Best Kayaking Spots in Ohio
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Ohio is a state full of natural beauty, and kayaking is a wonderful way to explore it. With its many rivers, lakes, and streams, Ohio provides a wide range of kayaking opportunities.

From calm, slow-moving waters ideal for beginners to more challenging whitewater rapids, Ohio has something for every level of kayaker. Kayaking in Ohio can be a peaceful, solitary activity or a thrilling, challenging adventure.

Paddling the rivers and lakes of Ohio offers kayakers a unique opportunity to gain an up-close appreciation of the state’s diverse and beautiful natural scenery. From the majestic Lake Erie to the rugged Hocking Hills, kayaking in Ohio can be an unforgettable experience.

Top Best Kayaking Spots in Ohio: From Lakes To Rivers

Hocking Hills Canoe Livery

Hocking Hills Canoe Livery

The Hocking Hills Canoe Livery is a great destination for those seeking outdoor adventure. Black River Kayak & Canoe offers a variety of tours and packages for experienced and novice paddlers alike, while Mad River Adventures offers stories and lessons shared by experienced guides. For those looking for an even more unique experience, Tuscarawas River Outfitters has equipment rentals and custom tours.

Black River Kayak & Canoe

Black River

Straddling both the Hocking Hills and the Appalachian Plateau, Black River Kayak & Canoe offers a unique opportunity for outdoor enthusiasts and adventurers alike. With its stunning scenery and tranquil waters, a day spent kayaking or canoeing in the area is sure to be a memorable one.

A visit to Black River Kayak & Canoe begins with the opportunity to rent a canoe or kayak and explore the area. Guests may choose from a variety of different boats and paddles, meaning that there is an option for everyone, whether they are a beginner or more experienced paddler.

The area is teeming with wildlife, and guests are sure to spot various species of birds, fish, and even the occasional deer as they paddle around. The calm waters also make it the perfect spot for a leisurely paddle, with plenty of time to take in the stunning views of the surrounding hills and forests.

When the day is done, Black River Kayak & Canoe offers a unique experience that combines the beauty of nature with the adventure of being out on the water. Guests can leave with a greater appreciation for the natural world and a newfound sense of relaxation from a day spent in the great outdoors.

Mad River Adventures

Mad River Adventures

Nestled along the banks of the Mad River, Mad River Adventures awaits visitors for a day of canoeing, kayaking, and tubing. With the backdrop of lush evergreen and oak trees, this serene spot is the perfect place to relax and take in the beauty of nature.

Mad River Adventures offers a variety of options for those looking to get out on the water. Whether you’re looking for a leisurely float down the river or a more adventurous whitewater adventure, there’s something for everyone. Canoe trips range from two to four hours and can be tailored to your group’s individual needs.

The knowledgeable staff will provide all the necessary gear and instruction to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience. Kayakers of all levels will find something to enjoy here. From beginner classes to whitewater kayak courses, Mad River Adventures has something to offer. The experienced staff can provide the necessary instruction and equipment for a successful journey.

Tubers can also choose from a variety of options at Mad River Adventures. From a relaxing float down the river to a more adventurous ride, there are plenty of options to choose from. The knowledgeable staff will provide all the necessary instruction and gear to ensure a fun and safe experience.

No matter which activity you choose, Mad River Adventures promises to provide a fun and memorable experience. With top-notch service and experienced staff, visitors will be sure to enjoy their time on the beautiful Mad River.

Tuscarawas River Outfitters

Tuscarawas River Outfitters

Continuing our journey along Ohio’s meandering rivers, we come to Tuscarawas River Outfitters, an outdoor adventure company located in the heart of Amish Country. Specializing in kayak and canoe rentals, Tuscarawas River Outfitters offers a variety of rental packages for a day of exploration and adventure.

No matter the skill level, Tuscarawas River Outfitters has something for everyone. For the beginner, they offer a variety of rental packages, from single-day rentals to weekend packages, that include the canoe, paddle, and all necessary safety equipment. Experienced paddlers can opt for a self-guided adventure, taking the provided maps and exploring the river at their own pace.

