Since 2013, we are honoured to have run a multitude of rowing trips in different corners of the world. As we continue to grow our selection of tours and explore new places and culture, we invite you to take a peek at our past (and some potential) destinations and reminisce with wonderful rowing travel memories. Maybe we will offer some of these destinations again. If you are interested, please let us know – we love to know your thoughts as you dream about future travels. It may also be possible to book one of these destinations as a private tour, although it is more likely that we can offer a private trip for one of our current destinations. Our private trips are tailored to suit you. We provide a package which is flexible and adaptable to your preferences, and of course has you rowing in a delightful destination. Please note, we may require a minimum of 10 participants for a private tour. If you and your crew are interested in a private trip, let’s talk!
Crystal Blue, That was the name of the 2016 World Rowing Tour which inspired this trip. It is both an evocative and an accurate name. The lakes are stunningly beautiful, the water ranging in hues of blues and greens. Surrounded by rock walls, high mountains or wooded hills, each lake has a distinctive character, as do the towns which dot the shores. Rowing is the perfect way to experience the Salzkammergut, the Austrian Lake District. You will drop your oars into six different lakes, all readily accessible from our base in the spa town, Bad Ischl. And while the water may be cool, the warmth of the welcome is anything but. Austrian culture, history, hospitality, food, wine and beer are all as spectacular as the rowing.
This special region in western Austria has attracted tourists since the mid-19th century, when aristocrats from Vienna and other cities discovered the mountains and the lakes, and the healing power not only of the beautiful landscapes and out-door pursuits, but also of salt baths. The Emperor established a summer home in Bad Ischl, and the city retains a regal air. All that fresh air generates a good appetite. Native char and whitefish are fished, cooked and served to your plate. Mountain pastures produce cow, goat and sheep cheeses. Home-made sausages and smoked meats from local farmers are perfect with the hearty breads baked in wood ovens. Oh, and then there are the deserts. The tradition of cake and coffee arrived with the aristocrats and has happily remained.
Tasmania is absolutely worth the journey. You get the best waters in Australia and experience a stunning landscape, vibrant culture and superb cuisine. The climate of Tasmania is more temperate than the rest of Australia, which means the landscape is green, beautiful and wild. Our trip shows off highlights of Tasmania and also include a fantastic diversity of rows. Five different clubs welcome us to row on beautiful lakes and gorgeous rivers. It is almost impossible to decide which one was the best. Lonely Planet calls the Tamar Valley “picture postcard perfect”. That just about sums up Tasmania, and each of our rowing venues. All that rowing builds up a good appetite. If you want to eat fresh and local, this is the place to come – they claim that the culinary experience is the envy of chefs around the world. The cool climate produces superb pinot noir and riesling wines, and the beer and coffee are not so bad either!
Tasmania is a very interesting place. Some call Tassie quirky. The tagline for Tourism Tasmania is “a curious island at the edge of the world”. We just love the island vibe, the distinctiveness of Tasmania. From the crazy idea of a penal colony on one of the world’s most beautiful islands, has evolved a friendly and fascinating destination. It is a bit apart, but not. You really have to come and see for yourself.
If you are not from Australia, chances are that you have not heard of the Clarence River, in New South Wales. You are really missing something, and we are out to change that. The Clarence River, at 400 km, is the second largest river on the east coast of Australia – and good news, no crocodiles! Located in the Northern Rivers region which reaches to the Queensland border, the Clarence River offers forested upper reaches, lush farmland along the lower reaches and ends at a coast filled with splendid beaches. That would be about 40 beaches in the Clarence Valley area. The subtropical climate means that we can enjoy in equal measure time in the boat and time exploring this beautiful but little-known region. Sounds like a perfect Australia rowing tour!
Sometimes wide and stately, at other times intimate when islands create narrower channels, the Clarence River is generous in its diversity of scenery and experiences. We begin our “rowing trail” just downstream of Australia’s longest canoe and white water trail. For about 100 km we will explore the changes in the landscape as we row to the sea. Minimal boat traffic will intrude on our enjoyment. Tidal influence and sea breezes reach up past Grafton, but currents are gentle and calm water is the norm, especially in the cooler mornings. Three clubs dot the Clarence, and friendly local rowers will welcome us and show us their stretch of the river.
