Experience the Thrill of Lake Erie Kayaking

Are you ready for an unforgettable adventure on the stunning waters of Lake Erie? Whether you’re a seasoned paddler or new to kayaking, the shores of Lake Erie offer a plethora of rental spots where you can embark on an exciting kayaking experience. Get ready to explore picturesque landscapes, encounter fascinating wildlife, and soak in the tranquility of this magnificent lake.

Kelleys Island Kayak Rentals: A Paradise for Nature Enthusiasts

Located at Kelleys Island State Park, Kelleys Island Kayak Rentals provides an ideal starting point for your kayaking journey. Here, you can rent both single and tandem kayaks and paddleboards to explore a mile-long section along the island’s shoreline. As you paddle through the protected harbor, you’ll be captivated by the stunning views of the sandy beach and abundant wildlife. Don’t forget to take a moment to visit the Glacial Grooves near the state park, a fascinating natural wonder that will leave you in awe.

Portage River Paddling Co.: Discover the Beauty of Port Clinton and Oak Harbor

For those seeking a diverse kayaking experience, Portage River Paddling Co. is the perfect choice. Whether you prefer a leisurely paddle along the wide section of Portage River in Port Clinton or a thrilling 9-mile route down the narrow and winding portion of the river in Oak Harbor, you’re guaranteed to be surrounded by breathtaking scenery. Keep your eyes peeled for bald eagles and turtles as you navigate through these picturesque waterways.

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Lakeside Chautauqua Watercraft Rentals: Immerse Yourself in History and Natural Beauty

Take a trip to the charming gated community of Lakeside Chautauqua, originally a Methodist church camp, and rent a kayak or paddleboard to explore the area. Paddle around the outdoor pavilion, often accompanied by live music, and enjoy the stunning views of Bettinger Park and the historic Hotel Lakeside. The tranquil ambiance of this area will make your kayaking experience even more memorable.

People on water bikes (photo courtesy of Harbor Yak)

Harbor Yak: Unique Kayaking Experiences Await

Situated in a historic former Coast Guard building, Harbor Yak offers a wide array of watercraft rentals, including kayaks, paddleboards, canoes, and even water bikes. Explore the beautiful Ashtabula breakwater while engaging in a relaxing session of kayaking and yoga. If you’re looking for something more unconventional, try out the water bikes, which are gaining popularity among visitors. Make sure to make a reservation, especially on weekends, to secure your spot. Harbor Yak also provides a kayak launch for those who bring their own watercraft.

Put-in-Bay Watercraft Rental: Discover the Wonders of South Bass Island

Set off on a leisurely trip around South Bass Island State Park with a rented kayak or paddleboard. Marvel at the wildlife, stunning rock ledges, the South Bass Island Lighthouse, and the elegant homes that grace the island’s landscape. For those seeking an adrenaline rush, Jet Skis and power boats are also available to rent. Make the most of your time on this enchanting island and create memories that will last a lifetime.

West River Paddling Co.: Serenity Awaits on Vermilion River

If you find solace in the tranquility of nature, West River Paddling Co. is the perfect place to rent a kayak, paddleboard, or canoe. As you paddle up the Vermilion River, be prepared to witness majestic eagles soaring above rocky cliffs. For a peaceful experience, head down the river towards Lake Erie and explore a quiet lagoon. Watch sailboats glide by and relax on sandy beaches as you immerse yourself in the beauty of the surrounding landscape.

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Discover the Splendor of Lake Erie Islands Water Trails

From rocky cliffs and eagle nests to Victorian homes and colorful cottages, the Lake Erie Islands Water Trails offer kayakers an unparalleled experience. Although some trails are more suitable for experienced paddlers with their own equipment, there are plenty of spots along the shore for newcomers to try kayaking.

South Bass Island kayak trail (illustration by Rachael Jirousek)

The South Bass Island Trail spans 10.5 miles and takes you on a journey past Oak Point State Park, the South Bass Island Lighthouse, downtown, and the Perry’s Victory & International Peace Memorial. If you’re looking for a shorter route, explore the mile-long shoreline at South Bass Island State Park or paddle from Oak Point State Park through Put-in-Bay Harbor, around Gibraltar Island, and onwards to the Perry’s Victory monument.


The Kelleys Island Trail stretches over 11.8 miles, allowing kayakers to get up close and personal with 100-year-old homes, the island’s quaint downtown, pristine sandy beaches, limestone shorelines, and the stunning stone alvar nature preserve. Keep an eye out for the incredible wildlife that calls this island home.

North Bass Island kayak trail (illustration by Rachael Jirousek)

The North Bass Island Trail covers 5.2 miles and offers a remote and tranquil kayaking experience. With its vineyards and natural areas, North Bass Island is a hidden gem largely untouched by development. Take your own boat or charter one to reach this serene island and navigate around state wildlife areas, such as Fox’s Marsh and Honey Point, where you can observe birds and other fascinating animals.

Middle Bass Island kayak trail (illustration by Rachael Jirousek)

One of the more laid-back islands, Middle Bass Island is home to the iconic Lonz Winery, preserved as part of Middle Bass Island State Park. Explore this idyllic island by renting a kayak and enjoy breathtaking views of a bald eagle nest that can be seen from the water. Make your way to East Point Preserve on the northeast tip and savor the tranquility of this peaceful spot while hiking among the diverse bird species and wildflowers.

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For further information about these routes and the Mainland Trail, visit East Coast Paddle Sports.

Ready to embark on your Lake Erie kayaking adventure? Discover the wonders of this majestic lake and create memories that will last a lifetime. Whether you choose to paddle along the shoreline or venture out to the islands, Lake Erie offers an enchanting experience that will leave you in awe of its natural beauty.

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