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A landscape showing an arched bridge covered in colourful graffiti. Behind that a are green trees. All the bridge, the graffiti and bridge is reflected in the canal water below.

Kayak tour | Explore Hidden Birmingham

£35.00£40.00 (inc. VAT)

Explore parts of the canal those on foot can never see, as you paddle out of the city and into the greener side of Birmingham (yes, we promise there is one!).  

You’ll see the city differently as the apartment blocks fall away, revealing open skies and urban greenery on this kayak tour combining new routes with fan favourites. 

Catching the best sights and hidden areas of Birmingham from a totally unique point of view. 

Want to book a stag/hen party experience or make a private group booking for six or more? Visit our Group Booking page.

Further details


Exploring waterways hidden from regular tourists this tour will have you paddling past some of Birmingham’s recognisable locations including Brindley Place, Utilita Arena, the Roundhouse to name a few; but you’ll also head out of the city, away from the towering apartment blocks to an area of Birmingham often never seen by visitors. 

Icknield Port Loop was once the home to some of the most crucial businesses to protecting the UK with lighthouse lenses and camouflage paint, amongst other incredible inventions all being made on this small parcel of land.  

You don’t need any kayaking experience, specialist clothing or equipment – but a basic level of fitness (walking up the stairs without being out of breath) will ensure you can enjoy our kayak experience.

The tour is around 3 miles in total and is led by a professionally qualified British Canoeing Instructor.

All kayaks, paddles and safety equipment are provided. You must wear a buoyancy aid, regardless of your swimming ability, so you’ll be safe if you fall in. Sit back, paddle and have fun!

What’s included:

  • Birmingham Highlights Kayak Tour
  • See the city’s canals from a duck’s view
  • At around 90-minutes on the water you’ll be paddling along different canals and sections of original and improved canals.
  • Expert advice, full training and safety briefing from your fully qualified instructor.
  • All kayaks, paddles and safety equipment are provided.
  • Free downloadable photos of your experience.

What happens on the day:

  • On arrival, you’ll be warmly welcomed at the Visitor Centre and you’ll meet your expert tour guide.
  • The team will give you full training and a safety briefing – you don’t need any experience or specialist equipment.
  • You’ll explore waterways and visit places along the canal inaccessible to the average pedestrian.

What about the weather?: Guided tours will go ahead in all but the worst of weather. If we need to cancel the tour due to high winds or thunderstorms, we will reschedule at the earliest opportunity.

What should I wear?: Gym-style clothing is best because these won’t hold any water when wet.Everyone must wear footwear; old trainers, crocs, flip flops are all great. 

Great for: People looking to go kayaking in Birmingham; seekers of hidden gems; a unique experience; a bit of fresh air with people; something memorable to do with visiting family and friends. 

Fancy organising a private tour just for your group? Visit our Group Booking page.

Event Details

Dates: Various Saturdays from March-September.

Time-slots: 10:30am-12:30 or 13:30-15:30.

Meeting Point: Please check in at the Roundhouse Visitor Centre on arrival, 15 minutes before your tour starts. 

Directions: View our Getting here page for detailed directions. 

Duration: From introductions through to a chat at the end, you should allow around two hours for this guided experience, with 90 minutes on the water. 

Suitable For: 8 years plus, all under 18’s must be accompanied by an adult. We recommend that those that are 8-12 years take advantage of our two person kayaks to get the most out of the experience. Requires a basic level of fitness and mobility. Maximum weight: 18 stone.

Visitor Information 

Guided tours will go ahead in all but the worst of weather. If we do need to cancel a tour due to high winds or thunderstorms we will reschedule at the earliest opportunity. 

Please provide proof of your eligibility for concessions or discounts on arrival. 

Spectators are welcomed but unfortunately we can’t guarantee full sighting of the participant for the whole duration of the tour.

What to wear: 

It’s best to wear gym-style clothing, because these won’t hold any water when wet; jeans, leather and wool are not ideal for kayaking. 

Everyone must wear footwear; old trainers, crocs, flip flops are all great. 

