Kayaking in Denmark

Posted on 2 November 2011

Kayaking is a very popular water sports in Denmark for after all the country is completely surrounded by water. The east coast of Denmark offers more approachable and softer water while the west coast is more imposing and can sometimes be coarse and rough. Denmark’s interior has numerous creeks and fjords too for those who prefer to kayak in waterways and not into the sea.

The best locations to kayak are found in fjords at the eastern coast of Jutland. The islands of Rømø and Fanø of western Jutland also offers great kayaking adventure. Other localities such as the South Funen Island, Limfjorden inlet, the Smålandshavet archipelago, Øresund and Roskilde Fjord and along Copenhagen’s harbour afford excellent opportunity for kayaking. Gudenåen and Susåen areas account for 70% of kayaking activities.

Denmark is truly endowed with the beauty of nature as found in its waterways and seas. It has more than 40 navigable rivers, canals and lakes for kayaking where you can experience an exhilarating experience as you paddle your way in its waterways. More often than not, the areas open for kayaking and canoeing are preserved areas where it is possible to watch at close range Denmark’s wildlife. Kayaking opportunities into the fjords are possible as long as you or your guide is familiar with the current and wind conditions along the shore.

Should you choose kayaking in the open seas around Denmark, there is nothing to worry about big ships et al since it is the “law” of the sea that big water craft s give way to kayaks and canoes. There are day-trip canoe and kayak charters all over Denmark but if you prefer to go on a kayaking package tour there are plenty of exclusive packages available for every type and shape of “kayaker”. If you are touring Denmark in a campervan, it is best to hook-up in a motorhome park that has access to a body of water for ease.

The Fyn Archipelago offers excellent sea kayaking tours. The Round Thurø is a short (15 km) day trip that will take you to see the town and countryside. This is a fairly easy ride unless a strong wind from the east decides to blow.

For a longer trip of 2 days, the Helnæs Bay has a 35 km run. The water here is calm and tranquil as the bay is sheltered from the wind in all directions. This trip is highly recommended for newcomers in kayaking.

For experienced kayakers a 5-6 day kayak tour of the major islands in the South Fyn Archipelago is a great idea. In this trip you will come in close contact with the island communities. You will also be expected to show consideration to the protected areas en route. Canoeing and kayaking are regulated activities in Denmark.

There are seven general rules that you should be observed when transversing the waterways of Denmark. The first one is that you should always assume that you are generally not permitted to go ashore.
use only waterways that are at least at least 0.50m deep and 1.5m wide
Always travel with the current 

  • Do not navigate up narrow streams and tributaries 
  • Never navigate before 8am and after 6pm. 
  • Never navigate near or into reed beds 
  • Do not run the prow into riverbanks 

Keep these rules in mind to enjoy a glitch-free kayaking in Denmark.

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