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River Rafting in Nepal

Nepal RaftingNepal has many rivers for you to explore: Trishuli River (rafting for 1 up to 3 days), Seti River (2 days trip), Bhote Khosi River (2 days rafting trip), Kali Gandaki River (3 days rafting), Marshyangdi River (4 days), Sun Koshi River (7 up to 9 days rafting), Arun River (9 days of rafting adventure), Karnali River (10 days of whitewater rafting), Tamur River (11 days whitewater adventure). On these rivers you will find the world's most thrilling whitewaters with a wide range of difficulties, warm water and bug free beaches for camping. All this makes a wealth of unlimited opportunities for great rafting, kayaking, Climbing, Mountaineering, biking, hiking and ever popular trekking adventures in Nepal. Nepal has something to offer to everyone.

White water or flat water?

Rafting has this image of crashing through horrendous rapids and monstrous waves, and yes at the time of high flow, in the monsoon, this may be justified but at most flows there are many class 3 and class 4 rivers of moderate difficulty and also many rivers of class 2 where you can float along admiring the scenery and running a few very small rapids. Rafting in Nepal is a superb experience in it's own right- the thrill of running white water rapids is the cream on the cake for those who enjoy it!

Many people are naturally a little bit fearful if they haven't been on white water before, but after the first rapid hit as long as people are physically fit and not scared of water they can safely go on water of class 2 to 3. Remember that we grade a river on the hardest section as most rivers have days of easier water and long stretches in between the rapid in which to relax. For more difficult and exciting class 4 rivers people should be active, confident in water and preferably have some previous rafting experience.

White Water Rafting In Nepal

The rivers of Nepal are an ever-flowing source of splendor rising from the glaciers and the snow fed-lakes in the high Himalayas forging their way through rugged landscapes, lush green forests, alpine meadows and lowlands of the Terai in southern Nepal to meet the holy Ganges in India. The rivers of Nepal are segregated into three categories: the big and large rivers, the medium range rivers and the third category of streams and rivulets. The first category comprises three major river systems on the basis of their origin. They are the Koshi, Gandaki and Karnali.

The Koshi river system is comprised of Tamur, Arun, Dudhkoshi, Likhu, Tamakoshi, Sunkoshi and Indravati rivers, and are also known as Sapta Koshi (Seven Koshis). The Arun and Sunkoshi originate from Tibet and the confluence of the Saptakoshi is in the Sagarmatha Zone. Saptakoshi flows through narrow gorges before entering the vast plains and merges with the Ganges.

The Gandaki river system that lies in central Nepal includes the Kaligandaki, Budhigandaki, Marshyangdi, Trishuli, Seti, Madi and Daraundi rivers. The Kaligandaki; the longest river of Nepal, originates from Mustang and meets the Trishuli; the main stream of the Gandaki river system in Deoghat and hence, the river is called Narayani. This confluence - Deoghat is considered a holy place by Hindus. Narayani flows into the southern plains and on to the Ganges.

The Karnali river system is the longest river system of Nepal originating in Western Nepal and consists of Humla Karnali, Seti, Bheri, and Mugu Karnali rivers. The main tributary of this river system is Humla Karnali that originates in Tibet. All these rivers flow into India where they converge and is known as Gogra.

Rivers rising from the Mahabharat range such as Mechi, Mahakali, Rapti, Kamala etc. and Bagmati, the principle river of Kathmandu Valley that drains out from Chobhar make up the second category of rivers in Nepal. The third category of rivers consists of streams and rivulets that mostly originate in the Chure Hills. These rivers flow only during the monsoon and during the rest of the season are dry.

The varying altitude, staggering topographical variations and the mighty Himalayas of Nepal have contributed in making these rivers beautiful, fast flowing and a playground for adventure. Hence, Nepal has become ever so popular in the last few decades for the most exhilarating and rewarding whitewater rafting that any rafter could ever experience.

Rafting is the ultimate way of exploring remote regions of Nepal, travelling through deep gorges and riding over audacious rapids.  The warm water, white sandy beaches, gorgeous mountain scenery and the rich cultural heritage of the country all add up to an unique experience. Enjoy the adrenaline rush as you go on a thrilling roller coaster ride on the swirling waters of Nepal’s many fabulous rivers.