You’ll get a wet lower half, as you are exposed to the drips from your paddles and splashes. You may get a small puddle in your seat, so we'd recommend wearing some waterproof trousers if you have them. If you don’t own any, we do have some waterproof trousers and jackets available to borrow. 

There's a small chance you may fall in, so we recommend bringing a towel and a change of clothes, just in case. Should you be unlucky enough to fall in, we have an onsite shower.  

What to bring: 

We have lockers available for your bags, and we recommend that no valuables are brought to the Roundhouse. We strongly recommend that no phones, wallets, or sunglasses are taken on the water and we will not be held responsible for any loss incurred. 


Looking for something to eat and drink after your tour? Ticket holders receive 20% off food at The Distillery pub and 10% off food and drink at Ristorante Caffe Arena.Discount is valid on the day of your tour on production of your ticket. Booking is recommended.

Alternatively, you’re welcome to bring a packed lunch to eat in our courtyard. 

We are an accredited British Canoeing Delivery Partner.

You want to know that the centre you choose is high quality, and that’s what the Delivery Partner badge means. A paddling centre displaying the British Canoeing Delivery Partner badge has agreed to the Delivery Partner Charter. This means the paddling centre has agreed to high standards of safety, value for money and customer service.

The badge is an indication to schools, parents and other customers that the partner takes its responsibilities seriously. They will use highly trained, qualified and competent staff, to deliver a high-quality customer focused product.

Venue: The Roundhouse

Directions: 1 Sheepcote St, Birmingham B16 8AE

Related products

Kayak Tour FAQs

Most frequent questions and answers

Kayaking is easy to pick up, we cater for all abilities on our tours and our guides are trained in being able to assist you should you require further advice.

Many people may think that kayaks are easy to flip over but they are a lot more stable than they might look, we have chosen the kayaks specifically for their stability.

Sports clothing is light, dries easily and doesn’t make you freeze, simply stay away from denim, leather and wool and you will be fine. We can provide waterproof jackets and trousers to keep you drier too!

You need to wear something on your feet during the tour; old trainers, crocs, sandals all work well.

There will always be the odd splash and dribble that will get you damp and, because of the nature of the kayaks that we use, you will get a wet bottom!! We can provide waterproof jackets and trousers to keep you drier though.

And, of course, we recommend bringing a change of clothes should you capsize.

Yes, we always assume that no-one can swim. If someone should capsize our guides will be there to assist you; normally, because the canals are only 4-6 feet deep, you could stand up.

All participants regardless of ability will be required to wear a buoyancy aid provided by us.

Due to equipment limitations the maximum weight we can currently cater for is 18 stones.

Our buoyancy aids have a maximum chest size of 50 inches.

Both of our kayaking tours involve approximately 90 minutes on the water

It’s better to book all our tours in advance. You may be lucky if you show up on the day and one of our guides will be available but we recommend always pre-booking.

8 years old and upwards (because of the size of our equipment)

We don’t recommend taking any valuables on the water, we are not responsible for any damage and loss.

We have lockers available free of charge for tour participants.

We have lockers suitable for bags and personal items available for all tour participants free of charge.

Please visit Visitor Reception to book in, your guide will meet you there.

A canoe is paddled with a single-bladed paddle, and you will have seen these paddled generally by two people. A kayak is paddled from a sitting position with a two-bladed paddle.

We use sit-on-top kayaks, which mean should you fall off you’ll simply slide into the water.

We paddle on the canals so if you are not participating you can walk alongside but there is a lot of places that can’t be accessed by pedestrians.

We do have 2 x Two person kayaks available; these are ideal for an adult and young person. These will need to be arranged on the day so please mention this at the earliest opportunity.

We do have facilities for changing available in our visitor centre and a shower should you take a dip in the canal, however the shower is not for general use.

Group Booking FAQs

Most frequent questions and answers

Please get in touch with us to organise a group booking.

Alternatively please visit our Group Booking Page for more information on how to make a booking enquiry.

Roundhouse Birmingham accepts card payments and cash. We accept all card, Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay, except for American Express. We don’t have a cash machine on site – you’ll find the nearest one in Brindley Place.


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