Canada is a beautiful and vast country. Québec is especially endowed with stunning landscapes and vibrant, distinctive cultures. Welcoming, authentic and fascinating, the Lac St. Jean and Saguenay region offers the best of La Belle Province. This area is Canada’s centre for coastal rowing. We will row through the Saguenay Fjord, one of the longest in the world and the only one in North America. Most of the rowing route is through protected areas and parks, including a marine park. While never that far from civilization and all the culinary treats of Québec, you will feel that you have left your regular life behind and enjoyed a coastal rowing adventure in a very special and beautiful place.
The Maritime Provinces are among the loveliest in Canada. Famous for lobster suppers, potato fields to the sea and Anne of Green Gables, Prince Edward Island, affectionately known as PEI, is Canada’s smallest province. It offers a concentrated dose of delightful scenery, friendly people, wonderful food and lots of ways to have fun outdoors. Now we can add rowing to the list of vacation choices. We row coastal boats on this trip, which is logical given that PEI is an island surrounded by a lot of salty water. This trip is perfect for flatwater rowers who wish to experience a bit of coastal rowing – in a safe environment with experienced local guides and without the extremes that some coastal races and events offer. We launch right in downtown Charlottetown and row the harbour, seeing this historical city from the water. Then off for a little Island living, to explore the beautiful red shoreline, stroll stunning sand dunes, smell the salty air and listen to the waves washing on the multitude of beautiful beaches. Did we mention lobster?
Rugged and rocky Cornwall is the westernmost tip of England. Our Coastal & Traditional Boat Camp was based in Falmouth harbour and the river Fal. We explored the creeks, gardens, beaches and natural maritime environment of this beautiful region. Flanked by two officially recognized ‘Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty’ and with the South West Coast Path running alongside, the region’s coastline is a must-see attraction for walkers, swimmers and wildlife-watchers as well as for rowers.
We love the north of England. There is something wonderful about the dramatic yet comforting landscape of hills, green pastures dotted with sheep, stone walls, forests and valleys. Plus we are impressed with the dynamic cities, blending historic and modern with panache and ease. Even better, there is a plethora of rowing opportunities.
Time is perfect for a pop-up rowing weekend adventure on the Lancaster Canal. Numerous things make this excursion special. For example, the canal passes through bucolic rural scenery and straight through the middle of villages, towns and the city of Lancaster. Remarkable feats of 18th century engineering created aqueducts for the canal, meaning that we will row OVER a river and a highway! Later we will be able to see the sea from the banks of the canal. And even better, there are no locks on the section of the canal that we will row.
Welcome to a very special tour to this beautiful region of southwestern France. The French consider the Dordogne River to be the most beautiful river in France. You will soon understand why as we immerse ourselves in this timeless landscape. Sunlight mixes with shadows and history mingles with rural French culture. Row past châteaux, some stern and austere, perched high on impossible cliffs, glaring across green valleys. Others sport turrets and fanciful carvings, nestled among gardens. Discover other histories of pilgrimages, battles and prehistoric cave paintings. Sheltering the history is a lush and varied landscape, as the river cuts a winding path through ancient limestone. At times it feels surprising remote and untouched. We also pass delightful towns and villages, built of this same warm, golden rock. It is a beautiful river to row.
We spend three days descending the Lot River, rowing through an ancient landscape of limestone cliffs, perched villages, walnut farms and vineyards. The Lot used to be used for transportation, and as with so many rivers, was supplanted by railways and roads. In the last few decades, navigation has returned to the rivers, with locks re-opened allowing us to explore one of the most beautiful rivers in France. We begin in the Parc Naturel Régional des Causses du Quercy. At times we row through remote sections with just the green hills for company. Cave entrances can be glimpsed and you can imagine pre-historic hunters and gathers who populated this region and left mysterious painting of mammoths, antelopes and their hands, hidden deep in the rocks. We row past castles and villages perched high on dramatic cliffs. The most famous is Saint-Cirq-Lapopie, a stunning site best appreciated from the water. Walnut groves fill the few flat stretches before we reach the vineyards named for the city of Cahors. The spectacular Pont Valentré is over 700 years old and classified as a UNESCO world heritage site, just another of the many features packed into this weekend.
