Nantahala Raft & Rail®

Raft & Rail with Wildwater on the Nantahala River

Raft & Rail with Wildwater on the Nantahala River

Wildwater Raft & Rail- Nantahala RiverSpend a beautiful day on a train and rafting in Western North Carolina in the Nantahala Gorge with Wildwater and the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad.  You’ll begin your trip in Bryson City, NC at the train depot, with a 2 hour railroad excursion including crossing the Fontana Lake Trestle and into the Nantahala Gorge.  As you travel on the train, watch paddlers challenge the rapids you will soon be rafting.

At the top-of-the-line, you will disembark the train and travel a short distance to the launch site.

After a paddling orientation your group will raft the entire 8 miles of the Nantahala River on our Fully Guided raft trip.  A picnic lunch is included, as well as changing facilities with hot showers and transportation back to your car at the train depot.

Members of your group and escorted young children who do not want to raft can purchase a train only ticket and remain on the train, meeting up with rafters later in the afternoon.  *The “train only” trip ends 2 hours before the Raft & Rail© trip gets back to Bryson City.

You should board the train in the clothes you plan to raft in (bathing suit, shorts, t-shirt, tennis shoes or sandals with an ankle strap) and have your change of clothes and towel for after in a closed duffel or backpack.  We provide transportation back to your car in Bryson City.

Call 1-866-319-8870 for booking.

Facilities:  Changing rooms, hot showers and river store available after your rafting trip.  Before you leave us, don’t forget to grab a t-shirt or trip photo out of our souvenir shop!




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Details & Requirements

Minimum Weight:  60 lbs. or 7 yrs. old

Intensity Level:  Mild to moderate, no experience necessary

Trip Length:  Approximately 6 hours

Meals:  Gourmet picnic lunch

Equipment Furnished:  Self Bailing Raft, paddle, PFD and paddling jacket

Transportation Provided:  From Adventure Center back to your car at Railroad Depot in Bryson City

Season: Early April to Late October


Individual Adult   $109.68*
Individual Kids   $92.00*
Group Adult   $98.71* (20 or more)
Group Kids   $82.80* (20 or more)

Visit our Nantahala Pricing page to find prices for all Nantahala activities.

*Plus taxes and fees


Combine 2 or more adventure activities and SAVE 10% or more!  Add any Wildwater Lodging to your package and save 10% on lodging, too.  Choose from Wildwater Packages.

Nantahala Lodging

Wildwater Nantahala Lodging
Yurt Village – Queen bed, Futon, sleeps 4, separate bathhouse
Group Lodge – Bunk lodging, group kitchen, great for groups

Lodging Partners
Fontana Village Fontana Dam, NC  (800) 849-2258
Nantahala Village
– Bryson City, NC (800) 438-1507
Lake Junaluska Conference and Retreat Center – Lake Junaluska, NC (800) 222-4930

Other Nantahala Area Lodging

Location & Directions

Raft & Rail starts in Bryson City

Directions to Great Smoky Mountain Railroad Bryson City Train Depot from Hwy. 74/19:

Take Exit # 67 from US Highway 74, to Bryson City.  Look for Great Smoky Mountain Railroad signs.  Travel straight through two traffic signals, cross the Tuckaseege River.  Turn right immediately after river onto Mitchell Street at the Ford dealership.  Parking is on the left, parking attendants will direct you.  There is a parking fee.

45 Mitchell Street;  Bryson City, NC  28713


Wildwater Nantahala

10345 Highway 19 South/74 West
Bryson City, NC 28713

Reservations #: 866-319-8870
Local #: 828-488-2384

GPS Coordinates: 35 20′ 36 N 083 33′ 39 W

Yurt Village, Group Lodge & Canopy Tours
10320 US 19 W
Bryson City, NC 28713

***Internet mapping and some car GPS systems do not give the correct directions to some of our rural locations.  Please have a copy of our directions as your primary source or as a backup.

Wildwater Nantahala, Yurt Village, Group Lodge & Nantahala Gorge Canopy Tours are located on Hwy. 74 West, 12 miles Southwest of Bryson City, North Carolina.  We recommend Hwy. 74/23 versus Hwy. 19 for time and better roads.  Please check your map to confirm driving routes.

Nantahala Directions

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