For those looking for a more immersive experience, Tuscarawas River Outfitters offers guided tours. Experienced guides take paddlers on a journey along the river, providing insight into the local wildlife and ecology. From bald eagles to river otters, visitors will have the chance to see a variety of wildlife in its natural habitat.

Tuscarawas River Outfitters also offers an assortment of outdoor gear for sale. From fishing rods to life jackets, visitors can find all the necessary equipment to make the most of their outdoor excursion. With friendly staff and a knowledgeable team of guides, Tuscarawas River Outfitters is the perfect place to embark on a river adventure.

Mohican Adventures Canoe & Fun Center

At Mohican Adventures Canoe & Fun Center, guests can explore the breathtaking beauty of the Ohio River Paddlefest, the rich history of the Kokosing River Water Trail, or the unique wildlife of the Cuyahoga River Water Trail. With a wide variety of activities available, visitors can embark on a fun-filled adventure and create lasting memories.

Ohio River Paddlefest

A mere one hundred miles away from Hocking Hills Canoe Livery, an even larger paddling adventure awaits Ohio River Paddlefest. Every year, paddlers from all around the Midwest come together to celebrate the Ohio River and all of its tributaries, creeks, and inlets.

Ohio River Paddlefest is a five-day journey through the Ohio River and its waterways. Participants have the choice to paddle the entire route or just join for a day or two. The paddlefest begins in Cincinnati and ends in Portsmouth, and participants can stop at any number of interesting and scenic stops along the way.

The first day of the paddlefest starts on the Ohio River, winding north along the banks of the mighty river. Participants pass through the stunning Shawnee National Forest, with its majestic bluffs and towering trees. Paddlers then turn east toward the Ohio River Islands National Wildlife Refuge, home to hundreds of species of wildlife and plants.

The second day of the paddlefest takes participants to the Kokosing River Water Trail. The trail winds between the two forks of the Kokosing River, providing paddlers with views of the lush countryside and a chance to spot some of the local wildlife. After a full day of paddling, the group makes camp for the night on the banks of the river.

The third day of the paddlefest takes paddlers on the Cuyahoga River Water Trail. The trail follows the river’s course through Cleveland and into the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. The river provides a great opportunity to view the natural beauty of the area and spend some time exploring the park. After an exciting day of paddling, the group makes camp for the night.

Ohio River Paddlefest is an amazing opportunity to explore the Ohio River and its tributaries. Not only is it an adventure, but it’s also a chance to make new friends, share stories, and have a great time. Whether you’re looking for a weekend of paddling or a full-fledged adventure, Ohio River Paddlefest is the perfect way to explore the Ohio River.

Kokosing River Water Trail

Kokosing River Water Trail

If you’re looking for a unique and exciting experience, the Kokosing River Water Trail should be your next stop. This riverwater trail is located in the Ohio region and offers plenty of opportunities for visitors to explore the area’s natural beauty. From camping to canoeing and kayaking, visitors can enjoy a variety of activities along this river.

The Kokosing River Water Trail is a perfect choice for those looking for a relaxing and enjoyable experience. The water is calm and clear, making it great for paddling, fishing, and swimming. Along the river, you’ll find plenty of wildlife, including birds, frogs, and fish. The surrounding forest is full of trees and wildflowers, providing a picturesque backdrop.

One of the most popular activities on the Kokosing River Water Trail is the annual Ohio River Paddlefest. Organized by the Ohio River Trail Council, the event is held every summer and draws hundreds of paddlers from all over the country. During the event, you can join in on guided trips, rent canoes and kayaks, and take part in a variety of outdoor activities.

The Kokosing River Water Trail is a great way to explore the outdoors and experience the beauty of nature. Whether you’re looking for a peaceful paddle or an adrenaline-filled adventure, the Kokosing River Water Trail has something for everyone.

