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Kelsey D

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  1. It’s difficult to remember all of them, but here’s what I recall. I chickened out at the biggest jump, so I climbed down a ladder to bypass the jump. I remember my daughter choosing not to jump into the first one of the 27, which we had to swim into and climb onto a rock to jump in. She simply stayed at the base of the waterfall and got started at 26. I remember when given the choice of sliding or jumping, she always chose to slide. I also remember the guide leading her around a jump or two to a shorter drop where she could just slip into the water. My daughter is not adventurous at all but could do this. But you do have to be willing to get submerged. That’s inevitable.
  2. There are alternative ways down some of the larger waterfalls, but you definitely have to get wet on this tour. If my daughter was given the option to avoid the water, she would have taken it. However, there was no choice but to take the plunge, and she was so glad that she did. If your sister-in-law feels strongly about not getting in the water, I don’t recommend bringing her along. I don’t think that she can avoid the water, and she won’t enjoy herself. If she only THINKS that it’s not for her, like my daughter, she may love it if she can let go of her fear. It was an amazing adventure. I hope that you get to experience it.
  3. I estimate that we were onsite about 4 hours from drop off to pick up by taxi, and it’s about a 30-minute drive each way. You should be fine getting back on board by 2:30 if you 1) get off the ship relatively early and 2) don’t anticipate that your group will need frequent breaks. We only took one break during the 45-minute hike, and we made good time getting down the falls. I would go for it!
  4. In March, it was...refreshing. You don’t really have time to think about it once you start, and after you take that first plunge, it’s fine. We weren’t uncomfortable at all, but it was definitely chillier than my preferred 80 degree water temp. I wore a long-sleeve bathing suit top. A wetsuit top isn’t a bad idea if you’re prone to being cold in water.
  5. When we arrived, they grouped us with another family that was doing all 27, and we were assigned two guides, one to lead and one to trail the group. From what I understand, when you book through a tour company, at least one guide is assigned from the park itself; so every group, whether booked through a tour company or directly at the park, is officially led by a guide from the park. The guides all knew each other and worked together. What they were doing for us seemed customary. Nobody questioned it, and even the waiting tourists didn’t seemed phased by it. I can’t guarantee that they do this for every group, but they sure did make it seem like business as usual. I suspect that not too many opt for all 27 on any given day, so it’s probably not too disruptive to let a small group go to the front of the line when this happens. I am so thankful that we went this route. It was easy and less expensive; though, I’d be willing to pay more for this experience over that of a tour group. That’s just our preference though. Best of luck in your planning, and enjoy yourselves whichever route you decide!
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