Below you will find a list of some of our more common questions, but if you require any further information please get in touch with us.
1. What do I need to bring?See Answer
What do I need to bring? You will need a towel and a complete change of clothes including footwear for all sessions, although 99% of our clients stay dry!
If you are looking to do our Beginners' Course; rescues, safe exit and re-entry techniques are on the syllabus, so at least one week of the four will involve submersion.
2. Can I rent a kayak?See Answer
The Tidal Thames is a busy and very tidal section of water, and as such we are not insured to rent kayaks out without a coach on the water, neither are any other clubs or facilities on this section of the river. If you would like to get on the water, we can usually find a time which suits and take you out for a spin either as an individual or a party, this way you have a coach on hand to keep you safe and offer any tips or advice you might require.
3. How do I get there? See Answer
Kayaking London operates from the Cremorne Riverside Centre which is inside Cremorne Gardens on Lots Road, just off Chelsea embankment.
The easiest way to get to Cremorne Riverside, is by train to Imperial Wharf Overground, or by bus; any of the buses which cross Battersea Bridge, or visit the Worlds End Kings Road stop to bring you to within a five minute walk. Sloane Square or Fulham Broadway tube stations are both about a 20 minute walk.
You can secure your bike to the railings on our private pier. Nearby street parking is free on Sundays, however we would not recommend driving, as the bridges and surrounding roads are often heavily congested.
4. Will I get wet?See Answer
We use a variety of highly stable boats which prevent accidental capsizes for our trips and tours, so getting wet is rare! Regular users who are confident in a stable boat, are welcome to use our sea kayaks which can feel more lively. If it rains, or if you push each other over, or if you are on a course that involves safety and rescue techniques, then yes, you will get wet.
5. Will I need to rent equipment, or is it provided?See Answer
All of our high quality specialist equipment, including splash proof outer clothing, buoyancy aids, paddles and boats are available for your comfort and safety during your session at no extra cost.
6. Do I have to go in a double kayak?See Answer
We use double kayaks for many of our trips. This is because they are highly stable, so you can admire the sights without falling in, and the effort is shared, so even long trips are not too strenuous! If you have not paddled with us before, or if we are heading towards central London on a trip, we will ask you to go in a double kayak for your own safety and comfort.
7. How many people will be on my session?See Answer
At Kayaking London you will always be joined on the water by at least one of our highly experienced team of coaches.
Most of our group trips and events are for up to 16 people, and with a group of that size there would usually be three or four coaches on hand to keep you safe. We can take larger groups out on the water if necessary, and we do run One to One sessions if you feel you would like more support.
8. Do I need experience?See Answer
You do not need any prior experience to join us for any of our trips or tours as we time these with assisting tides, and the boats we use are very stable.
9. Is the water dirty?See Answer
The River Thames is the cleanest inner city river in Europe, and is now home to over a hundred species of fish. The herons and cormorants you will see on your visit are all a good sign that the water quality is improving, however, there is still work to be done.
During periods of very heavy rainfall, waste water which has not been fully treated is sometimes released into the Thames as a last resort. We are notified immediately of these releases, and cancel sessions if the water quality poses a hazard.
Many people use the Thames regularly for recreation, and a mild Thames Tummy is usually the only consequence of spending too long underwater!
10. Can I bring a young person with me? See Answer
We are passionate about getting people of all ages and abilities into kayaking, and the Cremorne Riverside Centre where we are based has a busy youth programme for those under 18. However, with the exception of Families Afloat, our Kayaking London group sessions and tours are only for adults, as we only have one set of changing rooms on site.
Cremorne Riverside has a variety of sessions on offer for youth groups and schools, please get in touch if you would like more details.