Diana first came to Costa Rica in 2011 to complete in the world championships in white water rafting as part of the Bulgarian national team. Upon her return to this country, her plan was to get away from the Canadian winter, raft some new rivers in Costa Rica and make her way slowly to Colombia. Until, that is, she met Ahndres and as she likes to joke, “I am still on my way to Colombia.”
When Diana and Ahndres met (now husband and wife), they brought their experiences and passions together and in 2013, Dinghy Expeditions – Mountains, Rivers and Coasts, was born. More than just an adventure company, Dinghy was formed to bring something different to rafting, hiking and multi-day expeditions. “We were fed up with seeing these big ‘Mickey Mouse Operations,’ where money and numbers mattered more than safety, great customer service, the environment and treating people kindly,” recall the couple. “I came to Costa Rica expecting to be engulfed in nature, remote wilderness and pristine beaches like on the photos of travel magazines, which is exactly what we are offering now through our company. Instead, I found a saturated industry where the percentage of the commission determined who would sell your tour instead of the quality of the activity, your years of experience and the high quality service provided. An industry that survives by moving a high volume of people fast for a profit, which is totally opposite of the pura vida lifestyle that is embedded in the Costa Rican way of being. We want to do want we love and have a personal life too,” shares Diana.
“Dinghy Expeditions is different,” says Ahndres. “Through great day trips hiking in national parks, safari floating and river rafting to real exploring, trekking deep in the biggest forest reserve on our multi-day expeditions, our goal is to show you, teach you, treat you well and get you passionate about nature again. Through white water rafting and trekking, we preserve our rivers and planet while having fun. We purposely maintain our tours small and personalized in order to give 100% of our attention and knowledge to our clients. This creates trust. We put safety first. We give back to the community, hiring locals and buying products from the region. This creates jobs. We perform community service and team building. This empowers people. We pay our guides and employees well because their work is valuable and important. This creates worth. We care about the environment using biodegradable and recyclable products. This creates a better future for the next generations.”
In a nut shell, Dinghy’s focus is on fun, adventure, unparalled customer service, supporting local communities, sustainability, preservation and conservation through responsible tourism, good kharma and exploring the real Costa Rica.
For more on Dinghy’s philosophy, CLICK HERE.