Cuyahoga River Water Trail

Cuyahoga River Water Trail

Nestled in the heart of Ohio’s Cuyahoga Valley National Park is the Cuyahoga River Water Trail. This popular destination is known for its winding, meandering course, making it ideal for a peaceful day of canoeing or kayaking. Whether you’re an experienced paddler or a beginner, this river trail offers something for everyone.

The Cuyahoga River Water Trail offers paddlers of all skill levels and miles of scenic beauty, including marshlands, wooded hillsides, and open farmlands. As you paddle along the river, you’ll encounter numerous species of birds, fish, and wildlife, as well as the occasional historical landmark. The river also offers plenty of opportunities for a picnic, with numerous scenic spots dotting the banks of the river.

The Cuyahoga River Water Trail is host to the Ohio River Paddlefest, an annual event that celebrates the scenic beauty of the Cuyahoga Valley. During this special event, paddlers of all ages and abilities can join in a variety of activities, including guided tours, races, and educational demonstrations.

The event is held each year in the spring and is a great way to get out and explore the river. The Cuyahoga River Water Trail is a great place to spend a peaceful day or weekend of paddling. From experienced paddlers to beginners, anyone can find something to enjoy along this scenic river.

Whether you’re looking to explore the river’s wildlife, take part in the Ohio River Paddlefest, or just relax and enjoy the natural beauty, the Cuyahoga River Water Trail is sure to provide the perfect adventure.

Little Miami Kayak Rental

Little Miami

Lake Hope State Park is the perfect spot for kayaking, with its lush green landscape and tranquil Little Miami River. From the park, the river is accessible for paddlers to explore, with a range of paddle routes to choose from. Little Miami Kayak Rental offers the perfect opportunity to navigate the river and take in the beauty of the region.

Lake Hope State Park

Lake Hope State Park

For a more serene and natural experience, Lake Hope State Park offers a peaceful getaway with plenty of opportunities for outdoor recreation. Located in the southeastern portion of Ohio, the park is home to sprawling forests, winding creeks, and the picturesque 25-acre Lake Hope.

Visitors here can take advantage of the many trails that the park has to offer, with the most popular being the Lake Hope Trail. This 7-mile loop takes hikers and bikers through the scenic woodlands and offers breathtaking views of the lake and surrounding forest.

The lake itself is perfect for kayaking and canoeing, and Lake Hope State Park proudly boasts miles of shoreline for paddling. With no motorized boats allowed on the lake, the waters are serene and inviting. Two boat launches are available for those who wish to explore the lake in a kayak or canoe.

The lake is also home to a variety of wildlife, and visitors can often spot turtles, frogs, and various species of fish. The park also offers a variety of camping sites, both primitive and electric, making it a great spot for an overnight getaway. The cabins, however, are the most popular lodging choice.

These rustic cabins provide all the modern amenities, including air conditioning, and are cozy enough to make them feel like home. Visitors who choose to stay in the cabins have access to the many trails, boat launches, and other park facilities.

Lake Hope State Park provides an ideal setting for outdoor fun and relaxation. With its abundant wildlife, calm waters, and stunning views, there is something for everyone to enjoy here.

Grand River Canoe & Kayak

Grand River

Following the lazy curves of the Little Miami River, the Grand River beckons and promises a more daring adventure. Here, the river is wider and deeper and flows more quickly, offering a greater challenge for paddlers. The Grand River Canoe & Kayak offers the perfect opportunity to explore this wild and winding stretch of river.

The Grand River Canoe & Kayak offers a wide range of kayaks and canoes for novice and experienced paddlers alike. From traditional canoes and kayaks to modern sit-on-tops, Grand River Canoe & Kayak has something for everyone. With a wide selection of styles and sizes, Grand River Canoe & Kayak is sure to have the perfect boat for your needs.

