Apurimac River - White water rafting tours - Black & Granite canyon trips

Apurimac rafting

Looking for an exciting adventure with a difference? Our Apurimac River Rafting Tour ticks all the right boxes. This mind-blowing white water adventure will have you enjoying the splendor of the Peruvian countryside as you paddle through the white river rapids of the Granite or Black Canyon. Come with us for the ride of your life.

Discover the excitement of the Apurimac River with our white water rafting, featuring iconic tours like Black Canyon and Granite Canyon. Choose from 1 to 6-day trips for an unforgettable experience.

The upper Apurimac River Black Canyon tours

Located in the heart of Peru, just south-west from Cusco, the Black Canyon offers both day and multi-day trips that will teach beginners all they need know before going further downstream with more advanced sections perfect for intermediate and advances boaters!

The Black Canyon is open for white river rafting in Cusco from Nayhua to Walpachaca. Only expert Kayakers can do the section from Tinqoq to Nayhua.

Black Canyon 1 day

The one-day tour through the Black Canyon section of the Apurimac is the shortest trip you’ll take, but you will be paddling for at list four hours along level II to IV rapids. This section offers an unforgettable experience for your  family, group, or friends.

Black Canyon 2 days

The two-day Black Canyon tour is a great trip for canoers of various capabilities. Families with some rafting experience will also enjoy the two-day tour. The tour will take you down 40 km or 24 miles of river, through wonderful rapids and great scenery.

Black Canyon 3 days

Three days of rafting through the Black Canyon is a great trip for boaters of every skill level. When you take the 3-day tour, you’ll experience all aspects of the river from calm flat waters to rushing rapids. All the while you’re immersed in the splendor of nature from the tranquil river waters to the looming rock face and nice sandy campsites. 

When to go?

From mid-April to the beginning of June, this is quite possibly the best white river rafting experience in the whole of South America. The volume of water creates astonishing rapids that reach level IV+. Even in the quieter months when there is less water, the river still produces some of the best one-day rafting experiences in the country at this time of the year. You will still get decent rapids reaching levels II to IV and no one can take away from the astonishing river canyon views. You’ll also get to see some amazing wild life on the banks of the river.  

The best time for advanced rafters is from mid-April to May.
The best time for all rafters is from June to October

Experience the beauty of the Apurimac River mountains and the thrill of moderate Level II-III rapids followed by plenty of splashy Class IV rapids and non-stop whitewater.

Combine two fun-packed days camping deep in the Apurimac River canyon enjoying moderate tempo and world class, fun-filled eruptions of whitewater rapids. 

Enjoy the peacefulness of the river mixed with bouncy, easy rapids, tranquil natural swimming pools and thrilling of exploding whitewater camping on secluded sandy beaches.

The lower Apurimac River Granite Canyon tours

In addition to the stunning natural formations on the granite Apurimac section, the whitewater is truly impressive, with over 200 challenging technical features, boulders, big waves, and roaring rapids.

The Grand Canyon is quite possibly the most challenging section of the Apurimac River. We consider this the best Cusco area for rafting rapids. These rapids are perfect for intermediate and advanced rafters. In this section of the river, you’ll encounter some of the toughest rapids in the whole commercial section. The Grand Canyon section has four portages and various levels all the way up to level V rapids.

The Granite Canyon 3 days

The 3-day Granite Canyon Trip is a total adrenaline ride. We start the tour at the Wallpachaca Bridge. We’ll travel 45 km down the river where we’ll encounter rapids from Level II to Level V. We’ll finish off at Puente Qunyaq. The portion of the river offers boaters fantastic views from tranquil pools to crashing waterfalls and loads of wildlife. Feast your eyes as you enjoy your trip through the wild waters of the Apurimac River.

This tour is best suited to intermediate and advanced boaters as it requires a fair amount of paddling.

The Granite Canyon 4 days

If You really want to make the most of your Granite Canyon tour, book a 4-day tour and add an extra 10 miles or 16 km of fast-flowing water to your trip. The 4-day tour covers the full Granite Canyon and part of the Black Canyon for 67 km/42 miles of fun in the sun.

