Boat Rentals


The Waterfront Activities Center located on the shores of Union Bay, the gateway to Lake Washington. We are conveniently located within a short walk of the UW Lightrail station, on the south side of Husky Stadium. Spring through Fall we rent kayaks, canoes, and rowboats. Our boat selection can accommodate a single paddler up to a group of four. Come by yourself, a group of friends, or the family and experience a paddle around the Union Bay Natural Area admiring the wildlife such as Bald Eagles, Osprey (also known as Seahawks), and various types waterfowl. Pack a picnic and paddle to the Washington Arboretum and enjoy the protected waterways and hiking trails that provide spectacular animal and people watching.

We are open to the UW Community and the public, seven days a week.  We are also pet-friendly; dogs are allowed in our boats (no life jackets provided).  UW Students and UW Faculty/Staff receive a discounted rate when they present their valid Husky Card.

Boat Rental Hours

Month Days of Week       Times
November – March Closed for the Season
April Daily 11:00 am – 5:00 pm

Rental Rates

  (Per Boat)*

Renter Types Single Kayak Double Kayak Canoe Rowboat
UW Students $/hour $/hour $8.00/hour $/hour
UW Faculty/Staff $/hour $/hour $10.00/hour $/hour
General Public $/hour $/hour $12.00/hour $/hour

Rental Details

Rental Eligibility

  • Boat rentals are available to the greater UW Community and the Public.
  • Must be at least 18 years of age with valid ID to rent a boat.
  • Children must weigh at least 25 pounds and be able to walk on their own.

What to Expect

  • Rentals are always first come – first serve basis; No reservations.
  • Life jackets and paddles are supplied with every rental.
  • Life jackets must be worn and buckled at all times.
  • Boaters and personal item onboard will get wet, please plan accordingly. Dry bags are available for rent to protect valuables such as phones and wallets from splash damage. Dry bags do not float and will not protect items in the event of a capsize.
  • Maximum Occupancy for each boat type
Boat Type Maximum Occupancy
Single Kayak 1 Person
Double Kayak 2 Persons
Canoe 2 Persons (3 Persons if the third is 90 lbs or less)
Rowboat 4 persons

Group Outings

  • We do not offer a walk-up group discount. Schools and organizational groups must schedule an outing no less than 14 days in advance.

Discounts and Payment Methods

  • Patrons must have current UW Husky Card to receive established UW rates.
  • Only one ID may be used per boat.
  • Payment must be made by check, Visa, MasterCard or Discover.
  • Prices do not include sales tax.

Important Dates and Hour Changes

  • Opening Day of Boating Season: May 6, 2017
  • UW Rowing Regattas
  • Home Football Games (September 9 & 16, October 7 & 28)
  • Off-Season: November 1-March 31