Personal Equipment:

The fewer luggage you have to carry around the more you will enjoy yourself. Clothing should ideally be light weight, dry quickly, and provide insulation even when wet. Synthetic fibres are preferable to cotton on the river for this reason. Here is a fairly extensive to serve as a guide

For Camping and Travelling

  • Lightweight pants.
  • Thermal and Cotton underwears.
  • Light weight long sleeved shirt or T-shirt.
  • A fleece style jacket. Polypropylene or wool is preferable.
  • Toiletries: keep it to a minimum, and forget the cosmetics
  • Moisturising lotion.
  • Spare glasses or contact lenses (for the required ones)
  • Flashlight or headlamp with spare batteries.
  • Water-bottle
  • Note pad and pencil to write your story in the evening, if preferred.
River Wear
  • River sandals like Tevas or Alps are the preferred footwear on the river. It is essential that all rafters have footwear that they can wear in the raft, which will not come off in the event of a swim, as this is considered standard safety equipment. Old snickers or running shoes would also do.
  • Shorts or a swimming costume.
  • A sarong for women (a long wrapper) or simple trousers.
  • Shade caps
  • Sunglasses equipped with a retaining device
  • Sunscreen (minimum of SPF 15, better to have with greater SPF and waterproof) is essential, Lip Balm



Trishuli River

Grade  III +

The Trishuli River, named after the ‘Trident’ or ‘Trishul’ of Lord Shiva, a powerful God in the Hindu pantheon, is Nepal's most popular river for white water rafting for its easy access from Kathmandu as well as Pokhara. The scenic valleys, astounding gorges, exhilarating rapids including easier and relaxing sections all make Trishuli a perfect rafting river for both first-timers and experienced rafters. Depending on the guest’s interest and time available, one can raft for a varied duration normally from a day to four days enjoying Nepal’s diversity in demography, landscapes and cultural heritage along with the fascinating flora and fauna of the country.

Rapids: Snail's nose, Monkey rapid, Malekhu rapid, Teendevi, Twin Rocks, Ladies’ Delight, Highway, Monsoon, Upset, Surprise, Bijuli, S-Bend and Pinball Rapid, Double Decker, Tea Pot and Coffee Pot.

A typical two-day Trishuli Experience

Day 01 Charaudi to Kuringhat:

After an early breakfast, we leave Kathmandu at 7.30 a.m. for our exciting Trishuli trip. We drive for 2 ½ hours to reach Charaudi, our put-in point (starting point for rafting) where we are greeted by locals with beaming smiles. They are happy to see foreign faces once again geared up for rafting. After the rafts have been assembled by the crew, we head towards the river for safety briefing when paddling procedures and safety equipment are explained in detail.

During this day, we go through a number of rapids rated 1+ to 3+. The succesful tackling of a rapid is like accomplishing a mission,a great experience. All rapids are rated or graded using an international rating scale. The grade of a rapid depends upon its difficulty level with 1 being the easiest and 6 being too difficult for rafting. The major rapids have been given interesting names and our informed guides can relate the story behind each one.

After paddling for about two hours, we head for lunch to a beach unique for its strange sculptured boulders. Paddling through the splashing rapids inevitably tires our muscles and what could be more delightful than having a scrumptious meal al fresco, enjoying the sights and sounds of the river. Shortly after lunch, we enter the Trishuli gorge. As the canyon narrows, the walls become steeper, and the river accelerates giving rise to bigger rapids which arrive in greater frequency. It is time to hang on tight!

Our last rapid Jhoolunge Pul (Pul means bridge in Nepali) is named after an old suspension bridge. Here we also often encounter an enthusiastic group of onlookers who line the bridge, waiting excitedly to see us pass below. The geological formations are extremely interesting along the Trishuli River.
When we halt, those interested may help the crew with camp chores. Once the tents have been pitched, a savoury dinner is prepared over gas stoves.

Kunringhat is a popular destination among the Nepalese as it is the gateway to the
holy Manakamana temple. It is believed that with the Goddess’ blessings, devotees will have their wishes fulfilled. It is wonderful camping out on the riverside with the bright stars so clear in the dark night sky while all the while enjoying the rumbling sound of the river. Our night does not end with dinner. Indeed, many adventure stories are told by the camp.

Day 02 Kuringhat - Mugling:

Our morning starts early but our second day has a leisurely pace. After breakfast, we continue down from Kuringhat for yet another fun-filled day. This day definitely presents us with thrilling rapids, but it’s our last day on the river. We are also rewarded with delightful scenic views along the way. The green paddy fields, surrounding hills, riverside country life and the terraced hillsides are a delightful sight, adding immense pleasure to the river adventure.