This tour is best suited to intermediate and advanced boaters as it requires a fair amount of paddling.

The best time to go!

The Apurimac River is one of the most difficult rivers to paddle on earth. The rapids contains huge waves and holes that will make your journey challenging, but it’s worth every minute!

In the beginning of the season (May) big flowing water runs through the Canyon making the Apurimac one of the most difficult rivers to paddle on earth. The rapids contains huge waves and holes that will make your journey challenging, but it’s worth every minute!  After May the water levels drop off  but still the rapids are challenging enough even for expert professional kayakers.

Best time only for advanced May.
Best time for intermediate tom more from May to November.

If 3 days is not enough, get one day extra day to experience. This trip covers part of the Black Apurimac Canyon section and the whole entire Granite Canyon section running rapids from level II to level V! Previous rafting experience is needed.
 

U$ 820

A whitewater paradise! The Grand Canyon rumbles through an extended succession of great rapids and calms pools, offering the finest in class IV & V whitewater rapids. This trip is only for advanced boaters or for those in a very good physical conditions.
 

U$ 1200

full canyon

Prepare for the ultimate wilderness adventure! Dive into the untamed beautyof the Apurimac River’s Black and Granite Canyons, where the river runs wild and the thrill never stops. 

This exclusive 6-day experience is tailor-made for the daring rafter in you. Marvel at 2,000-meter cliff faces standing proud against the canvas of the deep blue sky. Enchanting waterfalls and ancient ruins adorn the path along the 57 miles (90 km) journey. Immerse yourself in a pristine wilderness bustling with extraordinary wildlife, from majestic condors to leisurely river otters, accompanied by a diverse array of avian species, foxes, deer, and the elusive puma.

What to expect on your Apurimac rafting tour

Camping

Camping

If you’ve never camped before, there’s no better way to start than with River Explorers. We make it easy to camp. 

Expert guides

Our Apurimac river guides are the epitome of safety and expertise, holding certifications in CPR, first aid, and Swiftwater rescue.

Meals

Your Apurimac white water rafting tours include all meals and snacks from lunch on day one to lunch on the last day of your tour. 

Wildlife

The source of the Apurimac River is up in the mountains near Arequipa. The river flows through the low lands of the Mismi volcano.

a day on the water

A day on the River

Before any Apurimac rafting tours begins, your guides will give you a trip orientation about safety including details of river navigation,

Weather

The climate on and around the Apurimac River is mild and dry between May and August. From September to November, 

Apurimac rafting FAQs

All the information that you need to know for your rafting vacation of a lifetime!

Good physical and health conditions are the requirements for rafting the Apurimac River. In addition, being outdoors for a few days in a hostile environment can fast impact one’s health and energy. Your fitness and health grade will collaborate to your personal security and also benefit to expand your experience.

Both lower and upper Canyon tour sections have exciting rapids, waterfalls, superb camping sites, history, nice wildlife, and hikes, gigantic stone walls, valleys and astonishing views. However, there are a few differences.

The Black Canyon, offers an easy introduction to whitewater river rafting. Recommended for beginners to intermediate rafters, but it can also satisfied experience rafters, good for families with kids from 8 years old, friends, couples and groups. The walls of the canyon range between 1 to 2 thousand meters deep and contains waterfalls, hikes and rapids from level II to level IV. For family with kids, the level IV rapids are easily avoided, and in some rapids walking is the best option.

The Grand Canyon, is the hardest, this section is meant for people with previous rafting experience. If you are a beginner and you really don’t want to miss the whole Apurimac rafting experience, then the perfect combination is first rafting the Black canyon as an introduction and continue on with the Grand Canyon, check out our 6 day Apurimac rafting.

