Marin Blog · Outdoor Adventures Collection

Paddling Marin

Posted in Best Marin Attractions on Wednesday, November 22, 2023 by MCVB Staff

Interested in trying the hot new sport of stand-up paddleboarding (SUP for short)? There's no better place to learn and rent boards than 101 Surf Sports in San Rafael. The expansive paddlesports shop and rental center are conveniently located just off Highway 101 on a narrow, mile-long canal leading to San Rafael Bay, a quiet inlet of the greater San Francisco Bay.


SUPing is easy to learn and requires just a few minutes of practice before you're standing steady on a long and broad paddleboard, which looks like a surfboard on steroids. The shop offers lessons and rentals from their shopside dock next to their parking lot. Rates run about $40 for an hour with 30 minutes of free paddle time after the class and you'll be on the water in minutes.  For something really different on the water, the shop offers SUP yoga classes, which "blend all the positives of a good workout for mind and body by introducing an extra element of balance to the overall (yoga experience)." Classes are $40 for 75 minutes of instruction and are offered in Sausalito at Seatrek.


Nature lovers who like kayaking should head to Blue Waters Kayaking, based in the small town of Inverness on Tomales Bay. In winter, Fridays through Mondays (and on weekends in nearby Marshall), Blue Waters offers wonderful outdoor escapes on the bay, along the ocean inlet in the heart of West Marin. Blue Waters' full-day tour takes you to where Tomales Bay opens up to the Pacific Ocean, an area with an abundance of wildlife, such as seals and sea lions. You stop on a remote beach to enjoy lunch and other activities—tide pooling, photography, and hiking. The center also leads morning paddle tours led by naturalist guides as well as a full moon,  sunset, and unusual "bioluminescence" tours. On these tranquil evening paddles, you may find yourself in the company of seals, night herons, osprey, pelicans, jellyfish, bat rays, and kingfishers, an "only in Marin" experience you'll never forget.

More information on featured attractions:

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Blue Waters Kayaking

Blue Waters Kayaking is your outdoor activity resource for the West Marin area. We offer kayaking tours, hiking tours, as wells as specialized camping, birding and oyster tours. 

Visit...[Learn More]

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Tomales Bay State Park

The 2,000-acre day-use park features four gently sloping, surf-free beaches, protected from winds by Inverness Ridge, the backbone of the Point Reyes Peninsula. The park has hiking trails...[Learn More]

Tags: kayaking