We raft for about 1 ½ hours till we reach the confluence of Trishuli and the raging Marsyangdi. The Marsyangdi River comes from west Nepal and is one of the most popular rivers for white water rafting. Marshyangdi is quite technical compared to Trishuli and is popular amongst keen rafting experts.


Bhote Koshi River

Grade: IV to V

Rising from the land of Bhot (Tibet), navigating its way through the mountains, deep gorges and astounding valleys, Bhote Koshi is another very popular river for rafting that lasts a few days. With its classic rapids of Class III in the lower level and IV to V at higher flows, Bhote Koshi offers the trip of a lifetime.
Only a 3-hour drive away from Kathmandu, on the way to the Tibetan border, Bhote Koshi is the most stimulating raft trip in Nepal. Owing to its sharp gradient, this is a fast flowing river, offering a unique combination of exceptionally fun and challenging rapids without it ever getting past the point of recreation. Suitable for both novices and expert rafters, Bhote Koshi offers the ultimate adrenaline rush.

It is said that the best way to know Nepal is to raft down its rivers. The adventure of Bhote Koshi is not just limited to its white-waters. Indeed, the drive to our adventure spot unfolds wonderful views of Nepalese and Tibetan mountain ranges such as the Langtang range, Dorje Lakpa and others. Similarly, the sights of emerald green fields, terraced hillsides, deep canyons, gushing waterfalls complemented by smiling villagers and the shining waters of Sun Koshi (river of Gold) are just awesome.

Rapids: Frog in a Blender, John’s Home, Great Wall, Gerbil in the Plumbing, Exlax, Liquid Bliss, Dazed and Confused.

One-day trip

Day 1 begins early in the morning with our drive from Kathmandu to reach the put-in point located 96 k.m away. Bhote Koshi awaits us for a perfect roller-coaster ride. This is an extraordinary rafting trip and moreover, the 3-hour drive also has a bagful of wonders for us. Crossing the busy streets of Kathmandu, we reach Thimi, a typical Newari town that keeps its own slow pace of life and eventually we enter the countryside as we approach Banepa. There is lovely greenery all around as we drive along the Arniko Highway. Further up at Dhulikhel, life is a lot more relaxed and we see people working in the fields; there is no loud honking and all is peace and quiet here. Across the emerald paddy fields we see the leaves dancing in the breeze while far away in the distance the great Himalayan ranges dominate the horizon. Enjoying great views of the countryside, we arrive at our put-in point, located just below the dam on the Upper Sun Koshi, 40 km south of the Tibetan border.

We unload the gear, prepare for rafting, get ready in our rafting outfits and rub some sunscreen lotion – all set for the day’s adventure. The rapids come continuously and are highly technical. Hence, it is very important to listen to your guide and paddle according to his instructions. The journey on the flowing torrents could thus be an exhilarating and fun-filled adventure. After a series of Class III rapids, easy yet so adventurous, we hit the first Class IV rapid popularly known as Gerbil in the Plumbing followed by the technical rapid Frog in a Blender, which makes us fearless while tackling the churning waves as we wind up in a big swirling pool. After a long gutsy ride, which feels like a ride on the back of a giant dragon, we stop for a scrumptious lunch on the riverside.

Certainly, a good meal after a great adventure is such a delight. But it’s not over yet. We gear up again and board our rafts to face more challenges and more excitement. The river flowing through beautiful narrow canyons with lush green vegetation and tumbling waters that come down from great waterfalls, join the churning waves of the great Bhote Koshi. There are more exhilarating rapids ahead making our descent yet more thrilling. What could be more flattering for a keen rafter than to cross the Dazed and Confused rapids successfully. Depending upon the time available, we end our journey at one of the take-out points, either near Barabise or Lamo Sangu (Long Bridge) Dam and drive back to Kathmandu, bringing home some fond memories. A two-day trip can also be arranged, in which case we end up at Barabise and stay at a resort as there are no good campsites at Bhote Koshi.

Kali Gandaki River

Grade: III to IV +

The Kali Gandaki is considered a “World Classic" in the rafting fraternity. The challenging rapids, the spectacular scenery of the Annapurna range combined with high gorges make this river unique. Visiting temples and villages along the way is an added attraction. The Kali Gandaki is a three-day adventure of high excitement with something of interest for everyone.
Named after the Hindu goddess, Kali, incarnation of Goddess Durga, this great holy river rises up in the Himalayas of Mustang, makes its way between the magnificent Dhaulagiri and the majestic Annapurna, carving the deepest gorge on earth.

