Kayak in Lombardia - BergamoXP

kayak in Lombardy: the 10 best itineraries

kayak in Lombardy: the 10 best itineraries

Sea kayaking, also known as flatwater kayaking, is used for excursions on the sea, lakes, and calm rivers. With its long and narrow hydrodynamic design, it differs from white-water kayaking, which is generally shorter and more tapered, suitable for fast-flowing rivers with steep gradients and rapids.

Sea kayaking offers a unique perspective of the landscape and provides intense contact with nature. Being immersed in water and able to reach places otherwise inaccessible from land makes it a rewarding experience.

To navigate a sea kayak, you need a basic level of technique that involves understanding the physics and dynamics of kayaking, as well as a minimum level of physical fitness to sustain the continuous paddling effort. Without the help of currents, your muscular effort generates the propulsive force.

The difficulty of sea kayaking depends on the chosen route, distance, and weather conditions. If you’re new to the sport, it’s advisable to rely on specialized centers for guided outings or to take a basic course before attempting independent trips.

Despite being landlocked, Lombardy, our region, boasts numerous rivers and lakes that are ideal for sea kayaking. These locations offer captivating views and landscapes of high natural interest, making them rewarding experiences. In this article, we will list and analyze the main sea kayaking routes in Lombardy..

  1. Garda Lake
  2. Iseo Lake
  3. Endine Lake
  4. Como Lake
  5. Novate Mezzola Lake
  6. Maggiore Lake
  7. Adda river
  8. Ticino river
  9. Oglio river
  10. Mincio river
Iseo lake

Garda lake

Garda Lake, also known as Benaco, is the largest lake in Italy. The Lombardian shore offers several interesting routes. We would like to highlight two in particular..

The first is the area around Manerba, with the picturesque Isola del Coniglio and Isola del Garda. In spring, the blooming flora makes this route a feast for the eyes. Occasionally, BergamoXP organizes a sea kayaking trip of about 20 km here. The second route is around Sirmione, where the peninsula of this beautiful town is perfect for a day trip.

kayak Garda lake BergamoXP
Garda lake

2. Iseo lake

Moving westward, we encounter Iseo Lake, a hidden gem among Lombardy’s lakes. There are several interesting routes for sea kayaking here.

One recommended route is circumnavigating Monte Isola, the largest lake island in Italy. BergamoXP offers a kayaking tour of Iseo Lake that includes this experience. Another fascinating route explores the Orrido del Bogn and Castro gorges in the upper Sebino area on the Bergamo side.

Kayak on Iseo lake BergamoXP
Iseo Lake

3. Endine Lake

The tranquil green waters of this small Lombardian lake in the province of Bergamo blend with the surrounding woods and hills. With its shallow depths and absence of motorboats. it’s an ideal route for beginners or those seeking a relaxing day in nature. BergamoXP also organizes fantastic kayaking excursions here!

kayak on Endine lake - BergamoXP
Endine lake

4. Como Lake

Among Lombardy’s lakes, Como Lake offers numerous options and itinerary possibilities for kayaking. You can paddle along each of its three main branches.

On the Como side, historic villas and their botanical gardens, such as Villa Carlotta and Villa del Balbianello, provide a scenic backdrop for your journey. BergamoXP occasionally organizes kayaking trips here as well.

On the Lecco side, the bulk of Mount Moregallo which plunges straight into the lake will accompany us to the famous town of Bellagio. Finally, in the central and upper part of the lake, we will be able to observe the splendid tourist villages of Varenna, Dervio and Colico from the water. BergamoXP organizes a kayak outing in Varenna, look at our proposal!

Kayak Como Lake - BergamoXP
Como Lake

5. Novate Mezzola Lake

Venturing to the northernmost part of Lombardy, this route offers an intense experience. As the starting point of the Valchiavenna, Novate Mezzola Lake, formed by the Mera River, is set against the backdrop of the Rhaetian Alps and spectacular cliffs which, as they descend south towards Como Lake, give way to the reeds and marshes of the Pian di Spagna Nature Reserve. BergamoXP occasionally organizes a kayaking excursion of about 20 km here.

Novate Mezzola Kayak - BergamoXP
Novate Mezzola Lake

6. Maggiore Lake

This lake that forms the border between Lombardy and Piedmont boasts the Borromean islands, one of the most beautiful archipelagos of Italian lake islands, which absolutely deserve an exploratory paddle. Particularly appreciable is the flowering of the botanical gardens of these islands during the spring. Pay attention only to the high boat traffic! Alternatively, you can choose to explore the southern part of the lake, to observe the splendid hermitage of Santa Caterina del Sasso from the water. The more trained can then also reach the famous Rocca d’Angera, but between the round trips it is about 30 km of paddling.

Kayak Maggiore lake
The Maggiore lake

7. The Adda River

Let us now review the main rivers of Lombardy and start immediately with his majesty the Adda, the most important tributary of the Po, in terms of flow and length. One of the most interesting stretches to visit by Kayak is that of the Brivio marshes, reachable only by water, inserted not by chance in the Adda Nord Park. During our outings, BergamoXP offers a kayak excursion in this area. The stretch that goes from Porto d’Adda to Trezzo is also of scenic interest. Going down, in a purely agricultural context typical of the lower Lombard plain, there are finally the stretches between Lodi and Pizzighettone.

Kayak Adda BergamoXP
The Adda River

8. The Ticino River

The Ticino river, like Maggiore Lake from which it flows, is the natural border between Piedmont and Lombardy. Precisely in its lowest stretch, near Vigevano, this river offers an exceptional natural environment, thanks to the presence of the Ticino Natural Park, and which certainly deserves to be traveled.

Kayak Ticino BergamoXP
The Ticino River

9. The Oglio River

The Oglio river, emissary of Lake Iseo, is easily navigable by kayak in its stretch between the lower Brescia and Cremona areas, inside the Oglio Nord Park, between placid current, wide bends and sandy beaches, meanders and wooded areas. The stretch of the Oglio closest to Iseo Lake, although with a higher current, has numerous artificial barriers and dams, which make its navigation not easy, if not downright recommendable.

Kayak Oglio
The Oglio River

10. The Mincio river

We close this overview with the Mincio river, emissary of Garda Lake. Also in this case, the stretches that are easily navigable by kayak are in the lower part of its route, from Pozzolo to Mantua, in order to avoid the numerous and often dangerous artificial barriers along its path. The stretch near Mantua is very suggestive, where the river fades into the upper lake and creates an incredible natural area made up of reeds, lotus flowers and numerous meanders, which host a very rich ecosystem.

Kayak Mincio - BergamoXP
The Mincio River


BergamoXP is the first aquatic sports center in the province of Bergamo. We are a team of nature enthusiasts, outdoor and adventure lovers, connoisseurs of our territory and professionals specializing in the disciplines of Kayak, Canyoning, Rafting, Hydrospeed, River Trekking.

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