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Nantahala River Rafting: Fully Guided in North Carolina

Bryson City, NC
from $60

White water rafting in North Carolina is a classic family friendly trip down the iconic mountain river: The Nantahala River. This popular rafting trip is perfect for families and paddlers of any skill level.

7+ Years Old
Min 60 Lbs
3 Hours Long
Girls getting splashed while white water rafting north carolina.
Group rafting on the Nantahala River Rafting: Fully-Guided in North Carolina trip
A family enjoying their rafting trip down the river via their Adventure Pass.
Family rafting trip on the Nantahala River Rafting: Fully-Guided in North Carolina trip
Group rafting trip on the Nantahala River Rafting: Fully-Guided in North Carolina trip
Group rafting trip on the Nantahala River Rafting: Fully-Guided in North Carolina trip
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A guided white water rafting trip is one of the best ways to experience the Nantahala Gorge! The crystal-clear Nantahala River is the perfect family-friendly river where experienced river guides will help you navigate through splashy Class II-III rapids and bouncy waves, with occasional calmer waters where you can enjoy the spectacular mountain scenery. The fully guided rafting trip the most popular adventure at NOC, with thousands of families returning year after year. Plus, NOC is the only outfitter where you paddle right back to where you started, no need for a wet bus ride back! Enjoy lunch or dinner, live entertainment and more on our 500-acre campus!

If you’ve experienced the fully guided rafting trip and are ready for the next challenge, guide your own Raft and Ducky Rentals down the Nantahala River!


Morning trips offer serene settings and less crowds, while our late afternoon trips are hotter and fun to splash along!

Use codes EARLY10 or LATE10 to save $10 off of your Fully-Guided Rafting trip when you book for the following times: 9am / 9:30am / 3pm / 3:30pm.


  • A Fully Guided Tour is the ideal trip for beginners, families, and groups of any experience level.
  • The Nantahala River provides the perfect mix of fun Class II-III rapids, waves, and splashes with calmer floating spots to take in the picturesque mountain scenery.
  • Guides will teach your group how to navigate the river while sharing river stories and interesting facts about the area.
  • NOC has been guiding families and groups down the river for almost 50 years with many returning year after year.

What to Expect

This trip takes approximately three hours, with two on the river, and the rest on trip preparation.

Please check in for your trip 30 minutes prior to your reservation at the Adventure Deck. After a brief orientation and video, you’ll get geared up with pfds and paddles and load onto the big blue bus to shuttle to the river put in. Once in the raft, your experienced guide will walk you through the rafting lingo and what to expect. Then its down the river you go, paddling through bouncy waves, cool mountain water, and fun rapids, ending at Nantahala Falls.


All participants must be at least 7 years old OR weigh at least 60 lbs. No prior experience necessary.

All minors (17 and under) must be accompanied by a participating adult during the activity.

Participants must meet age, weight, and chest size minimums and maximums for the specific trip they are partaking.

Please read our General Participant Eligibility & Recommendations for more information specific to your trip.

NOC provides all rafts, paddling equipment and pfds for this guided adventure.

  • Raft
  • Paddle
  • Personal Flotation Device (PFD)
  • Wet Suits & Splash Gear (by request)

Dress in clothes that can get wet, and wear shoes that will stay securely on your feet, with a back heel straps (flip flops are not recommended). Don’t forget dry clothes and shoes for after your trip. There are changing rooms available.

  • Clothing that can get wet
  • Shoes that will stay securely on your feet
  • In cooler weather, avoid wearing heavy cottons; wear synthetics and wool socks

*Please leave all personal belongings in your car, our guides will take your keys prior to the trip and hold them until you return.

Enjoy riverside dining at one of our two locations conveniently located right on campus. River’s End Restaurant offers American-style cuisine from entrees to pizza and sandwiches. Big Wesser features quick Southern fare like burgers and barbeque. Both have a great selection of beer, wine, and cocktails.

The General Store or Outfitter’s Store provide snacks, drinks, hiking and camping provisions.

Upgrade Your Adventure

Save 15%

Pedal & Paddle Adventure Package

Experience the Nantahala by river and by trail with this full day combo of guided mountain biking on Tsali Trails and guides whitewater rafting down the Nantahala River!

Pedal & Paddle Call to Book
Save 10%

Second Activity Discount

More adventure, more savings! Save an extra 10% when you book a second qualifying activity at our Nantahala River adventure campus.
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Nantahala Outdoor Center
13077 US-19
Bryson City, NC 28713

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