Previously a five-day trip which used to reach Ranighat in Palpa, it has now been shortened to a three-day one due to the dam that has been built on the lower section of this river. Nevertheless, the trip is a combination of great white-water, turbulent rapids, stupendous scenery, delightful villages, pleasant sandy beaches and camps offering great views of mountains and diverse flora and fauna. Interestingily, beneath the white sands and under the water are found countless fossils.

Although the rapids of Kali Gandaki River are technical and continuous and keep the rafters busy paddling almost all day, this river is loved by both novices and veteran rafters alike for the fantastic trip it offers. The opportunity of exploring the seldom-visited villages, beholding the beauty of lush green valleys, mysterious gorges, outrageous waterfalls and abundant wildlife besides observing some Hindu rituals taking place by the river, makes the Kali Gandaki trip an extraordinary experience.

Rapids: Small Brother, Big Brother, Refund.

Day 01 Pokhara - Naya Pool - Aribeni

We leave Pokhara at 7 a.m. and drive for approximately 2 hours along the new Pokhara - Baglung road to the put-in point near the village called Naya Pool, located 45 km out of Pokhara. The drive is stunning as we climb out of Pokhara valley passing mule caravans on the way. We get spectacular views of the mountains. On reaching the put-in point, the rafts are inflated and you are given a full safety briefing, with instructions on rafting techniques for people preferring to raft with a paddle boat.

We then begin three days of stimulating river rafting, where on the first day we are greeted by a series of Class II and III rapids. As we set off, you will be able to practice the commands and techniques you have just learned. Following the guide’s command and instructions to manoeuvre our raft through the tricky rapids, we all feel like experts before reaching our first day’s campsite. Most of the day we pass through one of the world’s deepest gorges, with scenic rock formations and villages perched high overhead. We come across a variety of wildlife in this undisturbed area, particularly birds such as Red shank, cormorants and kingfishers.

Day 02 Aribeni - Seti Beni
After breakfast, we leave camp at 9:30 a.m. Today we will go through more Class II and III rapids but we encounter less rapids after lunch compared to the previous day. The landscape changes with the valley becoming slightly wider in places. During the day, we see an increase in the number of villages and temples along the way where most of the inhabitants are either Brahmins or Magars. As the valley closes in again, waterfalls cascade from stalactite formations, and we enter the jungle corridor that has an abundance of lush green vegetation. The campsite tonight is on a remote beach.

Day 03 Seti Beni – Mirmi
The Seti Beni village has been named after the confluence of two rivers – Seti and Kali Gandaki. The Kali Gandaki has left a huge boulder on the confluence. A confluence according to the Hindu religion is a holy site; hence, the boulder has gained importance as a shrine for the local villagers. With the building of the dam, the Mandir (temple) is now in the middle of the river. With three days of experience tackling great rapids, we can now handle the smaller rapids ahead with ease. As the valley widens, it is time to say goodbye to the gorge and the river becomes noticeably tamer. The hills around us are now less steep and we can watch farmers working their fields while children wave at us. After lunch, we end our three days of adventure on the Kali Gandaki.

We pack off and drive back to Pokhara taking a different route from the one taken on the first day, through steep, hilly country, farmland and Gurung Villages, enjoying the spectacular views of the mountains and the Pokhara valley.

Sun Koshi River

Grade IV to V

Sun Koshi, the "River of Gold" rises near the Tibetan Plateau and flows eastward traversing through the great valley formed by the Mahabharat range. It forms the main watershed for most of the eastern parts of Nepal and is fed by the tributaries drained from the world’s highest mountain range. It finally flows into the northern plains of India to merge with the holy Ganges. The major rapids are huge with bouncy waves, drops and holes similar to the rapids in the Grand Canyon of the Colorado. Along the river are beautiful white sandy beaches for camping and as you go further down, the area is covered with thick vegetation. This region is rich in wildlife such as monkeys, leopards, gharials and also has an abundance of bird life.

Sun Koshi is one of the popular white-water rafting rivers in Nepal and is the longest trip offered in this Himalayan nation. Rafting on this river begins from the hilly region with our put-in point at Dolalghat, just a two-hour drive from Kathmandu and we end the trip at Chatara, down in the plains a week later.

