One of the local's favorite attractions, kayaking the Augusta canal is easy, fun, and family friendly.

Out of all the adventures in Augusta, Kayaking the Augusta Canal might be my favorite. Hosted by the Savannah River Rapids Park, single kayaks, tandem, and paddleboards are available for rent ($20-$40) from the Savannah Rapids Kayak Rental Center located on the Savannah River Rapids Trail. The launch site is located at the beginning of the canal, near the headgates and ends a couples miles down in Lake Olmstead, a lake that branches off from the canal. If you rent one of their kayaks, they will pick both you and your kayak up and bring you back to the start point for only $5 dollars! If you bring your own kayak, they will still pick you up, but for a fee of $10. The whole trip takes anywhere from 1.5-2hrs. Because the current carries you downstream and you are being picked up at the end of the trip, you can relax and enjoy the scenery, or hop out and swim at any point along the way.

Local tip: if you aren’t going alone, drop one car off at lake Olmstead so you don’t have to wait for the shuttle OR drive the kayaks back yourself and skip the $5 fee! 

Pack List

  • Water bottle
  • Snacks
  • Sunscreen
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Activities Stand Up Paddle, Canoeing, Photography, Kayaking, Swimming
Skill Level Beginner
Season Year Round
Features
Bathrooms
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
River
Romantic
Scenic
Waterfall
Swimming Hole

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Overall rating: 

Good Variety

By far the most popular way to kayak here is to rent a boat at Savannah Rapids. Pushing off there, you float down the canal to where the shuttle picks you and you craft up for the drive back. An easy relaxing day especially enjoyable with a group of friends of mixed (or zero) paddling skills. For me, though, a much more rewarding experience is to start at Lake Olmstead, paddle its length, then paddle upstream in the canal until you reach Savannah Rapids. Enjoy a break and/or a picnic lunch there before setting off for the easy float back to Olmstead. A good workout that will certainly be met by a chorus of "You're going the wrong way!" as you head up the canal.


Please respect the places you find on The Outbound Collective.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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