Soon to come is a two day rafting tour in the upper Apurimac canyon. The ministry of transport in Cusco are constantly building new roads making these  an easy access to sections that wasn’t possible before. The 2 days into the Apurimac will start right before the biggest rapids on of the Black Canyon, and probably this will be the best 2 days rafting tour in Peru and maybe South America during this time of the year.

From May to December, during the 1st two months after opening the season, the Grand Canyon offers one of the best whitewater experiences with a volume of water and hundreds of great rapids. The river lowers down between July and September, but still there is plenty of water to run and is always fun. October and November are the warmest temperatures of the year; with many rapids, the Apurimac River will cool you down in the warmest months of the year with temperatures that can easily arrive at 40 degrees.

The Black Canyon, offers an easy introduction to whitewater river rafting. Recommended for beginners to intermediate rafters, but it can also satisfied experience rafters, good for families with kids from 8 years old, friends, couples and groups. The walls of the canyon range between 1 to 2 thousand meters deep and contains waterfalls, hikes and rapids from level II to level IV. For family with kids, the level IV rapids are easily avoided, and in some rapids walking is the best option.

The Grand Canyon, is the hardest, this section is meant for people with previous rafting experience. If you are a beginner and you really don’t want to miss the whole Apurimac rafting experience, then the perfect combination is first rafting the Black canyon as an introduction and continue on with the Grand Canyon, check out our 6 day Apurimac rafting.

Soon to come is a two day rafting tour in the upper Apurimac canyon. The ministry of transport in Cusco are constantly building new roads making these  an easy access to sections that wasn’t possible before. The 2 days into the Apurimac will start right before the biggest rapids on of the Black Canyon, and probably this will be the best 2 days rafting tour in Peru and maybe South America during this time of the year.

For the upper section, the Black Canyon are available for couples, families, friends solo travelers! All levels of experience are allowed. Normally our clients range in age from 11 to 70 years old. However, we can accommodate a wide range of needs, including those who are physically challenged or have medical conditions. However, the rigors of outdoor life are not for everyone

For the Grand Canyon, the lower section, everyone over 11 years old can join our groups and we required previous rafting experience. The Apurimac River is one of those Rivers where you need to pay attention to everything, for example number of people per group, number of people per boat, experience of the guides, excellent rafting gear and navigation system, all these are important components for a successful rafting expedition. For that reason, for better personalized service and most important safety, we can only accommodate 15 people per departure.

For more information about levels and who can join our Apurimac rafting adventures, let us know. We are happy to provide more information, please contact us or write us directly to contact@riverexplorers.com

Meals: Breakfast, lunches and dinners. Breakfast on the first day is not included in any of the tours. Drinking water, sodas, and some alcoholic beverages for after dinner is also included.

Camping gear: We provide spacious camping tents for 2 people. If you wish to have your own tent inform our headquarters before any trip departures, dinner tent, ground tarp, waterproof dry bags.

Rafting gear: Live vest type V, full wetsuits, shorts, helmets, paddles, safe-bailing boats, luggage boat, and coolers.

Safety: Swift -Water rescue certified river guides, English speaking, satellite monitored device, safety kayaks.

Your safety is our main concern and with over 25 years of experience, we have learned to manage risk exceptionally well. You do not have to sign a waiver, but we do require you to sign an Acknowledgment of Risk which describes the hazards and challenges, as we want you to make an informed vacation decision.

Being in outdoors environment, flying insects and mosquito are present during daylight. At night, virtually there are no any. No snakes in the canyon. Scorpions and other insects are seldom seen and they aren’t poisonous even the ones with small pinches.

Yes, you do need travel and cancellation insurance.

Did you know that the source of the Amazon river is the Apurimac?

The source of the Apurimac River was  identified at the volcano peak of Mismi  and considered the ultimate source of the Amazon River according to the  National Geographic expedition led by Loren McIntyre in 1971. In 2000, a follow-up expedition affirmed Lake Ticlla Cocha at the base of Mismi mountain as the source and the Apurímac River as the longest upstream extension of the Amazon River. Until now the Apurimac River is considered as the continuously flowing source of the Amazon River.

Apurimac source

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