Ideal Places to Canoe in the UK

Great Ouse River in England

Canoeing is a great way to escape the hustle and bustle of the city, relax, and explore nature. You may be wondering where the best places are to canoe in the United Kingdom. Believe it or not, the UK has thousands of miles of paddling trails, rivers, and canals that are perfect for canoeing and kayaking. The UK has over 3,000 miles of canals that take you on a serene journey where you can explore not only the British scenery, but the awesome wildlife as well. There are also dozens of rivers and lakes to paddle on, whether you’re wanting to fish or partake in some competitive canoeing. Whatever reason for taking your canoe out, the UK has a perfect spot for you, and here are some of the best ones.

The River Wye

One of the most well-known rivers in the UK when it comes to nature conservation, the River Wye, is the fifth longest river in all of the UK. The Wye forms a portion of the border separating England and Wales. This river is the UK’s most popular river for open canoe trips, and for many, this is the first body of water they ever paddle on. The River Wye is perfect for canoeing and kayaking, and welcomes paddlers, no matter their skill level. The river also has campsites located at key points throughout for tourists. This is the perfect setting for a fishing trip, overnight camping trip, or just a day out on the water.

 Two people kayaking.
Two people kayaking.

River Thames

Starting out as just a trickle of water, it then becomes a small wild stream about 30 miles down, before it reaches the small town of Lechlade, where it widens to become a river perfect for paddling. The River Thames is a river that runs deep and when paddling down, you have plenty of views of old houses, churches, and even a local castle. Making its way through the countryside of Thames Valley, this river is made up of bright scenery and tons of wildlife. Once the river raches Teddington, it becomes tidal and goes on past huge landmarks of London. Thames, the second largest river in the UK, is perfect for open canoe trips.

The Norfolk Broads

The Norfolk Broads is very popular amongst tourists and is a must visit when canoeing in the UK. The Broads are shallow lakes where many people enjoy taking their motorboats and jet skis out on. However, there is an area of nice, calm backwaters that is reserved strictly for canoes. In this neck of the woods, the only others that you may have to navigate the waters with are the wildlife. The water stretches for miles on the Broads, and you’re able to rent out canoes as well as take a guided tour. There is so much to see and do while on your canoe adventure on the Broads. This open canoe trail is one you don’t want to overlook.