10 Spectacular River Rafting Places in India

In India, the trend of adventure sports is relatively new. However, it is definitely one trend that’s fast catching up, especially with the youngsters. Today most family tour operators have included river rafting in their itineraries. There’s no surprise that river rafting has caught the fancy of not just adventure sports enthusiasts but also travellers and tourists. With a plethora of roaring rivers, you can easily find a number of river rafting places in India.
What many of you may not know is that India is also regarded as one of the best river rafting destinations of the world. You can opt for the rafting options depending upon the level of difficulty where Grade ! is the basic level, Grade II and III are of moderate difficulty levels and Grade IV being extremely challenging. So, here let’s take a look at all the places where you can enjoy your love and passion for river rafting.

1. Indus River, Ladakh

Indus is one of the longest rivers in Asia. The river is also known as the Sindhu river and it stretched over a distance of approximately 3,180 km. Here, the rafting season commences from July and continues till late September.
In this time span, the water level in Indus is massive making it one of the best river rafting places in India. Many even refer to Indus as ‘Singhe Khababs’, since the river has several rafting points such as:

  • Phey to the Indus Zanskar confluence at Nimo
  • Phey to Nimo – both of these are villages in Leh
  • Upshi to Nimo – Upshi lies on the Leh Manali Highway and Nimo is a village in Leh
  • Upshi to Kharu – Kharu is a small village in Kashmir

Rafting in the Indus river is definitely once in a lifetime experience that you’ll cherish all your life.

Types of Rapids: Grade I Rapids (very basic)
Best Season for Rafting: July to September
Approx. Cost: INR 1500 per person
Distance Covered: Approximately 25 km.

2. Barapole River, Coorg

South India too has its own share of adventure and thrill. Coorg’s River Barapole particularly the upper river offers phenomenal opportunity for white water rafting in India. This river of Dakshina Kannada is situated along the Deccan Plateau in the Western Ghats. The river is divided in two sections – One is the upper section while other is the lower section. In the regular upper section, the river has some 4 to 5 rapids. However, the lower section of the river has about 6 to 7 rapids.
Depending upon the level of water, these rapids usually are between the grade 2 or 3 or 4. Some of the names of the grades that you’ll hear from your instructor there would be Milky Churn, Morning Coffee i.e. the Grade II, The Ramba Sambha i.e. again Grade II, Grasshopper i.e. the Grade III, The Wicked Witch i.e. again Grade III.

Types of Rapids: Grade IV to VII Rapids – Extremely Challenging
Best Season for Rafting: Monsoon as well as the post monsoon months between July to September are perfect
Approx. Cost: INR 1200 per person
Distance Covered: Approximately 150 km.

3. Beas River, Kullu & Manali, 

The most prominent destination in India for white water rafting is Kullu. Here, you can sail on the beautiful River Beas and enjoy your love for thrill and adventure. In the Kullu Valley, the river rafting commences at Pirdi.
It further goes up to Jhiri covering a stretch of about 14 km. You will experience 1 to 4 rapids in the river. More so, some of the rapids are strong enough to leave you exhilarating memories. The picturesque scenery of the river Beas and the thrill of the rapids is certain to make this day memorable and a must visit place in Kullu for all your adventure seekers. You can enjoy your love of rafting all round the year except during the period from 15th of July to 15th of September.

Types of Rapids: Grade I to Grade IV
Best Season for Rafting: March to July
Approx. Cost: INR 400 to INR 600 per person
Distance Covered: Approximately 14 km.

4. River Ganga, Rishikesh

Another popular spot for white water rafting in India is the River Ganga. Undoubtedly, River Ganga is the best places to raft. You can enjoy river rafting in Ganges, Rishikesh that is situated in Uttrakhand’s Garhwal Himalaya has a number of activities to do!. Here, you can pick the stretch for rafting depending upon your preferred difficulty level. There is a 16 km long stretch in Rishikesh that takes you from Shivpuri to Lakshman Jhula.
Amidst this stretch, you’ll experience rapids from Grade I to Grade IV. It is one stretch that filled with rapids and whirlpools and has been tried by renowned celebs like Brad Pitt. Here, there are a total of 13 rapids and some of them have really curious names such as Three Blind MiceTee Off and Golf Course, Return To Sender, Double Trouble, Roller Coaster, etc. This stretch is a beautiful amalgam of scenic beauty of the Kumaon Mountains and the serenity of the white sand river beaches.
Besides this, there are other stretches too that can be enjoyed by you such as Mandakini’s 26 km stretch leading you from Chandrapuri to Rudraprayag which has abundant of higher grades, 12 km long stretch from Matli to Dunda that has a mixture of basic, moderate and difficult grades, 12 km long stretch from Dharasu to Chham, Harsil to Uttarkashi set on the River Bhagirathi which is again a delightful mixture of grades and a 20 km stretch from Jangla to Jhala that is a mixture of grades.

