Best Kayaking and Standup Paddling in Massachusetts
March 16, 2016
We have a soft spot for our Little Harbor and Islands. Crowninshield and Gerry’s Islands offer protected paddling at mid to high tide. They’re fun to paddle around and make for awesome swimming, exploring, picnics and landing spots. Neighboring Marblehead Harbor with 2,000 boats on moorings, yacht clubs and homes as well as Marblehead Light offer endless paddle intrigue and fun. Views of Children’s Island, Bakers and Misery Island, the shorelines of Beverly and Manchester-by-the-Sea and distant views of Half Way Rock to Gloucester provide world-class waters and views. With all there is to do, see and explore we seldom leave our hidden gem for paddling 15 miles north of Boston. We simply love Marblehead!
For those thinking about going on a road trip or spreading your wings - here are some top picks from Boston.com and Mass Vacation Bureau for kayaking around Massachusetts!
- Boston Harbor Islands A world away, and not so far at all. Paddle across the Nantasket Roads, as the channel is called, toward the outer islands of Boston Harbor. Little Brewster Island is home to Boston Light, the oldest in the nation. Or stop at Calf Island, a good spot for a walk, and continue across Hypocrite Channel to The Graves, and another light.
- Plum Island Sound Surf the shifting tides near the mouth of the Ipswich River, paddle the clam-rich shores near Middle Ground, or continue toward the Parker River and head deep into the Great Salt Marsh from the narrow end of Plum Island Sound. Depending on tides and time of day, the water can keep the fittest paddler working, or offer peaceful refuge from the breaking waves and weekend crowds on the ocean side of Plum Island.
- Monomoy Islands - The Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge is the only federally designated Wilderness Area in southern New England. Paddling Monomoy brings kayakers in touch with a uniquely beautiful and ecologically invaluable place. The trip is one of the best in the state for unspoiled vistas, wildlife, birds, and challenging waters.
- Annisquam River The Annisquam River offers pretty, protected paddling and acres of marshland to explore at high tide. Novices can find scenic and quiet paddling on the Jones River and in Lobster Cove. More adventurous kayakers can paddle into Ipswich Bay to visit sandy Wingaersheek Beach or the many rocky coves along Gloucester’s northern coast. Paddlers of all skill levels can enjoy this diverse and interesting area.
- Great Island In Wellfleet - Great Island in Wellfleet is one of the most remote areas on the Cape. The island, like Nauset Marsh, is part of the Cape Cod National Seashore, federally owned and run, and hence is one of the few places on the Cape with public access year-round. It is also a magnificent shore, undeveloped in an area of creeping summer house settlement.
With hundreds of lakes and streams and nearly 200 miles of coastline, Massachusetts is a paddler’s paradise. Enjoy finding your paradise!