Connect with nature and experience Tarawera River’s swirling currents and fun whitewater from a riverbug perspective. Share our passion for riverbug adventures, and help us to support regenerative tourism, community and healthy lifestyles.

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Qualmark Rating Covid Clean

The Tarawera River is sacred to Māori, and local iwi (tribes) have a long history of connection to the awa (river). Our Tarawera Riverbug tour takes you on a journey through a fun section of this special river.

The tour starts in Kawerau, close to Whakatāne, Rotorua & Tauranga. A combination of easy flowing currents and exciting whitewater make the Tarawera great for beginners, the climax of the tour coming at the Slalom Rapid – site of the 2013 IRF World Rafting Championships. Tours depart year round. In small groups we offer top equipment, personal service & and unforgettable experience.

Difficulty Grade 1 & 2, suitable for children & Adults over 1.25m tall.
All equipment provided. Bring swimwear & towel.

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Riverbug – Tarawera River Bay of Plenty - logo


Business Hours:
8.00am to 9.00pm

Months of Operation:
All months of the year


Proximity to town:
34 km to Whakatāne, 55 km to Rotorua, 90 km to Tauranga, 130 km to Taupō, 280 km to Auckland.

Proximity to airport:
88 km to Tauranga Airport, 33 km to Whakatāne Airport, 47 km to Rotorua Airport, 141 km to Taupō Airport, 269 km to Aukland International Airport.

Proximity to bus:
1.5 km to Kawerau coach terminal, 90km to Tauranga, 34 km to Whakatāne, 55 km to Rotorua, 90 km to Tauranga, 130 km from Taupō, 280 km to Auckland.

Parking, toilet and changing facilities available at Firmin Lodge Carpark.

Weather Considerations:
Trips may be postponed or cancelled due to heavy rain and rising river levels.



Adult $159
Child $129

Activity Duration:
3 hours

All prices quoted are in $NZD.
Bookings confirmed by full payment
Bookings are accepted on the understanding that customers appreciate the possible risks in outdoor adventure activities such as but not limited to, injury, uneven terrain, inclement weather, other river users.
All clients must warrant that they have acceptable fitness and no medical condition that will cause them concern during the activities.
It is at our discretion if any customer is deemed incapable of participation.

Cancellation Policy:
Client cancellation within 24 hours from the tour departure will incur a 50% cancellation fee.
All other client cancellations will incur a 10% administration fee.
Covid 19 related cancellations will receive a full refund or a credit.
There will be no refund on any portion or part of a guided trip once the trip has departed.
Client 'no-shows' who fail to notify cancellation will not receive a refund. reserve the right to cancel or amend any tour for any reason.