There are plenty of water sports in the Lake District, whether you are trying an activity for the first time or practising your skills.
From kayaking and sailing to windsurfing and raft building, your choice of water sports in the Lake District is huge. Rent canoes, kayaks or paddleboards or even join in an outdoor swimming event like the Great North Swim. Cumbria has over 80 lakes, meres, waters, and tarns for you to explore. Here is our guide to water sports in the Lake District.
Low Wood Bay Watersports Centre
Low Wood Bay watersports centre is great to check out as it offers an extensive range of equipment to hire for use on Lake Windermere. If you’re a beginner they offer a wide variety of watersports instruction and boat hire suitable for all ages and abilities including:
Windermere Boat Hire
Their motorboat and rowing boat hire are great if you would like to explore England’s largest lake at your own pace and experience the breathtaking views only available from being out on the water.
Canoe and Kayak Hire on Windermere
Canoes and kayaks offer a unique go-anywhere ability and offer a completely different perspective of the lake. They have a range of modern craft at the centre with closed-cockpit and sit-on-top kayaks and open canoes.
Paddle Boarding on Windermere
Take a board and head onto the lake with nothing but a paddle to power you along. Paddleboarding has become popular recently and is such a fun way to explore Lake Windermere.
Wakesurfing and Kneeboarding on Windermere
Using well-established training techniques, MasterCraft ski boats and modern wakeboards and kneeboards let them take you to the water for the time of your life.
Sailing on Windermere
Low Wood Bay Watersports Centre is a recognised training centre with both the RYA (Royal Yachting Association) and the BWSW (British Water Ski and Wakeboard).
Graythwaite Adventure has a pop-up centre from April to October (exact start and finish dates subject to the weather and school holidays) and at the end of the season they pack up, leave no trace and allow Grubbins Point peace and quiet over the winter months.
RIB tours are so much fun, they start and finish at a private boathouse on Graythwaite Estate. The 1-hour tour is an exclusive charter for your group which accommodates 1 to 9 passengers. Once you get going their experienced skipper will stop occasionally to tell tales of gun powder plots and the estate’s history whilst pointing out places of interest on the western shore. You will then cross the route of the Mallard, the lake’s 500-year-old ferry route. You’ll head back via Bowness Bay along the eastern shore, passing the Temple of The Heroes and the arts and crafts architecture of the famous Windermere Motor Boat Racing Club.
For experienced paddlers or complete novices wanting to kayak, they offer that too. This is a great way to paddle around the small islands and bays off Graythwaite Estate’s private shoreline. These boats are paddled with double-bladed paddles, they’re really steady and lots of fun.
They offer instructed sessions so that you can master the basic strokes quickly and with ease to make the most of your session. They are happy to hire water confident first-timers too. They require at least one adult in your party to be on the water. You can opt for one hour, two hours of you may prefer a half-day adventure.
The single-seaters are spacious enough for 1 person with a dry bag and/or picnic. The double seaters comfortably hold 2 people with space for a dry bag and/or picnic. As with all their experiences, this will be a private booking for your party if you book a lesson.
Canoeing is a really relaxing way to explore the lake and paddle around the small islands and bays off Graythwaite Estate’s private shoreline. For experienced paddlers or complete novices, they offer an instructed session to help you master the basic strokes quickly and journey with ease to make the most of your session. They require at least one adult in your party, but not necessarily taking part.
Or you may opt for canoe hire if you’ve paddled before. They are happy to hire water confident first-timers too. They require at least one adult in your party to be on the water. You can opt for one hour, two hours of you may prefer a half-day adventure.
Located just a short walk from Keswick on the banks of Derwentwater. The adventure centre is accessible on foot or by car. They offer more adventurous water sports in the Lake District, such as raft building, ghyll scrambling and river tubing.
Ghyll scrambling is one of the most fun and popular outdoor activities you can do. Suitable for anyone, whether you have no experience or lots. You get to head down a rocky Lake District mountain stream. There are plenty of fun obstacles including natural rock chutes, clear pools of water, and even the occasional mini waterfall. All of this is under the safe guidance of their experienced instructors.
River Tubing takes its roots from White Water tubing. Equipped with a tube and paddle, start with often the most demanding part of the trip, crossing some of the lake (the difficulty can vary depending on wind direction and weather conditions) then embark on a safari down the river enjoying the scenery and wildlife as the current takes you downstream. Those wishing to enjoy some White Water action can take on their rapid section on the man-made weir. All safety kits and full-length wetsuits are provided.
River Deep Mountain High
Offering raft building on Coniston and Windermere. Raft building requires everyone to work together to come up with a design for their barrels, wood and rope. They then build the design and put it on the water to test out its capabilities. This is always lots of fun and with larger groups, more than one raft can be built which enables races, tugs of war and other variations.
Raft Building is a great team-building event for large groups and groups of families to work together to produce a strong, streamlined and most importantly buoyant raft. Their instructors will give tips along the way on using the most efficient knotts and getting everybody involved.