Adventurers rafting in a boat in a river in Nepal

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If you thought Nepal was all about Everest Base Camp and Annapurna, I would have you think again! The wonderfully placed Himalayan child has been an adventurer’s muse from time unknown. And of all the adventure activities that you can take, river rafting in Nepal could be your ultimate dose of thrill!

Nepal holds a special place in the hearts of the adventure seekers. Activities like mountaineering, rock climbing, bungee, paragliding, mountain biking, and trekking in Nepal feed the adventurer in you but white water rafting in Nepal is an adventure beyond words. You sway along the giant streams, cutting through untamed, violent torrents and trust me, it is the ultimate dose of adrenaline that you’ve been looking for!

Why rafting in Nepal is awesome?

Youngsters enjoying rafting in Trishuli river in Nepal

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River rafting in Nepal is special because of the fact that some of the most famed Himalayan rivers run across it. The catch here is the great descent; as the rivers cut through the extreme terrains of Nepal they make steep falls which are rapid and extreme than most of the rivers on the planet.

The rivers make an exciting proposition for thrill seekers as they create a set of gorgeous landforms and rappelling streams; a perfect situation for river rafting. And rafting across the gushing torrents could be the best of all the possible adventures that you can try in the gorgeous Himalayan land.

Best time to go river rafting in Nepal

September to early December and March to June is considered as the best time go on a river rafting in Nepal. During this period, the weather is mild and water is not too cold.

Best rivers for rafting in Nepal

Nepal thrives on glacial rivers and they flow through some of the most scenic locations across the country. Places like Pokhara and Kathmandu have a lot of rivers flowing across the city and make for ideal rafting destinations. There is a range of best routes for a day long rafting activity and in some cases can also go up to a week or so. Pick the one that meets your adventure fantasy.

1. Karnali

Karnali rafting trip

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Post monsoon the streams in Karnali are huge and defiant, though mostly straightforward. This is one of the reasons why rafting in Karnali is such a thrill after the rainy season. The course of the river takes to narrow canyons where the rapids fluctuate marginally and at such places, the rafters need to be extra cautious.

Stretch: 180 km

Starts at: Dunge Shower
Ends at: Chisapani

Ideal rafting duration: 10 days
Difficulty grade: 5
Approximate cost: INR 25578 per person


Post rafting you can spend a few days exploring the wonderful wildlife at Bardia National Park. Brace yourself to spot freshwater dolphins and wild elephants there.


2. Kali Gandaki

Rafters enjoying river rafting in Kali Gandaki in Nepal

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Named after goddess Kali, the Kali Gandaki river brings the best of white water rafting in Nepal. The rafting stretch makes for an ideal setting to quench all the thrills that an adventurer could have probably asked for. A violent bed of blue and white lather awaits you!

Stretch: 90 km

Starts at: Maldunga
Ends at: Mirmi

Ideal rafting duration: 3 days
Difficulty grade: 5
Approximate cost: INR 9600 per person



3. Marshyangdi

Adventurers cruising on a water stream in Marshyangdi in Nepal

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Rafting in Marshyangdi is more of a scenic location and you would love every bit of this heavenly rafting experience. This is a continuous stretch of whitewater perfectly surrounded by steep gorges and weary rocks. With plenty of rapids pushing you insanely, you would love the entire rafting experience in this Himalayan river.

Stretch: 27 km

Starts at: Bhule Bhule
Ends at: Sanghu/Phailiya

Ideal rafting duration: 2 days
Difficulty grade: 5
Approximate cost: INR 9600 per person



Suggested Read: 10 Ancient Nepal Temples In The Serenity Of The Himalayas

4. Sun Kosi

Thrilled adventurers on a boat in Sun Koshi River in Nepal

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Touted as the world’s best river rafting tour, Sun Kosi is the perfect place to test your adventure acumen amidst the gushing violent streams. Experience the best of white water rafting as you go on a rafting spree in almost 10 days time.

Stretch: 270 km

Starts at: Dumja
Ends at: Chatara

Ideal rafting duration: 9 days
Difficulty grade: 4
Approximate cost: INR 35200 per person


Club it with Poon Hill or Everest Mini-Trek for an experience of a lifetime.


5. Tamor

A boat cruising in Tamor River in Nepal

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Popular for kayaking and whitewater river rafting in Nepal, Tamur is a powerful river that offers an incredible rafting experience. Rafting in the 6th largest river in Nepal is special as it presents exceptional nature views running along the eastern part of the Nepal. The river boasts of marvelous nature views and some sleepy villages en route.

