River Rafting - Best Tours & Trips 2019
Classic Tour Groups are between 25-60 people, typically ~30-40. Usually there will be many opportunities to split off and enjoy meals and excursions in smaller groups. This is the most economical way to travel, saving up to 40% versus booking the same itinerary yourself.
Small Group Guided Experiences Small groups are usually defined as between 10 and 24 travelers, often less. If you're the kind of person who enjoys more intimate experiences and personal service this is a good choice. All else being equal you will pay a premium for this style vs a larger group tour.
River Cruise These vessels are smaller than most ocean cruisers, limiting which amenties are available. Passenger counts can vary. One of the biggest advantages of a river cruise is the ability to dock at smaller ports and local villages.
Small Ocean Cruise Small ship cruises usually have a max passenger count of 500. The primary purpose of these trips is to spend time off the vessel in local ports (e.g. Mediterranean) or experiencing nature (e.g Galapagos or Antarctica). Cabins can vary from budget to luxury.
Private Tour Private tours give you the undivided attention of a guide, and often involve special access to sites and unique experiences not available to larger groups. This is a great option for families, couples, and small friend groups. Expect to pay a bit more for the extra service.
Independent Package A travel company plans your itinerary and arranges all the logistics including lodging, local activities, and transportantion. You have the flexibility of a solo trip while still getting the convience and time savings of expert planning. Get 90% of the benefits of a tour, without a guide.
Vacation / Holiday Package Similar to a self guided tour, this usually involves a home base, such as a hotel or resort, with packaged activities and day tours as a part of the stay.
Large Ocean Cruise This is the "floating city" experience, with multiple ways to enjoy your vacation aboard the ship as much as on land. Ships are multiple floors, provide several activities, culinary, and shopping options. They often make fewer stops and have less time available for shore excursions.
Camping Typically involves most nights sleeping in tents (sometimes permanent tented sites) or in rustic cabins and lodges.
Basic - 2 star You'll stay in no-frills, but clean and comfortable, hotels or guesthouses. A 'Basic' trip might also involve a few nights of camping.
Value - 3 star Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Premium - 4 star 3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards.
Luxury - 5 star The highest level of comfort and service. All accomodations are in four or five star hotels, boutique lodges or high-end homestays.
Price Per Day
Very Easy Minimal walking - motor vehicles available for all major parts of trip.
Easy Normal generally flat walking in urban or suburban environments.
Moderate Walking or physical activity half to most of day - no carrying equipment.
Strenuous All or most of day hiking or biking, hills included.
Extreme Very challenging all day hiking and backpacking carrying significant equipment.
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Rivers & Seas
Cities & Attractions
Good for Singles Trips that specifically cater to travelers looking to meet other singles.
No Single Supplement Trips where single supplement is usually not required for solo travelers.
Flights & Transport
Continents & Regions
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Top River Rafting Experiences
Rafting through Raft Badger and Soap Creek rapids of Grand Canyon
Hiking to explore the Grand Canyon which can only be accessed from the river
Seeing beautiful Kackar Mountains while rafting Coruh River in Turkey
Stopping to camp at a sandy beach
Gathering around campfire and listening to river legends
Spotting amazing wildlife and beautiful landscapes
Seeing monkeys while rafting through Sun Kosi River of Nepal
River Rafting Trip Reviews
61 River Rafting Tour Reviews - Summary 98% Recommend
River Rafting Tours and Travel Guide
River Rafting Attractions & Landmarks Guide
Whitewater river rafting -- especially class III and above, with plenty of churning rapids -- provides all the thrills most adventurous travelers could ask for. Long-distance river rafting trips are available in many countries; just grab a paddle and helmet and prepare to follow your river guide's instructions. It's a good multi-generational activity, too, especially with teenagers.
Whitewater River Rafting vs. Beginner River Rafting
No matter how much of a beginner you are, river rafting is always a thrilling experience. If you are not going whitewater rafting you’ll experience the joy of being outside, drifting through calm water in the sun, taking in the unique view of the landscape from the middle of the river.
Whitewater rafting is a bit less about gazing at the landscape and more about the adrenaline rush of soaring down the river through thrilling rapids, avoiding rocks and banks, and working with your companions to stay upright.
But the thrills are nicely intermittent with periods of calm, when you can gather yourself in preparation for the next whitewater section, and appreciate the surrounding landscape. Whitewater rivers - really any rafting rivers, are by nature situated in stunning landscapes so appreciate the beauty!
Popular Rafting Destinations:
All River Rafting tours, cruises, and adventure trips. Find the best guided trips and expert planned vacation and holiday packages. Average rating of 4.7 for all River Rafting trips.