Where to Stand-Up Paddleboard in Maryland
Paddleboarding is a fun way to frolic in Maryland's many waterways.
Stand-up paddleboarding, SUP for short, is becoming one of the fastest-growing water sports. Outfitters throughout Maryland offer rentals and instruction to those new to SUP, a mashup of surfing and canoeing. They also regularly host social gatherings—and even yoga classes—for paddleboarders to enjoy. When you’re ready to get on the water, there’s no shortage of places to go for an aquatic adventure.
Stunning views of the Potomac River await National Harbor paddlers in Prince George’s County. Go to Boating in D.C.’s boathouse to rent a paddleboard, kayak or pedal boat by the hour. No experience is needed as they provide a quick lesson before you head out. Rentals include a life jacket and paddle. Try it at night to see the Capital Wheel lighting up the sky.
Head to Potomac and Bethesda in Montgomery County for more options to paddle the Potomac River. At PaddleStroke SUP in Potomac, you can take SUP lessons, send your kids to CampSUP and buy gear onsite. When you’ve mastered the sport, an instructor can take you through whitewater rapids! That’s also the case at Potomac Paddlesports, which offers both basic and whitewater lessons, beginner trips and paddling gear. Go to Pumped Up SUP in Bethesda to buy high-performance SUP gear, including inflatable paddleboards.
Anne Arundel County is a beautiful place to be, especially for paddleboarders. Annapolis Canoe and Kayak sells and rents SUPs and the equipment you’ll need to spend the day on the water in Spa Creek and Annapolis Harbor. After a lesson with Capital SUP in Annapolis, sign up for a SUP yoga or fitness class—you’ll get a great workout (without a gym) in Back Creek. Twisted Creek Paddlesports offers lessons and guided tours at two Annapolis locations, Quiet Waters Park and Jonas Green Park. Or, spend an hour with a Stand Up Paddle Annapolis instructor, then show off your new skills on the Severn River in Crownsville. If you’re experienced, you can hit the water right away on a rental board.
For a great day on the Gunpowder River in Baltimore County, visit Ultimate Watersports, Maryland’s oldest and largest outfitter for SUP, kayak, sailing and windsurfing. Visit the Miami Beach Park location in Middle River for lessons, rentals, tours, adventure travel, summer camps and beach parties.
Worcester County is the place to paddle and swim in fresh and salt water—from the Atlantic Ocean, to the Chincoteague Bay and Pocomoke River. Two great places in Ocean City to rent paddleboards and take lessons are OC SUP and Fitness for its lessons, fitness classes and group paddles and 48th Street Water Sports for free SUP lessons with every rental at its fabulous beachside location. You’ll be amazed watching wildlife, including those famous wild horses at the Assateague Island National Seashore, after renting your SUP for a tour with Assateague Outfitters in Berlin; you’ll feel especially good knowing 50 percent of their profits benefit the Maryland Coastal Bays Program. Paddle the scenic Pocomoke River and Nassawango Creek on your own or with a guide from Pocomoke River Canoe and Kayak Company in Snow Hill.
With two Dorchester County locations, one just minutes from Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge and the other at the Hyatt Chesapeake Bay Resort, Blackwater Paddle and Pedal Adventures offers year-round SUP adventures. Shore Pedal and Paddle in St. Michaels in Talbot County rents SUPs in addition to offering private lessons and guided tours; a variety of models are available for paddlers of all abilities.