A Short Break is a quick getaway for a few days of rowing in a stunning location, or it can be an add-on to a longer non-rowing vacation. Based at one location, it is flexible and very adaptable. Majestic on the Brittany shore of the English Channel, St. Malo offers a mélange of French elegance with Maritime flair. Come here for a long weekend of coastal and river rowing. Add on beach hikes, a visit to stunning Mont St. Michael and other charming seaside towns. We indulge in seafood – mussels, oysters – plus crêpes, cider, Calvados and the world’s best apple juice. C’est si bon!
Fodor’s travel guides describe the Mosel as “one of the most hauntingly beautiful river valleys on Earth”. The river winds and loops through a gorgeous landscape of hills clad green with forests and vineyards. Delightfully pretty towns dot the banks and castles reach for the sky. The Mosel offers all the elements needed for the best kind of rowing tour. There is a beautiful river. We have a clear destination – row to the Rhine. The boats are only trailered once – to the upstream start and then we row them home. Daily distances mean that you get lots of catch, drive, release, recovery. The current helps us along and natural rests are built in when we go through the locks. There are typically one or two a day. It is such a good river for rowing that clubs are found at regular intervals. At some clubs we store our boats overnight, while at other clubs we stop to meet local rowers over lunch or dinner. This is what rowing travel in Europe is all about.
How much can you pack into one weekend? A lot if you are travel to the western reaches of Ireland and the counties Galway and Mayo. In just three days we move between city and country. First we enjoy time in charming and colourful Galway, where the pubs pulse with traditional music and friends sharing a pint of Guinness or a local ale. Then on to the wild and rugged countryside of Connemara. This is some of the most famous and stunningly beautiful scenery in this country of spectacular sights. Big rounded mountains fold into valleys winding to nowhere, lakes and bogs fill the creases in green hills, and everywhere stone walls enclose sheep dotted with colourful splotches. Even the rowing is a study in contrasts. We begin with a spin on the shortest river in Europe. The setting is urban. The next two rows are on The Republic of Ireland’s biggest lake. The feel is much more remote.
We partner with two rowing clubs in Galway: Grainne Mhaol Rowing Club and Tribesmen Rowing Club. As you spend time with rowers from these clubs, you will begin to understand more and more about the local depth of connections to tradition, folklore, history and culture in this beautiful part of Ireland.
Ireland rowing tour in County Cork is a lovely sampler of some of the best that Ireland has to offer. We begin with a visit to Cork City and a row on the River Lee. Skibbereen, on the River Ilen, is the home of the famous and funny O’Donovan brothers, who won the first Olympic rowing medal for Ireland at Rio 2016. They entertained the world by describing their race strategy as “eat steak and spuds and pull like a dog”. We will have a more leisurely approach, taking time to enjoy the magnificent scenery we will pass on our rows out of Baltimore, exploring the sheltered harbour, islands and coastline. We might eat some steak and spuds, but the seafood is magnificent. Enjoy a new and different taste of Ireland.
In addition to the rich history of the towns and villages in this part of Co. Cork, a big attraction is the sheer beauty of the scenery. Cliffs plunge to the sea, islands dot harbours and follow the coast while in between little beaches entice you to stroll. Look-outs and headlands offer views inland over green rolling hills laced with trees, stone fences and winding lanes. Seaward are the great shipping channels and yacht racing courses of the untamed Atlantic Ocean. Visitors can stay on shore and explore the Wild Atlantic Way. We use the shelter of the rivers, islands and lakes to get a wonderful taste of easy river and coastal rowing in spectacular scenery.
Venice and the Vogalonga tend to get all the attention. Rightly so. Venice is a spectacular destination, and the Vogalgona is legendary, a bucket list event for rowers. But beyond Venice and the Vogalonga, there is a stunning destination to explore. It has the same magic, and more. Trieste is another famous and fascinating Italian city, separated from Venice by 150 km along the Adriatic Sea coastline. There is also an inner waterway network of lagoons, canals and rivers. Known amongst Europeans for beach resorts, the region also offers charming cities, UNESCO world heritage sites, Roman ruins and surprisingly rich ecosystems. This is what we explore as we row the Adriatic Sea and Venetian Lagoons.
Scattered like strings of pearls in the Indian Ocean, the atolls which comprise the Maldives are some of the most beautiful in the world. Perfect beaches, thousands of uninhabited islands dotted with just coconut palms and intensely coloured coral reefs have made the Maldives a top destination. The crystal clear water is the focus of activities: swimming, snorkelling, paddling, diving, surfing. Why not rowing? Following up on the successful FISA Development Rowing Tour – Maldives 2015, this trip continues the exploration of rowing in this tropical paradise, spending a week exploring the North and South Huvadhoo Atolls. Support the growth of the Rowing Association Maldives and local clubs through rowing tourism.
