Few areas in the world are as beautiful to explore by kayak as the coastal waters of BC, with its jagged coastline and thousands of islands, inlets and coves. British Columbia is one of the premier adventure destinations in the world for ocean kayaking, whether you’re new to the sport, looking for an exciting adventure getaway, or simply out to improve your paddling skills. The kayaking season is mid-May to September.
Vancouver Island & the BC Gulf Islands
Vancouver Island’s vast number of lakes, rivers and ocean inlets are a pleasure to explore by canoe or kayak. The large, relatively isolated lakes of the north and central portion of Vancouver Island are enclaves of solitude. Kayakers glide through marine parks into scenic bays and lagoons and go ashore on secluded sandy beaches and uninhabited islands.
- Canoeing & Kayaking Services: North Vancouver Island and Broughton Archipelago
- Canoeing & Kayaking Services: West Coast Vancouver Island (Ucluelet, Tofino & Barkley Sound)
- Canoeing & Kayaking Services: Desolation Sound and BC Sunshine Coast
- Canoeing & Kayaking Services: Vancouver Island and BC Islands
- Canoeing & Kayaking Services: BC Gulf Islands and Discovery Islands
- Canoeing & Kayaking: Victoria, Vancouver Island, BC Gulf Islands
- Sea Kayaking: Victoria, Vancouver Island, BC Gulf Islands
- Whitewater Kayaking: Victoria, Vancouver Island, BC
Vancouver, Coast & Mountains
Exquisite kayaking adventures await paddlers in the crystal-clear waters of Desolation Sound and Sechelt Inlet, and the Powell Forest Canoe Route on the BC Sunshine Coast is considered one of the more significant paddle routes in the province. Closer to Vancouver, kayakers can explore Bowen Island, Burrard Inlet, Deep Cove, Howe Sound, and the numerous rivers and lakes of the Fraser Valley.
- Canoeing & Kayaking Services: Vancouver, Coast & Mountains
- Canoeing & Kayaking Services: Desolation Sound, Sunshine Coast
- Canoeing & Kayaking: Greater Vancouver, BC
- Canoeing & Kayaking: Fraser Valley, BC
- Canoeing & Kayaking: North Vancouver & West Vancouver, BC
- Canoeing & Kayaking: Squamish, Whistler & Howe Sound, BC
- Canoeing & Kayaking: Desolation Sound and Sunshine Coast, BC
The BC interior offers unlimited paddling and kayaking delights, including the challenging Thompson River, while Shuswap Lake, and its many arms, is one of the most popular canoeing locations in the Southern Interior. Peaceful paddling can be enjoyed on Kinbasket Lake, Murtle Lake in Wells Gray Park, Clearwater and Azure Lakes, and the various lakes around Lac Le Jeune.
- Canoeing & Kayaking Services: Thompson Okanagan
- Canoeing & Kayaking: North Thompson and Nicola Valley, BC
- Canoeing & Kayaking: Okanagan Valley, Shuswap, Similkameen, BC
The region boasts some huge lakes with endless paddling excursions, including Slocan Lake, Upper and Lower Arrow Lake, and Kootenay Lake in the heart of the B.C. Rocky Mountains of the West Kootenays. Paddling down the Fraser and Columbia Rivers in the Rocky Mountain trench, flanked by the Canadian Rockies, is an inspiring near-wilderness experience.
- Canoeing & Kayaking Services: Kootenay Rockies
- Canoeing & Kayaking: Nelson, Castlegar, Slocan, Kootenays, BC
- Canoeing & Kayaking: BC Rockies & Columbia River Valley, BC
Cariboo, Chilcotin, Coast
The wild and remote Central Coast offers spectacular kayaking opportunities, with coves, lagoons, sandy beaches, and rugged coastline. Kayakers explore the Fjordland Recreation Area and Princess Royal Island, home to the famous white Kermode (spirit) bear. Paddlers seeking a challenge can tackle the Bowron Lakes Chain, one of British Columbia’s most popular canoe routes.
- Canoeing & Kayaking Services: Cariboo, Chilcotin, Coast
- Canoeing & Kayaking: Cariboo, Wells & Bowron Lakes, BC
- Canoeing & Kayaking: Chilcotin River, Tweedsmuir, Chilcotin, BC
- Canoeing & Kayaking: Bella Coola, Discovery Coast, Tweedsmuir, BC
Northern BC and Haida Gwaii
The lure of kayaking around Haida Gwaii is strong, with every place as magical as the next. The former Queen Charlotte Islands offer prime paddling, with the tiny islands, secluded coves, and sheltered coastline of the southeast being the most popular kayaking destination. The north coast of BC is wild, with wonderfully varied shores – an exceptional destination for kayakers.
- Canoeing & Kayaking Services: Northern British Columbia
- Canoeing & Kayaking: Gwaii Haanas, Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands)
- Canoeing & Kayaking: Prince George & North East BC
- Canoeing & Kayaking: Nechako River, Tweedsmuir, North West BC
Ecosummer ExpeditionsEcosummer Expeditions
Awaken to the song of the Humpback whale. Fall asleep beneath the hushed canopy of a temperate rainforest. Fill your days whale-watching, kayaking with Orcas, observing sea lions romp through an underwater forest of kelp, and eagles fishing along the shore. Linger over lunch on a deserted island, scanning the horizon for signs of Orca activity.
Sign up for Ecosummer’s guided Orca Camps to kayak in the realm of Killer Whales. Explore the rainforest, hiking to waterfalls, or along ancient First Nation trails. Marvel when dolphins swim so close you wish you could reach out and touch them. Tune in to the rhythm of the tides. Escape the hubbub of your everyday world and restore life’s equilibrium on the shores of BC’s Johnstone Strait, one of the best places to whale-watch in all of British Columbia. Paddle the same waters as these gentle giants on three, four, or six-day kayaking adventures with Ecosummer Expeditions for a family vacation you’ll always remember.