Kayaking and White Water Rafting are both excellent water sports, but they’re not the same activity. While both provide an action-packed day of paddling through river rapids, there are many differences between the two sports. Perhaps the most obvious difference is the size and shape of the craft. A white water raft is a flat, inflatable boat that can accommodate up to 10 people, making it ideal for group outings. A kayak, on the other hand, is a smaller, canoe-shaped boat that holds one or two paddlers.

In this post, we’ll answer some of the most frequently asked questions about the two sports to help you decide which is the better recreational activity for you and your family.

How Do the White Water Rafting and Kayaking Experiences Differ?

White water rafting is more of a team activity where each member assists in paddling. In contrast, kayaking is a solo activity where the kayaker has more control over the craft. That can be a drawback if the kayaker gets into trouble on the water. Also, because of its configuration, a kayak will travel much faster down the river than a white water raft will.

What Is the Required Skill Level for White Water Rafting vs. Kayaking?

As kayakers must maneuver the craft by themselves and move at faster speeds, kayaking requires more skill than white water rafting. It’s always a good idea for new kayakers to take classes or attend clinics to learn the basics, or at the very least, receive training from someone with experience. With white water rafting, a stronger rafter can compensate for a less skilled and experienced “newbie.”

Do You Need Different Clothes or Gear for White Water Rafting vs. Kayaking?

Generally, you can wear the same type of clothing for rafting and kayaking. Make sure you’re wearing clothes that you don’t mind getting wet, such as old sneakers, t-shirts, shorts or river sandals. Weather should impact your clothing selection as well — you may want to dress in layers or bring along a light jacket on cooler or cloudy days. Wet suits and paddling pants are also available for additional comfort. Of course, a life jacket is a mandatory piece of gear for every rafter or kayaker!

Which Is More Expensive: Kayaking or White Water Rafting?

Because rafting is typically a group activity, group rates are often available that will reduce the overall price per person. However, many adventure companies will provide special pricing for groups of multiple kayakers as well. Some may also offer lower off-season rates for kayaking or rafting at certain times of the year, such as late fall or early spring.

Southeastern Expeditions Can Deliver an Exciting White Water Rafting or Kayaking Adventure

Whether you prefer rafting or kayaking, Southeastern Expeditions can provide a thrilling adventure at a fair price. We also offer kayaking and canoeing clinics where you can hone your skills and increase your confidence before tackling the challenging Chattooga River. Contact us today to learn more.