Here’s our short list of exciting rafting and zip line trips for the holiday weekend. Get ready for some serious fun! Remember there’s also paddling, mountain biking, shopping, riverside dining, train rides, hiking on the Appalachian Trail and much more.
So pack up your picnic baskets and gather your loved ones, then head to the mountains for a weekend to remember.
#1 Ocoee River Rafting: Middle Ocoee
A hugely popular trip, it’s all about exciting rapids and big, splashy water. Not too extreme, not too calm, but just right—a continuous journey of waves, currents and all-around bliss. If the words Double Trouble, Tablesaw and Hell Hole don’t mean anything to you yet, they will!
#2 Chattooga River: Section IV
A spectacular adventure to remember. The South’s definitive whitewater rafting experience, Section IV of the Chattooga is rich in natural beauty, river running lore and iconic rapids. It boasts Seven-Foot Falls, Raven’s Chute Rapid and the famous Five Falls—where five Class IV-V rapids unfold in 1/3 of a river mile.
#3 Pigeon River Rafting: Upper Pigeon Gorge
A popular whitewater rafting option for guests staying in Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge or the national park. Its quick shuttle and 5 miles of waves and hydraulics make this the fastest, most convenient rafting trip NOC offers. With nearly-continuous Class II-IV rapids and views into Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the Upper Pigeon is your quick fix for outdoor fun.
#4 Rafts & Ropes: Rafting and Zip Line Package
This is NOC’s most popular multi-activity package. It starts with a fast, exciting run down the gorgeous Nantahala River. After a splash through the Class III Nantahala Falls, you’ll grab a riverside lunch before heading to the Zip Line Adventure Park where you’ll climb, balance and swing from obstacles while 40′ in the air. The grand finale is a race down the dual 550′ Wesser Zips.
#5 Nolichucky Gorge Rafting: Full-Day with Lunch
Nestled in the steepest gorge east of the Mississippi, this trip provides 8.5 miles of prime whitewater rafting. It starts strong in the morning with Class III-IV rapids in the first 3 miles, including the long, technical Class IV rapid, “Quarter Mile.”
#6 French Broad Half-Day Trip
Asheville’s own French Broad River is the third-oldest river in the world—with rich history and abundant wildlife. Combining fun rapids, fabulous scenery, a riverside lunch and two convenient trip lengths, it’s a fantastic, well-rounded adventure.