There are a number of ways to enjoy the water, but only a kayak can really get you out there at surface level to navigate those beautiful bodies of water. If you are taking on narrow rivers and unpredictable rapids, kayaking can also be an incredible adventure sport and one that is different every time you step aboard. Today we are going to highlight some of the best kayaking destinations in the world for you to add to your bucket list, each of them offering once in a lifetime views and an endurance test you won’t soon forget.
Thrill-seekers will know Nepal very well as the home of Everest and the Himalayas. Although there are wonders to be found at sea level, and thousands of kayakers in the know will flock to these waters each year. Many travellers will base themselves at Kathmandu and here you can make the half-day paddle up the Upper Seti out towards Pokhara by kayak, and bask at the looming mountains that fringe the water. Pokora has a very small population and is quite untouched so be sure to visit this for a stark comparison to the bustling Kathmandu. Alternatively, you can head to the Everest regions and find many places to direct your kayak, each of them promising a peaceful and expansive paddle.
The French Alps
You might never see water as crystal clear as it is in the French Alps. This destination appeals to so many because there are easy and challenging trips to be enjoyed, surrounded by stunning snow-capped mountains. The Ardéche region is known by most well-travelled Europeans, and here you will find whole families kayaking together as it’s an easy paddle to complete. Don’t be fooled by the name of Durance’s challenging trip, the ‘Sunshine Run’, because many take on this body of water to train and prepare for harsher terrains in neighbouring countries and it can be quite the challenge.
New Zealand has always attracted those who love the water, and both the North and South Island have a lot to offer. If you are one who enjoys a rainforest type environment with diverse scenery and a tropical atmosphere, then North Island is the place to kayak. Conversely, South Island has an almost European feel, with the Alpine Mountains dictating the winding waters. One tip that is overlooked by travellers is that these islands are quite untouched and there is not the service or infrastructure to transport you to these destinations, so there may be some hiking involved!
Whatever adventure you are looking for in Chile, you will find it. Pucon is the ideal spot to base yourself with lots to explore, but be sure to allow enough time to see and experience Patagonia in all its beauty. Chile has some of the best waterfall tracks and some extreme rapids that need to be seen to be believed, which is why lots of kayakers master their craft here as there are so many diverse challenges to get you the experience quickly. It might be a good idea to make contact with a tour operator so that you can maximise your time out on the water and have someone else worry about the transport.
The US is hardly one destination, but rather a collection of fantastic kayaking spots spread along with the country. You might need to see it all in two or three trips, taking on a region with each visit. Colorado River is known for its wild rapids and luscious scenery. Devils River redefines the Texas experience with this beautiful river taking you to coves and natural wonders. If you really want to get off the beaten track, head to the Prince William Sound in the Alaskan glacial gulf and kayak toward snow-capped mountains. Start with these three and find rivers nearby that you can also visit.
The Soča river in Slovenia looks like a scene out of The Beach, or any desktop background location worth daydreaming about. You won’t get sick of this stretch of never-ending water, and can even choose to stay the night on the riverbed and take on the rest in the morning. The dense bushland that lines the river is so unique to the area and makes you feel like you’re the only one lucky enough to have stumbled on this paradise.
Kayakers are truly spoilt for choice when it comes to choosing a destination. In fact, if you plan your next trip right you might be able to knock a couple of these spots off the list at once and go in search of your next 6 destinations.
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