10 Cool Places To Go Kayaking In the UK

There’s nothing quire like kayaking in the sea or down a peaceful river. Kayaking allows you a freedom and flexibility on the water that other activities simply don’t, and for that reason, it’s one of the fastest-growing outdoor adventures in the UK.

It should be noted, however, that not all kayaking channels will give you the same experience. Canals, for example, have calmer waters that are better for beginners, while the seas tend to be rough and suitable only for those who are experienced and ready for a thrill. Rivers and lakes vary, with different bodies classified at different “levels” depending on their difficulty.

Before you jump on the water, you should also make sure you’re licensed to kayak in the UK. You can purchase this through a general membership with the British Canoe Union (BCU) or for specific waterways: The Thames and the Medway are covered by the Environmental Agency (EA), the Severn, Trent and Yorkshire Ouse by British Waterways (BW) and the Norfolk and Suffolk Broads by the Broads Authority (BA).

Professional water sport equipment is available nationwide and one of our favourites is Northshore Watersports, especially the Dagger Kayaks that Northshore sell.

Got all that? Ready to start paddling? Here are 10 of the best kayaking spots through the UK.

1: Helford, Cornwall

Part of the official Cornwall Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, you won’t find sunnier shores and clearer waters anywhere else than Helford.

2: Bala Lake, Gwynedd

Six kilometers may not seem like a lot, but when it’s packed with the sights, sounds and overall sensory experience of northern Wales, you’ll definitely get your money’s worth.

3: Fal-Ruan Upper Creeks, Cornwall

Perfect for beginners, this area of the River Fal is known for its tranquility and beauty, meaning a picture-perfect paddling experience for kayakers of all ages and skill levels.

4: Arisaig, Scottish Highlands

Scotland is such a wonderful place to kayak that it’s been featured in National Geographic more than once, and the West Coast is the best of the best.

5: Cardiff Bay, Cardiff

Kayak to your heart’s content, then jump off and visit the many attractions of Cardiff. It’s like having two holidays in one!

6: Isle of Wight, England

Tired of docile canals? Dark waters and secret coves make every trip through the Isle of Wight a tense but exciting adventure.

7: Pembrokeshire, Wales

With blue skies, white sands and jagged cliffs jutting over the water, Pembrokeshire is an absolutely gorgeous place to go kayaking, one of the best in the whole of the UK.

8: River Ouse, England

River Ouse winds through the countryside and around the Sussex coast, meaning your fun in the water will be equally matched by the breathtaking sights during your breaks.

9: St Agnes, Cornwall

Accessible only to those who can navigate her waters, the coves and caverns of St. Agnes offer an incredible look at some of Cornwall’s rarest landscapes.

10: Loch Torridon, Scotland

You’ll need a lot of bravery for the deep lochs and rapid rivers of the northern Scottish coast, but if you can handle it, you’re sure to pick up some great tales for the people back home.

Photo sourced from bob hamilton photography


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