Paddling down Franklin River is one of the world’s most exhilarating rafting trips, known far and wide for the dramatic Tasmanian scenery that lines the water’s banks and the truly ‘wild’ atmosphere that will stay with you forever if you take on the challenge.
Outdoor adventures don’t come much more inspiring than this: speed through rainforest valleys, watch as duck-billed platypus surface around you, sunbathe on rocks high above the water and sleep under the stars in the shelter of a cosy ledge. Rafting down the Franklin, you’ll get the blood pumping through your muscles, witness fantastic views of the rock formations that sail past you and benefit from some quality time to enjoy some relaxation and contemplation.
The national park that the river flows through has been an important element of Tasmania’s history: there were once plans to dam the mighty Franklin to produce hydroelectric power, a move that would have compromised much of its natural beauty. However, fortunately for travellers, the locals were having none of it: mass protests took place across Australia and many even chained themselves to the proposed dam sites.
If you’re new to rafting, don’t worry at all: you will be accompanied by guides who know the river like the back of their hand, who fell in love with its twists and turns and who will make your experience an unforgettable one as a result. Your guides will also provide al fresco dining with the best of Tasmanian produce, and you will find that a well-deserved meal surrounded by the gently swaying vegetation and the swirl of the waters flowing beneath you is unbeatable.
Nature lovers will discover a number of treasures here. Myrtle, leatherwood, sassafras and the rare and ancient huon pine can all be spotted in the area, while native creatures including platypus, wallabies, quolls, yellow-tailed black cockatoos and white-breasted sea eagles are often found going about their business.
Trips ranging from 5 and 7 days to the full 10-day experience are available to suit your fitness level and the time you have available on your personalised holiday. Some stretches of the river can be demanding, but if you are keen for a challenge and eager to learn then tourists of most fitness levels should be able to do the trip comfortably.
This UNESCO World Heritage site area is one of the world’s truly wild locations, a place to escape the rush of everyday life and enjoy some time in the wilderness – so pick up your paddle and get going!