The rushing waters of Sun Koshi come down from the snow-capped mountains, passing through the hills and plains, great gorges and canyons offering a fascinating river trip. The rafting trip on the Sun Koshi starts off with Class II and III rapids, which help rafters warm up and to hone their rafting skills, in preparation for the challenges ahead. From the third day, the rapids get bigger and more frequent with high torrents. The giant waves on the river are overwhelming and the Sun Koshi reserves some of its biggest rapids for the last few days.

The world-class rapids, stunning scenery, great camping sites, tranquil evenings, vibrant culture and bounteous wildlife with almost four hundred species of birds and two hundred and fifty different species of orchids, all make this ‘one of the world’s ten classic river journeys’. Your ultimate adventure of nine days ends only after you have covered 210 km of wild stretches and calm flows.

Our journey on the Sun Koshi ends here, but the mighty river keeps flowing with its tributaries - Rosi Khola, Likhu Khola, Junga Khola, Tama Koshi, Dudh Koshi, Rasuwa Khola, meeting Arun and Tamur rivers at Tribenighat thus forming the gigantic Sapta Koshi to eventually meet the holy Ganges in India.

Rapids: Meat Grinder, Punch and Judy, High Anxiety, Rhino Rock and Dead Man Eddy

Day 01 Dolalghat - Kuihe Bhir
We start off from Kathmandu at 7.00 a.m. and drive east for about 2 hours to our put-in point on the Sun Koshi River at Dolalghat. Here we rig the rafts and after a brief safety talk, we hit the waters of Sun Koshi. Initially, the river is peaceful, leisurely and a good introduction to local village folk and wildlife.

We stop for lunch at one of the many sandy beaches that flank the river. In the afternoon we pass through small villages and temples and camp a few kilometres above one of the many named rapids called "KUIHE BHIR" OR "MEAT GRINDER". While the crew pitch up tents and prepare dinner, you can explore the area or help them with their chores.

Day 02 Kuihe Bhir - Khalte Chayenpur
After breakfast, we pack and leave the camp site. After a 2 hour float on the placid waters, we encounter the first Class III rapid "Meat Grinder". It is a straight run through the middle avoiding holes on the left and right. This could be the first introduction to the general type of rapids we will be encountering. A few kilometres further down, the Tama Koshi or "River of Copper" joins the Sun Koshi from the left. Unlike other modes of travel the river provides easy access to remote areas seldom seen or visited by westerners.

After a hearty lunch we continue to explore the landscape and come across different ethnic groups as we float by. We camp above the second named rapid called the "CHAMEREY BHIR" or "PUNCH AND JUDY". A delicious dinner is cooked while you sit around the campfire and talk about the adventures of the day.

Day 03 Khalte Chayenpur - Likhu Khola
The valley here varies in width from a half to one kilometre. A few kilometres lower and we are at "CHAMEREY BHIR" (Bat Cave). The crew stops to scout and chooses the most exciting way to go through the rapid. This region next to the river is inhabited by many ethnic groups like the Newars.

After lunch we float down through small splashy waves that are just enough to get you wet. Later we find a nice sandy beach and set up camp for yet another introspective evening.
Day 04 Likhu Khola - Harkapur
From the third day we notice a frequent flow of rapids and slight changes in vegetation. Today the canyon changes; the ridge begins to close in and the vegetation becomes thicker. We encounter a number of small to medium size rapids. A few kilometres below the confluence of the LIKHU KHOLA is a short rapid followed by the "LIKHU RAPID" or "HIGH ANXIETY", a long Class IV rapid.

After lunch we continue through a maze of interesting rock formations. The white water picks up. Later, we camp near a small village called Harkapur next to the bridge to Okhaldhunga. There are a few shops around, and it is quite an experience to linger around watching the life of the locals, enjoying locally brewed tea.

Day 05 Harkapur - Rasuwa Ghat
The river slowly picks up speed and with careful scouting, we go through the biggest rapid called the "HARKAPUR II". An hour and a half of floating downstream and we come to the confluence of the Sun Koshi and Dudh Koshi rivers. Further down from here, the river valley widens into an area of gravel and rock that is almost 2 km wide.

This afternoon, we run a number of small rapids. The topography changes as we float past many trails and suspension bridges. This day, we camp near Rasuwa Khola on Rasuwa Ghat.

