Apr 5, 2023 - Things to Do

Kayaking on the San Antonio River Walk returns

Kayakers paddle the Museum Reach of the San Antonio River.

Museum Reach paddling is back for the spring. Photo: Courtesy of Mission Kayak

Kayaking on the River Walk has returned.

Why it matters: Kayaking on the San Antonio River gained traction with locals during the pandemic as people searched for socially distanced things to do, but the activity also has become a popular attraction for visitors.

The big picture: David Gonzalez, vice president of media and communications for Visit San Antonio, tells Axios kayaking joins a list of nature-focused activities that provide diversified itineraries for travelers.

  • The Robert L.B. Tobin Land Bridge at Hardberger Park, which opened in December 2020, and the recently completed 100-mile greenway trail system are also on the list.
  • "There's so much to do in the outdoors here. It's something (visitors) didn't associate with San Antonio before," he said.

Zoom out: Kayaking also was recently approved at Woodlawn and Elmendorf lakes.

Flashback: In fall 2020, the business district — the stretch of water that typically comes to mind in River Walk conversations — was included in the kayaking routes. It was the first time in 30 years that that section was open for paddling.

  • Go Rio Cruises now partners with Mission Kayak to host special dates to give kayakers the rare chance to paddle there.

What's happening: Self-guided kayaking tours of the Museum Reach are being offered by Mission Kayak.

How it works: Reservations for kayak rentals can be booked online through Mission Kayak. The 2-mile trip starts at the corner of Camden and Newell streets and last up to two hours.

  • Single kayaks are $35 for one hour and $60 for two hours. Tandem kayaks are $70 for one hour and $160 for two hours.
  • Standup paddleboards are $35 for one hour and $60 for two hours.

What they're saying: Sarah Neal, owner of Mission Kayak, says the Museum Reach tour is a picturesque paddling experience.

  • "It's very popular. We promote it as the Venice of San Antonio. It's extremely beautiful."

What we're watching: Mission Kayak and Go Rio Cruises will offer four summer dates for kayaking in the business district. Those interested in booking should keep an eye out on Mission Kayak's social media pages and website as Neal says the reservations are usually full within 20 minutes.


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