Looking for the world’s best white water rafting? Then invest five minutes to read this guide to Nepal rafting holidays. We look at the basics of the rafting scene and identify the best rivers for white water rafting in Nepal.
For most people, Mount Everest is the first thing to come to mind when thinking about Nepal. But for rafting efficiados it’s the rivers such as the Seti, Trisuli, Kosi, Karnali, Tamur and Marsyangdi that spring to mind.
World’s best white water rafting?
There is a lot more to Nepal than the world’s highest mountain. Culturally it is unique and endearing. The people are friendly and the scenery is incredible.
But for paddlers it’s the white water that matters. Rafting in Nepal is widely considered as some of the best in the world. It boasts some of the most famous and challenging white water rafting rivers on the planet.
However, no matter what your ability or previous rafting experience you will be spoilt for choice on Nepal rafting holidays. There is rafting suitable for everyone from families and first timers to the highly experienced.
Guide to Nepal rafting holidays
The main seasons for rafting in Nepal are September to November and March to June. However you will find some rivers (for example the Lower Seti and Trisuli) are open all year round.
Most rivers close from June-August due to the high volume of water caused by the monsoon. This corresponds with the low season in Nepal so not many people visit then anyway.
Most people arrive in Nepal by flying into Kathmandu, the capital and largest Nepalese city. It is a great base to acclimate yourself and experience the culture. There is also very good rafting near Kathmandu.
Best rivers for white water rafting in Nepal
Below we look at the top rivers for different types of rafting in Nepal.
Families and first timers
For families and those new to rafting the Lower Seti is a great option. With smaller rapids, great scenery and the warmest waters in Nepal is is accessible to all.
A one to two day trip will show you what rural Nepal is all about. This is one of the safest rivers in Nepal, with most of the rapids being just class II. So, if you are looking for high octane action, this is not the river for you.
Closest to Kathmandu
Looking to get a quick taster of whitewater rafting? Need to stick close to Kathmandu? A one or two day trip on the bouncy Trisuli is ideal. Big wave trains run down this river making it fun and safe raging from class II to III.
The river runs from Kathmandu toward Chitwan and Pokhara, so it is also a great trip to break up a long and winding bus journey. This river runs all year round and is one of the best rivers for white water rafting in Nepal if you are in Kathmandu.
Are you an experienced rafter or looking for more of an adrenaline filled experience? Then Nepal rafting holidays on the Bhote Kosi and Marsyangdi are highly recommended but not for the faint hearted.
Bhote Kosi is a class IV the whole way and Marsyangdi a class V – the highest class on the international scale of river difficulty considered raftable. Both these rivers offer non-stop rapids in beautiful gorges fed by the Himalayan ice-melt. Trips can be one to two days.
Longer Nepal rafting trips
The best rivers for white water rafting in Nepal above meet certain needs. But the reason Nepal is considered to have some of the world’s best white water rafting is for it’s longer rafting expeditions.
Nepal has probably the top multi day white water rafting trips on the planet. The Sun Kosi (III-V) is rated by National Geographic as one of the top ten river journeys in the world. And the the Karnali (IV-V) and Tamur (IV-V) also offer spectacular trips.
All three are between 8 and 11 days long and can be combined with hiking. They take you to the most remote regions of Nepal and giving you a real taste of Nepal’s river culture and an insight into rural Nepal.
You will experience great rapids, fishing, local villages and see wildlife –keep an eye out for Tiger footprints! Cliff jumps, lovely local food and drinks and stunning monasteries can be looked forward to on these longer rating trips in Nepal.
White water rafting in Nepal can suit anybody, of any age, of any experience and on any time scale….
We hope you found this guide to the best rivers for white water rafting in Nepal useful. We would like to thank GRG Adventure for the images. Be sure to check out our discounts for Nepal rafting holidays as you could save a fortune.