What To Pack For A Kayaking Day Trip

backpack lunch box water bottle sunscreen blue water shoes and bikini top laid out evenly on a woonedn background. Top right says kayaking packing list

Kayaking is one of the best summer activities! Spending the day out on the water enjoying the fresh air and the sounds of nature can be quite the adventure. To make sure the day goes as smoothly as possible it’s always good to be prepared.

If you need some help deciding what to bring on your kayaking adventure check out this list of must haves.

girl infornt of a canoe and kayak rental place building


Day Pack/ Dry Bag

dry bag is best just in case your kayak tips over into the water. With this type of bag all your belongings will stay safe and dry but if you don’t have a dry bag a small day pack works also. 

The one pictured above is from L.L.Bean.

Cooler/ Lunch Bag

On a long day out on the water as the sun blazes down it’s important to stay hydrated and energized. To keep items cool bring a small cooler with ice or an insulated lunch bag with ice packs. Don’t forget a big water bottle!


Bathing Suit – While kayaking your bound to get wet, so a sporty bathing suit is a must.


Dry Clothes – I usually just use the same clothing I wore over my bathing suit on the drive to the kayaking spot. It’s a good idea to change at the end of the day because sitting in wet clothing can be uncomfortable.


Water shoes– I prefer these as opposed to sandals, there’s much more traction on the bottom of the shoe, which is helpful when getting in and out of the kayak. There’s lots of slippery rocks in the water.


Towel – In case you decided to go for a swim bring a towel to dry off. You can even use the towel to wrap your bathing suit into after you change so you won’t get everything in your bag wet as you head back home.



GoPro– The perfect camera for waterproof and action photography.


Selfie Stick– Helpful when wanting to capture the fun times you have out on the water. Selfie sticks can come in handy when you’re in the kayak by yourself and you are looking to capture more of the background with you still in the pic. 


Cell Phone– Good to use if you don’t have a waterproof camera.


Waterproof Phone Case Unless you like to live life on the edge, give your self some peace of mind and buy a waterproof case, it’s worth the investment.



Sunscreen– The sun really beats down on you when your out in the water. Protect your skin from the UV rays. I like to use reef safe sunscreen, such as Sun Bum, the banana smell is so yummy!


Bug Spray– Bugs are a given. Save yourself from itchy skin later and use a plant based bug repellent. 


First Aid Kit -Accidents happen, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Take a travel size one with you. 


Compass– Even if you are following a straight forward route it’s always good to carry a compass in case you get lost


Flashlight– This probably won’t happen but in case you get stranded and it starts to get dark a flashlight can be a life saver


Map– If you’re renting a kayak the facility will have maps or you can bring your own of the area and water routes.

Now other than a kayak, paddle and a river you’ll be all set for your kayaking adventure. Be safe and have fun! 

Leave a Reply