Since you stand up on the board, you get a full-body workout AND you get a much better view of your surroundings than if you were sitting in a kayak or canoe. There are lots of places near Vancouver to try it out, plus some unusual ways to experience this fun new sport.
For decades, North Vancouver’s Deep Cove has been one of the most popular places to go kayaking. So it’s no surprise that it’s also a great place to go paddleboarding. The calm waters of the cove are great for beginners. You can rent a board at Deep Cove Canoe and Kayak. They have wide and stable beginners boards, plus more advanced racing boards. You can learn better technique by signing up for one of their lessons. And if you want to paddleboard with your friends, rent their Starship SUP. It holds four people!
Paddle through the heart of downtown Vancouver. Rent a board at Ecomarine Paddlesports or Vancouver Water Adventures at Granville Island, then SUP on False Creek. If it’s your first time, both companies offer lessons. During the day, Ecomarine offers guided tours to learn about local history. After dark, take part in Vancouver Water Adventure’s Light the Night Tour. You’ll paddle out in a flotilla of kayaks and SUPs, decked out in colourful lights.
Although it’s just a short ferry ride from Vancouver, Bowen Island feels worlds away. Head over to Bowen Island Sea Kayaking once you arrive – they’re right next to the ferry dock. They rent stand-up paddleboards and also offer lessons if you need help mastering the sport. And if you want to try something really different, sign up for their SUP Yoga classes. That’s right: you do yoga on your paddleboard. It’s definitely a good core workout! (And you’re almost guaranteed to get wet!)
Rent a paddleboard at English Bay to enjoy views of Stanley Park, Vanier Park, and Burrard Inlet. Vancouver Water Adventures has a kiosk on-site in the summer months, so you can rent a board, then head right into the waves.
Kitsilano Beach (known as “Kits Beach” to locals) is a popular summer spot for swimming, sunbathing and beach volleyball. If you want to cool off, rent a SUP and explore the shoreline. If you’re a beginner, watch carefully for boat traffic. Vancouver Water Adventures rents paddleboards at the north end of the beach.
Head to Jericho Beach on Vancouver’s west side for a chill SUP experience. Head west along the shoreline to Spanish Banks and the forested shores of Pacific Spirit Park for some nature time. Watch for eagles overhead! You can rent a paddleboard from Ecomarine Paddlesports at Jericho Beach.