I grew up sailing with my family on Lake Monroe in Bloomington and there is nothing better than being on the water with your family. Some of my favorite summer time memories involve Strike two, which was the name of our sailboat (as my dad had already had two boats that had been struck by lightning). I can remember weekends on the boat with our feet hanging over the side of the boat, dipping them in the wake on those windy days. I remember laying down in the cabin of the boat listening to the water lap against the side of the boat. Pure happiness!
Bloomington isn’t that far away, but you don’t need to travel even 20 minutes to have a similar experience. There are several bodies of water in the Indy area that allow space for sailing, kayaking, canoeing or rafting.
In recent years, my family has been sailing at Eagle Creek Sailing Club. Eagle Creek is a great place to sail because of it’s proximity to the city yet it still feels like you are a million miles away. Being surrounded by Eagle Creek Park means that the natural beauty is abundant and there are no power boats. Below is a list of areas to sail, kayak or canoe, or raft. Happy summer!
Eagle Creek Outfitters offers many rentals. You can rent kayaks, canoes, stand up paddle boards (SUP), and sail boats (you must pass a sailing course that they run) right in Eagle Creek park (on the north end). In addition to renting boats, they have different guided paddling programs you can choose if you would rather go with a group.
Eagle Creek Sailing Club is a private club that has an excellent youth sailing camp in the summer.
Geist Marina offers kayak rentals
Indianapolis Sailing Club is another private club that offers a youth sailing camp.
Saxony Lake-Who new you could kayak here?
Freedom Kayak Adventures offers kayak and SUP rentals every weekend at Saxony Lake. They also have classes to learn to kayak and ride a SUP.
The White River offers many opportunities to kayak, canoe or raft. For specific routes, click here. There are several places to rent kayaks and canoes.
White River Canoe Company is a one stop shop. You can rent boats here and they will shuttle you to your starting point. You will finish your trip at their shop. In addition to kayaks and canoes, you can also tube down the river with the White River Canoe Company. If your child is under 50 pounds, you must bring your own life jacket with a safety buckle that goes between the legs.
Freedom Kayak Adventures also offers mobile events at various bodies of water around Indianapolis. They bring a load of kayaks and you paddle with a group.
Rusted Moon offers canoe and kayak rentals but you have to pick them up and return them. They do not deliver.
The canal downtown
Wheel Fun Rentals offers kayaks and pedal boats right in the heart of downtown.
*While doing research for this post, I was not able to find specific age limits. One guideline I saw a few places was that infants and toddlers that are not able to walk should not kayak or canoe.