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5 Excellent Places for Beginners to Kayak in Michigan

By Steve Anderson

5 Excellent Places for Beginners to Kayak in Michigan

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Kayaking can be a difficult sport for those without experience, but Michigan is a kayaker’s paradise. Surrounded by the Great Lakes, you can expect to find some seriously stunning spots to get your feet wet. The state offers not only opportunities for those experienced, but plenty of places to get started. Before heading out for the first time, try taking some lessons or bringing along a guide. Here are five awesome spots for beginners to kayak in Michigan.  

1. Quiet World Sports, Jackson, MI

Quiet World is considered to be one of the best kayak schools in the state of Michigan. With kayak classes running from beginner to intermediate, private instruction available, and instruction in several other sports also on hand, Quiet World Sports will develop skills and give new kayakers the ability to better enjoy the sport. Once your classes are done, apply your newfound knowledge with five lakes and the Grand River that connects all five, allowing for a thoroughly unique experience.

2. Liquid Therapy, Three Rivers, MI

Liquid Therapy in Three Rivers offers its kayaking focus on several major area rivers, the St. Joseph, the Rocky, the Prairie, the Portage and the Fawn River. With several rivers to choose from, it's a safe bet that beginners will be able to find something appropriate for their skill level right here. That's good news for anyone who's planning to get started in kayaking. The St. Joseph is suggested particularly for beginners, and those confident enough can step up to rivers with some whitewater portions as well. Since all boats are required to be off the water by 6 p.m., there's a much greater chance of not getting lost.

we sunk 3 times 🚣... Not therapeutic lol

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3. Velocity Adventure Tours, Fennville, MI

Fennville’s Velocity Adventures gives first-time paddlers access to kayaks, and some seriously great kayaking territory. Beginners will be able to go out with a much more experienced kayaker in a bid to not only get better acquainted with the craft, but also to see what's in the area. Tours are available in three or six-hour variants. Be sure to stick around for the sunset on the nearby Kalamazoo River—it’s breathtaking!

4. Tahquamenon River Canoe and Kayak Rental, Newberry, MI

Up in the Upper Peninsula is one of Michigan's great rivers: the Tahquamenon. Not far from Newberry, meanwhile, is the Woods Canoe Rental, or Tahquamenon River Canoe and Kayak Rental. It's not just a rental operation, of course, but also a great starting point for beginners and even small children. They offer what's called a “Short Trip,” which comes complete with delivery of equipment and shuttle service to and from the base. Featuring good fishing, excellent variety of wildlife—everything from birds to bears and beyond is right here—and varying levels of difficulty, kayakers from beginners to experts should be able to find a challenge worthy of their skills. 

5. Tecumseh Paddling Company, Tecumseh, MI

Out in Tecumseh, which isn't far from Detroit, Ann Arbor, and several other major Michigan cities, there's the Tecumseh Paddling Company. Located right along the River Raisin, the company can start users out as simply as short hops around their own internal kayaking area known as “The Ponds” to access to the river itself. Options are the key to producing the best kayaking experience for beginners, and there will be plenty of those at the Tecumseh Paddling Company.

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Due to the escalation of the coronavirus outbreak, local destinations for outdoor recreation may be closed. Please visit official websites for more information.

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