Kayaking and camping go together like Mac & Cheese, for a family holiday that’s full of adventure, excitement and relaxing moments by the water. You’re spoilt for choice across the United States, with pristine lakes, forest-clad national parks and rivers with a rapid or two to bring the thrills. Most importantly, these natural wonders are located close to fantastic campgrounds.
Pack your 3-person, Sea Eagle FastTrack 465 and get set for some serious kayaking and camping fun!
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Where to Go Kayaking and Camping in the USA
John Day River, Oregon
Oregon’s John Day River puts you in the heart of towering desert canyons, amazing bass fishing and abundant wildlife. Mild whitewater adds to the scenic surrounds, on one of the country’s longest free-flowing rivers. Great campsites run along the river, including Burnt Ranch Campground and Service Creek Campground. Don’t forget your trekking boots, for time off the water on magnificent hiking trails.
Rio Grande River, Texas
Kayaking and camping on the Rio Grande River offers miles of deep canyons to explore. Furthermore, you’ll spot beavers, turtles and blue herons. It’s home to adventurous rapids, so come prepared with a top whitewater kayak, like the Dagger Mamba. The Rio Grande Village Campground is located right on the banks of the famous body of water, with a camp store, showers, picnic tables and grills.
Missouri River, Montana
Montana brims with outdoor recreational options and the Missouri River gives you the opportunity to paddle through history. One of the most scenic areas is accessed from Moniteau Creek in Rocheport. See limestone bluffs soaring over the river and discover Native American rock paintings. Set up camp at Cooper’s Landing Campground, Store & Marina. Therefore, you’ll explore the nearby Katy Trail State Park too.
French Broad River, North Carolina
Family paddling doesn’t get much better, than on The French Broad River Paddle Trail. It opened in 2012 and connects more than 140 miles of waterways. Enjoy paddle-in only campsites, with a focus on environmental conservation. Furthermore, you’ll paddle through lovely farmland on flat water, ride the whitewater at Ledges and pass by the elegant Biltmore Estate. To buy a great recreational kayak, check out Ocean Kayak Frenzy.
Lake Powell, Utah/Arizona
Situated in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Lake Powell is a top spot for boating, kayaking and camping. Some of the best places to paddle include Antelope Canyon, Ice Cream Canyon, Labyrinth Canyon and Padre Bay, the widest part of the lake. Choose from plenty of campsites, such as Bullfrog Marina Park and Campground. It offers all the facilities you need and pet-friendly surrounds. Therefore, your furry friend doesn’t miss out on the kayaking and camping action.
Hillsborough River, Florida
Do you love photography, fishing and birdwatching? Florida’s Hillsborough River is the place to fulfill your passions, while kayaking and camping. Traverse a designated paddling trail that runs for 30 miles. Here, you’ll drift under shady tree canopies to spot turtles, ibis and even alligators. After that, camp in Hillsborough River State Park, which is one of Florida’s oldest.
Sawtooth National Recreation Area, Idaho
The Sawtooth National Recreation Area is blessed with scenic mountains, hiking trails and more than 300 lakes. Redfish Lake is a popular spot for a paddle, with glassy water that’s perfect for children or beginner paddlers. Choose from a range of campgrounds, but book early as this is a very popular spot for kayaking and camping. If you’re searching for a suitable kayak for kids, take a look at Ocean Kayak Banzai.