As we know the higher the mountains the fasters and the Southern Alps of New Zealands South Island feed some pretty wild but very beautiful rivers! This is especially true with the islands West Coast that experiences litteral torrential rain creating Turbulent rivers that cascade down from the mountains through lush native forest before spilling into the Tasman Sea. These extremes of the west coast make heli rafting an exciting region for multi of even single day adventures.

The South Islands Wild West Coast

‘The Coast’ as its known to locals, by nature is a wild place of rivers, rainforests, glaciers and big bold geological treasures. The active tectonics of the Southern Alps have produced truly uniquely wild rivers that deliver a 100% pure rafting experience – Rafting New Zealand's West Coast is an experience that push your rafting skills and get out of your comfort Zone.  South Islands West Coast

These rivers are scenic, remote, unspoiled and accessed by only a few. Every river has its own personality and they change, quickly, with flow, weather, season and natural events such as landslides and flooding – they are to say the least challenging and therefore if you are a guest visiting our shores then taking a local guide is the only way to go.

Accessed by choppering (helicopter) a multi day rafting adventure will leave you Inspired, challenged and exhausted after you raft the pristine, crystal clear waters and monolithic gorges – this is why most people come to the coast for, and these qualities are second to none when it comes to wild river wilderness experiences. The wild rivers of the West Coast of the South Island are the pinnacle of many New Zealanders rafting desires, you need to have respect for both their natural beauty and their rapids.

Optimize Your New Zealand Rafting Experience.

The quality of your rafting experience relies solely on the rafting guides experience and his intimate knowledge of the river, this is especially relevant when it comes to those remote wild grade 4 and 5 rivers the West Coast is famed for. Here at First Light Travel we deal with seasoned operators, those that we have been dealing with for a long time and those that our guests tell us tick all the boxes.

By its very nature the Coast has many Raftable Rivers and therefore a multitude of single and multiday rafting combinations to choose from. Contact us and we can suggest what experience we consider is right for you.

West Coast Adventure Rafting Rivers

Karamea River (grade V)
Gray River (grade IV)
Hokitika River (grade III - IV)
Clarence River (grade II - III)
Whitcombe (grade V)
Perth River (grade V)
Whataroa River (grade IV)
Landsborough River (grade III - IV)
Waiatoto River (grade IV)
Arahura River (grade IV)
Whanganui River (grade III - IV)
Waiau River (grade II - III)
Hurunui River (grade III)