Rafting in Bhutan

Bhutan’s fresh water rivers are a source of envy to many, constantly fed by natural glacier lakes, in the Himalayas. It supports freshwater life forms, major hydropower projects and has recently gained popularity for adventure sports such as rafting, kayaking, and fishing. Rivers are characterized by huge upper and undercurrents. Major rivers boast of 200 CFS – 7000 CFS of water volume. Rapids are good and are suitable for beginners as well as professionals. The valley of Punakha is famous for rafting with Bhutan’s two most prized rivers Po Chhu and Mo Chhu. A rafting tour or overnight camping near Po Chhu, followed by a day of rafting next day is an absolute treat. Best times for rafting in Bhutan are from March to April and November to December. Water levels in the month of May and October are high and low in the winter months of January and February. Guides are well trained in safety measures. Having said that, ensure that all safety measures are undertaken and most importantly, follow your guide's instruction very carefully.

 

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Rafting Details (Source: Tourism council of Bhutan )

River

Area

Distance

Duration

Class

Water Volume

Equipment

Upper Paro Chhu

Misti Zam- Satsam Chorten

10 km

3 hour

III-IV

500 CFS

Kayak

Lower Paro Chhu

South of Paro – Chuzom

7 km

1 hour

II-III,  one V

500 CFS

Kayak

Upper Wang Chhu

Chuzom – Tam Chhu

4 km

2 hour

IV, one V

800-1000 CFS

Kayak

Lower Wang Chhu

Tam Chhu-4 km dowm

4 km

1 hour

III

800-1000 CFS

Kayak and Raft

Upper Pho Chhu

Wangthangka – Samdingkha

7 km

2 hour

III-IV

2000-3000 CFS

Kayak and Raft

Lower Pho Chhu

Samdingkha- Punakha

7 Km

1.5 hour

III-IV

2000-3000 CFS

Kayak and Raft

Mo Chhu

Tashitang- Punakha Dzong

12 kms

5-7 hour

V

1000 CFS

Kayak

Upper Mo Chhu

Punakha –Sonam Put In

3 kms

1.5 hour

IV-V

1500-2000 CFS

Kayak

Lower Mo Chhu

Khamsum Chorten – Pho Chhu Confluence

6 km

1 hour

I-II

NA

Kayak and Raft

Upper Dang Chhu

Wangdi – Kichu Resort

3 Km

2 hour

IV-V, V-V

400-500 CFS

Kayak

Middle Dand Chhu

Kichu Resort- 5 Km Dowm

5 Km

1.5 hour

IV

NA

Kayak

Lower Dang Chhu

Wangdi-Puna Tang Chhu Confluence

5 Km

1 hour

III+

NA

Kayak and Raft

Puna Tang Chhu

Kami Chhu- Waklaytar Bridge

15 Km

4 hour

IV-V

5000-7000 CFS

Kayak

Puna Tang Chhu

Waklaytar – Sunkoshtak

17 Km

4 hour

III-IV

5000-7000 CFS

Kayak and Raft

Mangde Chhu

2 Km upstream from Yincholling palace

5 Km

2 hour

IV

3000 CFS

Kayak

Mangde Chhu

Langtel

7 Km

3 hour

III-IV

3000 CFS

Kayak

Mandge Chhu

Ema Datzi Canyon- Tingtibi

50 Km

2 river day

V-VI

3000 CFS

Kayak

Chamkar Chhu

Thankabi – Jakar

5 Km

1 hour

II – III

1500 CFS

Kayak and Raft

Tang Chu

Misitang – Jakar

10 Km

2 hour

III-IV

300-500 CFS

Kayak

Kuru Chhu

Lhuentse – 14 Km down Stream

14 Km

3 hour

IV-VI

4000-6000 CFS

Kayak

Kuru Chhu

Bottom of upper Canyon – Austho Village

20 Km

4 hour

IV-IV+

4000-6000 CFS

Kayak and Raft

Kuru Chhu

Powerhouse – Hydropower site

10 Km

1 hour

III

4000-6000 CFS

Kayak and Raft