• Jet boat ride - Rapids Jet

    The
    Ride

A 35-minute jet boat adventure!

364 days a year…your authentic New Zealand jetboating experience awaits.

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The Rapids Jet Experience

We start by getting you into a life jacket and into ‘the zone’ for epic jet boating: calm nerves and lots of excitement!

It’s then a few steps down and into our custom, Kiwi-built boats. Your skilled driver settles you in and gives a quick intro to the beautiful part of the Waikato River that you’re floating on. Then – hold on tight! – you’ll take off for every twist and turn imaginable!

You’ll experience the thrill of ‘surfing’ on the pressure waves of the famous Nga Awa Purua Rapids, squeeze through the narrowest spot of the Waikato River and spin multiple times on the stunning clear water! You might even learn something new, like how hot the bubbling geothermal water is at the river’s edge, a bit of history about the Aratiatia Dam, or how many world-famous movies have been filmed here (keep your eyes peeled for clues in the trees and on the shoreline!).

By the time you return to the jetty 35 minutes later, the kiddos will be smiling ear-to-ear for the rest of the day. And the memories will last forever.

Jet Boat Ride - Rapids Jet

Check out the map above for a sense of your jetboat journey of a lifetime, including some famous movie hotspots!

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Quick Facts!

WHO can ride with Rapids Jet?

Anybody aged 5+ can join us! But do check out our FAQs for more info, and give us a ring to talk about any health concerns or personal limitations: 0800 727 437

WHERE is Rapids Jet?

We’re located on Nga Awa Purua Rd, just off Rapids Rd, in Aratiatia, Taupō. It’s about 15 minutes from Taupō and 50 minutes from Rotorua. Here we are on Google Maps!

WHEN can I come for a ride?

We’re open 364 days a year (only closed on Christmas Day)!
Our office is open from 9am – 5pm, and our boats operate between 9am and 4pm. On busier days, we can depart every hour, on the hour.  Book online today, or call to chat about when you’d like to come for a ride:
0800 727 437

WHAT should I wear?

  • Any footwear (running shoes, jandals, sandals – it all counts!)
  • In summer: comfy, light clothes
  • In the winter: please dress warm & wear waterproof layers!
  • We provide the life jackets. Rapids Jet life jackets are adjustable and able to fit around a 2XL. If you are unsure on whether you will fit one of our Jackets, stop by and try one on!

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SEE MORE FAQs

No question is a dumb question at Rapids Jet! Don’t see yours in the FAQs?  Contact us today!

  • Adult (16yrs+): $145 per person
  • Child (5 – 15yrs): $85 per person
  • Family Special – BIGGER SAVINGS!: $375 / $460*

Combos

  • Huka Falls River Cruise Combo: $159

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*prices for 2 adults & 2 children, or 2 adults & 3 children

  • Rapids Jet in Taupō gets a perfect 10 out of 10 from me! The combination of stunning scenery and great banter from the team made it an unforgettable experience.

    Rona Latisha - NZ, 2024

  • Jacob was amazing! A very talented driver and had a great sense of humour! It was an overall thrilling ride with some splashes to keep hydrated. Jacob was informative and provided many facts along the River; in addition to 360 spins. Lastly, the photos provided at the end were super high quality! Happy to support this business 😊

    Camila Bulkowski - United States

  • Had the best time with Shannon at the controls of the jet boat experience! Great fun great organisation and brilliant experience! Great value for money. Very safe and exhilarating at the same time. The Waikato River is stunning! A fantastic time from start to finish! Thanks, Rapids Jet! Had a ball!

    Pat & Alan - NZ, 2024

  • awesome experience, Jacob our jet boat driver was amazing and knew his stuff. I would recommend it 100% to anyone visiting Taupo😄

    Catherine Marshall - NZ, 2024

Hold on tight! The Aratiatia Rapids rolls out quite the impressive welcome mat 😎 Did you know the rapids are released three times a day in winter, sending out a torrent of cascading water from the dam gates? Credit: @Torisgoodlife #RapidsJet #Taupo #NZadventure #ThrillSeeker #Aratiatia #NZtravel #NZmustdo
Jumping off the boat grinning from ear-to-ear, that’s the Rapids Jet effect! #HappyNationalSmileDay ☀️ #Taupo #RapidsJet #Happiness #PureJoy #Waikato
Hands up for the long weekend! It’s time for a royally good adventure with Rapids Jet – the jewel in Taupō’s crown. We’re open every day over King’s Birthday weekend 👑🚤 #Taupo #RapidsJet #NZ #LongWeekend #NZRapids
Stretch your legs after your ride with this must-do walk in @lovetauponz 🚶‍♀️🚶‍♂️ Aratiatia Rapids will blow your mind as millions of litres of water erupts and cascades over the stream below – it’s a sight for all the senses 🙌 #AratiatiaRapids #RapidsJet #OutdoorAdventures #Taupo
Discover the magic of the river where scenes from “The Hobbit” were filmed. An adventure fit for Bilbo himself 🌄✨ Relive the magic of the iconic barrels scene with our thrilling jetboat experience. #AratiatiaRapids #RapidsJet #OutdoorAdventures
Overdue for a romantic getaway with your partner? Whether it’s a date, an anniversary, or just a cute weekend break, Taupō offers a mixture of stunning scenery, thrilling activities, and relaxing spa treatments to suit every couple ❤️ Check out the link in bio to get inspired! #RomanticGetaway #Taupo #NZ #RapidsJet #NZMustDo
Smiles all round! Happy Mother’s Day from our whānau to yours 🥰 #RapidsJet #Taupo #JetBoat #NZActivities #WhiteWaterRafting #Waikato
Like a rollercoaster, but on the water – hold on tight for the ride of your life 🎢💦 #Taupo #RapidsJet #NZ #NZMustDo #NZTravel
See more and spend less with our all-new package deal that encompasses the best of Rotorua and Taupō 😍 Geysers and mud pools in the morning, jetboating in the afternoon, and feasting on Māori kai and culture in the evening? Sounds like the perfect day to us! Book your combo online now – incredible stories and gorgeous scenery await at @Te Pa Tu and @WaioTapu ✨ #NZ #Taupo #Rotorua #ComboDeal #Package #Culture #Adventure #Thrills #NZTravel
Family bonding, adrenaline-style 🙌😎 Reuniting with the cousins or getting the squad together soon? Book out an entire boat trip for yourselves or get amongst our daily departures! #familyfun #grouptravel #rapidsjet #NZ #Taupo
Nature is our playground – where every splash tells a story 🌊🚤 #RapidsJet #Taupo #NZNature #JetBoat #NZ #NZTravel
A shout-out to our superstar team 🙏🦸‍♂️ Our crew are all about making sure you have a great experience from start to finish – and making every spin and splash a memorable one! #EmployeeAppreciation #NZTravel #RapidsJet #Taupo
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