home. The rafting trip from the lodge down packs in even more excitement than the trip in. The day will be spent on class III-IV rapids, with a riverside lunch. For those wishing to stay for further education or time at the lodge, an optional ACA River Safety and Rescue- Level 3 course will be held on the fourth day. Space in this course is limited and offered on a first-come, first-served basis.  Guests will also have the ability to enjoy optional activities around the lodge including canopy tour, tubing, water slide hike, hiking to a hidden waterfall, horseback trail ride through the rainforest (additional cost- $200), or yoga, chi gung, meditation, and relaxation time. 

On the sixth day all remaining students will raft out, where they will have transportation back to San Jose or continue on with in-country travel.  Options include exclusive access to Central America’s first downhill mountain bike park (45 minutes outside San Jose), surfing on the west coast, or diving excursions on the Caribbean.  


Rios Lodge offers a truly unique dining experience. Despite being a completely off-grid rainforest eco-resort, the culinary experience is unmatched. Guests rave about the food, and consistently consider it a highlight of the trip! All meals are included while at the lodge.

Learn more about Rios Lodge’s world class food!

Giving Back

By participating in this trek, you are not only feeding your mind and your soul, but you are also supporting the local guiding community and the environment. Proceeds from this trek go directly to supporting ongoing projects to provide free wilderness medicine education to the local guiding community, drowning prevention education, and conservation of the rainforest through a partnership with the Rivers and Forests Alliance.


This activity will provide 20 hours of AMA Category 1 CME, and is sponsored by Wake Forest University Department of Emergency Medicine, and Northwest NC AHEC. 

This activity will also provide credits for the Fellowship in the Academy of Wilderness Medicine, though the Wilderness Medical Society.


Course Fees:

Type of Room3 Night/ 4 Day4 Night/ 5 Day5 Night/ 6 Day
EcoHostel- Bunk with shared bathroom$1,683.20$1,807.50$1,931.80
Private Room- Double Occupancy$1,949.88$2,163.45$2,374.76
Private Room- Single Occupancy$2,386.06$2,744.27$3,102.48
Discounted pricing available for Residents and Students, contact Rios Lodge for details.

Price includes all CME activities, transportation to and from San Jose, rafting into the lodge, all meals while at the lodge, as well as your accommodations. All taxes included.

This trip consists of at least three days at the Rios Lodge, with an optional fourth and fifth day for additional training, or relaxation and exploration.

Price does not include alcoholic beverages at the lodge, or flights to and from San Jose, Costa Rica. Please plan to arrive in San Jose on November 3, the day prior to the start of the conference. It is recommended that all participants stay at the Parque del Lago Hotel San Jose the night before the start of our trek. The Rios Lodge reservations team can assist with making these reservations. The bus will pick you up early in the morning of November 4th from Parque del Lago Hotel, the day the trek starts.  You may choose to depart Rios Lodge on November 7th to return home, or continue in-country adventures, visiting the coast, the cloud forest, or coffee plantations. Guests may also remain at the lodge for an additional two days of optional activities.  Guests should not book flights to return home on the same day they raft out of the lodge. Although guests usually arrive in San Jose by early afternoon, traffic is unpredictable, and we do not recommend return flights on the same day you depart the lodge.

Additional activities are available for additional cost and are arranged through Rios Lodge. 

Discounted price also available for guests accompanying trek participants who will not be participating in the educational activities (family members, children, etc).

Parque del Lago Boutique Hotel:

Contact Rios Lodge Now to Register:

After submitting this registration form a reservation specialist from Rios Lodge will be in touch with you shortly

Pura Vida!

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