Racing Around Devil's Hole in the Niagara riverThese jet boats race through a narrow gorge, where the water has been compressed as it pours over Niagara Falls and becomes rapids in the narrow river. (Niagara's Devil's Hole Rapids has a class 5 rating.) The boats travel past rocky shores, do 360s and circle whirlpools where you just know it would be all over if the boat got caught in the waters circular action. Whirlpool Jet Boat Tours leave both from Niagara-on-the-Lake on the Canadian side, and from Lewiston, N.Y., on the United States side of the river, during the spring, summer and fall months.
Avoiding Rocks in Shotover Gorge, Queenstown, New ZealandWhite knuckled riders are common on the jet boats racing through the canyons of the Shotover River. At times, you're positive the boat will swipe a boulder or rocky outcrops because the river is so narrow, but skillful drivers know when to turn, where to do 360s, and where to idle so you can enjoy the spectacular views. Shotover Jet operates these boats. You can also book one of the rides through Viator.
Watch the Surfers on Australia's Gold CoastRides with Jet Boat Extreme include 360s and water slides during a tour of the beaches along Australia's Gold Coast. Trips that go past Seaworld and several islands are available daily.
Boating in the Lava Canyon of Iceland's Hvita RiverThe jet boats create fish-trails of water that wash against the black lava-rock walls of this canyon in the Hvita River. It's a special way to see some of Iceland's most dramatic natural settings. Pickup and drop-off on a Riverjet trip are in Reykjavik April to September.
Hellgate Excursion on the Rogue RiverThese boats have a shallow draft and loads of power, so you'll jet over just inches of water to reach the edge of the Rogue river's restricted section. On the way back, you'll race through the whitewater rapids again. During the tour, a guide will tell you all about the history and the geology of the river and region.
A variety of tours are offered, from the two-hour, 36-mile trip from Grants Pass through Hellgate Canyon, to the "Quick and Scenic excursion. You'll view the canyon where John Wayne and Katherine Hepburn filmed "Rooster Cogburn" and Matt Dillon plunged into the depths to escape a gang in hot pursuit in "Gunsmoke". Hellgate jet boats rides run May to September.
Jet Boating on the Great LakesYou can go on a jet-propelled ride, with full throttle slalom runs, and fast turns and twists, in Chicago. During the rides, which leave from Chicago's Navy Pier daily, March to October, you'll get an entertaining narration about the Windy City. The company also has fast-paced cruises in Baltimore.
Jet Boating in Galveston, TexasYou'll do just as the boat's name - Spintime - implies. During this jet boat experience in Galveston, Texas, you make hard right turns, mad dashes and experience "The Hamilton Spin". Watersports operates during the summer and has weekend hours during the winter.
Thriller Rides in MiamiThis company offers a high-speed cruise along the Miami coastline, so you get panoramic views of the city's skyline, the homes along Millionaire's Row, the Art Deco district of South Beach, and the beaches where travelers are lounging on the sand. The Thriller Miami Speedboat Tour is offered right through the year.
Self-Drive Speed Boat Tours in San Diego HarborYou'll travel slower in these smaller speed boats during this 13-mile ride. While it's not a jet boat tour, it's still lots of fun driving the boat on a circuitous route around the harbor from Cabrillo Isle Marina. You'll swing by a display of Navy ships, aircraft carriers and massive oceangoing ships surrounded by smaller sailboats and speed boats. You'll view the downtown skyline, Coronado Bridge and at certain times of the year see sea lions.
The kicker: You'll navigate and captain your own speed boat while following a trained and knowledgeable guide in a different boat. There is a two-way communication systems mounted in each boat so you'll be able to hear your guide throughout the tour.