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Taking a kayak out for a couple of hours is a great way to soak up that sunshine, burn a few calories, hang with friends and take in some pretty DMV views. (Image: Courtesy Julia Keane)


Hit the water in a kayak during these final dog-days of summer

Summer's end is on the horizon, even though the recent temperatures (and insufferable humidity) make us think differently. If you didn't get the chance to do as many summer activities as you would have liked, don't worry. D.C. usually stays pretty warm until October, which means there is still plenty of time for you to grab a pal and hang onto summer by going kayaking!

Taking a kayak out for a couple of hours is a great way to soak up that sunshine, burn a few calories, hang with friends and take in some pretty DMV views. Here is where you can rent kayaks (and other boats) nearby:

Boating in DC

This company has multiple boathouses in D.C. where you can rent kayaks. Rental prices: Single Kayak $16/hour; Double Kayak $22/hour; All Day 4x hourly rate.

  • Ballpark Boathouse (Potomac Ave SE and First Street SE) This boathouse is located right on the Anacostia River near Nationals Park. You can see some pretty cool D.C. landmarks from the water, or hear the crowd at the stadium. After Labor Day, the boathouse will be open 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on weekends only.
  • Fletcher's Boathouse (4940 Canal Rd NW) Enjoy your day by kayaking on the Potomac River. Before Labor Day, this boathouse will be open 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. After Labor Day, it will be open 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Key Bridge Boathouse (3500 Water Street NW) This location is perfect for a view of the Georgetown Waterfront, Roosevelt Island or even up river to the C&O Canal. After Labor Day, the Key Bridge Boathouse will be open weekends 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and weekdays 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • National Harbor (165 Waterfront Street, Oxen Hill, MD) Paddle on the Potomac River with views of the Capitol Wheel in the nearby distance. After Labor Day, you can rent boats Wednesday-Friday 12 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. and weekends 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
  • Thompson's Boat Center (2900 Virginia Ave NW) This is a pretty big boathouse located on the Potomac River that offer earlier hours, if you want to have some peace and quiet on the water as the sun rises in the District. Thompson's Boat Center is open after Labor Day every day from 6 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
  • Washington Sailing Marina (1 Marina Drive, Alexandria, VA) Live in NoVa? This is the boathouse for you. It's open for rentals 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Thursday and 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday-Sunday.
  • Wharf Boathouse (700 Water Street Southwest) With all that there is to do at The Wharf, of course there is kayaking. After Labor Day, rental hours are 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekends.

Capital SUP

Although named for their stand-up paddle boards, this company also offers kayak rentals out of their boathouses in both D.C. and Annapolis. Weekday Prices: Single Kayak 1-Hour $15, 2-Hour $30; Double Kayak 1-Hour $20, 2-Hour $35 Weekend Prices: Single Kayak 1-Hour $20, 2-Hour $35; Double Kayak 1-Hour $25, 2-Hour $40 *Ladies Night: $15/hour Fridays 4 p.m. to close.

  • Washington D.C. (1492 4th Street, SE) Hours: Saturday-Sunday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Annapolis (808 Boucher Ave, Annapolis, MD) Hours: Thursday-Friday 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday-Sunday 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Penguin Paddling

There are two locations in Virginia for this kayaking tour and rental business. Both offer two-hour kayaking tours and hourly rentals. Rental prices: Single Kayaks $16/Hour, $43/Day, $85/Friday-Monday, $125/7 Days; Double Kayaks: $21/Hour, $53/Day, $110/Weekend, $150/7 Day

  • Potomac Boat Rentals at Hamptons Landing Marina (16205 Neabsco Road, Woodbridge) This boathouse is located about 30-45 minutes from D.C. You'll be kayaking on the Neabsco Creek with beautiful nature for you to gaze at. It's open Tuesday-Sunday 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Occoquan (201 Mill Street, Occoquan, Virginia) Occoquan is a quaint old town about 45 minutes from D.C., and the boathouse is nestled on the river. Take a kayak out to paddle and float by the remnants of the old town and enjoy beautiful Northern Virginia wildlife. Fall boathouse hours: Friday 12 p.m. to 5 p.m., weekends 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Kayak Annapolis (900 Truxtun Park Rd, Annapolis, MD)

Want to spend the afternoon in Maryland's capital? Rent a kayak or go on a kayaking tour while you're there. The tour is two hours long and you'll learn a lot as you paddle past the United States Naval Academy. Tours are available on the weekends in September. Kayak Annapolis is open Monday-Sunday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Rental price: $20

River & Trail Outfitters (604 Valley Rd, Knoxville, MD)

Located one hour from D.C., you can take lessons, rent kayaks or even go on a "Paddle & Pour Tour" -- aka drink beer after kayaking! Rental prices: Single Rec Kayak Half Day $47/boat, Full Day $56/boat; Double Rec Kayak Half Day $65/boat, Full Day $70/boat