Best Places to Rent Kayaks and Boats in Connecticut

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Are you looking to spend the day on the water? Fortunately, you don’t need to own your own boat to spend the day on the water. Connecticut is a coastal state with lakes, rivers and of course Long Island Sound. You can rent pontoons and kayaks for a day on the lakes in Connecticut. You can also rent powerboats and kayaks for a day boating on Long Island Sound. Here are the best places to rent boats in Connecticut.

Where to Rent Boats in Candlewood Lake, Connecticut

Candlewood lake is the largest lake in Connecticut. It is a large manmade lake measuring 8.4 square miles. If you are looking rent a boat in Connecticut, Candlewood Lake is a great place for a day on the water. Candlewood Lake straddles two Connecticut counties, located in Fairfield County and Litchfield County bordered by the towns of Danbury, Brookfield, New Fairfield, New Milford and Sherman. Candlewood Lake is convenient to NYC and Westchester County. Candlewood Lake is approximately 1.5 hours from New York City’s midtown Manhattan and it is approximately an hour from Westchester County (New York). If you are coming from Boston, Candlewood Lake is 2 hours and 45 minutes from Boston. There are boat rental companies with docks on Candlewood Lake. Below you will find boat rental companies on Candlewood Lake to rent kayaks, pontoons and powerboats.

Echo Bay Marina Boat Rentals in Candlewood Lake

Echo Bay Marina is a boat rental company in Candlewood Lake. You can rent pontoons and powerboats at Echo Bay Marina for a day on the water in Candlewood Lake. You can rent pontoons and powerboats by the day or half day (3 or 5 hour rentals). If you are staying in one of the waterfront vacation rentals with private docks, you can do multi-day powerboat or pontoon rental. Daily pontoon rentals start at $650 per day and half day pontoon rentals start at $175 per half day. There are also water sports activities add-ons to make your day in Candlewood Lake more fun. I highly recommend renting Tubes so your guests can go tubing. One thing to note, you will need a Connecticut boating license with the CT Safe Water Skiing Endorsement if you want to do any water sports activities (tubing, skiing or kneeboarding) on Candlewood Lake. If you are renting a boat on Candlewood Lake, you do not need a CT boating license. Echo Bay Marina is located at 227 Candlewood Lake Rd, Brookfield, CT 06804. Phone: 203-775-7077

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Gerard’s Waters Edge Marina Boat Rentals in Candlewood Lake

Gerard’s Waters Edge Marina is also another boat rental company in Candlewood Lake. If you are looking to spend the day on the water at Candlewood Lake, you can rent pontoons and powerboats at Gerard’s Waters Edge Marina. They offer short term boat rental leasing. You can rent boats by the week, month or the entire season. They do have a minimum rental period of 1 week. Some people rent their boat for the summer season in Candlewood Lake. There are a lot of waterfront homes with private docks in Candlewood Lake that you can rent for the summer season as vacation rentals. Candlewood Lake is a popular summer destination for New Yorkers looking to get away from the city, definitely a great place to spend your summer! Gerard’s Waters Edge Marina 120 Old Town Park Rd, New Milford, CT 06776. Phone: (860) 350-2628

Hotels near Candlewood Lake

Why not make a weekend out of your boating excursion in Candlewood Lake? There are many hotels, resorts and bed and breakfasts near Candlewood Lake. There are also many seasonal vacation rentals for waterfront homes on Candlewood Lake. If you want to indulge and treat yourself, then stay at the Mayflower Inn and Spa. For a less expensive hotel option near Candlewood Lake, try the Ethan Allen Hotel. If you want to stay in a quaint Bed and Breakfast near Candlewood Lake, you should stay at the Homestead Inn.

Where to Rent Boats in Connecticut (Long Island Sound)

If you are looking to rent boats in Connecticut, there are a few marinas along the coast that offers boat rentals. Unlike renting boats in Candlewood Lake, the rental places below will allow you to take the boat onto the open waters of Long Island Sound. Below you will find places to rent boats in Connecticut (Long Island Sound).

Rex Boating Club Boat Rental in Norwalk, CT

Rex Boating Club is not your traditional boat rental company, it is a boating club that gives you access to boats without the expense and hassle of boat ownership. Members of Rex Boating Club will have access to a fleet of powerboats to use for a day on Long Island Sound. Your membership includes everything, you just have to pay for gas! There are many membership plans available at Rex Boating Club ranging from unlimited boat use to weekdays only boat use. Rex Boating Club membership plan starts at $1695 for the year. They even have a membership plan where you can share your boating membership with another family to lower the cost. Boat rentals from Rex Boating Club is a good choice if you are looking to rent more than once during the summer season. Rex Boating Club at 144 Water St, Norwalk, CT 06854. Phone: (203) 984-1278.