As soon as you step onto the river, the Grand River’s wild beauty will captivate you. The river winds through the lush forest, offering an abundance of diverse wildlife. The natural beauty of the river will take your breath away with its crystal clear water and sweeping meanders.

The river offers plenty of opportunities for fishing and sightseeing. With its pristine waters, the Grand River is home to a variety of fish like bass, catfish, and panfish. Along the banks, you can spot an array of wildlife, from birds to beavers, turtles, and even the occasional deer.

Grand River Canoe & Kayak offers a variety of guided tours for those who want to explore the river in style. The knowledgeable guides will take you on a journey of discovery, providing a unique and thrilling experience. You’ll be paddling along the Grand River, taking in the scenery and learning about the area’s unique history and ecology.

Whether you’re looking for a leisurely paddle, a fishing excursion, or an adventurous journey, Grand River Canoe & Kayak has something for everyone. With its beautiful setting and wide range of activities, Grand River Canoe & Kayak is the perfect place to explore the wild beauty of the Grand River.

Lake Erie Canopy Tours

Lake Erie Canopy Tours

Dashing across the waters of Lake Erie, the thrill-seekers clustered aboard the vessels, ready to embark on a journey like no other. As the boats cut through the windswept waves, they were accompanied by the steady rhythm of oars dipping into the depths of the lake.

This is the beginning of the Lake Erie Canopy Tours, an adventure that will take them soaring through the tree-tops and exploring the heights of the canopy.

The tour commences at the beach, where guests are greeted by a friendly guide who will lead them through the adventure. Before beginning the tour, the guide gives a brief overview of the tour and safety instructions – reminding guests to wear their life vests and helmets at all times and to follow the rules of the tour. Armed with this knowledge, the group sets off in search of adventure.

The boats make their way to the first stop of the tour, where the group disembarks and a new kind of adventure awaits. Here, guests are strapped into a zip-line platform as the guide instructs them on how to safely navigate the zip-lines. After a few practice runs, the group is ready to take on the canopy.

Guided by the tour guide, the group zooms through the treetops, getting a bird’s-eye view of the lake below. The tour continues with a series of rope bridges, skywalks, and other interactive elements, each designed to give guests an up-close look at the area’s natural beauty.

From atop the trees, guests can spot the birds and other wildlife that call the lake home, as well as take in the breathtaking views of the lake and surrounding landscape.

The tour finally comes to a close at the beach, where guests can reflect on the incredible journey they have just embarked on. Here, the group can share stories of their adventure, take pictures, and take away lasting memories of the tour. The Lake Erie Canopy Tours provides guests with an unforgettable experience, one that they will never forget.

River’s Edge Canoe & Kayak

With a different flavor of outdoor adventuring, River’s Edge Canoe & Kayak provides a stunning backdrop for paddling the Grand River. Located in Paris, Ontario, this beautiful stretch of water is lined with scenic views and wildlife. As the longest river in Southern Ontario, the Grand River is a special place to explore by kayak or canoe.

The Grand River is perfect for paddlers of all ages and skill levels. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced paddler, the river offers a range of options. For instance, you can take a leisurely paddle down a calm section of the river, or choose a more challenging route to explore the rapids.

The launch area is equipped with a dock, providing a safe and easy way to enter the river. There are also plenty of other amenities to make your trip enjoyable, such as a snack bar, restrooms, and a picnic area.

The staff at River’s Edge Canoe & Kayak are passionate about providing customers with an unforgettable experience. They offer a variety of packages, including half-day, full-day, and multi-day trips for groups and individuals.

Whether you’re looking for an exhilarating adventure or a peaceful journey, River’s Edge Canoe & Kayak has something for everyone. They provide all the necessary equipment and supplies, such as life jackets and paddles. They also offer guided tours and lessons for those who need a bit of help navigating the river.

The river is also home to a variety of wildlife, including fish, turtles, and birds. During your trip, you may even spot some of the area’s more elusive residents, such as beavers, otters, and bald eagles.

