Our History

Alpine Jet Thrills has safely and reliably been

operating on the Waimakariri for more than two decades and has evolved from the small one boat business Paul and Lynda Vernel began in 2000 into the region's largest family owned jet boat operation in Canterbury.

 

In 2017 Paul Mullan, another passionate jet boater joined the business with wife Robyn to further develop the experience for local and overseas passengers.

Like many tourist businesses Covid-19 has seriously disrupted plans and the focus is now firmly anchored in providing JetBoat and AirBoat experiences for Kiwi tourists, corporate businesses and educational experiences for schools through the pioneering aspect of Jet Boat World which was being established early in 2020.

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Jet Boat World - History

While the jet boat was 'invented' by Bill Hamilton at Irishman Creek in  South Canterbury's  Mackenzie Basin, it's right here in on the Waimakariri River in Christchurch where the majority of the development happened that saw the jet boat introduced to the world.

 

Our base at  Springfield overlooks Woodstock Beach is where countless pioneer jet boaters launched to explore into the gorge that was otherwise the domain of trampers or those lucky enough to sneak a peak from their train as it plied its way through the alpine mountains to the West Coast.

The last jet boat owned by Bill Hamilton - Whio V is on display with several other early jet boats at Jet Boat World at our Springfield Adventure Park base, so allow time to wander through and check out the rich history, one of the unique features of New Zealand that placed it on the world stage.