When it comes to wet-and-wild summer fun, here’s a fresh idea: Why not plan a river tubing day trip or go white water rafting near NYC? After all, you’ve likely already visited some local beaches, swam in our favorite FREE swimming pools, and (of course) hit up a splash pad while attempting to beat the summer heat.
Most of these destinations for river tubing and white water rafting near NYC clock in at around two hours from Midtown Manhattan, making them perfect for a day trip or quick late-summer weekend getaway—some even offer family-friendly camping packages, too. So, read on for our top picks for river tubing and white water rafting near NYC, and find more seasonal fun in our Guide to Summer Fun in NYC for Kids.
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Before planning a river tubing or white water rafting trip near NYC, be sure to call ahead and confirm age and height requirements for kids. Many of these spots cater to the 5-and-older crowd.
Float into the weekend with Silver Canoe & Whitewater Rafting. Photo courtesy of Silver Canoe & Whitewater Rafting
River Tubing and White Water Rafting in New York
1. Silver Canoe & Whitewater Rafting – Port Jervis
Tweens and teens—kids have to be at least 12 years old and more than 65 pounds—love the chance to try tubing on the Delaware River. Operators bring you to and from the site and floating lasts upwards of 2 1/2 hours (though it also offers overnight options!). When it comes to rafting, younger kids can get in on the action—they only have to be 30 pounds—with shorter 3-mile trips and longer 9-mile trips as options.
2. Lander’s River Trips – Narrowsburg
This family-owned white water rafting and river tubing outfitter has run along the Delaware River since 1955. There are plenty of options to get out on the river, including rafting, tubing, canoeing, and kayaking. Guided trips access the river from multiple points and 1-2 night camping packages are also available. A huge bonus: Kids ages 7-12 stay for half price. Generally, kids have to be 5 years old and up to participate.
3. Reber River Trips – Barryville
Another option for river tubing or white water rafting on the Delaware River, this company offers trips of various lengths, ranging from 5 to 12 miles long. And, if you’re looking to go with a group, it also offers a 20-person party raft option. When it comes to rafting, kids younger than 5 are FREE, while those up to age 12 are half price.
Watch out for the (friendly) river pirates when you book Poconos Whitewater’s pirate rafting adventure.
River Tubing and White Water Rafting in Pennsylvania
4. Pocono Whitewater – Jim Thorpe
If you’re hoping to introduce your little ones to white water rafting near NYC, this is the best option: Kids as young as 4 can try their hand at white water rafting down the Lehigh River. All river trips include a barbecue lunch in its meadow, with everything from hot dogs to potato salad, and fruit. Another kid-friendly option: Its unique Pocono pirate rafting experience sets loose a gang of pirates to chase you down the river and engage in a friendly water fight along the way.
5. Bucks County River Country – Point Pleasant
Bucks County River Country offers canoeing, tubing, kayaking, and white water rafting near NYC. This local mainstay has been in business for more than 50 years. If you’re looking for river tubing, sessions range from 2-3 hours and can accommodate groups of 20-plus people.
Cruise down the river for 3+ hours with Farmington River Tubing. Photo courtesy of Farmington River Tubing
More Places to Go River Tubing near NYC
6. Farmington River Tubing – New Hartford, Connecticut
This river tubing spot gives you the chance to see the Farmington River from a different vantage point. It also happens to be one of the most affordable spots on our list at $25 per person—though note that it’s cash-only. Tubes come in various sizes, with the smallest at 38-inches, which organizers say is best for kids starting at 48 inches tall.
7. Winding River Campground – Mays Landing, New Jersey
If you’re a seasoned tuber or just prefer to tackle the water on your own, this campground offers tube rentals for what they describe as “self-guided” tours down Egg Harbor River. Tube rentals are just $30 and it’s open every day. At the campground itself, you can choose a campsite or cabin if you’re looking to spend the night—and there are fun family-friendly activities and themed weekends, too.
For even more spots to go river tubing in NJ, check out our full guide.
All photos courtesy of the respective venues.