North Carolina rafting on the Nantahala River in Nantahala National Forest and bordering the Great Smoky Mountains National Park near Cherokee and Bryson City, NC is the ideal beginner or family rafting trip.
Being a dammed-controlled river, the Nantahala River guarantees good water flows at all times of the year. Its eight miles of bouncy waves and lively current, makes the Nantahala a white water rafting delight for all ages with numerous Class I and II rapids and a Class III rapid delivering a white water finale at the end of your run. This destination is known as the North Carolina rafting center, with millions of visitors each year. Come join the fun on a popular North Carolina rafting trip today!
Enjoy eight miles of constant waves and swift, clear currents make the Nantahala River a delight for all ages and groups interested in an exhilarating introduction to whitewater rafting.
If you are confident with your paddling skills and want to go at your own pace, a rental trip may be just right. We offer 4 and 6 person rafts, as well as 1 and 2 person inflatable kayaks Wildwater provides all the gear, as well as transportation to and from the river.
You'll begin your trip in Bryson City, NC at the train depot, with a 2 hour railroad excursion over Fontana Lake and into the Nantahala Gorge. As you travel on the train, watch paddlers challenge the rapids you will soon be rafting. At the top-of-the-line, you will disembark the train and travel a short distance to the launch site. After a paddling orientation your group will raft the entire 8 miles of the Nantahala River on our Fully Guided raft trip. A picnic lunch is included, as well as changing facilities with hot showers and transportation back to your car at the train depot.
Nantahala Gorge Canopy Tours takes you through multiple ecosystems, past hemlocks, and into hardwood treetops. Take flight above the forest floor blanketed with mountain laurel, rhododendren, flame azalea, and other native plants. Share in the cultural history of the Nantahala Gorge.
Join our skilled and knowledgeable local guides by following in the steps of the early explorers, visiting the back roads of the region and learning more about this beautiful region directly from North Carolina locals. This 2-hour tour takes you on a personal exploration up the mountain to some of the most spectacular waterfalls in the Nantahala area. Travel past beautiful lakes and up to the Appalachian Trail.