Canoeing the Ardeche in Southern France

The Ardeche is a river in the South of France in what is known as the Massif Central, and is possibly one of the most renowned rivers for canoeing on in the whole of France, if not the entire European mainland.
What tends to attract people (and it especially appealing to families) is a combination of the amazing and frankly quite beautiful scenery and surroundings, along with the picture postcard typical French villages and towns that line the route, and offer the kinds of rustic French cuisines, wines, people, architecture, wildlife, and atmospheric genre that screams the heart and soul of France from every pore.

Ardeche canoeing

If you enjoy warm clear water, blue skies, sunshine, and wildlife that you probably won’t see in the UK like beavers, wild boars, eagles and goats, then you are in for a real treat.

One of the most popular white water experiences is at the “Gorges de l’Ardeche” which is a run of gorges covering a roughly 30 Km river section in a typically French canyon that combines an exciting and exhilarating canoeing experience across 26 grade 2 rapids, along what you might call a nature reserve that is bordered by huge steep-walled limestone cliffs that extend above and around you.

One of the companies offering these life changing tours is the Outdoor Experience, and they have 3 packages to choose from, which include an 8Km descent, a 2 day canoeing experience, or the ultimate canoeing experience which includes 5 nights in a 3 star accommodation to make your experience complete.

What you end up with, whichever package you choose, is a truly unforgettable experience.

The wonderful feeling of navigating the powerful rapids, and feeling to be so close and riding upon the powerful river itself is truly an adrenaline inducing and awe inspiring experience especially as you watch the kayas in front of you take their turn, and in breath-held anticipation await your turn.

It is incredible, heartbeat raising fun!

One of the main things to consider is that the canoe journeys are tailored to be suitable for everyone, you don’t need to be an Olympic athlete, these are after all family oriented (as much as anything) holidays, and so can be tailored to be as demanding – or relaxing – as you desire your holiday to be.

In the summer time the weather can be very hot and so you will need to remember to bring sun screen, especially for your children or fairer skinned canoers, apart from that a swimsuit or shorts is the perfect attire, although flip-flops or some kind of water suitable footwear in advisable.

In cooler times of year, thick warm clothing includjng jumpers, cardigans, sweaters, and neoprene clothing is advisable, as the temperature really does drop quite considerably compared to the summer and spring months.

Of course you will be advised of other things you ought to bring like drinking water, etc., nothing is left to chance as you would expect – the aim is the perfect experience for everyone, young or old, new to canoeing or experienced.

Everyone wants to have a perfect adventure, and the providers of these trips also want you to have a perfect experience and adventure, and so don’t imagine that you will be left to your own devices, or to make your own decisions or work out for yourself what you need to do or bring.

Experienced guides and canoeists are always on hand and with you every step (or is that paddle) of the way.