River Rafting in Rishikesh: Things To Know Before You Go

What is River Rafting?

River Rafting is a challenging sport in which you need to navigate downstream on river rapids while you’re using an inflated raft. To make things happen, you’ll need awesome teamwork. Rafting is among the most popular, in the extreme sports niche.

Is River Rafting Available in Rishikesh?

In the last few years, one special adventure has become very popular among keen adventure enthusiasts. Its name is Ganga Rafting, and there is one town in India that can offer you the best experience possible.

Right! Its name is Rishikesh

river rafting

Know it or not Rishikesh is well-known for being the adventure capital of India, so this is one of the main attractions for travelers who are looking for this type of activity.

People from all around the world are going to Rishikesh to taste the rafting there.

Ganges river is named after the living mother Goddes of India. During your rafting experience on its waters, you’ll be able to have fun while exploring this must-try experience.

Is it dangerous to do River Rafting in Rishikesh?

The river rafting in Rishikesh is safe if you follow the safety instructions given by the guides in charge.

Which Are The Best Rapids For River Rafting in Rishikesh?

Are you not a professional river rafter?

No worries… There’s something for everyone!

The difficulty of the river water is divided into grades, starting with 1 grade which can be handled by everyone no matter if you did this before or not, and following with the rest of the numbers until Grade 5 which offers challenging, highly congested, and violent waters.

Different Grades of Rapids


The people who are not that good or can’t swim, can’t practice rafting with rapids of grade III and more!

Grade 1: These are the easiest to navigate, there is no risk here!

Grade 2: Rapids where the rocks or the obstacles are distinctively apart, but it’s easy to navigate.

Grade 3: This is the middle class rapid, where the rapids are quite technical and require good judgment by the guide.

Grade 4: Fell the real thrill of the river rafting, very tricky and risky. You need to be a good rafter!

Grade 5: Dangerous Rapids, where only the best ones can get through the waves without being toppled.

So to consider you need to know that you can practice River Rafting for the first time and still make the first step in the waters of the Ganges.

Which Are The Best Stretches For Rafting In Rishikesh?

1. Brahmapuri to Rishikesh

This is a good option for first-timers and people of all ages. This stretch is a mild one, so people who can’t swim very good or are afraid of the water can try this stretch. This is a fun way to make the first step for beating up your fears.

The length is 9 km and the time you need to take it is one and a half hours. This stretch difficulty level is Grade 2.

The cost of this experience will be 7$ USD per person. But the necessities like food cost extra money.

2. Shivpuri to Rishikesh

This stretch is the perfect mix of pleasure and thrill. Its length is 16 km, and it’s of intermediate difficulty level or simply said a combination of Grade 2 and 3. So if you’re not a good swimmer, this is not the perfect option for you. To complete the whole distance, you’ll need 3.5 hours.

This will cost you only 10$ USD per person, but again for food, you’ll need to pay extra cost.

3. Marine Drive to Rishikesh

One more intermediate difficulty level stretch! Here the challenging part is that the rapids from grade 3 come one after the other. But after this hard part, there is time to relax and enjoy the incredible landscapes of India’s nature.

The length of this route is 24km, and you’ll need 4.5 hours until you finish it.

The cost per person here will be 12$ USD per person without the food.

4. Kaudiyala to Rishikesh

Do you want to try rafting for the first time? Yes?

Then don’t read this!

This stretch is only for people who are experienced in rafting. This is one of the longest stretches in India, but also one of the most dangerous and difficult.

This is like a test for the skills and strength of the rafters. One of the rapids is called “The Wall” and is one of the most difficult to pass rapids in the world.

And that’s normal because of its length of 34 km, and the needed 8 hours to pass the whole stretch.

To try this fantastic experience, you’ll need to pay around 26$ USD, and again you’ll need to pay extra for the food.

Which is the Best Stretches For Rafting stretches in Rishikesh?

  • Brahmpuri Rafting Stretch: The middle part of September until the end of June
  • Shivpuri Rafting Stretch: From the late September until the early part of June
  • Marine Drive Rafting Stretch: From October to Late June
  • Kaudiyala Rafting Stretch: From the middle part of October until the first week of May

Which is the Best Time for River Rafting in Rishikesh?

Well, the best time for River Rafting in Rishikesh is during the months of October and March. These seasons offer the most pleasant weather for rafting because it’s neither too hot nor too cold.

Most people go rafting during the summer, but there are excellent opportunities for rafting during Christmas and New Year eve. During this holiday there are exclusive river rafting offers so the price can be lower.


The river rafting industry in Rishikesh stays closed during the Monsoon season which is from 1st July to the mid of September.