Day 06 Rasuwa Ghat - Jungle Corridor
This is one of the most exciting days of the trip, beginning with small rapids followed by long and large rapids. One of the long rapids "JAWS” with a large ledge on the bottom right forms a huge hole at certain levels.

In the afternoon, we go through a few small but fun rapids, and then encounter "RHINO ROCK", a Class III rapid. This is just above the next bridge and marks the beginning of the "Jungle Corridor". This is where we camp.

Day 07 Jungle Corridor - Big Dipper
Today we enter tropical vegetation. The river narrows into a gorge lined by thick forest. This section contains a number of consecutive rapids which are named "COOPER CHIN", "BLACK HOLE" etc.

When we stop for lunch you can shower under any of the waterfalls which cascade down from both banks. The rest of the afternoon we meander through the gorge and enjoy the changing scenery. Tonight we camp on a road near a waterfall four hundred feet high and a couple of kilometers from the last major rapid called the "BIG DIPPER".
Day 08 Big Dipper - Tribeni Dovan
This day is mostly on gentle waters so the morning begins with an easy float down river, enjoying the scenery around us. In the afternoon we witness cremations and other activities like logging out bamboos, people being ferried across on dugouts etc. This is the area where most of the Rais and Limbus collectively known as Kirants come from. We camp at the confluence of the three main rivers of eastern Nepal: Arun, Tamur and Sun Koshi. From here the river becomes "Sapta Koshi" or the Seven Koshi.

Day 09 Tribeni Dovan - Chatara
On this last day of river rafting, we pay a visit to a famous Hindu temple at "Barah Chetra" below Tribeni Ghat which is the meeting place of the three rivers. During full moon in January, thousands of Hindus arrive at the temple to worship. Legend has it that a demon God used to inhabit the area. He had special powers bestowed upon him by the higher Gods, preventing any mortal from killing him.

Because this Demon God was such a nuisance to the holy men and pilgrims who came to the temple to pray, Lord Vishnu descended from heaven and took the shape of a pig and destroyed the demon God. Thus every year, pilgrims come to celebrate the death of the demon and Lord Vishnu's victory in the form of "Barah" or "Pig". We end our trip after lunch at Chatara where all the gear from the raft is unloaded and loaded back on the bus awaiting us for the return journey. We then drive for 3 hr to reach Biratnagar where we catch a flight back to Kathmandu

Tamur River

Grade: III-V

Originating in eastern Nepal, the sixth largest river in the country, the great Tamur is fed by the waters of Mt. Kanchenjunga, the third highest mountain in the world. This trip calls for tackling of huge Class IV and Class V rapids that are challenging and exciting. The action is fast and furious, giving rafters an unforgettable experience.
The Tamur is for those who like action and anyone on the lookout for something different. For variety, this trip can combine either a safari in the Chitwan National Park or a rewarding trek in the little visited Kanchenjunga region.
A short flight to Biratnagar and the adventure is on. We drive to Ilam and on to the put-in point which is at Dovan. The whitewater experience is exhilarating with a succession of rapids encountered along the way.

The Tamur Experience
Day 01
Fly Kathmandu-Biratnagar and drive to Ilam in the extreme east of the country. We leave the hot terai behind after veering away from the highway and drive up to cool Ilam on a lovely winding road with little traffic. On the way, we get superb views of Kanchenjunga, which rises more than eight thousand meters above sea level. Overnight at Ilam.

Day 02 – Ilam - Dovan
On the second day, we leave Ilam and drive to Dovan (put-in point) which lies below Taplejung and camp there for the night.

Day 3
Before the river trip begins, the usual safety talk is given. Soon after hitting the water, we come across some of the most challenging white-water. It is an exciting ride as rapids come in quick succession until we stop in the afternoon and set up camp. Evening is the time to reminisce and enjoy the camaraderie.

Day 4
On the fourth day, the river flows through a deep canyon and some powerful rapids are encountered. The river then broadens and we pass through small fishing villages along the way. We can see monkeys on the prowl along the river banks. A lovely white sandy beach is the venue for our next campsite.

Day 5
This is a day of rest. There are many ways to pass the time on the beach: just relax, read, go for a swim or take part in an invigorating game of volleyball with fellow rafters. The atmosphere is peaceful and relaxed.

Day 6
One more day of rest with a bit of white-water fun on the river.

