There is nothing that appeals more to adrenalin junkies than the thrill of river rafting on untamed rivers! India has a range of river gushing down from the Himalayas hence guaranteeing you a river rafting experience of a lifetime! White water rafting is more interesting according to us is because it is something you can enjoy as a group and secondly it helps you reach areas that aren’t accessible by road or foot! Soul Indian Journeys picks up the top 5 most adventurous river rafting experiences in India for you!
The Ganga at Rishikesh is one of the world’s best rivers to raft. A 16 km stretch from Shivpuri to Lakshman Jhula in Rishikesh, rapids range from grade 1 to grade 4. This stretch, rich with whirlpools and rapids, has seen the likes of Brad Pitt come for a rafting adventure. The Ganga is at its turbulent best in Rishikesh and will give you an excellent combination of chilled and beautiful white sand river beaches against the scenic Kumaon Mountains. The best season to go there is from September to June.
Zanskar or Indus: Imagine yourself rafting with walls of mountains rising up to hundreds of feet on both sides! Yes, the Zanskar river situated in a gorge at the height of 12000 feet of the sea level and offers the most unique landscapes to feast your eyes!
Rafting is held between Padum and Zimo as well as Chilling to Nimu regions in the Zanskar river gorge in Ladakh. You will be rewarded to see the confluence of the Zanskar and Indus rivers at the end of your rafting adventure! The route passes through some very rough terrains and remote places in Ladakh. The river is rated as grade IV. Best time to go is July to August as the river freezes during winters(read more on the frozen river trek and other fun stuff to do in Ladakh about it in our article )
Teesta river, Sikkim and Darjeeling: The rugged Teesta River, the main river of Sikkim, Darjeeling, and Kalimpong Hill Region, with a series of rapids with varying intensity, has been rated at Grade 4. The turbulent Rangit, a tributary of the Teesta, with its multi-dimensional rapids, it offers a challenge to more experienced rafters. In Teesta rafting is confined to the winter months, between October and April. Spring or early summer is ideal for river rafting.
Kolad, Maharashtra: For all you people who thought that all the fun is happening only around Himalayas…you are wrong :)Kundalika, the fastest river of the South, at Kolad, is an excellent rafting destination South of the Himalayas. Situated amidst the magnificent Sahyadris, the almost 15-kilometre stretch of rapids along this river provides ample opportunities for an exciting experience. Rapids range between Class III & IV. The best months for rafting are in the months of monsoon when the water levels are high. Monsoon is arriving soon in Maharashtra….what are you waiting for??Go enjoy Kolad with your loved ones!
Barapole in Coorg: River Barapole in Coorg, south Karnataka, provides excellent rafting opportunities. Situated in the Western Ghats edging along the Deccan Plateau, the grades range between 2 and 4.There are approximately 4 to 5 rapids in the regular upper section & about 6 to 7 rapids in the lower section, these rapids depending on water levels are between grade 2 to 3 or 4. The best season to raft is in the monsoon and post-monsoon months of June to September.
Tons in Garhwal: The Tons River flows through Garhwal, the western part of the Himalayan state of Uttarakhand. The biggest tributary of the Yamuna, the Tons River is said to have more water and wrath than the Yamuna itself. The average rating being between grade III, IV and it also has some grade V rapids. It is considered as one of the most challenging white water river rafting expeditions in the country today.
Sutlej/Beas/Ravi : Himachal Pradesh’s snow-fed rivers offer tremendous opportunities for the challenging adventure sport activities of rafting. The rivers Chandrabhaga (Chenab) in Lahaul, the Satluj near Shimla, the Ravi near Chamba and the Beas near Kullu offer immense white-water rafting possibilities. You will face rapids ranging from 2 to 4 here. Spring and Summer are the best times to visit these.
Not sure what Grades of river rafting mean ??Read on..
Grade 1: Small rough areas, might require slight maneuvering. Apt for families and beginners. (Skill Level: Basic)
Grade 2: Rough water, maybe some rocks. This does require some bit of maneuvering. (Skill level: Basic paddling skill)
Grade 3: White-water, small waves, maybe a short drop, but no considerable danger. Requires maneuvering. (Skill level: Experienced paddling strokes)
Grade 4: White-water, medium waves, many rocks, considerable drops. Requires sharp manoeuvres. (Skill level: White-water experience)
Grade 5: White-water, large waves, big rock formations can pose danger, huge and sudden drops. Requires maneuvering. (Skill level: Advanced whitewater experience)
Grade 6: Now, this level of rapids can be tackled only by veterans and the truly experienced lot. Encounters with huge waves, big rocks and very sharp and sudden drops is a given. (Skill level: Successful completion of Class 6 rapids requires great skill, high levels of strength to maneuver and outstanding lady luck).
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