If you've ever wanted to try a new sports activity - white water rafting is perfect for those with a thirst for adventure and seeking an adrenaline rush! We caught up with guest blogger, Emily Suart to find out everything we need to know to get started!
Hi Emily, Where did you white water raft?
I did white water rafting in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Although you don't have to travel that far! There are many places you can learn that are closer to home.
Have you ever white water rafted before? Or was this your first time?
No, I've never done it before, this was my first time! After lying in the hot sun on countless Thai beaches, my friends and I thought that it looked pretty awesome and decided to give it a try. We were looking for activities that were adrenaline-filled that would enhance our overall travelling experience. Thailand's Chiang Mai offers a slightly calmer city life than Bangkok and is situated close to beautiful jungles, so the opportunities for adventure are varied, with white water rafting being just one activity on offer.
How did you feel before setting off? Were you nervous?
That day I had also taken part in a jungle trek and an elephant ride so it was a day full of excitement. When it came to do white water rafting I was quite nervous, as I found it very daunting walking past the rapid parts of the river on the way knowing we'd soon be relying on a small boat and team work to get past them. However, I was pumped on adrenaline from the other activities and dived straight in to rafting.
What equipment did you need? Did you have any special instructions to follow?
White water rafting is a full on experience and can be dangerous, so I was given a life jacket and a helmet to protect myself, along with an oar to move the boat! We were taught how to steer using the oars, how to work as a team, how to maneuver through the rocks, as well as how to balance going down the sloped parts of the river. It was a really fun activity to learn!
How long did it last?
There was a group of ten of us doing the rafting; five girls in our boat and five boys in the other (plus an instructor each). We were told that it would take around an hour to finish the course and that the finish line was on a calmer part of the river. Someone from the other team suggested a race and our competitive spirits immediately kicked in!
How did the experience make you feel?
We got into the boats and began rowing down the river as fast as we could, whilst taking in the amazing scenery around us. We soon came to the fast, white water. It was a bumpy ride and we did get stuck on some rocks for a minute, but with some team work we pushed ourselves back into the flow of the river. The sloped parts of the river were the scariest and seemed very high, but in reality they weren't as high as we thought as we slipped down them quite easily.
When we got back into the calm part of the river, it was an ultimate race to finish line. We managed to beat the other team! Go girls!
What advice would you give to anyone thinking about white water rafting?
Go for it! Even if fast, adventurous sports aren't normally your thing, it's definitely a fun activity to get your heart pumping.
Travelling is about pushing your boundaries and putting yourself in unusual situations. Even though the experience is not always guaranteed to be something you like, the fact that you've tried something new can often be life changing... and certainly alter your personality! White water rafting was definitely an activity that pushed my limits as I thoroughly recommend it!
If this has given you a thirst for adventure, Alpha Travel Insurance can provide cover for your trip including over 500 activities including white water rafting!
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