When the warm weather rolls into town, residents and visitors of Portland, OR take to the waterways in their kayaks to cool off and make the most of those sunny days. With many rivers in and With the Columbia and Willamette Rivers both flowing in and around the great city of Portland, there's a lot of options for kayakers in the area, with kayaking offering a great way for people to get outdoors, stay active, explore the city from a new angle, and spend quality time with friends and family.

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In the surrounding area outside of Portland, OR, there are plenty more rivers and waterways for kayakers to explore and various kayaking companies run tours and rentals for this purpose. However, if you’re looking to really enjoy some kayaking in and around the city itself, two main operators spring to mind: Next Adventure and the Portland Kayak Company. Both located on the banks of the Willamette River, these companies offer various kayaking trips and other options for residents and visitors looking to enjoy some water adventures in the Portland, OR area.

Next Adventure

Next Adventure is a well-known outdoor brand in Portland, OR, offering an incredible amount of products and services for people looking to stay active and get some fresh air in lots of fun different ways. For kayaking, Next Adventure runs both rentals and guided trips, as well as offering introductory classes to help people learn the basics of kayaking and improve their technique to feel more at ease out on the water.

Accessible for both beginners and seasoned pros, Next Adventure's kayaking tours are focused in the Portland area, granting guests some beautiful views and memorable experiences in one of the Pacific Northwest's most attractive locations. The 2.5 hour Ross Island tour, for example, provides a great chance for kayakers to simply relax and enjoy the trip, possibly spotting some local wildlife like herons and ospreys as they pass by Ross Island on the Willamette River.

Next Adventure really excels when it comes to kayak classes. Whether you're looking for flat water or white water experiences, Next Adventure's friendly and highly-experienced guides offer a fun, exciting way to learn. Classes include basic maneuvering of the kayak all the way up to advanced techniques on rougher waters, with waterfall workshops and combat rolling classes available for advanced kayakers.

Another unique advantage of choosing Next Adventure is the option to customize your experience. The friendly folks at Next Adventure are always eager to please their customers, often going above and beyond the call of duty to make sure everyone is happy, and they're more than willing to change up their tour programs. They'll offer private tours, extend the length of a route, add in additional stops or snacks along the way, and consider any other customization you'd like to recommend. In short, you get to create your own Portland kayaking adventure.

Portland Kayak Company

The Portland Kayak Company also offers tours, lessons, and rentals. The tours mostly focus on Ross Island, giving visitors a chance to get as close as possible to one of the inner city's most iconic natural landmarks, replete with beautiful wildlife. These tours are available in both daytime hours and during the sunset, providing two unique experiences.

There's also the 'Moonlight Paddle' option, allowing Portland, OR residents and visitors to soak in the city's lights by night, with only the stars and the moon for company. The moonlight tour is particularly popular and provides a really unique way to enjoy Portland from a kayak. Portland is a beautiful city that can be wonderful to walk or cycle around, but enjoying Portland on a kayak is something truly special.

When it comes to classes, Portland Kayak Company offers a whole host of different programs to suit all ages and skill levels. The Kayaking for Kids options, for example, allow youngsters aged 9-12 to take to the waters and gain confidence in their kayaking abilities, learning vital skills that will help them become more accomplished kayakers in the future.

The Women on the Water option is just for ladies, while Essential Kayaking classes go over all of the key skills and paddling techniques you need to get started. Private classes can also be booked and the Rescues Clinic helps kayakers gain confidence in their abilities, teaching them valuable skills to save themselves or kayaking partners in case of a capsize. All of these lessons and kayaking tours provide some super ways to enjoy the great city of Portland, OR from a brand new perspective.