Why do we love paddleboarding so much?
Well, beyond the fact it’s a water sport for all, it’s easy to get into and is super relaxing, the really great thing about stand-up paddleboard (SUP) is you can do it just about anywhere there’s water. When you consider all the amazing places there are across the US to do a spot of SUP, that leaves the average paddleboarder rather spoilt for choice.
It’s a nice headache to have, no doubt, but if you are looking for the best areas in the US to go paddle, where do you even begin? We’ve picked out four of our favourite domestic spots that scale breath-taking locations, diverse conditions and memory making experiences for you to explore.
Glacier Bay and Bear Glacier Lagoon, Alaska
Wait, that doesn’t sound particularly warm, does it? Far from it, as we start our list with Glacier Bay and Bear Glacier Lagoon in Alaska, which take the ‘chilled’ vibe of SUP to much more literal levels.
It’s very much worth ditching your beach gear for a wetsuit, though, as a trip to Glacier Bay will see you paddle alongside stunning glaciers and giant icebergs. Only accessible via boat or helicopter, it’s not a spot for first time paddlers, but is one that will live long in the memory for experienced stand-up vets who will share the same waters as humpback whales, harbour seals and pass by wild bears on their journey through this icy wonderland.
Lake Powell, Arizona and Utah
Warming things up, Lake Powell offers incredible desert scenery across a sprawling 1.25-million-acre water and back country landscape. Paddle along the waters of the Colorado River in Glen Canyon National Park and you’ll be sailing through rock formations finely crafted over millions of years. “Fortunately, it is close to the Four Corners and popular hubs like ABQ and Durango, Colorado.
As one of the top and most remote destinations in the world for SUP hobbyists, Lake Powell is the perfect place to go and remind yourself just how big (and beautiful) the world around you is.
Lake Tahoe, California
Perhaps better known for its ski resorts and casinos, Lake Tahoe is seeing more and more paddleboards pop up on its cold and refreshing waters in the summer months, while springtime and fall visitors can head to the hot springs for a warmer dip. A must for SUP enthusiasts visiting North CA, Lake Tahoe is so big that’ll you’ll need plenty of planning and multiple visits to see it in all its glory.
If it ain’t broke…
One of the original surf meccas and the birthplace of SUP, Hawaii welcomes masses of paddleboarders home each year to a number of must-visit SUP spots, including Kealakekua Bay in Kona, Kapalua Bay in Maui and Ala Moana, Waikiki, Lanikai Beach and Sunset Beach – all in Oahu.
Each spot worthy of individual recognition in a list like this, Hawaii’s volume of paradise-level SUP locations spans an array of stunning reefs, tropical, calm waters and general good vibes that make it a must visit location for paddleboarders of any age or experience.
Our list of US SUP locations only scratches the surface of the great places our country has to offer when it comes to memory-making, breath-taking paddle waters. There’s no doubt you’re spoilt for choice on home soil, the big question is where will your US SUP adventure begin?