Book Canoe And Camp

Canoe and camping is a fantastic trip through stunning countryside in Bedfordshire, less than an hour from London. This exciting trip was voted Top 52 Things to do in the World by Lonely Planet and Top 3 for SUP adventures by Red Bull Magazine. Our unique offer of woodland camping only accessed by canoe or kayak has quickly become a popular choice. Finish your day in style at our private woodland riverside campsite, cook over an open fire and sleep under the stars. Due to Covid-19, we are currently limiting our camping to one route from Bedford which is a return trip.

Book Your Adventure



Canoe and Camp in WoodlandOnce you arrive at the woodland, you have your own clearing complete with a campfire (with logs to sit on) and not forgetting the all-important compost loo. Our luggage service will allow you to paddle a light boat and make portages easier, with your luggage waiting for you in your clearing for when you arrive.

Canoe camping is the water equivalent to backpacking, carry enough to travel and camp for several days but do so in a canoe or kayak. It is also known as touring, tripping, or expedition canoeing. We have a number of different trips available which includes a camp in our woods adjacent to the river. Choose your route and then relax and enjoy the nature of the woodland. 

Here are some ideas to help you plan your trip:

FIRES & COOKING

Campfire. One of the best bits of camping is being allowed to have a real campfire. The woodland main clearings have a campfire circle. We often pack a tarp and paracord in case it is raining and we need shelter around the campfire. Don’t forget to bring a fire lighting kit such as a good lighter, matches or a flint and steel. You may also need some tinder, paper, or other good material to start it.

Cooking Kit. Don’t forget to bring a grill or something to cook on over the campfire. You can, of course, bring your stove. We have a wide selection of cooking kit that can be hired including:

  • * Kettles - every camp needs a brew
  • * Campfire grills - specially designed to flat pack into your boat
  • * Dutch ovens - big cooking pots that go in the fire

Campfire Cooking. Why not research campfire cooking before you start your paddling adventure and make some lovely campfire treats. We recommend:

  • * Green & Blacks Chocolate Banana Melt
  • * S'mores
  • * Campfire Popcorn
  • * Gourmet Woodland Breadsticks
  • * Campfire Orange Muffins

SHELTER

Bring your tent or hammock. There is plenty of space in your clearings as well as lots of nooks and crannies between trees. If you pitch a tent just remember pack size and the weight you will be carrying. For an additional cost, you can select a luggage service when you book.

Hire a Tent. We can offer a Tipi for the same household only which sleeps, 6-12 people.

Build A Woodland Shelter. Feeling adventurous, Matchstick Wood is a great place to hone your bushcraft and survival skills. We have plenty of large staves and branches already cut to make shelters from. Although requiring a bit of elbow grease there is nothing more satisfying than sleeping in a shelter built by you.


FACILITIES & RULES

Matchstick Wood is a riverside woodland campsite on the banks of the River Great Ouse. It is not accessible by road or car. So pack light. Please don’t bring the kitchen sink! You will need to bring a kit for camping as well as:

    • * Water – you can hire filled containers
    • * Toilet roll - don’t be the person who forgets to pack it
    • * Fire lighting kit- paper/ lighter/ tinder

Compost Toilets. Compost toilets are what we lovingly call “loo with a view.” They have a simple screen and toilet seat on a wooden frame. Try to leave them clean and as you would wish to find them. There is usually a citronella air freshener and some hand sanitiser. Please bring toilet roll!

Campsite Rules

  • * Be respectful of other people.
  • * Dogs are welcome as long as they are kept under control and to your campsite clearing.
  • * Keep noise to a sensible level.
  • * We suggest you don’t run as there are plenty of rabbit warrens and holes to trip you up.
  • * Don’t leave smouldering fires, please put them out when you have finished.
  • * Leave no trace (no rubbish) take your plastics, and waste with you.