Whether you’re looking for a whitewater rafting trip or a relaxing afternoon on the lake, West Virginia’s boat tours will bring you a little bit of everything. Explore the state’s cool mountain streams that feed into rushing rivers or race down Class IV rapids. Here are the 10 best boat tours in the state.
If you’re looking for a fast and fun outing for your family, Cantrell Ultimate Rafting is the place to contact for day tours on the wild rivers of West Virginia. Located in Fayetteville, this family owned and operated tour company understands what makes a safe and exciting water activity. They can provide expert guidance on all aspects of your adventure on the New River or Gauley River. They can also make suggestions on overnight accommodations in case you’re having so much fun you don’t want it to end. Base camp is the place to be for a great pub and grill experience and live music, too.
The tours arranged by West Virginia Adventures tend to sell out quickly because their trips are planned with two things in mind—fun and adventure. There are several rafting trips to accommodate the thrill you want and the level of experience. The family float trip is an all-day trip for ages five and up on the Upper New River where kids of all ages can get out and in the water. A buffet lunch is included in the price. The Lower New River is the site for a day trip with lunch that goes through the New River Gorge National Park and includes Class III/IV rapids. Part of this trip takes you under the famous New River Gorge Bridge, the third longest bridge in the world. And for the extreme thrill seekers, there’s the overnight trip on the Upper New River with Class I/II rapids. Lunch and dinner are provided, and Day 2 includes Class III/IV rapids on the Lower New River. Experienced guides are part of all rafting tours, and life jackets and helmets are provided for the youngsters.
Are you ready for the adventure of your life running the river? If you’re an adrenaline junkie and the idea of experiencing come of the best rapids makes your heart beat faster, then New & Gauley River Adventures is where you need to go to plan your next water adventure. From mild to wild, whatever your comfort and experience level dictates, you’ll find West Virginia to have some of the best Class III-V rapids along the legendary Gauley River. You can do a half-day, full-day, or overnight trip that fits your activity level and interest.
ACE Adventure Resort in Oak Hill, West Virginia offers a trip to remember that includes so much fun, it’ll be hard to leave. From zip lines to water slides, live music, and white water rafting, it’s all here. Family friendly and safety conscious, you’ll be able to experience the water like never before. You’ll see gorgeous landscapes along the shoreline as you float down the New River by raft. You’ll stop and enjoy a special lunch, and spend the rest of the day navigating fast and fun rapids. Swimming, water games, and lots of fun are on the agenda with ACE Adventures.
Guided or self-guided white water rafting is available at River Riders, your water fun maker. Located in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, River Riders will give you a trip you won’t soon forget. One of the most popular trips is the Shenandoah, perfect for beginners and young rafters. Guides will be with you all the way navigating you and the other boaters on the seven-mile trip through the Class 1-III rapids of the Shenandoah and Potomac Rivers. Suitable for ages 6-8 (or 50 lbs.) and up. Group pricing is available, and you’ll spend 2-3 hours on the river.
From the finest resort in the country comes Greenbrier Outfitters, the ultimate in outdoor adventures. Have you ever wanted to learn how to paddleboard down a river with white water rapids? You’ll have your chance at this White Sulphur Springs location. You can choose a one or two-person kayak, and travel with an experienced guide to find out what adventures await you. If stand up paddle boarding is more your interest, you can learn to do that on a quiet lake. No matter what age or skill level, each three-hour tour/class will give you the information and opportunity to test your limits.
Cheat River Outfitters is the premier river running outfitter in West Virginia. Located in Albright, you’ll have the best at your fingertips when it comes to planning your trip and making it happen. Experienced guides will take you on a trip designed with you in mind, whether you’re a beginner or a rafting expert. You’ll see Mother Nature at her best along the Cheat River Canyon with its high walls and Class III-IV whitewater. Cheat Narrows offers families and those unfamiliar with this type of water adventure a chance to enjoy Class III white water in the spring and summer. The Upper Yough is for the most daring of them all and you’ll have Class IV and V whitewater on this trip. Occasionally, special dam releases are offered on the North Branch of the Cheat River and provide the chance to raft where the Olympic trials are held.
It’s almost like traveling back in time when you rent a canoe from Trough General Store and take the seven-mile trip from Romney, West Virginia through the trough. Once you reach your destination, you’ll take the shuttle back to your starting point. There’s a shorter 5.5-mile trip, and several longer trips from nine to 24 miles long. Price includes paddles, preservers, and shuttle back for two adults and the second day is discounted.
Relax and dive right in to the Little Bahamas of the East, as Summersville Lake is known. For an exciting day on the lake, stop by Sarge’s Dive Shop in Summersville, West Virginia and rent a canoe or kayak for some excellent white water rafting. Then reserve your spot for an evening of enjoyment on the water featuring a meal catered by a local restaurant. Other adventures that can be found at Sarge’s include scuba diving classes and snorkeling charters, lake tours, and boat rentals.
One of the best-kept secrets of Pocahontas County, Knapp’s Creek Trout Lodge will let you experience the mountain like nowhere else in the Mountain State. Located in Marlinton, Knapp’s Creek is family friendly and offers half-day, full-day, and overnight trips on the river. Opened in 2015, with the idea of being a place where outdoor enthusiasts could have a place that catered to their wants and needs. This mountain retreat center helps you experience this lovely and scenic part of the West Virginia by organizing fishing trips, tours, classes, and boat rentals.