Where to Go Kayaking in North Georgia


Known for its breathtaking views and pristine bodies of water, there are no better spots to kayak than in Northern Georgia. Regardless of your experience, there are a variety of lakes and rivers to choose from. With a great mix of Class I to Class VI trips, North Georgia has routes that will entice the explorer within you.

With so many beautiful lakes and rivers in this area, it can be difficult to figure out which is best for you. Trust a local and check out the ten best places to go kayaking in North Georgia below!

1. Lake Rabun

kayaking on lake rabun

For those looking for a calm, peaceful day on the water, Lake Rabun is the perfect spot for you. With 25 miles of shoreline and endless views, you will truly feel one with nature here. This secluded lake has calm waters, which attracts adventurers of all ages and skill levels. So if you’re a parent and looking for a great family outing, you should definitely consider this gem!

After a fun day on the water with your friends or family members, consider extending your trip and staying at the Historic Lake Rabun Hotel & Restaurant! This nature-inspired boutique hotel is right across the street from the lake, and is a treat for all nature lovers. Complete with Farm to Table food and a relaxing spa, there is no better way to end your day and relax those sore arms.

2. Lake Burton

kayaking on lake burton

Located in Rabun County, not far from Lake Rabun, rests a watersport haven. Lake Burton is renowned for its many water activities, including, but not limited to, kayaking! With thirteen miles of shoreline, you’ll never run out of fun things to do.

3. Tallulah Falls National Park

kayaking at tallulah falls national parkJust a ten-minute drive from Lake Rabun Hotel is the Tallulah Falls National Park. Known as one of the seven natural wonders of Georgia, Tallulah Falls Lake and Gorge offer incredible scenery alive with color. If you decide to go kayaking at this spot, be sure to check out some of the other fun things to do in Tallulah Falls!

4. Lake Lanier

kayaking on lake lanierLake Lanier is the largest lake in Georgia, with 692 miles of shoreline. That means that this lake has great spots for both beginners and seasoned professionals. Do you want a peaceful paddling experience or a more challenging adventure? Lake Lanier has it all!

5. Chattahoochee River

kayaking on chattahoochee riverChattahoochee River is located in the heart of Atlanta. The calm, tranquil waters are perfect for a relaxing, kayaking adventure. Moreover, the river is known for its diverse and abundant plant life. You may even spot a heron as you casually float!

6. Toccoa River

kayaking on toccoa river

Toccoa River is located in the Blue Ridge Mountains. When you book your kayaking trip, you can enjoy amazing mountain views, great fishing opportunities, and tranquil solitude. With floral, mountain, and pasture views along the way, Toccoa River is a great kayaking spot for those who want to relax.

7. Etowah and Chestatee Rivers

kayaking on etowah and chestasee river

The town of Dahlonega offers visitors Class I and Class II rapids for kayaking and canoeing. However, because water conditions often change, it’s recommended you travel with a guide or in a group. For this reason, the Etowah and Chestatee Rivers are best suited for experienced kayakers, and those who are looking for a more exciting excursion.

8. Lake Allatoona

Kayaking on Lake Allatoona

Lake Allatoona is equipped with eight full-service marinas where visitors can rent kayaks, making it convenient for visitors. This unique destination has some of the cleanest lake waters in the state, as local towns use it for drinking water.

9. Chattooga River

Kayaking on Chattooga River

Chattooga River is known as a premier whitewater river, complete with thundering falls, twisting rocky channels, and narrow, cliff-enclosed deep pools. Additionally, the river offers many spots for kayaking. While areas range in difficulty, some areas offer instruction for beginners as well as group excursions.

10. Cartecay and Ellijay Rivers

kayaking on ellijay river

The junction of the Cartecay and Ellijay Rivers form the perfect conditions for kayaking. For experienced kayakers, you may want to check out the whitewater areas of the Cartecay. However, the Ellijay “lazy river” is ideal for beginners.

Book Your Stay at a Charming Kayaking Destination in North Georgia!

By booking your stay with Lake Rabun Hotel & Restaurant, you will be central to all the great kayaking spots in Northern Georgia. If you ever want a change of scenery, our friendly concierges can also help you book a variety of other adventures like zip-lining, horseback riding, and more!

So what are you waiting for? Grab your gear and experience the best kayaking North Georgia has to offer.

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