Nearly half the rapids on the Zambezi River are classified as Grade 5 (Grade 6 is commercially unrunnable), which means that the steep gradient causes long and extremely turbulent rapids with big drops and a high volume of water. Half and full-day rafting expeditions provide what is internationally acclaimed to be the wildest and best whitewater rafting experience in the world. The most exciting time to do rafting is during the dry season (July to mid-February), when the water is at its lowest and the rapids at their biggest. For those that want even more adrenalin than the whitewater rafting can supply, river boarding allows individuals to surf their way down the mighty Zambezi armed with only a body board, fins, helmet and lifejacket.
Many well-established operators offer whitewater rafting trips in Livingstone. Age restrictions are in place for the main rafting route and participants will have to sign disclaimers due to the dangers involved in the sport. However, serious accidents are rare. There are more sedate paddling trips for those who are underage or prefer something less extreme.