Types of Rapids: Grade I to Grade IV
Best Season for Rafting: Mid September to Mid June
Approx. Cost: Price starts from Approx.. 600 INR per person.
Distance Covered: Approximately 16 to 36 km.

5. Lohit River, Arunachal Pradesh

Northern India has a number of river rafting places in India. Though there is less choice in the North East but that doesn’t mean that adventure is completely absent there. So, if you seek some rafting adventure in the North East, Lohit river which is a tributary of the Brahmaputra River is exactly where you need to head. This river in Arunachal Pradesh, though isn’t very famous is still a great spot for water sports like kayaking and river rafting in India.

Types of Rapids: Moderate to Grade IV
Best Season for Rafting: November to March
Approx. Cost: Price starts from Approx.. 400 INR per person.
Distance Covered: Approximately 100 km commencing from the Line of Actual Control stretching to the Hayuliang.

6. Spiti River, Himachal Pradesh

Spiti River is another popular destination when it comes to white water rafting in India. Spread over a distance of 180 km the river spans from Tuting region and goes up to Pasighat. If you plan on taking up the whole expedition till the end point which is the Sumdo, this entire thing would take a minimum of 6 days to finish.
One of the biggest advantages of undertaking this rafting journey is that you will be delighted with the serene view of the pristine villages and the valleys of the Himachal Pradesh.

Types of Rapids: Moderate to Grade IV
Best Season for Rafting: July to August
Approx. Cost: Price vary depending upon the chosen distance.
Distance Covered: Approximately 180 km commencing from the Tuting stretching to the Pasighat.

7. Bhagirathi River, Uttarakhand

Uttarakhand as discussed already is the best when it comes to river rafting places in India. Bhagirathi is a very thrilling and turbulent river that flows through Uttarakhand. The course of the river is very challenging and take you through rushing streams and beautiful landscapes that are nestled between two parallel mountains.
Some of the rapids here have very intriguing names such as the Elephant Rock, Confluence rapid, Sharp S and The Chute. Here you can also experience the two of the best rapids of River Ganges that is ‘The Wall’ and the ‘Daniel Dip’

Types of Rapids: Grade III to Grade IV
Best Season for Rafting: October to Mid of May
Approx. Cost: Price vary depending upon the chosen distance.
Distance Covered: Approximately 150 km

8. Kundalika River, Maharashtra

If you head to the western India, River Sahyadri is said to be the perfect spot for white water rafting. Further, Kundali converges with Kolad at a dam that controls the turbulence and the gradient of the river. Kundalika is a very small river which flows from the Sahyadri Hills to the Arabian Sea. The river originates from Maharashtra’s small town known as Bhira.
Many even refer to Kundalika as the fastest flowing rives. Kolad is one of the best weekend getaway spots in this region and it is probably the only river rafting places in India that is open all round the year. The most suitable time to enjoy river rafting here is during the monsoon months as the water then is at its full capacity.

Types of Rapids: Grade II to Grade III
Best Season for Rafting: October to Mid of May
Approx. Cost: Approximately 785 per person.
Distance Covered: Approximately 10 km

9. Teesta River, Sikkim

One of the most renowned rivers in Sikkin in Darjeeling is the river Teesta. This is also a great river rafting place in India. What really adds on to the fun and adventure is the beautiful surroundings that you’ll pass through during the course of your rafting experience. Stones and rocks spread around only amplify the beauty of the river. Rapids here in the river are variable and largely depend on the flow of the water.
Here, you can also try your hand at Paddle Rafting. One thing to particularly look forward to when enjoying rafting here is the point where River Teesta converges with the River Rangit. This point is regarded as the formidable place for the adventure seekers and thrill lovers. Please know that in Teesta river, rafting is confined strictly to the winter months that is from October to April months. Early summer or spring is a good time to enjoy rafting here.

Types of Rapids: Grade II to Grade IV
Best Season for Rafting: October to April
Approx. Cost: Approximately 785 per person.
Distance Covered: Approximately 309 km

10. Kameng River, Tawang

Another great destination for river rafting in India is the Kameng River. Situated in Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh, the river originates from a glacial lake that is located below the Gori-Chen Mountain and is about 264 km long. However, the rafting distance is of 25 km with some really turbulent waters.
Here, with every successive kilometer, the thrill amplifies. This impulsive river holds the potential to delight even the veteran thrill and adventure lovers. It is the perfect destination to enjoy White Water Rafting experience. Here you can experience Grade III, IV and V rapids.
Planning a visit here? Have a look at the top tour packages for Arunachal Pradesh to enjoy the river rafting and some very interesting activities.

Types of Rapids: Moderate to Grade IV
Best Season for Rafting: February to March and also during November and December
Approx. Cost: Variable depending upon the course chosen.
Distance Covered: Approximately 25 km

Rekha Jain

I have been travelling across India for a long time and I am using this blog to share my experiences with you so that you can see the tremendous beauty which India has to offer.
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