Day 7 Sun Koshi
On the seventh day, it’s back to action with giant waves crashing and there is much white-water action to get your adrenaline pumping. The ride takes us through steep canyon walls and there are plenty of rapids to keep everyone busy. Eventually, the waters of the Tamur flow into the Sun Koshi River.

Day 8 Chatara
In the early morning, we watch the sun rise over the hills and gently float down to Chatara. This is where the long, glorious river run finally comes to an end.

Day 9 Chitwan
Fly back to Kathmandu from Biratnagar.

Karnali River

Grade: IV to V

The Karnali River with its graceful Class III to awe-inspiring Class V rapids, offers a classic expedition with its big volume whitewater combined with short trekking, fishing and jungle safari activities in a remote and unexploited region of Nepal. 

The Karnali carves the Himalayan landscape into a series of magnificent gorges and canyons as it descends slowly into the forests of western Nepal. Seasonal snow melts and storms can cause the river levels to swell drastically and create extremes of white-water rafting. It is one of the best trips offered anywhere.

We don’t see a sign of modern living for the next six days as we hit the river. Life seems so isolated and demanding, yet so rewarding with this wonderful experience in far western Nepal. Many expeditions along this route have encountered Langur and Rhesus monkeys, and reported sightings of leopards, bear, martins, deer, crocodiles and gharials and sometimes the elusive Royal Bengal tiger. Karnali apart from being one of the best white-water rivers, supports life in West Nepal with its major water source and also ropes in the finest fish habitat in Nepal, with giant catfish and Golden mahseer prowling the depths of the river.

The Karnali River during high water with its huge rapids is a serious undertaking and even at lower levels is still a thrilling ride with the rapids becoming more constricted and the gradient even steeper. One highlight of this classic river journey is a 7 km roller-coaster ride through the gorge where you encounter rapids at every bend. Rafting on the Karnali is suitable from 15th October until end of May.

The Karnali Experience

Day 01 Kathmandu - Surkhet
We fly from Kathmandu to Nepalganj and drive for approximately 3 ½ hours to Surkhet where we camp for the first night. Our camp is right next to a beautiful, refreshing spring where you can bathe and watch local people who are busy with their daily chores.

Day 02 Surkhet
After a hearty breakfast, we start driving further west on a dirt road for another 7 hours to Tallo Dhungeshwor. The river’s put-in point is here and nearby is a nice beach to camp for the night.

Day 03 Start raft trip
After a comprehensive safety talk and also a dry drill on paddling instructions (for the paddlers) we start our expedition on the Karnali River. The river starts on an easy but entertaining level, with rapids getting more exciting in the afternoon. Cotton Pony, Sweetness and Light will be the first few rapids you will tackle.

Day 04 Red Canyon Gorge
Jail House Rock, Inversion and some other major rapids are encountered today. Along the way, we explore a waterfalls and in the late afternoon pass through a deep gorge. Deer are commonly seen drinking water on the river banks.

Day 05 Totale Ghat
This is extreme white-water rafting at its best. The whole day is spent running many large and exciting rapids with skill and team work that you have developed over the last few days.
Day 06 Khar Khola
Time to sit back as there are fewer rapids along the way today. Before lunch, we reach the confluence of the Seti River, a great place for those who are crazy about fishing. Village life abounds on the river banks; these people have little contact with westerners.

Day 07 Tamcha
If there are kayakers along on your trip, this is a great time for a spell sitting inside their kayaks. The vegetation  now turns into jungle. In the morning you wake up to an orchestra of bird calls.

Day 08 Baardia  
Arrive at Chisapani around lunch time. The rafting trip ends here and drive back to Kathmandu  

Bheri River

Grade III-IV

Rising in the Himalayas of Dolpa district, Bheri is yet another incredible white-water rafting river of Nepal. This remote river located in west Nepal, remains relatively unexplored with its lovely campsites surrounded by lush vegetation in a tranquil environment with picturesque landscapes. The mellow rapids of Bheri, graded as easy white-water for its fun-filled yet calm flows offer an enchanting white-water rafting trip. This trip promises beautiful scenery, un-spoilt villages with vibrant local traditions, interesting people and their warm and hospitable culture complemented by unique flora and fauna. The Bheri is also one of the best rivers for fishing. The two large tributaries, Thuli (meaning big) and Sani (Small) meet at Ramna Ghat to form the main Bheri River. The river has crystal blue water complemented by clean and brilliant white sandy beaches for comfortable night stops. White water rafting on the Bheri when combined with other adventure sports like fishing and jungle safari in the Bardia National Park makes for a superb holiday experience in Nepal.

