Ultimate Queenstown

Family Thrills

Book - Family Adventures Rafting


Raft the upper reaches of the famous Shotover River goldfields. Family Adventures rafting is suitable for everyone from 3 years up, as they paddle down gentle grade 1 & 2 whitewater rapids.

Your trip begins with a unique bus journey into the infamous Skippers Canyon as you weave and wind down into the canyon - quite possibly the most spectacular drive in New Zealand! The views are astounding and the area is jam-packed with history.

Fully equipped with all clothing and equipment necessary for your rafting adventure, you’re lively and knowledgeable guides will deliver a full briefing including all elements of raft control and safety. Once you’ve embarked on the river you’ll float through sheer rock canyons, past mining relics and through enjoyable rapids.

There's always time to take a dip in the river or engage in a water fight with other rafts. You may even recognise their put-in-point as "The Ford of Bruinen" from the Lord of The Rings movie!


  • Return transport from Queenstown into Skippers Canyon
  • Commentary on the way in and out of Skippers on the myriad of  scenic highlights and historical points of interest
  • Photo stops
  • Light snacks & refreshments
  • Rafting equipment - Helmets, wetsuits or over pants, polar fleeces, spray jackets, life jackets & booties


  • 7:45AM and 1:30PM [November - April]
  • 12:30PM [October]
  • Check-in time is 15 minutes before departure


  • Alpine Sports - 39 Shotover Street, Queenstown


  • Allow 5 hours


  • October- April 


  • Swimwear (togs) Its best to wear your swim suit under your clothes and bring dry underwear for the end of the trip
  • Towel
  • Sunscreen


  • Family Adventures offer a photo pack for $39, including rafting pictures so you don't have to worry about your camera when you are in the raft
  • Cameras are carried at your own risk
  • Water confidence is not necessary
  • Minimum age is 3 years
  • Child Age: 3 - 17 years. Adults 18+ 

Family Adventures Rafting:
A great adventure for the whole family!

  • Adult $199.00
  • Child $120.00

This trip is far more than just the rafting. People pay to go on 4x4 trips along the same road you'll travel in on so effectively you get two for the price of one.

The scenery is world class so make sure you have your camera.

The guides are awesome & will make sure not just the Kids but the whole family have an amazing experience.

Where do I start the tour?

Meet at Alpine Sports in Shotover Street, just across the road from Fergburger. Check-in time is 10 minutes before departure. If you are having trouble finding parking, just park temporarily behind the shop & they can then direct you to a more permanent car park.

What do I need to bring?

Swimmers (togs), sunscreen and a towel. You are welcome to bring your camera, however since camera's and water don't generally mix you carry it at your own risk. Family Adventures do take photos of the rafting trip available for sale at the end for $39.

What do I wear?

Family Adventures give you a wetsuit,  spray jacket and pants as well as wetsuit booties. You should wear your swimsuit underneath the wetsuit.

Do I need to be able to swim?

Water confidence is not necessary. This is what makes our trip suitable for small children.

What is the drive like?

The road through Skippers Canyon is quite possibly one of the most scenic and spectacular drives in NZ. It is one of only two roads in NZ that rental vehicles are specifically excluded from insurance coverage!

Is there food provided?

Yes, they have snacks for you at our base, before & after the river trip. 

What does "Grade 2 rapids" mean?

All rivers that are rafted are graded. Grade one is the gentlest, pretty much flat flowing water. The section of the Shotover River that Family Adventures raft is Grade 2, which means that there are rapids, but the water flow is gentle and small. Grade 5 is the highest (or most difficult) navigable river – remember "Deliverance"?

How long is the whole day, round trip back to town?

It will take about 5 hours for the trip

Will I get wet?

Generally, only if you want to. The trip is a very gentle float trip where the emphasis is on fun and a unique opportunity to access remote and beautiful areas of backcountry wilderness where there are no roads.

Is this raft trip safe?

Yes, all Family Adventures equipment is independently audited and meets Maritime New Zealand Code of Compliance rule 80 part B. They also carry radio telephones, first aid kits and throw ropes. Family Adventures guides are all New Zealand Rafting Association qualified and many have international experience working year around in the rafting industry.

Family Adventures Rafting Location

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