Barreling through whitewater rapids at up to 50mph and hurtling along crystal clear passages no more than 4" deep. Blasting over swells and whipping 360s through canyons. Testing the strength of your heart and the stamina of your gut, all while blowing your freaking mind, which will be trying to focus on what the nice Kiwis at Shotover Jet told you before the ride began: It's good for you!
Yes, the thrill of being lifted and plummeted and tossed about while housed in a jet boat custom designed to face the angry rapids of the Shotover River supposedly "livens up your system, waking up dormant biochemical pathways that refresh, relieve stress and heal." Basically, the rush of the adventure and the realization that your are surviving it elicits a sense of euphoria in the form an oxygen, sugar, adrenaline, cortisol, and endorphin cocktail far more effective than even the most celebrated mixologist could concoct.
If you're ready for the proverbial--and literal--thrill of a lifetime, get thyself to Queenstown, New Zealand. Shotover Jet and their "Big Red" Jet Boats await.
The Shotover River
Shotover Jet operates along an exclusive area of the Shotover River, located about 10 minutes outside of central Queenstown in South Island, New Zealand. The river is a 37-mile long booming stretch of fast-flowing waters with numerous rapids, and formidable canyons. Shotover Jet is the only rafting company cleared to maneuver guests through the grandeur of the river's canyons, and maneuver its guides do. Great skill applied to a greater sense of adventure allows the trained professionals to whip their Jet Boats past rocky outcrops, careen around crags and boulders, and dart through narrow openings between canyon walls. The simultaneous visual and physical intensity of the river, combined with the all-in, balls-to-the-wall intensity of a Shotover Jet's attack makes for a truly irreplicable experience.
Shotover Jet Rides & Rates
The Shotover Jet experience lasts around 1 hour 30 minutes, including transportation to and from the base. "Big Red" Jet Boats leave every 15 minutes, and operate 7 days a week, weather permitting. Shotover Jet provides all passengers with (mandatory) life jackets, (optional) full-length spray jackets, and an on-site specialized photography and videography service.
Current rates can be found here. Plan on spending in the neighborhood of $130 per adult, and $70 per child up to age 15.
Getting to the Shotover Jet River Base
To reach the Shotover Jet River Base by car, drive up Shotover Street (with Lake Wakatipu behind you) and onto Gorge Road, continuing along Gorge Road towards Arthurs Point and Coronet Peak. After approximately 3 miles, you will come to a duo of bridges. The first one is a small one lane bridge at Arthurs Point--cross it and, after a short distance, cross also the second, larger one-lane bridge, called Edith Cavell Bridge. The Shotover Jet entry will be on your immediate left. There is plenty of public parking available.
Shotover Jet also operates a complimentary shuttle service to and from Queenstown. Shuttles depart from the information center at The Station, located at the corner of Shotover and Camp Streets. Frequency of departures is up to every 15 minutes during high-traffic times.
- "Big Red" Jet Boats: http://www.shotoverjet.com/boats/about-your-jet-boat
- Shotover Jet Rates: http://www.shotoverjet.com/rates
- Shotover Jet Shuttle to/from Queenstown: http://www.shotoverjet.com/about-us/facilities