Whitewater Kawerau

Kawerau is the only town in New Zealand which has a purpose made whitewater slalom course right on it’s doorstep.

The Tarawera River offers a beginners section, a challenging grade 2 slalom facility and a venue for competitive social and elite rafting competitions.

There are excellent viewing platforms with easy access points for the coach, competitors or just the passionate whitewater enthusiast.

Seriously Social Rafting Competition

Seriously Social

New Zealand is an extremely popular tourist destination for world wide visitors and many come to experience the amazing white water rafting tours throughout the country. The relatively unknown competitive white water paddling competitions however, are a new sport and have only been attractive to a select few in New Zealand, but with incredible countries and stunning environments to be explored at International level, this sport is gradually becoming more popular in New Zealand, especially Kawerau.

Kawerau District Council has been developing a relationship with the Association of Competitive Paddlers and as a result Kawerau is now offering excellent fun competitive rafting competitions. The Seriously Social rafting series has already attracted over 250 competitors in its first year and expects to keep growing in its second season.

Competitive youth rafting has recently been inroduced into the World Champs and at present there is no NZ youth raft team to represent the nation. Seriously Social rafting is an excellent way to give raft racing a go and it may lead you onto the world stage in the future. Therefore this competition is ideal for college age students through to corporate businesses simply looking for a bit of fun team building.

Seriously Social rafting offers the competitors a unique rafting experience in a race format at an extremely affordable price and is simply serious fun.

Canoe Slalom New Zealand


After a winter away in the Northern Hemisphere most of New Zealand’s top kayakers will be once again on display in Kawerau. During the weekend of 21st & 22nd of January the Tarawera River will play host to the NZ selection and ranking races.

Top NZ kayakers Luuka Jones and Michael Dawson will be on display along with the best young talent New Zealand is developing for the sport. There will be International competitors who make there way to the Southern hemisphere and make use of the warmer climate in preparation for the future Championships held in Europe and prior to the 2012 Olympics in London.

This weekend will provide a compelling amount of spectator excitement as each paddler negotiates the twists and turns of the Tarawera River.

Come and check out the beautiful natural environment along the Tarawera River bank and watch these fine sports unfold.