Everything You Need to Know About Pictured Rocks Kayaking
The Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore is encompassed by towering sandstone cliffs, beautiful beaches, dunes, waterfalls, inland lakes, deep forest, and the crystal-clear waters of Lake Superior. Located in the heart of Michigan’s rugged Upper Peninsula, vibrant colors of minerals like copper and iron have stained the face of the Pictured Rocks cliffs, formations, and sea caves over thousands of years.
Though hiking trails run throughout the park
, the national shoreline is best seen by water. Kayaking the scenic area has made quite the splash lately among people of all ages. Located in the small city of Munising
, Pictured Rocks Kayaking
is the only company that launches paddlers from a boat, guaranteeing an exciting but safe experience.
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You’re not with Pictured Rocks Kayaking if you’re not on a boat.
Your guided tour begins at our office where you board one of our vessels and cruise through Munising Bay into Lake Superior. You’ll sail by landmarks like the East Channel Lighthouse and Miners Castle during the boat ride to the paddling route.
Our boat follows you – making it safer and more convenient for varied ages and abilities.
Kayakers are launched from the boat right where the iconic stretch begins, just past Painted Coves. On your paddle route, you’ll get intimate views of Caves of all Colors, Lovers Leap, Rainbow Cave, Indian Head, Gull Rookery, Grand Portal, Battleship Rocks, Flower Vase, Indian Drum, Chapel Cove, Chapel Rock, among other natural treasures.
Trips are approximately 4-5 hours long with around 2 hours (5 miles) of kayaking time. Once finished with the paddle portion of the trip, you don’t have to paddle all the way home – you’ll board the boat for a ride back to shore.
Why You Need to Paddle Pictured Rocks
The Different Tour Times & Boats
Aboard the Kayak Express
| 2:30PM Tour
Aboard the Pictured Rocks
9:15AM Tour | 3PM Tour
The tour is the same no matter what time you pick! Just make sure you keep travel time in mind. Yet, it is recommended passengers purchase tickets at least three weeks ahead of time. Tickets can be booked online or by calling (906) 387-5500.
See Available Dates
Safety & Convenience is Our Game
Since our boats follow you along as you kayak along the Pictured Rocks shoreline, you’ll always be within a reasonable distance of restrooms and emergency help if ever needed. Families and seniors can choose to take a break at any time, making your trip as comfortable as possible. However, we still don’t recommend this tour for smaller children.
We only offer tandem (two-person) kayaks, due to their stability, and will pair you up with a guide or another person if there’s an extra person in your group.
All of our kayak guides are ACA trained and will be with you throughout the duration of your adventure. No previous kayaking experience is necessary for this tour and a basic safety and paddling course will be provided before you board the boat.
Pets are not permitted on our tours.
What to Bring?
We recommend bringing sunglasses or a hat, sunscreen, insect repellent and shoes or sandals. Please keep in mind anything can get wet. We sell floating waterproof phone cases at our office. You may have food and non-alcoholic beverages aboard, as well. While always beautiful, the weather in the U.P.
can be finicky at times. Be sure to bring appropriate layers for rain or cold weather.
Plan Your Trip
Please arrive at our office at least 45 minutes prior to confirm your booking, receive gear, and review safety protocol prior to boarding. You’ll get a chance to sit in one of our kayaks, and we’ll answer any questions you may have.
What if the Weather’s Bad?
We do paddle in light rain; however, if Pictured Rocks Kayaking cancels a trip due to weather, you will be provided with a full refund or you can opt to reschedule your tour depending on availability. An alternative option may also include a tour of Grand Island at a reduced rate if weather permits. While safety is our number one concern, we will always do our best to work with you.
Cancelation & Refund Policy
Preparing for Your Trip to Munising and Pictured Rocks
Photo Credit: Tim Trombley
Of course, the first thing you should do is book your tour
! Tickets go fast, and you want to make sure you can experience this one-of-a-kind adventure. It’s also recommended to have a place to stay
before you travel. The Munising and Pictured Rocks area provides a wonderful selection of lakeside hotels, cabins and cottages
, and rustic or modern campgrounds
Photo courtesy of the Alger Co. Chamber of Commerce
Once you drop off your bags, it’s time to explore! Stop by the local visitor centers
for maps of the nearest trails, a waterfall and hiking guide, and all sorts of other information about the Munising and Pictured Rocks area.
Check kayaking the Pictured Rocks off your bucket list today and book your adventure now!