Wanaka Jet Boating

Jet boating is known as one of New Zealand’s more iconic outdoor activities. Available throughout much of the country but here Wanaka jet boating is very popular. Famous for the scenery and New Zealand’s swiftest river, Wanaka is one place you want to experience this adventure activity.


The jet boat was originally designed in New Zealand around the 1950’s, by Sir William Hamilton as a way to navigate the shallow fast flowing rivers where he lived. The jet boat essentially works by drawing water from underneath itself and expelling it out the back at large volumes. However it is the jet boats hull design which makes it so special. A majority of its hull sits clear of the water due to its flat strip along the bottom, therefore reducing drag, greatly enhancing speed and maneuverability. Unlike most conventional boats there are no obstructions underneath a jet boat and allow operation in waters as shallow as 2 inches of water.

Wana Jet one of the Wanaka Jet Boating operations ride both the lake and river combining the scenery of Wanaka with adrenaline of shallow water. Once on the river Clutha River Jets skilled drivers show you just what makes these boats amazing. Picture yourself travelling at speeds up to 85 kph hair blowing in the wind on a craft with no seat beats or brakes. Next imagine yourself mere inches from boulders, flying through tree tunnels, racing in little to no water; gets the heart pounding doesn’t. However one manoeuvre will have you holding on like no other, the Hamilton Spin. Named after Bill Hamilton the boat while at speed is thrown into a spin like no other skimming across the surface.

It is these spins that have become the most well-known jet boat manoeuvre because you just want more; it is a feeling that can’t be replicated in any other vessel.

In essence during your stay in New Zealand jet boating is an experience you definitely don’t want to miss and will give you memories you won’t forget.