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Kayaking the Upper Newport Bay

Newport Bay Conservancy

Kayaking the Upper Newport Bay

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Event Details

Currently all NBC Kayak Tours are CLOSED due to Covid-19.  Please refer to our website or Facebook/Instagram for updates.  We are working on ways to safely guide our guests back on the water and we look forward to seeing you soon.  For questions or more information, please contact: Carissa Macias at  Thank you for your support!

What to expect: 

As you practice your technique, you will get a view of picturesque bluffs merging with the wetland, shore birds feasting in the tidal flats, stingrays gliding under your boat along the calm bottom, and silvery mullet fish jumping gleefully out of the water.  Upper Newport Bay is one ot the only wetland environments in Southern California that you are allowed to kayak in, which makes this experience unique from other kayak expeditions in harbors or along the coast.  The water is calm and mostly shallow, and the land is always within swimming distance.  There are no motorized boats allowed or ocean waves, making this a peaceful way to learn kayaking or build upon skills in a mellow environment.

**Double kayaks are assigned to even numbered reservations (party of 2, 4, etc).  Individual kayaks are held only for odd number reservations (party of 1, 3, etc.) and naturalists.  Children ages 8-12 MUST ride with an adult (18+) in a double kayak.**

What you will learn:

Naturalists will make 2-3 stops to allow the group to rest and catch up where they discuss various aspects of the ecology and natural history of the Bay.  Each tour is unique with different wildlife sighting depending on the season and state of the tide. In the summer it is common to see open-water skimmers and terns that come here to nest predominate as well as more sting rays gliding through the warmer water.  In the winter, there is a huge abundance and diversity of migratory birds from shorebirds, ducks, and grebes visiting from Canada and Alaska.  Each naturalist guide will have their own passions and interests in various topics in the Bay, however, if you are looking for more information on a specific topic, please contact us to consider a private tour.  

How to be prepared:

All participants will help to set up their kayak and work together to carry the equipment from the storage area to the water's edge.  This requires participants to be relatively fit and able to carry up to 30 lbs for a short distance.  Come prepared for the elements wearing layers, sun protection (even in winter), and be prepared to get a little wet.  Electronics such as cell phones, car keys, and cameras are not recommended unless properly protected.  Any items lost or damaged will not be replaced by the Newport Bay Conservancy.  Make sure to arrive at least 15 minutes prior to tour to check-in and fill out waiver (minors under the age of 18 need parent signature on the waiver).  No dogs allowed on tour.  Lightning or heavy winds/rain cancel tour.

**All participants are expected to be able to swim, lift, and paddle efficiently.  Any participants that may have disabilities or limitations should contact Carissa Macias at prior to booking a reservation.

Groups/private tour: 

There are options for groups of 10 or more to tour together privately.  Consider us for your next class field trip, scout experience, or staff bonding activity.  Contact Carissa Macias at for more information.  

Have questions about Kayaking the Upper Newport Bay? Contact Newport Bay Conservancy

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Newport Bay Conservancy

The Newport Bay Conservancy (NBC) is a nonprofit organization focused exclusively on the protection and preservation of Upper Newport Bay – one of the most precious natural resources in Southern California.

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