two ladies in blue hire kayaks

Kayak Hire

We provide kayak hire allowing you to paddle and explore stunning locations on the River Great Ouse.

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What is a Kayak?

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. Read the difference between and canoe and a kayak.

Couple in yellow kayaks at Kempston river

Our kayak hire is straightforward, we provide high-quality kayaks, paddling kit, simple bank-based tuition, and a great paddling location. Once kitted up, you can go off and paddle as much or as little as you like in the time given. You can pull over almost anywhere along the riverbank for a break. Our kayak rental fleet includes double kayaks, single kayaks, and sea kayaks which are perfect for beginners through to more experienced paddlers. You can also check out our kayaks for sale.

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

  • Kayak
  • Kayak Paddle
  • Basic Map
  • Waterproof Dry Bag
  • Buoyancy Aid
  • Simple Bankside Tuition

Group in Hire Kayaks on the River Great Ouse

What Do You Need for Kayaking?

  • Clothing and footwear you don't mind getting wet. Go for gym style, don't wear denim!
  • If it's hot remember suncream and water.
  • If it's cold, warm clothing, a change of clothes, and extra snacks.
  • If it's raining, a waterproof jacket, trousers, or poncho is recommended.
  • Bring a mobile in case of emergencies, we can offer a dry bag if needed.

 We have a range of kayaks including:

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

Kayak River Journeys and Hire

Booking one of our kayaks includes a select river route for ½ day or full-day hire. If you want to try something a little longer and possibly a bit more challenging then you can opt for a multi-day kayak trip camping using our woodland campsite. We also have canoes and paddle boards available to hire.

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

Circular routes: There are options for circular routes usually starting in Bedford where paddlers can explore from Bedford’s Victorian Embankment up and downstream 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. 

Kayak Lessons or Qualifications

You can book a course or kayak lessons with a coach here.


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