5 Great Paddleboarding Spots in Connecticut

By Elizabeth Georgian

5 Great Paddleboarding Spots in Connecticut

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Stroke, stroke, glide—it is such a unique feeling to surf atop the water on a stand-up paddleboard. Stand-up paddleboarding is an excellent sport for toning your body while being out on the water. Numerous opportunities for paddleboarding are available in Connecticut including free, paid, and guided options for beginners. Here are five excellent spots to get started on your paddling journey. 

1. Mystic River, Mystic, CT

The calm waters of the Mystic River provide a safe and very scenic location for paddleboarding in southeastern Connecticut. Bring along your own board and paddle and launch from one of the boat launches along River Road for free. This budget-friendly option is great for experienced paddleboarders. Along Mystic River, you’ll spot Mystic Seaport, the Mystic River Bascule Bridge, and the quaint downtown Mystic. Also, numerous water birds, such as egrets, herons, and ospreys, live along the river. If you don’t have your own board, consider renting from nearby Paddle Mystic, where boards go at $30 per hour, $15 for every additional hour, or $50 for a half day and $75 for a full day. Paddle Mystic even provides lessons, adventures, and SUP yoga. 

2. Branford River, Branford, CT

The Branford River provides a perfect place to get your feet wet with paddleboarding. If you don’t have your own board, no worries! Branford River Paddlesports is a rental and educational facility for kayaking and paddleboarding. In addition to lessons and rentals, Branford River Paddlesports features guided tours on stand-up paddleboards, which allows you to explore Connecticut’s coastline in a truly unique way. Both a Thimble Island Tour and Farm River to Short Beach Tour are available. In addition, SUP yoga is also taught by Branford River Paddlesports, although prior reservations are required.

3. Candlewood Lake

Candlewood Lake is one of the most beautiful in the state. Located along the lovely Candlewood Lake, you’ll find Candlewood Stand Up Paddleboard. This company teaches you to glide across the water in their group classes. Paddleboards can also be rented through the Candlewood facilities, but due to popularity, you must reserve and pay for your paddleboards in advance online. Find your Zen with a yoga class atop the water with frequent SUP yoga classes taught be several different yoga studios. Simply choose your preferred class or classes, sign up, and pay online!

4. Farmington River

There might not be a more iconic body of water in Connecticut than the Farmington River. Explore these waters in a truly unique way—atop a paddleboard by renting from Collinsville Canoe and Kayak. Collinsville is a really beautiful place to try stand-up paddleboarding. This store, educational center, and rental facility offers numerous group and private lessons, as well as a paddleboard teacher training. Parties for adults and children can also be organized on paddleboards or kayaks. Additionally, the shop sells paddleboards if you are in the market to purchase and have one to explore Connecticut’s calm waters on your own.

5. Indian River Marina, Clinton, CT

This Clinton marina is located a quarter-mile up the Indian River. At the Indian River Marina, you can rent stand-up paddleboards for two hours for $30, a half day (four hours) for $45, or a full day (eight hours) for $70. You can even do a weekly rental, which includes local delivery, for $300. The Indian River Marina will also help you to organize events, such as team building outings, birthday parties, family reunions, and more! 

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