Paddling (Canoeing, Kayaking, Rafting & SUP) in Ontario
By Shari & Elisa Thursday, July 13, 2017
If there is magic on this planet, it is contained in water – Loren Eiseley. Ontario has a lot of magic as we have a LOT of water! While we love to explore by motor or sailboat, sometimes we like to move at a different pace and under our own steam. Check out other ways to see the sights in Boat and Train Excursions and Sightseeing tours, but here we’re going to tell you about some person-powered watercraft.
Kayaking is a great way to cover ground as its long, narrow shape cuts easily through the water. Kayaks can be designed for beginners or experts; slow and easy touring on calm water, to racing on whitewater, to fishing & long-distance ocean paddling and hold 1-3 people. 1000 Islands Kayaking (Gananoque) offers Half/full day kayaking tours of 1000 Islands National Park. Toronto Adventures offers Kayaking, Canoeing, & Paddleboarding adventures around Toronto.
Canoes are definitely the best way to cover distances as they are large enough to transport everything from tents to food and usually carry 2-3 people, although Voyageur canoes are much larger. Algonquin Park Canoe Adventures does 3 and 6 day Algonquin trips, all inclusive. Canoe Toronto offers guided 20-seat Voyageur War Canoe trips to Toronto Islands. Harbourfront Canoe & Kayak Centre in Toronto offers Guided Tours in Tandem Kayaks or Big Voyageur Canoes in the Toronto Islands & lessons too. And Canoeing the Grand has Canoe, Kayak, tubes and New Family nite Tuesdays!
SUP stands for Stand Up Paddleboards and they are basically standup surfboards that you paddle. They build balance and core strength, but can be used by anyone, any age. Many places that have canoes and kayaks also offer SUP rentals. There are even SUP yoga classes! Niagara Rowing School has canoe, kayak, SUP rentals & rowing lessons. LivOutside. Gear + Adventures in Bracebridge also has Canoe, Kayak & Paddleboard Rentals, as does White Squall Paddling Centre. SUPnorth Paddle Board Adventures in Haliburton, Muskoka & Kawarthas also has a Mermaid Lagoon with “SUP & Swim” (with your mermaid tail)!
Want a little (or a lot of) adrenaline with your paddle? Then rafting is for you! Great for groups or families, these guided trips can be easy or exciting! Wilderness Tours Rafting & Kayaking Resort not only has trips and camps, but also is Canada’s top adventure resort. RiverRun Rafting has high-Adventure, Family Rafting or Tubing & also has a 165-acre resort. Madawaska River Family Rafting has a great 2-hour Family Raft Trip on the Madawaska River, among other trips. Many of these companies offer trips for age 5+ and all provide safety equipment, instruction and guides.
Whether you like a slower, more relaxing, ride on the water or a bit of an adrenaline rush, the water fun options in Ontario are endless. We just need the weather to cooperate.