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Hotels near Norwalk, CT

Why not spend the weekend at a local hotel near Norwalk and go boating on Long Island Sound? You can stay at the Delamar Hotel in Southport if you want a New England luxury boutique hotel. For a more contemporary feel stay at Hotel Zero Degrees in Norwalk. You will love their rooftop deck!

Boardwalk Marina Boat Rental in Stratford, CT

Boardwalk Marina in Stratford, CT offers powerboat rentals. You can rent powerboats for half day (4 hours) for $300 per half day rental or $500 for full day boat rental (8 hours). There are additional discounts for multi-day boat rentals. You don’t need a Connecticut safe boating certificate to rent a boat as long as you stay within the Housatonic River but if you take the boat out to Long Island Sound, you will need a Connecticut boating license. Boardwalk Marina in 955 Ferry Blvd, Stratford, CT 06614. Phone: 203-378-9300.

Hotels near Stratford, CT

Why not extend your boating excursion and stay for the weekend? You can go to Milford, the next town over. There are beautiful public beaches in Milford and there are also a lot of restaurants in downtown Milford. You can stay in one of the many hotels near Stratford, CT. You can stay at The Homewood Suites in Stratford or The Residence Inn by Marriott in Milford if you are looking for a hotel with a full kitchen. If you want proximity to the beach, stay at the Inn at Fairfield Beach which is a 9 minute walk to Jennings Beach in Fairfield, CT.

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Where to Rent Kayaks in Connecticut

If you are looking to kayak, there are many places in Connecticut to kayak. If you want to kayak in calmer waters, you can Kayak in the lakes and rivers of Connecticut. While if you are looking for a more challenging ride, take your kayak out to Long Island Sound. You can even go whitewater rafting in Connecticut’s Housatonic River. There are many kayak rental companies in Connecticut. Below you will find a list of places to rent kayaks in Connecticut.

Sea Kayak Connecticut in Westport, CT

Kayak rentals are available at Sea Kayak on Saugatuck River in Westport, CT. You can rent single kayaks, double kayaks, pedal kayaks, paddleboards and pedal boards. Sea Kayak offers rentals by the hour. If you plan to rent frequently, it’s a good idea to get their rental packages. Kayak and paddleboard rentals start at $30 per hour. Aside from kayak rentals, Sea Kayak also offers kayak tours. You can tour Cockenoe Island and Sprite Island on your kayak. There are also Westport harbor tours and July fireworks tour. Sea Kayak also offers kayak lessons taught by their kayak instructors certified by the American Canoe Association. If you are looking for a fun day out on Saugatuck River and Long Island Sound, you can’t go wrong with a kayak rental from Sea Kayak. It’s also centrally located and you can stop by for lunch on the water at one of Westport’s waterfront restaurant. Sea Kayak is located in Westport, CT which is a little over an hour from NYC’s midtown Manhattan. Sea Kayak at 575 Riverside Ave, Westport, CT 06880. Phone: 203-557-6033

Hotels near Westport, CT

Why not spend the weekend in Westport, CT? Stay at the Delamar Hotel in Southport if you want a New England luxury boutique hotel. If you want proximity to the beach, stay at the Inn at Fairfield Beach which is a 9 minute walk to Jennings Beach in Fairfield, CT. You can also stay at The Westport Inn for New England hospitality.

Branford River Paddlesports in Branford, CT

You can rent kayaks from Branford River Paddlesports in Branford, CT. You will be able to kayak on Branford River which has access to Long Island Sound with dozens of small islands, creeks and coves to explore. Kayak rentals start at $20 per hour. You can rent kayaks and paddleboards. Branford River Paddlesports also offers Kayak tours to Outer Island which includes getting off to have lunch and a quick swim at the Outer Island. They also offer kayak and standup paddleboard instructions. If you are looking for a day on the water kayaking, you should try renting a kayak at Branford River Paddlesports. Then stop by Lenny’s seafood for fried seafood before heading home. Branford River Paddlesports is an hour and 45 minutes from New York City’s midtown Manhattan. You can also take the amtrak from NYC to New Haven’s Union station then take the connecting Shoreline East train to the Branford station. Branford River Paddlesports is a short walk to the Shoreline East Branford train station. Branford River Paddlesports at 50 Maple Street, Branford, Connecticut 06405. Phone: (203) 980-8451

Hotels near Branford, CT

If you are looking to stay for the weekend in Branford. You can stay at Madison Beach Hotel, which is a beautiful beachfront hotel on the Connecticut coastline. Or if you want to explore New Haven, stay at The Blake Hotel, a modern, luxury boutique hotel.

