Whether you are a kayaker, canoer, surf-skier, or sit-on-topper, paddling is one of America’s great outdoor activities. Below, according to Woodall’s Camping Life, you will find 10 of the best paddling destinations to set your sights on this year. Sadly, none of these are in Texas, but that just goes to show that you don’t have to stay in Texas to have some outdoor fun. But we do hope you’ll come back and visit our great state as there are many fun things to do in Texas.
Prince William Sound, Alaska
You need to be ready for cold water and chilly air temperature even in the summer when kayaking the tidal glaciers, but your experience with many islands and marine animals will be an experience unequalled anywhere. Sea kayakers can choose day trips from several communities, or extended tours.
San Juan Islands, Washington
San Juan offers a plethora of islands, channels, and the best Orca viewing in the states. In this birthplace of modern kayaking, you will find the best in Pacific Northwest paddling. Also visit Puget Sound and Vancouver, British Columbia for more kayaking opportunities.
Baja/Sea of Cortez , Mexico
If you are ready to experience crystal clear water, scenic paddling, and wonderful whale watching, you want to go to this south-of-the-border paddling paradise. You will want to visit Loreto and Cabo San Lucas.
Apostle Islands, Wisconsin
Along the southern shores of Lake Superior, the Apostles feature rocky shorelines, sea caves, and sandy beaches in protected bays. The water is cold along these dozen forested islands, which are accessible by open lake crossings. Don’t forget your camera!
Isle Royale, Michigan
Kayakers will enjoy the many water routes woven around the small islands surrounding the main island. The rocky outcroppings, towering ridges, and forests combine with the spectacular Lake Superior scenery to make this a must on any paddling destination list.
Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota
The waterways of Kabetogama and Rainey Lakes, sprinkled with hundreds of islands, offers paddlers a wonderful Northwoods experience.
The Ozarks of Missouri/Arkansas
The National Scenic Rivers of the Ozark Mountains have a primitive sense about them. The Buffalo in Arkansas and the Jack’s Fork in Missouri offer good old-fashioned backcountry scenery on lazy rivers. And they’re close enough to Texas that you can go and have some fun and be back in Texas before the end of the weekend.
The Everglades, Florida
America’s only sub-tropical “wilderness”, the Everglades, with mangroves and 10,000 tiny islands, offer incredible bird and gator watching in the forests, fresh-water swamps, and brackish estuaries.
The Outerbanks, North Carolina
The long wind-swept beaches and tide water marshes make for great exploration of numerous uninhabited islands. The lighthouses add to the attractions in this area.
Acadia National Park, Maine
Checking out the coast scenery while circumnavigating Mount Desert Island is what kayaking in this area is all about. The cold 55-degree water temperature can be dangerous for the less experienced kayaker, but Frenchman’s Bay along Maine’s Atlantic coast would be a better choice.
Where to Paddle in Texas
Of course, Texas does have its own paddling spots. There’s even some stand-up paddling in the Lone Star State. But if you really want to find a paddling trail fit for a Texas outsider, head over to Inks Lake State Park in Burnet, Texas.