Jet Boat Features

Purpose-built Jet Boats

  • A fleet of seven interchangeable highy specialised jet boats, designed specifically for the Shotover River Canyons
  • Constructed of heavy gauge marine aluminium
  • Hulls designed for maximum strength, speed and manoeuvrability
  • Powered by two 350 Mercruiser V8's boasting 700 horsepower combined
  • Propulsion, steering and control is through two Hamilton 212 Jet Units thrusting 760 litres of water per second

Jet boat Features FAQ:

What is a jet boat? What is the difference between a jet boat and a regular boat?

Great question! The Hamilton Jet, invented right here in New Zealand in the 50’s, are considered unique due to their distinctive design and innovative technology! It is the perfect canyon jet boat for navigating our unique New Zealand landscape.

How does a jet boat work?

Unlike conventional propellers, the Hamilton Jet unit utilizes waterjet propulsion. It draws water into an intake at the bottom of the unit and then expels it at high velocity through a nozzle at the rear. This propulsion method provides several advantages, including increased maneuverability, shallow-water operation, and improved efficiency. How cool! For our unique jet boat - Queenstown is the place to experience its adrenaline!

How fast does the jet boat go?

Our canyon jetboats are designed to go fast, with speeds of up to 90kph along the Shotover River! Our drivers undertake a rigorous training program which involves a minimum of 120 hours of training. This is more than double the 50 hours required to be a commercial jet boat driver as per NZ Maritime Law. That is how our drivers are able to deliver this unique experience in a fun yet safe manner!

Which is faster, a propeller-driven boat or a jet boat?

We use jet boats through our canyons because they can reach high speeds quickly and are easy to maneuver in water as shallow as 10cm and complex waters found in the Canyons of the Kimiākau (Shotover River). A propeller boat works best in calm, flat waters, you’ll find no lakes here!

What sort of carbon emissions do jetboats have and what do you do to offset them?

At Shotover Jet, we take the environmental impact of our business seriously and are always interested in new technology, alternative fuels and boat upgrades that give us a more sustainable approach.

Ngāi Tahu has been very clear about our commitment to reduce the environmental impact of our businesses. With our Electric Jet Boat project, this is the kind of innovation that is going to help us achieve our goal of a more sustainable future, for us and our children after us - mō tātou, ā, mō kā uri ā muri ake nei.

Sustainability is important to all New Zealanders and as one of New Zealand’s top
attractions, maintaining our beautiful environment is paramount to our success.