Kayaks Tied UpWe provide kayak hire to allow you to paddle and explore stunning locations on the River Great Ouse and a variety of other paddling destinations. 

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Kayak hire is straight forward giving you hire of high-quality kayaks and kit, a simple bank based tuition, and great paddling locations. Our kayak rental fleet includes double kayaks, sit on tops, single touring kayaks, and sea kayaks which are perfect for beginners through to more experienced paddlers.

We also provide the necessary equipment that you will need for your trip including:

  • Your kayak or sit on top
  • Paddles
  • A map
  • Waterproof dry bags
  • Buoyancy Aids
  • Trolleys if you need them
  • Waterproof tops


Kayaks were originally used by the Inuits, native people of the Arctic to hunt and travel. They have a distinct cockpit where the paddler sits. Your legs are generally inside the kayak and your feet positioned on footpegs to help paddle the boat forward.  Kayak paddles are double-ended and have a blade at each end. We have different paddles allowing for left and right-handed people as well as shorter paddles for children and youth paddlers.

We have a range of kayaks including:

  • Touring single kayaks
  • Double sea kayaks
  • Double touring kayaks
  • Single sea kayaks
  • Single river kayaks and playboats (used for courses)

Sit On Top Kayak

The most stable kayaks of the fleet. You could literally hold a party on the double one and the singles are also very stable. As the name implies you sit on top and rest your feet against the footrests along each side of the kayak.

Each sit-on-top is fitted with a simple waterproof hatch and a rear storage area with elastic bungees. Our sit on tops are perfect for family paddling fun and games and messing around. The sit on top kayaks are very stable and forgiving for complete novices.

River Journeys

The best way to rent canoes and kayaks is to book one of our ½ day or full day journeys. If you want to try something a little longer and possibly a bit more challenging then you can opt for a multiday trip with canoe and kayak camping options using our woodland campsite and some further downstream.

½ Day Hire

A large proportion of our canoe and kayak hire is based on half day of paddling on the River Great Ouse. It is slow moving and offers a perfect mix of stunning rural countryside and Bedford’s Victorian Embankment.

Half day trips include:

Bromham to Bedford (6 miles) 

This starts below the 14th century stone bridge and small rapids in Bromham and flows gently down to Kempston Weir which you need to portage (carry around) and then continues down into Bedford and its historic Victorian Embankment. Paddlers usually stop by the Longholme Boating Lake and café.

Bedford to Great Barford (7 ½ miles) 

This part of the trail starts near the Butterfly Bridge on Bedford’s Embankment opposite Russell Park on the lower river. Paddlers then paddle down to Cardington and postage past Cardington Lock, onto to Castle Mill with another portage (carry around) before arriving at the final Lock at Willington. This part of the trail passes through the Bedford River Valley Park and also the Danish Camp, riverside Café. This section of the trail ends at Great Barford next to the Anchor pub and the bridge above Great Barford Weir.

Great Barford to St Neots (8 miles)

Great Barford to St Neots another particularly rural and scenic stretch of the river. The water here is crystal clear with a few reeds rippling in the  lazy current. The trail passes the back of Wyboston Lakes, the old Mill at Eaton Soccon, and heads into St Neots riverside town. The trail either ends at the Ambiance Café which is next to the town bridge or further downstream at the River Side Campsite where many of our paddlers chose to camp over.

Other circular routes 

There are options for circular routes usually starting in Bedford where paddlers can explore from Bedford’s Victorian Embankment up and down stream on the upper and lower river, starting and finishing from the same place. We usually meet customers at the Butterfly Bridge, next to Russell Park on the embankment.

Full Day Hire

There are a number of different options for a full day’s paddling and hire on the River Great Ouse. We can advise you on duration and route depending on what you are looking for, length of time paddling, pace, and of course what you would like to see. Depending on whether you hire a canoe, kayak, double kayak, or stand up paddleboard you will also find that you can travel at slightly different speeds. 

Typical full day routes include;

 Bromham to Great Barford (13 ½ miles typically about 6-7 hours)

 Bedford to St Neots (14 miles typically 7 hours)
Talk to us about your specific requirements and get paddling.