Clarke Outdoors in West Cornwall, CT

If you are looking to do some gentle whitewater rafting in the Housatonic River (good for novice), then you should rent from Clarke Outdoors in West Cornwall, CT. Your can rent kayaks, canoes and rafts from Clarke Outdoors. Rental rates start at $35 per person. Rentals include van service to and from the Housatonic river. You will paddle past the famous Covered Bridge in West Cornwall on Housatonic River. You can also take a break and stop along the river for a picnic lunch. Clarke Outdoors also offer guided trips for an additional fee if you want a guide to go with your group. Clarke Outdoors in West Cornwall, CT is 2 hours and 6 minutes from New York City’s midtown Manhattan and 2 hours and 45 minutes from Boston, MA. Clarke Outdoors at 163 Route 7, West Cornwall, CT 06796. Phone: 860-672-6365 

Hotels near West Cornwall, CT

Explore and make it a weekend. You will love The Litchfield Inn, a charming, luxury boutique hotel around 12 miles from the famous covered bridge of West Cornwall, CT. Or stay at The White Hart in Salisbury, CT, a charming, New England hotel that is around 8 miles from the famous covered bridge of West Cornwall, CT. If you prefer staying at a Bed and Breakfast near the covered bridge of West Cornwall, you can stay at Locust Tree Bed and Breakfast, a Connecticut guest house in a historic home or Hilltop House Bed and Breakfast in Amenia, NY (10 miles from the West Cornwall covered bridge).

Scoot and Paddle in Milford, CT and Derby, CT

Scoot and Paddle has 2 kayak rental locations in Connecticut. At the Milford, CT location, you will be able to take your kayak out on Long Island Sound. Since you are kayaking on Long Island Sound, you may get calm waters or choppy waters. If you are looking for calmer water, try renting kayaks from Scoot and Paddle’s Derby, CT location. At the Derby, CT location, you will be kayaking on a lake so the water is much calmer. Kayak rentals start at $20 per hour. You can also save and buy Kayak rental season passes and Kayak rental monthly passes. Scoot and Paddle Derby Location at 412 Roosevelt Drive, Derby, CT 06418. Phone: 203-343-9126 and Scoot and Paddle Milford Location at 28 Naugatuck Avenue, Milford, CT 06460. Phone: 203-713-8282

Hotels near Milford, CT

If you are planning to kayak in Milford, definitely stay for the weekend. You can go to the beautiful public beaches in Milford and there are also a lot of restaurants in downtown Milford. Stay at one of the many hotels near Milford, CT. The Homewood Suites in Stratford or The Residence Inn by Marriott in Milford are solid choices if you are looking for a hotel with a full kitchen. If you want proximity to the beach, stay at the Inn at Fairfield Beach which is a 9 minute walk to Jennings Beach in Fairfield, CT.

Hotels near Derby, CT

If you want to spend the weekend near Derby, CT, you can stay at a nearby hotel in Shelton, CT. You can’t go wrong with the Hilton Garden Inn in Shelton or The Hyatt House in Shelton. If you don’t mind driving 25 minutes, you can stay walking distance to Jennings Beach at Inn at Fairfield Beach or stay at the Delamar Hotel in Southport for a New England luxury boutique hotel experience.

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Do You Need a Connecticut Boating License to Rent Boats in Connecticut?

It depends on where you will be taking the boat out in Connecticut. If you are renting a boat so you can go on Long Island Sound, then you will need a Connecticut Boating license. If you are renting a boat at one of Connecticut’s inland bodies of water such as rivers and lakes, then you don’t need a Connecticut Boating license.

In order to legally operate any boat in Connecticut with a motor, or a sailboat 19 1/2 feet in length or longer, you must be a residents of Connecticut, persons owning real property in Connecticut, or persons with vessels registered in Connecticut. You must have either a Safe Boating Certificate (SBC), a Certificate of Personal Watercraft Operation (CPWO) or a valid vessel operator license* issued by the United States Coast Guard. Exceptions to the requirements are if you are operating a boat in an inland bodies of water with a 10 horsepower limit and between one hour before sunrise and one hour after sunset, a certificate is not required to operate a boat with an electric motor (rated at 106 lbs. of thrust or less). However, the vessel must be registered with the Department of Motor Vehicles. For more information, check Connecticut’s DEEP Connecticut Boating site.

Can I use my Boating license from another state to operate a boat in Connecticut?

Yes, Connecticut recognizes a valid Certificate of Personal Watercraft Operation issued by a reciprocal state (NY, MA, RI or NH) for boaters not residing in CT and wishing to operate a personal watercraft in CT. Once a person holding a certificate from a reciprocal state makes CT their permanent residence, he or she must obtain a CT boating certificate within 90 days of becoming a CT resident. Personal watercraft (i.e. jet ski, wave runner, sea-doo) operators MUST have a recognized Certificate of Personal Watercraft Operation to operate legally. 

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