A Queenstown adventure on the Dart River Wilderness Jet

Here’s one for all the adventure seekers out there – jet boating Dart River on the Dart River Wilderness Jet! Dart River Valley flows from Glenorchy (a town of 500 or so, only a 45 minute drive from Queenstown along Lake Wakatipu) through to the Mt Aspiring National Park. The Dart River Wilderness Jet departs twice daily, with trips lasting for half a day making them a perfect holiday activity while in Queenstown.

 Dart River Wilderness Jet

The Dart River Wilderness Jet on the striking blue water of Dart River (photo credit Dart River Wilderness Jet)

A Wilderness Jet trip takes passengers deep into Mt Aspiring National Park and offers adventure, excitement, mythology, heritage and fantasy. The Wilderness Jet is the only Jet Boat operator permitted on the Dart River meaning it remains untouched and peaceful. And as a bonus gives your boat free reign to manoeuvre around the river!

A day on the Dart will have you experience thrills and excitement as the Wilderness Jet speeds across shallow waters, glides in between rocks and makes sharp turns on the smooth surface of the braided Dart River system. You will hear from your guide about the nature and history of your surrounds on a half hour forest walk through the 80 million year old ancient beech forest. You’ll also learn about the Maori heritage of the area and of tales of early settlers. You’ll also get to see first-hand the spectacular scenery that has been seen by many around the world on the big screen; some of the filming locations from the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings movies, which form jaw dropping backdrops throughout your day. Locations for Isengard, Lothlorien and Amon Hen were all filmed nearby. At the end of your adventure, you’ll be transported back to Glenorchy, giving you one last chance to take in the beautiful scenery.

 Forest Walk in Mt Aspiring National Park

A guided forest walk in Mt Aspiring National Park (photo credit Dart River Wilderness Jet)

Whether you choose a morning or afternoon trip you should be prepared with warm clothing (windproof is good in the Winter months), sunglasses, a hat (to suit the season!), insect repellant and sunscreen, and sturdy footwear suitable for the forest walk. Lifejackets are required and are supplied by the Dart River team.

The Wilderness Jet Trips are a great mix of thrill and tranquility, and with expert tour guides you’re sure to learn a thing or two along the way.

Take a look at what their happy customers have said on Trip Advisor.