New Zealand is iconic. It claims to be the earth’s youngest country (last inhabited) and appeals to travellers by offering a density of destinations and diversity within a compact area. Spectacular scenery has made it the dramatic setting for Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, King Kong (2005), The Chronicles of Narnia and Xena: Warrior Princess. With a wealth of lakes, rivers and coasts, it was a pleasant but challenging task to narrow the choice for our New Zealand rowing tour. There are so many beautiful possibilities in this country known for beautiful landscapes, outdoor lifestyle, Maori culture, friendly people and wonderful wines. For a comparatively small place, distances can seem substantial, so we offer a concentrated dose of rowing and touring in the Southern Alps and Otago regions of the South Island. Over a wonderful week, we explore some of the best that New Zealand has to offer, rowing and otherwise.
The South Island of New Zealand packs a remarkable diversity of scenery into a fairly compact area. Perhaps most famous are the mountains and lakes of the western and southern sections of the island. But the Otago region offers superb scenery and a different set of attractions. Its historical heart is the vibrant city of Dunedin, where we are be based to enjoy three different rows in the vicinity. Rowing Dunedin begins with a row in the harbour and see the city from the water. Dunedin sits at the head of the Otago Harbour, which stretches for 21 km to the sea. There is lots of rowing exploration to be done here. For even more variety, we trailer boats to row the very beautiful Taieri River to its mouth. Maybe we need to stay a week, not just a long weekend!
St. Petersburg is one of the most famous, historic and beautiful cities in the world. It is also a thriving modern metropolis undergoing a renaissance. The sheer grandeur of the city is just as advertised and will not disappoint. Palaces, gilded steeples, monumental art, colourful facades lining canals. It just goes on and on and on. Absolutely iconic, spectacular, bucket list. What better idea than to enjoy our favourite sport here? Then there is Novgorod, called the birthplace of Russia. Centuries of history are found along the banks of the Volkhov River, which served as a major trading route bringing riches to this city. The city has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is often called a city-museum. Beautiful churches graced with onion domes seem to pop up everywhere but the most beautiful is Cathedral of St Sophia, the oldest church in Russia. We row the rivers and canals of the St.Petersburg as well as two days rowing in Novgorod. Our base is the English Rowing Club, a powerhouse of Russian rowing, but a club that appreciates the beauty of where they row, and Andrej will show us his favourite spots.
South Africa is one of the premium tourism destinations in the world. We like it so much that we are delighted to offer this special rowing travel experience in this exceptional country. This trip is timed to coincide with the spectacular spring wildflowers in the Western Cape. Enjoy a concentrated dose of rowing on rivers and in coastal lagoons, with time to walk where the flowers bloom in wild pinks, oranges, yellows and whites. And of course we also enjoy the stunningly beautiful landscapes, fascinating bird and wildlife, the warmth and culture of the people and world-renowned wine and food that South Africa is known for.
Considered to be the most beautiful country in the world, South Africa is a “must see” destination. And what better way to experience the landscape and culture than through the sport of rowing? The South Africa Western Cape trip showcases amazing rowing in a one week adventure. The Western Cape is most famous for the city of Cape Town and for wine. The trip starts with lots of Cape Town rowing. There is so much to see and do in this beautiful and fascinating country that we recommend that you use the rowing trip as your springboard to further adventures!
At Rowing The World we are all about partnerships. Around the world we partner with rowers, rowing clubs, rowing federations and companies. We partner with OarBoard on our rowing weekend in beautiful Kelowna, British Columbia, in the heart of the Okanagan Valley. It is a vibrant city that also boasts a big, beautiful lake surrounded by beaches, vineyards and mountains.
OarBoards are with us on our Belize trip to Southwater Caye Marine Reserve in the Southern Barrier Reef. Where we get a chance to enjoy breathtaking sunsets and spectacular swimming and snorkelling.
Your SUP rower is great to explore Brazil’s azure blue waters with a spectacular mountain backdrop. Add in a UNESCO World Heritage town, an ecological reserve, fabulous hiking, snorkeling and swimming, friendly people and you have a tropical paradise.