May 23, 2023 8 min read

Discover Nova Scotia’s capital by stand up paddle board

Paddle boarding in Halifax

Halifax, located in the province of Nova Scotia, Canada, is a vibrant city with a rich maritime history and stunning natural scenery. With its picturesque coastline and calm waters, Halifax is the perfect destination for stand up paddle board lovers to get the most out of their boards. 

Crystal clear waters, diverse marine life, and beautiful landscapes make Halifax one of the best places to paddle board in Canada. From the Halifax Waterfront to the secluded lakes in Shubie Park, there are plenty of paddle boarding spots to explore. Whether you're a seasoned pro or just starting out, Halifax offers an unforgettable experience for all. 

We have highlighted the 10 best places to stand up paddle board in Halifax for you in this guide. So, pack your bags and head to Halifax to experience the thrill of paddle boarding in one of Canada's most beautiful cities. Dive into the fun and adventure that awaits you in Halifax!

Halifax Waterfront

Halifax city view, Nova Scotia

The Halifax Waterfront is a popular destination for easy-going stand up paddle boarding. The calm and clear waters are ideal for beginners learning the basics and how to paddle board. It offers stunning views of the city skyline, historic buildings, and picturesque harbor. It is a great way to explore the city from a unique perspective of the water.

Accessing the water is super easy from downtown and there are plenty of rental stores nearby if you are yet to get your own stand up paddle board. The Halifax Waterfront offers a variety of routes to choose from, depending on your skill level and preference. You can paddle towards the harbor for something gentle or head towards the open sea for a more challenging experience.

Crystal Crescent Beach

Crystal crescent beach, Nova Scotia

As the name suggests, Crystal Crescent Beach offers some of the clearest waters in the area. Along with that, its stunning natural scenery also includes white sandy beaches and a rugged coastline. This beach has breathtaking views that are sure to leave you completely mesmerized whilst zoning out on your paddle board.

Located about a 30-minute drive from downtown Halifax, Crystal Crescent Beach has a long stretch of sand dunes that are great to set up camp for the day. It is fairly secluded so you can almost guarantee a peaceful getaway when visiting.

Kearney Lake

Kearney lake, Nova Scotia

Kearney Lake is surrounded by lush forests, offering a picturesque setting for any keen nature lover who wants to explore by paddle board. The waters are extremely calm and the lake is secluded, making it a great place to start meditating on a yoga paddle board. There are some parts of the lake that offer more challenging conditions with light waves to navigate.

Located is in Halifax's West End. However, it is still easily accessible from downtown Halifax and has a public boat launch, making it easy for paddle boarders to launch their boards and start paddling. This is one of the best places in Halifax for beginners to learn the basics and find their balance.

Shubie Park

Two paddle boarders on Shubie park, Nova Scotia

Shubie Park ​​is located on the outskirts of Halifax and offers a variety of waterways to explore, including lakes, ponds, and canals. Both beautiful and tranquil, paddle boarders will be in their element while exploring this park. With its calm and serene waterways, lush greenery, and abundant wildlife, Shubie Park is a paradise. 

Whether you are a beginner or an experienced paddle boarder, you can enjoy paddling through the park's many lakes and rivers, surrounded by stunning natural scenery. With convenient launch points and equipment rentals, available on-site, paddle boarding in Shubie Park is easy and accessible for everyone. 

Read More : How To Paddle Board On Rivers


Bedford waterfront, Nova Scotia

From Bedford, you have access to the great Bedford Basin, the large bay that makes up the Halifax Harbour. This body of water is mostly flat and calm, making it ideal for beginners and those looking for a relaxed paddle boarding experience. 

Want to level up the relaxation? Some companies offer SUP yoga classes in the calm waters of Bedford Basin. This is a unique way to enjoy the beauty of Bedford while getting a workout and improving your balance and flexibility.

While Bedford Basin is typically calm, there are some areas where you can catch small waves and try handling your surf paddle boards.


Dartmouth, Nova Scotia

Dartmouth is a beautiful and vibrant city located across the water from Halifax. It is a popular destination for paddle boarding, with a range of waterways to explore and stunning natural scenery to enjoy. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced paddle boarder, there are plenty of options for you to enjoy here.

One of the most popular locations for paddle boarding in Dartmouth is Lake Banook. This pristine freshwater lake is home to many local paddle boarding events and competitions. With its calm waters and beautiful surroundings, it is easy to see why Lake Banook is a favorite among locals and visitors.

You can also dip your paddle into the Halifax Harbour and the Bedford Basin. These waterways offer stunning views of the Halifax skyline and the surrounding natural beauty, making it a unique and memorable paddle boarding experience.

Lawrencetown Beach Provincial Park

Lawrencetown beach provincial park, Nova Scotia

Lawrencetown Beach Provincial Park is located on the Eastern Shore of Nova Scotia and is home to one of the most consistent surf breaks in the region. Come here to join the keen surfers braving the cold water and join them in the lineup with your surf paddle board.

For those who are looking to paddle board in the ocean, Lawrencetown Beach is a great place to start. The beach is surrounded by rolling hills and has a long stretch of sandy beach, making it an ideal spot for paddle boarders to launch their boards and hit the waves. With gentle waves and currents, it is great for beginner and intermediate paddle boarders, but it also offers more challenging conditions for advanced paddle boarders who are looking for a thrill when conditions allow it.