Stretch: 120 km

Starts at: Basantpur
Ends at: Chatara

Ideal rafting duration: 11 days
Difficulty grade: 4
Approximate cost: INR 52755 per person



6. Upper Seti

Top view of a boat with rafters in Upper Seti River in Nepal

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Upper Seti is rather a short and sweet rafting tour near Pokhara Lake. The half day tour is more of a recreation and is known for the glorious views of Annapurna Mountains. Himalayan waters that are crystal clear and spine chilling cold would invigorate the thrill and adventure as you take to this white water rafting in Nepal.

Stretch: 7 km

Starts at: Bamboo Bridge
Ends at: The Dam

Ideal rafting duration: Half-day
Difficulty grade: 4
Approximate cost: INR 3300 per person


Lower Seti River also makes a pleasant 2-day tour. The calm waters, warm, and wonderful make the exciting atmosphere for a rookie as well as a family.


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7. Trishuli

Rafting boats moving together in a stream in Trishuli River in Nepal

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Trishuli river Nepal is modest and perfect for a day rafting stint in the river. Rafting here is one of the most exciting things to do in the Great Himalayan region. Cable car view and imposing gorges around would leave you spellbound as you embark on one of the most thrilling rafting trips ever.

Stretch: 60 km

Starts at: Charaudi
Ends at: Gaighat

Ideal rafting duration: 1 day
Difficulty grade: 3
Approximate cost: INR 2900 per person



8. Bheri

Adventurers fighting wave in Bheri river in Nepal

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Rafting in Bheri is as exciting as it can get! The Bheri river known for fishing and water adventures towards the western part of Nepal is the ultimate place for adventure enthusiasts. Combine rafting with Bardia National Park Expedition and you have a memorable experience awaiting you.

Stretch: 105 km

Starts at: Samjhi Ghat
Ends at: Bardia National Park

Ideal rafting duration: 4 days
Difficulty grade: 3
Approximate cost: Not available


* Please note that the cost may vary depending upon the group size


Safety tips & guidelines for rafting in Nepal

Rafters trying to maintain balance while rafting in Nepal

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i) Don’t worry about swimming gears and other river rafting essentials. Your service provider will take care of all the basic stuff that you need for a rafting.

ii) Listen to instructions given by your group leader very carefully. Do not take his instructions lightly.

iii) No prior experience is required to get on with river rafting. However for kayaking one must be a skilled level 4 boater.

Classification of difficulty grades:
Class 1: Slower moving current, small or no obstacles
Class 2 & 3: Fast moving rivers, some obstacles, and smaller/medium size rapids
Class 4: Continuous sections of whitewater, large waves, requires strong paddling along with great teamwork
Class 5: Powerful & prolonged sections of rapids and big holes in river, requires strong paddling, previous rafting experience is a must

More details on accommodation & itinerary

A campsite by the river in Nepal

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A sample 10-day itinerary comprises of 4 days of intense rafting followed by 3 days of gentle paddling/floating where adventurers get to soak in nature’s beauty by simply floating on water. Accommodation is arranged in the riverside camps. Tents are erected on the sand by the river banks. Your belongings are packed every morning and remains on the move every day. You won’t have the luxury of mobile networks and electricity. So don’t even expect it!

Top 5 organizers for river rafting in Nepal

Adventurers from Drift Nepal Expedition taking up river rafting in Nepal

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Some of the most popular river rafting operators in Nepal are:

  1. Paddle Nepal
  2. Drift Nepal Expedition
  3. Himalayan River Fun
  4. Rapidrunner Expeditions
  5. Rafting Star Pvt. Ltd.

Further Read: 15 Engrossing Things To Do In Nepal: Trekking, Rafting, & More

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Frequently Asked Questions About River Rafting In Nepal

Don’t forget the Everest but you can’t miss rafting in Nepal either! Here are top FAQs regarding river rafting Nepal and their answers.

Which are the best places for river rafting in India?

Some of the most popular places for river rafting in India are Rishikesh, Shivpuri, Ladakh, Kullu-Manali, and Coorg.

What are the most exciting places to see in Nepal as a tourist?

Pashupatinath Temple, Boudhanath, Nagarkot, Pokhara Valley, and Lumbini are some of the most popular tourist places in Nepal.

With 4 days in Nepal, what are the must do activities?

With 4 days in hand, you can choose to go sightseeing in Kathmandu, explore Bhaktapur and Patan, go for mountain biking in Kathmandu Valley, or take some adventure activities in Pokhara. Nepal is surely an adventure lover’s ideal buddy!

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