The Georgia coast provides an ideal location for all kinds of watersports. With the rampant rise in paddleboard interest in recent years, it’s no surprise that Georgians find themselves drawn deeper into the water. Whether you’re just getting your feet wet or have been paddleboarding for years, the following five locations and shops are more than willing to make sure you have the time of your life next time you’re on the water.
Paddle in the salt marshes near Saint Simons Island for a majestic, natural experience. Get your equipment at Saint Simons Paddleboard and Kayak, which is conveniently located on the island. According to their website, Saint Simons Paddleboard and Kayak would like to “show you the grandeur of a sunset over the salt marshes, explore tidal creeks with a pod of dolphins, or challenge your athleticism in the surf.” Whether you’re trying paddleboarding for the first time or are a regular, Saint Simons is happy to help. Book a class or a tour on their website.
Depending on where you start on the Etowah River, you can find locations with little to zero current, which makes paddling a dream. The River Dog Paddle Co. in Rome, Georgia, prides itself on being “Northwest Georgia’s premiere Stand Up Paddleboard Destination,” offering SUP rentals, demos, lessons, and fitness classes to customers of any skill level. River Dog hosts regular events down at the Etowah River, and invites all to come visit them at their River Dog Outpost for a cold drink and a game of corn hole. Join the Paddle Club for a weekly paddle meet-up with other River Dog lovers.
When near Savannah, Georgia, paddleboarders should check out Tybee Island and the sandy South Beach. If you’re in need of equipment or lessons, consider AOK Watersports, located on Tybee Island. They offer lessons, tours, SUP yoga, and paddle equipment for sale. According to their website, “AOK Watersports is dedicated to getting you out on the water and providing experienced, professional quality instruction to do so.” If you’re new to paddleboarding, consider the two-hour beginner tour. An experienced rider version is also available.
Jekyll Island is one of several Sea Islands in the Georgia barrier islands, and is composed of marshes, beaches, sandbars, and more, making for a diverse location to get up on the water. Turtle Tides Jekyll offers guided tours, shark tooth hunting adventures, and tours of the Altamaha River, in addition to water bike, kayak, and paddleboard rentals. Newbies can sign up for a two-hour guided paddleboard training tour. If you’d prefer to buy, consider their high-end paddleboards made from bamboo and fiber glass.
Lake Acworth in Acworth, Georgia, approximately 30 minutes north of Atlanta, is a 260-acre man-made lake. No motorized watercraft are allowed, which means kayakers, anglers, and paddleboarders have the lake largely to themselves. Rent your paddleboards and kayaks from the nearby Acworth Beach Rentals.