Paddlers beat everyone else when it comes to having a lot of gear, and leaving it everywhere. Boats, skirts, booties, paddles, towels, dry suits and snacks litter the ground at every put in and take out, and it’s usually wet. The super-specific needs of paddlers mean staying at a conventional hotel is often not a great option. Airbnb is a great way to stay in a cool home near the river or coast you want to paddle, have room for your things and maybe even stick within your paddling trip budget. We hunted for the coolest spots on Airbnb in some of North America’s finest paddling destinations so you don’t have to. Happy paddling!
Squamish, British Columbia
Price: $122 USD/night
This gorgeous two-bedroom home is an on island in Squamish, the recreational capital of Canada. You can kayak, canoe and SUP from the cabin’s private beach, or access the area’s many killer whitewater runs. Think the Cheakamus River, the Squamish River, the play wave on the Mamquam River and mellow class II to III on the Green River. The cabin is four kilometers from downtown Squamish, so you can mellow out in front of the lake at night or go for post-paddling dinner and beers.
Price: $152 USD/night
For big river running and world-famous playboating, the Ottawa River is king. The friendly rural communities in this region are home to gorgeous sunsets, rich paddling culture and excellent brews at the Whitewater Brewing Co. Bring your two favorite whitewater paddling buddies and book the three-bedroom Pioneer Point Guest House in Beachburg. It’s located on a private bay with a small beach on the Ottawa River, has a BBQ and a great deck for evening lounging. The coolest feature? The house is located just a short paddle from Garburator, the enormous surf wave home to the 2015 Freestyle World Championships.
Fayetteville, West Virginia
Price: $550 USD/night
Located adjacent to New River Gorge National Park with views of the famous bridge, this beautiful home is one mile from the town of Fayetteville. It’s also a short drive from the take-out of the New River Gorge run, a high volume and powerful river that ranges from class III-IV for normal flows. This warm and polished space sleeps five–or seven with use of an inflatable bed—and is best for couples, solo adventurers and families.
Weaverville, North Carolina
This guest cabin on a small-scale organic farm and homestead is the perfect place to unwind on a North Carolina paddling trip. Tucked in the trees and with light filtering in at every angle, this cabin sleeps two, has an outdoor sink and shower and sweeping views. Weaverville is just outside of Asheville and a short drive from the French Broad River, the Nantahala River and the Pigeon River.
Whitehorse, Yukon Territory
A short drive outside of Whitehorse, this off the grid cabin on Fish Lake has amazing views, a loft bedroom and a full kitchen. It is woodstove heated and has propane lights. The cabin sleeps four and can accommodate five for an extra cost. This is a great place to hang out for a few days of relaxing and planning before a classic canoe trip route on the Yukon River from Whitehorse to Dawson City. Feeling competitive? Sign up for the Yukon River Quest and stay at the cabin a few days before to relax and mentally prepare for the toughest canoe race on earth.
Cortes Island, British Columbia
Cortes Island is a remote and magical place located in between Vancouver Island and mainland British Columbia. It is a sea kayaker’s dream. Cortes Island alone is filled with interesting inlets, coves and 1,277-hectare Háthayim Marine Provincial Park, home to an old-growth forest and a saltwater lagoon. Cortes is also surrounded by other marine provincial parks and islands, making it a great base for multi-day kayak touring trips.
The PADMA yurt is a private, off-the-grid yurt with views of the mountains and ocean. The yurt sits on a moss bluff and is surrounded by douglas fir and western cedar trees. The 12-acre property is called Greenland and the owners describe the yurt as a combination of luxury, remoteness and camping.
Hood River, Oregon
If you want an unconventional place to stay while kayaking the endless whitewater in this region, this cozy Airstream trailer is for you. Located on two acres, the trailer has a refinished interior, a small propane stove for cooking, free wireless internet and a heated outdoor shower. Spread your maps on the grass outside and schedule runs on the Hood River, the Little White Salmon and the Klickitat.
Port Angeles, Washington
This rustic chalet surrounded by deep green forest is the perfect place to bring the family for a few days of laid back canoeing, kayaking and SUP on Lake Sutherland. Located in the Olympic Mountains, the chalet sleeps five, has a loft, a wood stove and world class hiking nearby. Turn off your phone and enjoy a real paddling getaway.
Garden Valley, Idaho
This large log cabin is on the South Fork of the Payette River and just a fifteen minute drive from Banks, Idaho, and the North Fork (where the North Fork Championship takes place). The region is home to some of the gnarliest whitewater in North America. The three-story cabin sleeps seven with a $15 per person charge for additional guests. You can put in and take out from the river right at the house. Swirly Canyon is the upstream run and the downstream run is the float through Garden Valley followed by the Staircase.