Top Ten Urban Kayaking Cities – Plus Fireworks Paddles

Kayaking during the Fourth of July celebration in Pittsburgh.  Photo courtesy of Cara Rufenacht, Venture Outdoors.

If you live in a waterfront city or are visiting one this weekend for Independence Day festivities, chances are you’ve seen at least one stranger navigating your metropolis in a kayak and wondered, Could that actually be . . . fun? “People ask me that all the time,” says Ted Choi, owner of San Francisco’s City Kayak. “They basically assume that kayaking in a natural setting is the best thing—but urban kayaking is amazingly beautiful.” And easy. Many U.S. cities have local paddling outfitters (we found three in Manhattan) that offer equipment rentals and tours, DIY or guided. It’s convenient, low cost, and yes, fun. You can even catch a fireworks 4th of July paddle in some cities. Text by Catherine Price, Laura Buckley, Annie Hay, Alyson Sheppard

San Francisco

Chicago

Washington, D.C.

Pittsburgh

Portland, Maine

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New York City

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