Crazy about Kayaking

by May 2, 2024South Brunswick, Sports

Exploring the natural beauty of the Carolina coast by kayak offers a serene aquatic adventure.

Kayaking along the Intracoastal Waterway is an amazing way to take in the beauty and learn about the history of the region. From Wilmington to Calabash, there are plentiful opportunities for getting out on the water to see aquatic life, a variety of native birds and lush plants and trees.

If you want to try exploring by kayak, you can find tours tailored to all levels, from seasoned explorers to those who are new to paddling. There are trips at sunrise or sunset or anytime in between. You can book your kayaking adventure with an expert guide or rent a kayak and explore on your own.

Cape Fear River Kayaking

Outfitters to Try
If you want to book a kayaking trip in southeastern North Carolina, here are a few outfitters that can help you explore. Whether you like to get out on the water and explore on your own or enjoy learning about the area and its history from a knowledgeable guide, kayaking gives you a unique perspective of the beauty to be found along the Carolina coast.

Kayaking Cape Fear Brunswick County NC

KAYAK CAROLINA
(910) 458-9171, kayakcarolina.com
Kayak Carolina invites you to explore the coast with them as they offer guided kayak tours in Wilmington, Wrightsville Beach, Kure Beach, Carolina Beach and surrounding areas. Tour destinations include Zeke’s Island, Shark’s Tooth Island and Masonboro Island, and while these require a bit of a drive from southern Brunswick County, their tours are worth it.

One of their most popular excursions is to Shark’s Tooth Island. The launching point for Kayak Carolina’s tour to Shark’s Tooth Island is River Road Park, which is just a few miles south of downtown Wilmington. Meet your guide near the water, grab your kayak and paddle a short distance to this man-made island to find fossils, shark’s teeth and shells. You may also encounter osprey nests and brown pelicans perched on nearby piers along the way. You will explore Keg Island and adjacent sandbars at low tide before concluding your adventure and returning to River Road Park. Single and double kayaks are available to rent. Tours are tailored for beginners and experienced paddlers.

Kayaking Sharks Tooth Island

SUMMERTIDE ADVENTURE TOURS
(910) 833-2418, summertidetours.com
Serving Ocean Isle Beach and Sunset Beach, Summertide Adventure Tours offers daytime and evening kayak tours, fishing charters and sunset cruises by boat. They invite you to paddle along with them to explore Bird Island, Bonaparte Creek, Tubbs Inlet and Blane Creek. Tours are conducted year-round depending on the weather.

Bird Island is an uninhabited nature preserve located on the west end of Sunset Beach. You can paddle from the mainland to the backside of Bird Island to explore oyster bed structures and possibly get a glimpse of a nesting bald eagle.

Continue the adventure by heading south into Little River, South Carolina. The tour includes a stop at the Little River Inlet, where kayakers are welcome to take a refreshing swim. Sea turtles and sea otters can often be spotted while traveling along Bonaparte Creek before returning to Sunset Beach.

MR. BEACH RENTALS
(910) 250-9960, mrbeachrentals.com
If you want to explore on your own, Mr. Beach Rentals takes pride in being North Carolina’s premiere beach equipment rental service. Kayaks can be rented with delivery offered for free.

Launching your kayak just after sunrise from the west end of Oak Island is a great way to catch dolphins swimming lazily through the channel. As the tide changes, look for great blue herons eating their breakfast at the water’s edge. Be sure to stop at Sheep Island to look for fiddler crabs and whelks in the sand.

Kayak rentals are returned to the launching point or a designated destination in the area. Rentals can be paid for in advance, and Mr. Beach Rentals provides service to Southport, Oak Island, Holden Beach, Ocean Isle and Sunset Beach.

Kayaking Cape Fear River

THE ADVENTURE KAYAK COMPANY
(910) 454-0607, adventurekayakcompany.net
Based out of beautiful Southport, The Adventure Kayak Company was recently voted as a winner of the Golden Pineapple Award for 2023. These awards are given by the Southport-Oak Island Area Chamber of Commerce to businesses that have been nominated by their customers for providing exceptional customer service.

Kayak tours include adventures through picturesque saltmarsh creeks, including Town Creek and Rice Creek. View the brilliance of massive native red maple and tulip trees towering overhead as well as white ibis resting in the tall grass of the marsh.

Kayak tours of historic Southport are also available. Informative guides make the tours fun and educational by sharing information about the area and wildlife seen along the way. The Adventure Kayak Company encourages you to relax and enjoy getting out on the water.

SAFETY TIPS for Kayakers
-Never kayak alone
-Always wear a lifejacket
-Don’t drink and paddle
-Bring your phone (make sure it’s charged) in a waterproof container
-Check the weather conditions and forecast before you go
-Pick a suitable location for your experience and ability
-Dress for the weather and the water – you could get wet
-Always file a float plan – tell someone who’s not in your kayaking party what your plans are – where you’re going and when you plan to return