Westminster Boating Base
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Kayak & Canoe - adult

Sessions and courses from beginner to advanced in canoeing and kayaking. Westminster Boating Base issues certificates for the British Canoeing Paddle Awards - Paddle Discover, Paddle Explore and personal performance awards.

Westminster Boating Base is a British Canoeing (BC) Quality Mark Approved Centre.

Where can kayaking and canoeing take you? See progression pathways


Age 10-23yrs?

See Youth Programme

Over 18's are also welcome to join our regular adult sessions and courses at the advertised price.


On this page

Courses & taster sessions for beginners & intermediates

Our weekly schedule for proficient (BC 1 Star / Discover +) paddlers


Go Paddling "taster" sessions

Taster sessions suitable for adults and children (age 10yrs+) who want to give kayaking/canoeing a try. Suitable for families. Emphasis on fun! These must be booked in advance.

2021 dates: See activities schedule on this page


Adult Courses

Our courses are run to the standards of British Canoeing - the National Governing Body for paddlesport in the UK.


British Canoeing Paddle Discover (novice)

An exciting new award from British Canoeing, the Paddle Discover Award teaches practical skills and knowledge, creating a foundation for a fun and safe time on the water.

Under the guidance of our instructors you will learn how to choose and use equipment effectively, develop practical skills including self-rescue and gain an understanding of the environment and other factors which will affect your paddling.

At the end of this course you will be competent at manoevering your craft having gained the confidence to take to the water during our recreational sessions or further your personal development with the Paddle Explore award.

Please note, some course dates have the choice of either kayak and canoe. Not sure what the difference is? Click here

2021 dates: See activities schedule on this page


British Canoeing Paddle Explore (improver)

 An exciting new award from British Canoeing, the Paddle Explore award builds upon the foundation skills and techniques learned in the Paddle Discover award.

The award is taught at a maximium ratio of 1:6, a small enough group to focus upon the individual and tailor the skills to personal development of the sport. At the end of this course you will be able to skillfully manoeuvre your craft and have a broad understanding of how to safely take your kayaking further whether that be with our recreational sessions.

Please note, some course dates have the choice of either kayak and canoe. Not sure what the difference is? Click here!

2021 dates: See activities schedule on this page


Foundation Safety & Rescue Training (FSRT)

This course aims to give the participant key safety and rescue skills to be able to operate safely and be able to deal with common emergencies. It is a prerequisite of the BC Paddlesport Instructor but is useful for any paddler providing a broader knowledge base, not to mention it is incredibly fun!

2020 dates: See activities schedule on this page


Adult Sessions



Beginners & intermediates: Tuition

These sessions will provide you with an introduction to kayaking & canoeing and for those with limited experience will advance your skills and familiarise you with the river. You can then attend the "proficient paddler" sessions.

How to attend


Proficient Paddlers: Sessions & river trips

(all year round, subject to winter clothing regulations from Nov-March)

These sessions are geared up for those that have already mastered the basic skills. Sundays are longer journeys (typically 3 to 5 miles) and you will need to be competent to paddle this distance. Scenic trips through the heart of the city can be both exciting and challenging at times!

To come along to these sessions you will need to have done one of the following:


How to attend

  1. Create a log-in on this website which will provide us with your contact details. 
  2. Print and sign this consent form to bring with you on the day.
  3. There is no booking required for the sessions although to ensure a space you can book the Wednesday sessions online. Just turn up at the advertised start time of the session (the sessions operate on a first-come-first-served basis. CASH ONLY on the door.
  4. From within the MY ACCOUNT section, you can purchase adult season tickets or just 'pay-as-you-go'.

Please note that if you are late, you may be turned away. Time and tide wait for no one!


You will need to bring:

NOTE: Nobody will be allowed on the water without the above.



Currently in summer season

  • Season starts: 01st May 2021
  • Season ends: 31st March 2022

Kayak & Canoe - adult activities schedule

January 2022

A Royal Yachting Association (RYA) & British Canoeing (BC) approved training centre, regulated by the Adventure Activities Licensing Service (AALS).

Trust marks