Sea kayaking around Europe, Asia

May 5, 2004
Outside Magazine
Week of June 19-25, 1997
Adventurous trips around Scandinavia
Beginner climbs on Mount Washington
Whitewater rafting in Tennessee
Sea kayaking around Europe, Asia
Mountain-bike touring in Thailand

Sea kayaking around Europe, Asia
Question: My parents are celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary. They're both in their 50s and are beginner/intermediate sea kayakers. Could you suggest some exotic places where they could go on a guided expedition? Preferably somewhere mild (mom doesn't like the heat).

Tom Rozan
New Haven, CT
[email protected]

Adventure Adviser: Where there's water, there's kayaking. But to help you narrow down the options, there are a few really good trips you should look into. Depending on the time of year, your parents could find themselves in Vietnam, Crete, Alaska, Patagonia, or even more exotic locales. The following is a brief sketch of a few choice trips, as well as the names of companies that offer them:

Ha Long Bay, Vietnam: A 10- to 15-day trip in the World Heritage Site Ha Long Bay, where there are thousands of interconnected limestone caves to explore. This trip's rating is easy and is offered April through June and October through November. Price is approximately $2,500. Call Mountain Travel Sobek (800-227-2384), Bolder Adventures (800-642-2742), or Absolute Asia (800-736-8187).

Tierra del Fuego, Patagonia, Chile: An 11- to 16-day paddle among the fjords and calving glaciers of the southernmost tip of Chile. Peaks soar to 8,000 feet and leopard seals, penguins, and cormorants inhabit the inlets. The trip's rating is moderate and is offered November through February. Price is approximately $2,500. Call Whitney & Smith Legendary Expeditions Inc. (403-678-3052).

Prince William Sound, Alaska: This trip could change drastically in the next year or so because a proposed road to the Sound will attract tourists in droves. So, if your parents have any desire to see pristine Alaska, they may want to take this trip. It is a six- to 10-day exploration of the sheltered bays and fjords of the sound. It will include ample wildlife viewing and a few hikes to alpine lakes and glaciers. The trip is offered June through August and is moderately difficult. Price is also about $2,500. Call Sierra Club Outings (415-923-5522) or North Star (800-258-8434).

Crete's South Shore, Greece: A seven-day village-to-village paddle through the aquamarine, glassy seas off Crete. Short breaks are available for snorkeling, beach combing, hiking, and drinking wine in tavernas. The trip is offered in April and October and is rated easy. Actually, this is a great trip for beginner kayakers because the waters are almost always satiny smooth. Price is $1,990. Call the Northwest Passage 800-732-7328.

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