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Top Sea Kayaking Destinations
Picture yourself paddling into a secluded cove, gliding silently beside seals, otters, sea birds, and maybe even whales. Bald eagles soar overhead, and kingfishers chatter in the distance. All this can be yours when you head out on a sea kayaking expedition to one of the sites on the list below.
Abalone Cove to Royal Palms State Beach, California
This gorgeous stretch of the southern California coast leads you past deserted beaches, wooded shores, and mysterious sea caves. Bring a picnic lunch and hop out of your kayak for some of the best tide pool viewing you’ll find anywhere.
Misty Fjords National Monument, Alaska
This gorgeous hidden gem is a delight to kayak. You’ll find incredible beauty at the most popular destinations -- Rudyerd Bay and Walker Cove. But be sure to paddle off the beaten path for an isolated look at wildlife and these lovely shores.
Peace River Fossil Hunt, Florida
Southern Florida is famous for its palm trees and turquoise waters…and its kayaking. From the coast, head up the Peace River and explore the banks, watching for birds and wildlife. If you hop out for a break, keep your eyes peeled for fossils.
San Juan Islands, Washington
This is the best place in the West to watch for orca whales, and you may also see harbor seals, bald eagles, sea birds, and otters. Three pods of orcas are residents in this area (J, K, and L pods). In addition, you’ll find high-banked and pine-topped islands to explore, sandy beaches, and plenty of room to paddle in the sheltered waters of Puget Sound.
Acadia National Park, Maine
The rugged east coast of Maine is a fabulous place to explore by kayak. With dozens of routes, secluded bays, and open harbors, you’ll find miles of shoreline between Southwest Harbor and Little Cranberry. Bring a sack lunch and hop out on the picturesque cobble beaches to watch for sea birds and wildlife.
Stony Creek to Thimble Islands, Connecticut
The delightful Thimble Islands are ranged with rosy pink granite. These picture-perfect islands are a popular kayaking destination because of their natural beauty and the variety of wildlife they attract.
Kice Island and Cape Romano, Florida
For a fun sea kayak outing, take trip around one of these two scenic islands. Both are located south of Marco Island in the group of barrier islands in South Florida. Keep your eyes peeled for egrets, ibises, and spoonbills while you paddle these crystal-clear waters.
Hammocks Beach State Park, North Carolina
Known as one of the prettiest beaches in the area, Hammocks Beach is a popular place to start a sea kayaking trip. You can paddle out to outerbank barrier islands like the Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge and the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge, or stop off at the Cape Hatteras National Seashore.
Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Michigan
Nothing beats a kayak as a means to reach remote beaches and solitary shores. At Pictured Rocks, you’ll paddle through clear green waters past massive sand dunes, steep cliffs, and beautiful white sand beaches. The banks of Lake Superior are framed by spectacular 50 – 200-foot high sandstone cliffs in this area.
La Jolla Shores to Mission Baym, California
This is southern California at its finest. You can frolic with dolphins as you paddle through these clear blue waters, gazing down as you pass over underwater forests of giant kelp. Bring your sunscreen when you go kayaking on this sunny coast.