There’s nothing like the adrenaline rush that comes with white water rafting, nor the sense of pride and accomplishment that comes with safely navigating a particularly treacherous pass. Adding a beautiful, exotic location that has plenty of other exciting opportunities will make your trip truly memorable.
1. Zambezi River, Zimbabwe
Situated below Victoria Falls, these rapids are not to be trifled with. Enjoy a breath taking experience with some of the most majestic views of nature in its full power in the world. For those looking for something a little more relaxed, there are tamer stretches of the river through the gorge that still over the occasional challenge.
The Victoria Falls area is an adventure seeker’s paradise, and is sometimes called the adrenaline capital of the world. When not rafting, you can try bungee jumping, walking with lions on a real hunt, or zip lining high above the trees.
2. Rangitikei River, New Zealand
This river on the North Island of New Zealand packs a punch. While you can take it a little easier in the Grade II rapids, the gorge section of the river offers ten rapids in a row, separated by a staircase-like drop and going up to Grade V. This exciting adventure is on a backdrop of natural beauty. On non-rafting days, try tubing through a cave of thousands of iridescent glow worms, visiting the filming sites for Lord of the Rings, and relaxing at the beach.
3. East Glacial River, Iceland
Plunge through scenic gorges and raw wilderness on this river nicknamed the Beast of the East. It is one of the best white water rafting experiences in the area with rapids up to Grade 5. Just make sure you go at the right time of year or prepare to be cold. While not enjoying the fierce river, relax in some local hot springs and take in the natural beauty that exists all around you.
4. Mae Taeng River, Thailand
While this river is a little tamer than others on this list, reaching only Grade IV, it more than makes up for it in beauty. Trek through the Thailand jungle on the back of this tumultuous river. For the truly adventurous, consider trying out the challenging whitewater kayaking at this location. You can also enjoy exploring the jungle from the back of an elephant and zip-line through the canopy when you aren’t on the water. The exchange rate between the USA and Thailand is favorable, allowing you to get the most out of your vacation.
5. Futaleufú River, Chile
Raft through the Pategonia Mountains and take in the breathtaking views. Try anything from mild currents to Grade V rapids on this exciting ride, and take note of the many scenic waterfalls. Glide through narrow gorges and past vast granite cliffs that are intimidating in their immensity. When out of the water, you can hike, ride horseback, or even repel through the breathtaking mountains, visit local beaches and soak up the centuries of culture all around you. If you need a break from the adventure, take some time to relax in a local natural hot tub.
Whitewater rafting can only be made better through exciting and exotic locations. Consider making rafting a part of your next remarkable adventure.
Rocky Mountain Whitewater Rafting was founded by Ron Raudelunas, a rafting guide with over 15 years experience, in 2009. Ron and his team have guided thousands of whitewater rafting trips on Clear Creek and throughout Colorado.