Rapids Jet has been operating for nearly thirty years! In 1996, a gap in the jet boating space presented itself: to offer a unique experience of family-focused fun on the water. Nearly three decades later and we take pride in creating unforgettable jet boat memories for all ages on this stunning stretch of the Waikato River!
Meet the Team
JAMES General Manager
One of the original founders of Rapids Jet! James “Jimmy” Tazewell has been a commercial jet boat driver since 1997. He loves seeing families out on the water and is a Dad himself.
AMANDAFront Desk & Marketing
Amanda has been with Rapid Jet since 2020! She’s the friendly face before and after your ride. Psst…keep your eyes peeled for Amanda with camera in-hand on the shoreline!
SHANNONJet Boat Driver
Obsessed with driving anything with an engine, Shannon has been with Rapids Jet since 2016! But don’t be surprised to find Shannon out white-water rafting from time to time as well!
GABEJet Boat Driver
Gabe is a skilled jet boat driver for Rapids Jet. Gabe has a passion for the outdoors and a strong sense of Manaaki, he loves giving people a taste of something new and different in Taupō!
Max has been running the show for years! He loves all the friendly people who come for a ride, and the ample amount of rocks and sticks the Waikato River edge has to offer.
Our Jet Boats
Our boats are custom-built for Rapids Jet right here in New Zealand, the home of the jet boat!
- They’re built by KwikKraft Marine, a company based in Christchurch who have over 30 years’ experience. They really know what they’re doing!
- They’re specially designed and built for us to safely navigate through the fast-flowing, ever-changing waters of the Waikato River.
- Being highly manoeuvrable means we can also steer you through narrow canyons, round rocks in the river and thrill you by performing incredible spins!
- Made out of heavy gauge marine aluminium with a deep ‘V’-shaped design, making them extremely strong and your ride wonderfully smooth.
- Our jet boats are fitted with a 500-horsepower, 496 Chevy V8 engine and connected to a Hamilton 212 jet unit – impressively powerful and exceptionally fast!
- Super important: They comply with all the relevant safety standards and are completely safe and suitable for our white-water adventures. We wouldn’t take you out on them if they weren’t.