In addition to the ocean, Lawrencetown Beach Provincial Park also offers paddle boarding opportunities on the nearby Salt Marsh Trail. This trail winds through a saltwater marsh and gives a chance to experience the area's natural beauty up close while paddling through calm waters. With the Salt Marsh Trail and the beach, Lawrencetown Beach Provincial Park is a must-visit destination for paddle boarding enthusiasts visiting Nova Scotia.

Martinique Beach

Coconut standing on Martinique beach, Nova Scotia

Martinique Beach is another great spot located on the Eastern Shore. The long and sandy beach offers a perfect location for paddle boarding. The beach is part of a provincial park and is known and loved for its pristine waters, scenic surroundings, and abundance of wildlife. You can enjoy exploring the beach's many inlets and coves while taking in the stunning natural scenery all by paddle board.

This is the place to head to if you are looking for a more relaxed and serene experience. The calm waters make it an ideal location for beginners or anyone who wants to take it easy and enjoy a peaceful paddle board outing. With easy access to the beach and rental equipment available on-site, Martinique Beach is a must-visit destination.

Long Lake

Wooden dock Long Lake, Nova Scotia

Long Lake is just a few minutes from downtown Halifax and is a popular spot for paddle boarding. The lake is surrounded by lush forests and offers stunning views of the city skyline, making it a unique and memorable location. Make sure you bring your camera to snap a memory!

There is something for everyone at Long Lake. The calm waters are perfect for beginners who are just starting out with paddle boarding. There are also more challenging areas for advanced paddle boarders who are looking to test themselves more. If you have a four-legged friend who is up for adventures, this is the best place for you both. Make sure you know all there is about how to paddle board with your dog and enjoy the ride!

McNabs Island

Lighthouse at Mcnabs Island, Nova Scotia

McNabs Island is just a short boat ride from downtown Halifax. This is a unique and exciting spot to paddle board and see Nova Scotia from the water. The island offers a range of paddle boarding experiences, from exploring its rugged coastline to paddling through its calm coves and inlets.

Paddle boarding at McNabs Island is great for adventurous and experienced paddle boarders who are looking to take their touring paddle boards further. You can explore the island's natural beauty and wildlife, sighting a variety of birds, seals, and other marine life. Due to the island's location and the potential for changing weather and water conditions, it's recommended that only experienced paddle boarders attempt to paddle around McNabs Island.

Interactive Map


🏆 Where is the best place for beginners to stand up paddle board in Halifax?

For beginners who are new to stand up paddle boarding, the best place to start in Halifax is the calm waters of Kearney Lake. The lake is located in the heart of Halifax and is easily accessible with plenty of parking available. The lake is also surrounded by scenic wooded areas and is known for its tranquil waters, making it an ideal location for those who are just starting out with stand up paddle boarding.

Other places that are great for beginners to stand up paddle board in Halifax include the Bedford Basin, Dartmouth, and Shubie Park.

👍 When is the best time of year to stand up paddle board in Halifax?

The best time to stand up paddle board in Halifax is during the summer months, typically from June to September. During this time, the weather is warm and sunny, and the water is relatively calm and clear, making it ideal for paddle boarding.

In the summer months, the temperatures are typically mild, with average highs ranging from the mid-60s to low 70s °F (around 18 to 22 °C), which makes it comfortable for spending extended periods of time on the water. The warmer water temperatures also make it easier to stay on the board and enjoy longer paddle board sessions.

It's worth noting that the summer months are also peak tourist season in Halifax, which means that popular paddle boarding locations like the Halifax Waterfront and Crystal Crescent Beach may be more crowded during this time. For those who prefer to avoid the crowds, early morning or weekday paddle board sessions can be a great way to enjoy the water without the crowds.

🏝️ Do I have to wear a PFD to stand up paddle board in Halifax?

Yes, wearing a Personal Flotation Device (PFD) is mandatory when stand up paddle boarding in Halifax, according to Transport Canada regulations. This is to ensure the safety of all paddle boarders and to prevent accidents and drownings.

Additionally, it's important to note that wearing a leash is also recommended when stand up paddle boarding. A leash is a cord that attaches your ankle or calf to the board and prevents the board from drifting away from you in the event of a fall. This can help prevent accidents and keep you safe in the water.

❓ Where can I take my dog stand up paddle boarding in Halifax?

If you want to take your dog stand up paddle boarding in Halifax, there are several options available. However, it's important to ensure that your dog is comfortable with being on the water and is able to swim.

One popular option for dog-friendly stand up paddle boarding is Kearney Lake, which is located in the heart of Halifax. The calm waters of the lake make it an ideal location for stand up paddle boarding with your dog. Other options include Lawrencetown Beach Provincial Park, Shubie Park, and Long Lake.

📦 What should I wear to go stand up paddle boarding in Halifax?

It is important to be comfortable in what you are wearing when stand up paddle boarding. As always, dress appropriately and for the water temperatures, not the air temperature. During the summer months, you can wear swimwear, rash guards, and sun protective layers. If you plan to paddle board in the winter, make sure you have a thick enough wetsuit and neoprene boots to keep you warm.

📦 Can I rent stand up paddle boards in Halifax?

There are plenty of stand up paddle board rental outfitters located at popular destinations across the Halifax area. So if you have not taken the plunge yet and bought your own stand up paddle board, you will be able to still get in the water on your visit.

Jay Regan
Jay Regan

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