As well as the fantastic Canoe Trails we have produced, here you’ll find details of a variety of other locations around the country where you can get out on the water.
There are many locations around the country where you can visit and enjoy a paddle.
- White Water Centres – These centres give more experienced paddlers a chance to test their skills on either man made or natural rapids. Facilities range in quality. White water paddling is only suitable for experienced paddlers in a group.
- Lakes and Reservoirs – These can offer a more gentle and scenic experience, especially for new paddlers. Many lakes and reservoirs do not allow paddling on their waters – so we have tried to give you an up-to-date list of those venues where you can paddle freely. Some will need permits or licences to paddle which will be indicated in the venue’s details.
Many lakes and reservoirs charge a fee to paddlers for launching and paddling on their waters. This is not covered by British Canoeing’s licensing agreements, so all paddlers will need to ensure they buy these permits where required.
If you have no canoeing experience we recommend visiting a club or centre, attending a course or a starter session first to build up the basic skills before heading out on the water at one of our listed locations.
Why not join British Canoeing
If you are planning to paddle regularly it would be worth considering joining British Canoeing. One of the great benefits is that you will receive a full licence to paddle a huge range of navigations across the country, saving you a great deal of money and hassle.
You need to know about:
Staying safe: It’s always important to be safe and to respect the area you are paddling in. Once you have found a location that you are interested in visiting make sure you check out our general safety guidance and key environmental good practice.
Rights of access: Access to and along water in England can be a difficult legal issue. We have ensured our listed locations have widely recognised rights of access, or fair local agreements, to ensure that you can have confidence that you will not be challenged while paddling. However many lakes and reservoirs may have a fee to launch so please make sure you pay this before you get on. You can find more information on British Canoeing’s position on access on our Waterways and Environment pages (coming soon).
Licences: If you are paddling on a managed piece of water you will generally need a licence to do so. If stopped with no licence, you will be at risk of being fined. Please check the information contained about the location you are interested in to see what and if any licences are required before you head off on the water.
Due to weather conditions locations can be more or less accessible depending on water levels and other environmental factors. We are working towards gathering more information about accessibility of our locations but where we can we have included as much information as possible around how accessible it is to get in and off the water within the location information.