Nantahala River Rafting: Fully Guided in North Carolina
The classic family friendly whitewater rafting trip on an iconic mountain river. This popular trip is perfect for families and paddlers of any skill level.
A guided whitewater 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.
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!
- Fully guided 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.
- Experienced 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.
Upgrade Your Adventure
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!
Second Activity DiscountMore adventure, more savings! Save an extra 10% when you book a second qualifying activity at our Nantahala River adventure campus.
River to Ridge Package
Combine our two most popular activities for a full day of adventure! Soar on the mountain top zip line, and enjoy a fully guided rafting trip for $20 of savings per person with the River to Ridge package!
Adventure Pass Upgrade
Add three more activities to your rafting adventure and save! The Adventure Pass combines rafting or rentals with our Zip Line Adventure Park, mountain biking, and Tree Top Nets for a full day of adventure for a savings of up to $50 per person!
Before You Visit
NOC provides all rafts, paddling equipment and pfds for this guided adventure.
- 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 your return.
All participants must be at least 7 years old OR weigh at least 60 lbs. No prior experience necessary.
All minors (17 and under) require the presence of an adult during whitewater rafting activities.
Enjoy riverside dining at one of our two locations conveniently located right on campus. River’s End Restaurant offers American-style cuisine with pizza, sandwiches, salads and more. Big Wesser features quick Southern fare like burgers and barbeque. Both have a great selection of beer, wine, and cocktails.
The General or Outfitter’s Store provide snacks, drinks, hiking and camping provisions.