River’s Edge Canoe & Kayak is the perfect place to enjoy the beauty of the Grand River while getting in touch with nature. From the serene scenery to the abundance of wildlife, you’re sure to have an unforgettable experience.

Scenic River Canoe Excursions

Scenic River Canoe Excursions

For those looking to experience the same tranquil beauty of the river surrounding River’s Edge Canoe & Kayak, but with a guided experience, Scenic River Canoe Excursions offers the perfect opportunity. Offering trips ranging from two to six hours, visitors can choose a trip that best suits their needs and comfort levels.

Beginning the journey at the bottom of the river, travelers will take in the scenery of the surrounding pine forests and marshes. The serene environment is perfect for those looking to commune with nature and take in the sights and sounds of the area.

As the trip progresses, the wide open waters of the river appear to stretch onward forever, eventually leading to breathtaking views of the riverbanks and nearby hills.

The experienced guides are no strangers to the river, navigating through the waters with ease and providing both a peaceful and informative experience. As they paddle along, they will provide insight into the local area, explaining the history of the river and the unique wildlife that calls it home. Visitors may even spot a few bald eagles dotting the sky or a family of deer grazing on the banks.

The trips are also designed to give visitors plenty of time to enjoy the water, with multiple stops throughout the journey. At these stops, visitors can take a break from paddling and take a dip in the cool river waters, or even seek out a hidden beach and take a short hike.

When the journey comes to an end, visitors can take a few moments to marvel at the beautiful sights they’ve seen and reflect on a relaxing day. With such an abundance of natural beauty, it’s easy to see why Scenic River Canoe Excursions continue to draw in visitors from far and wide.

Chagrin River Kayak & Paddleboard

Chagrin River

The Chagrin River is the perfect destination for kayak and paddleboard adventurers. Meandering through the rolling hills of Northeast Ohio, the Chagrin River offers a serene and calming escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

There are many different types of kayaks and paddleboards available for rent, so regardless of experience level, the Chagrin River is sure to provide a memorable experience for all.

The crystal clear waters of the Chagrin River make it easy to spot the local wildlife, including birds, fish, turtles, and even deer. Gliding along the river, one can take in the beauty of the surrounding nature and relax in the peaceful atmosphere. The sky is often filled with colorful birds, and the trees provide shade from the hot summer sun.

For those looking for a more thrilling experience, the Chagrin River has plenty of rapids to offer. The rapids offer a challenge to experienced kayakers and paddleboarders, but are still mild enough for novices to enjoy. The rapids add an extra element of excitement to the excursion and allow for a full-body workout.

The scenery of the river is breathtaking, and there is something for everyone to enjoy. From the picturesque cliffs and caves to the ancient oaks and maples that line the banks, the views are nothing short of stunning. The sunsets from the Chagrin River are especially breathtaking and provide a truly magical experience.

Safety is a priority on the Chagrin River, and all kayak and paddleboard rentals include life vests and whistles for emergencies. The staff are always available to help with any questions or concerns and can provide advice on the best routes for specific skill levels.

For those looking to explore the beauty of the Chagrin River, kayak and paddleboard rentals are available year-round. Whether you are looking for a peaceful journey along the river or an exciting rapids adventure, you are sure to find an unforgettable experience in the Chagrin River.


Ohio is a great destination for kayaking, offering a variety of places to rent canoes and kayaks from. From the Hocking Hills Canoe Livery and Mohican Adventures in the north to Little Miami Kayak Rental and Grand River Canoe & Kayak in the south, kayakers of all levels can explore the waters of Ohio.

For those seeking even more adventure, Lake Erie Canopy Tours, River’s Edge Canoe & Kayak, Scenic River Canoe Excursions, and Chagrin River Kayak & Paddleboard all offer unique and exciting experiences.

Whether you’re an experienced kayaker, or just looking to get started, Ohio has something for you. Get out and explore the best kayaking-spots-in-Ohio.
23 Best Kayaking Spots in Ohio