Costa Rica Travel – A series of stunning new photographs show intrepid tourists flinging themselves from cliffs as high as 100 feet — and then plunging into the pools below — as part of a new tour group offering the thrills to tourists in Costa Rica, which is famous for its stunning waterfalls.
Divers and tour guides Matthew Rosenthal and Brian Galloway spend their time searching for falls across the Central American country, driving through the island and along the rivers to find waterfall cliffs to try out and dive into — later taking tourists to jump off them.
“We explore and find all of these different waterfalls on a daily basis,” said Rosenthal, 33. “In our spare time, this is what you do.”
Rosenthal added that, because of Costa Rica’s abundance of rivers, “if you just follow a river, the chances are you are going to find a waterfall. Sometimes you just get really lucky and find an epic waterfall, it is the best feeling ever.
“It doesn’t take long to find one, it might not be the most beautiful waterfall you will ever see, but there will always be a little swimming hole you can dive into.
“We have such a wild time, I love it so much,” he added.
Originally a real estate financier, Matthew, decided to flip his career around and move to Costa Rica teaming up with his long time friend Galloway, 35, in 2013. The pair have made it their mission to find the greatest waterfalls of all time.
“It is funny because I wasn’t always into diving,” said Rosenthal, originally from New Jersey. “At the time of moving, I didn’t know I would love to jump of 60-foot or 70-foot waterfalls on a regular basis and shoot down them. “But it is great and we get to do this every day. I always look forward to every day, I am living the dream. I feel pretty fortunate about it.”
“But I love it, I have always been athletic,” Rosenthal added. “And I like being physical.”
Rosenthal and Galloway own a diving company named Paddle 9, both coming up with the idea five years ago.
Paddle 9 has officially been running since 2014, and has since been taking groups of people around the Nauyaca Waterfall, located in the southern region of Costa Rica. These majestic waterfalls are one of the main attractions of the southern region in Costa Rica.
“There is no element of danger,” said Rosenthal. “People of every capability can do this, even children.”
“We physically climb people up, people have to listen to my words. Myself and the team take full control. I take people’s hands and feet and I get people to see some amazing views. We are passionate about it and I think it shows.”
Rosenthal added that it’s “the best feeling getting people doing things they thought they would never be able to do, and it is all so safe. The energy is amazing.”
Rosenthal and Galloway work with a team of seven people in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, as part of Paddle 9. They also specialize in ocean paddleboarding as well, in the Mangroves, which holds some of the most eco-diverse areas.
“We are all experienced divers and love what we do,” said Rosenthal. “A lot of our divers have jumped of cliffs as high at 120 feet. It is awesome to see them fly through the air with no fear — we all can do double blackflips and twist.
“We just like to get our own kicks and have a fantastic and wild time. It’s real nice.”
A day trip with Paddle 9 costs $130 and includes three waterfalls to jump and slide from, a beach swim, rain-forest lunch, and guides who will also be carrying equipment throughout the day.
By Yasmin Harisha, Fox News