As we pulled up to River Valley Lodge, we knew it was going to be a fun evening. Situated at the bottom of a large hill, practically in the middle of nowhere, the lodge is right on the river’s edge. We dropped our bags in the dorm and headed out in the sun for an afternoon of card games, swimming in the lake and a few beers. A few beers turned into a rowdy evening of drinking and plenty of games organised by the staff, which was a laugh and great to get to know everyone else.
The point of going to River Valley is for the white water rafting, it’s supposed to be one of the best places in the world to do it. To my surprise it was actually pretty technical, and there were a few parts where we were having to struggle to make sure we didn’t tip the boat. The rafting experience lasted 3 hours, so well worth the money at 200 NZD. In boats of 6 we raced down the rapids, genuinely nervous at points as it could’ve been extremely dangerous if we capsized. Gliding along the river at points it’s impossible not to sit back and look up a the towering mountains around you, it really is beautiful. We went in at one point for a swim, wetsuits and all, but only lasted a short amount of time before we were absolutely freezing. As we got back to the lodge we were greeted with a selection of hot meals all for an extremely reasonable price, before getting to see the hilarious photos from the days activity.
After a hot shower and a cup of tea to bring the feeling back into our bodies, we jumped back on the Kiwi bus ready to hit Wellington.
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