Wanderlust: Kayaking Tomales Bay

By Kelly Conroy

Kelly Rathburn Conroy
Kelly Conroy

Only an hour and a half off the grid, Point Reyes National Seashore houses some serious outdoor gems. But, if you want to avoid the crowds and still revel in the coastal fog and spectacular views, head to Tomales Bay for a guided kayaking trip to experience the area in a truly unique way.

Name: Blue Waters Kayaking

Level: Beginner

Location: Operating out of Point Reyes and guiding tours all over the area from Tomales Bay to Lake Sonoma.


Amenities & Incentives:

  • A variety of options from camping to hiking to kayaking.

Fun Facts: Point Reyes National Seashore is on a different tectonic plate than the rest of North America. The entire peninsula moves about two inches north along the coast each year.



My Experience:

I chose the Tule Elk Half Day Tour and it was incredible.

After gearing up with kayak skirts, personal floatation devices, and waterproof jackets, we had some quick on-land instruction with the paddle and then pushed off into the bay. I’m generally uncomfortable in or near the water but the bay was so calm and full of wildlife that I had no worries at all.

We paddled past Hog Island, learned about the history and geology of the area, spotted seals, jellyfish, and tons of birds, and we got to watch herds of tule elk in the hills. Bonus – it’s rutting season (August – October) so the bugles were abundant!

The half-day tour gave me just enough time to really enjoy the bay without getting tired or hungry and our guides were incredibly knowledgeable and friendly. I definitely plan to do one of the bioluminescence tours next!

More Information:

Check out Blue Waters Kayaking calendar for dates and times of their many different tours (the calendar loads pretty slow, so give it a minute).

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