To make this more clear here, you can check the:

Conditions During the Different Seasons in Rishikesh

  • Monsoon Season (June to October)

The northeast monsoon brings so much rain with it. This rain causes high water levels in the Ganges, and the River Rafting in Rishikesh gets very difficult.
So during the Monsoon season is not the right time for River Rafting.

  • Winter Season (November to February)

Winter Season in India is actually the same as the summer season in most other countries.
The peak of the tourist seasons of India is during the winter season. So it’s also the right time for some river rafting too.
The average temperatures range from 19 to 26 degrees celsius.

  • Summer Season (March to May)

India’s heating up seasons starts around the end of February, with the daily temperatures from 30°C to 40°C
So if you’re going to visit one of our Monthly Yoga Teacher Training during the months from the start of December until the end of June, you’ll be able to try river rafting in Rishikesh!

River Rafting in Rishikesh Requirements

Age, weights, and medical conditions…


…Well, the minimum age for river rafting is 14 years.

Participants above 45 years old must present subject to a medical condition before they are allowed to try.


The minimum weight for rafting is 35 kg, and the maximum is 90 kg.


The participants must be mentally and physically well and fit. People with medical conditions like heart problems, Back or Neck injuries, or recent fractures, high blood pressure and dislocation, etc. are not allowed to practice river rafting.

And last but not least here we’ll give you:

Five River Rafting Safety Tips

1. You Need to Choose a Licensed and Professional Rafting School!

Here are some of the best options for river rafting in Rishikesh


2. You Need to be Sure That You Have the Perfect Outerwear for this Full of Joy!

If you’re going to practice river rafting during the winter months the water can be a little chilly. So if you put a splash jacket, wet suit, and proper shoes for the river, this can make your life better during the day. The most of the reputable outfitter have this gear and give it to the people who want to do rafting whit no additional costs.

However, for the sunny and clear days during the summer, for example, you’ll need to prepare differently. For these days you’ll need to wear clothes like polypro with are quick-drying, some sunscreen and a pair of sunglasses with UV protection.

In most of the Raft Masters in Rishikesh, they sell this stuff, but it’s always a good idea to be prepared before you go there.

3. Always Make Sure You’re Wearing all the Protective Gear

The people in charge will help you with everything, but you also need to know what you need, so you can be protected during you’re having fun.

river rafting in india
  • Always wear a helmet!

There is no matter if you’re doing Grade 1 or Grade 5 you always need to be with a helmet.

  • The second one is always to wear a life jacket!

So sometimes the fact that you’re wearing the life jacket doesn’t mean it will save your life. The most important thing is to wear it correctly.

The lifejacket must be fitted perfectly to your body, and all of its buckles must be clipped, so make sure everything is ok before to jump into the fun! The best thing you can do is to ask the professional guide to fit your jacket.

4. You Need to Listen CAREFULLY During the Safety Talk of your Guide in Charge

You’ll be working with experienced professionals who know exactly what to do and how to handle in any type of situation, so just listen to them carefully, and you’re not going to have problems.

5. Know the Proper Swimming Techniques

There are two swimming techniques in case you fall out, or you jump for fun.

The first one is to swim lay on the water with your back, nose, and toes to the sky and your head up. The head needs to be up, so you know exactly where you’re going. Your knees need to be slightly bent and the feet downstream.

You need that in case you contact a rock, so you can use your legs and feet as shock absorbers and push off the rock. Keep the arms near to your body, so you can navigate your body. The important tip here is to keep your butt high and your legs together because there is a chance for it to fit a rock. After this type of hit, often the river rafting is not funny anymore.

river rafting in rishikesh season

The second one is more useful in rescue situations. To make it correctly you’ll need to lay on your stomach and imitate Michael Phelps until you’re out of the river.

However, your guide will explain everything in detail, so don’t worry!

Well, you already know everything about the river rafting in Rishikesh! So now, you can just book your Yoga Teacher Training in Rishikesh and go to this incredible place where the beautiful nature is mixed with many different types of adventures.

We hope you enjoyed every line you’ve read, and we are waiting for you in Rishikesh!

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Meera Watts
Meera Watts is the owner and founder of Siddhi Yoga International. She is known worldwide for her thought leadership in the wellness industry and was recognized as a Top 20 International Yoga Blogger. Her writing on holistic health has appeared in Elephant Journal, CureJoy, FunTimesGuide, OMtimes and other international magazines. She got the Top 100 Entrepreneur of Singapore award in 2022. Meera is a yoga teacher and therapist, though now she focuses primarily on leading Siddhi Yoga International, blogging and spending time with her family in Singapore.


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