See & Do


With multiple rivers and two lakes, there is a wealth of opportunity to get out on the water for some serious fun. 

Whitewater Kayaking and Rafting

Hokitika is a MECCA for whitewater kayakers and rafters across the globe. The unique unspoilt rivers are world famous for the crystal clear blue water, beautiful gorges and stunning bush. The rivers drop from the Southern Alps to the sea in a relatively short distance.

  • The lower reaches of these rivers are ideal for beginners who enjoy class 1 and 2 rapids.
  • Frequent rainfall is perfect for upstream sections of the river which provide great class 3/4 rapids.
  • For the more adventurous kayakers and rafters the gem of New Zealand is a helicopter flight up to one of the steep 'heli-runs' on the coast. Sheer sided gorges, true wilderness and up to 3 days of nail biting CLASS 5 kayaking. Multi day trips make use of the extensive network of backcountry huts.
  • Popular runs include: Arahura, Hokitika, Whitcombe, Styx, Toaroha, Kokatahi, Totara, Kaniere, Kakapotahi, Waitaha

Relaxing Kayaking

For those who want to take it a little easier, there are several good trips around Hokitika. Grab the boat, canoe, kids, lifejackets and some paddles for a fun day activity. 

More Information on Kayaking/Rafting in Hokitika

Browse the listings below to learn more about kayaking in Hokitika. 

Lake Mahinapua, Mahinapua Creek - Kayaking

LOCATION : Lake Mahinapua

Grade 1 
There is a great paddle to be had from Lake Mahinapua through Mahināpua Creek and down towards the township of Hokitika. The Creek has a very gentle current, and passes through beautiful wetland and forest; white herons are usually seen. This trip is suitable for novice paddlers and people in Canadian canoes. Paddlers get out either where the creek crosses the main highway, or further down toward the mouth of the creek, close to the confluence with the Hokitika River. 

Wilderness Rafting Adventures
PH: 03 755 4254 E: FREEPH: 0508 669 675

Whitewater rafting tours from easy to extreme, half, full and multi day expeditions. Helicopter, drive in or hike in options available.  Heli-raft the Whataroa river, the Grand Canyon of NZ or chose from over 15 other rivers across the coast. All equipment provided, fully catered trips.

West Coast Scenic Waterways
PH: (03) 429 2322 E: MOBILE: 027 430 1777
Enjoy freedom kayaking or a cruise aboard the Eco Adventurer. Capture the picturesque beauty of the Mahinapua waterways along the original route used by pioneers, gold diggers and early explorers. Experience majestic views of Mt.Cook and the Southern Alps and outstanding West Coast flora, fauna and native rain forests.
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Hokitika Cool Little Town