The Bheri Adventure

Day 01 Kathmandu – Nepalgunj - Samjhighat
We fly out early in the morning from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj, which is an hour-long flight offering spectacular views of the Himalayas along the way. On arrival we will be met by our trip leader and driven to the put-in point at Samjhighat which takes approximately 3 hours. The drive itself is a unique experience, winding up through the Siwalik hills and passing through local villages. On arrival at the starting point your own tented camp awaits you on the banks of the Bheri River. Dinner is served around the campfire.

Day 02 Samjhighat – Hidden Lake
Our day begins with a refreshing cup of coffee, pumping up more enthusiasm and more energy for our adventurous day. After breakfast, we break camp and start on our exploration down the Bheri River. After 20 minutes on this wonderful white-water, we encounter our first big rapid, one of many to come. The Bheri itself is so remote that it remains a relatively unexplored river. The first section of the river is quite rough with twisted bends creating many exciting rapids. Himalayan River Exploration is the only rafting company that operates this river.

We stop for lunch beside the river and take time to explore the surrounding area, engage in some bird watching or simply laze around in the midday sun. Back on the river after lunch, we encounter more white-water and end the day on one of the many sandy beaches.

Day 03 Hidden Lake-- Jaamu
The "Exciting" section gives way to a narrow gorge section with vertical cliffs rising 200 - 300 feet on either side, interspersed with open valleys where there are small villages. This area is generally scenic but there are many rapids encountered, giving us the opportunity to tackle fun-filled active torrents. Once again we find one of the many pristine beaches for our campsite.

Day 04 Jaamu – Chisapani -- Karnali Camp
The final day on the Bheri River still holds a few surprises with several small but exciting rapids along the way. After an hour of floating downstream we arrive at the confluence of the Bheri and the Karnali rivers. Once again we enter another gorge section, this time opening up onto the huge plains of the southern terai region of Nepal. Once through this gorge, we enter the Bardia National Park. Here we stop at the Karnali Camp –one of the best wildlife sighting destinations. The camp overlooks the mighty Karnali River with its wide sandy beaches and riverine grassland.
With this, we end our grand white-water adventure on the Bheri River and begin a new adventure – Jungle Safari in Bardia

Seti River

Grade II-III

The Seti River flows down from the mountains between the Annapurna and Manaslu ranges and is an ideal two-day trip in an isolated region quite suitable for family trips. The river flows through beautiful jungle and has numerous easy rapids. The usual put-in point is Damauli that lies on the Kathmandu – Pokhara Highway between Mugling and Pokhara. It is easily reachable from Kathmandu or Pokhara. The two-day journey covers a distance of 32 km ending after crossing the confluence of the Seti and Trishuli rivers. Damauli is a 150 km drive west of Kathmandu.

Two-Day River Trip

Day 01 Damauli- Saran Ghat

We drive out of Kathmandu in the early morning to reach Damauli. After the usual safety talk and instructions, it is time to hit the water. This section of the river is a lovely forested canyon, quite a change from bustling Kathmandu. You will find a crowd of local villagers eagerly waiting to watch adventurous tourists take to the water. There is much wildlife to be seen along the river. We stop for lunch around mid-day. After lunch there is time to explore, take photographs, swim or just relax on the beach. Those interested can go bird watching as Nepal plays host to a large variety of exotic birds. Towards the afternoon, once again on the river, we encounter a small technical rapid near the village of Saran Ghat. Here you will find some interesting characters among the ethnic groups known as Gurungs and Magars, many of whom served as Gurkha soldiers. Nepal has an abundance of sandy white beaches along her rivers which are perfect for camping. We stop and set up camp in the late afternoon just below the village.

Day 02 Saran Ghat – Gai Ghat

The day begins with a sumptuous breakfast after which we set out again for more thrills on the second day of rafting. We will soon be tackling technical rapids of Class III. Once we have gone over the splashing rapids, the Seti flows into the well-known Trishuli River. We float down for another 20 minutes to reach Gaighat around 11:30 am. This is the last stop on our wonderful river trip. We have lunch and then drive on to Tiger Tops Jungle Lodge in the Chitwan National Park for jungle safari in Asia’s best preserved wildlife habitat.