Ballard Travel Guide for Paddlers

Ballard Travel Guide for Paddlers

Where to Stay in Ballard


Recommended Ballard Restaurants


Boat Ramps / Paddling Launches

  • 14th Street Boat Ramp, east of Ballard Bridge
  • Golden Gardens Park boat ramp and beaches
  • Shilshole Marina hand-carry put-in, north end 
  • Ballard Elks Club ‘Secret Beach’ put-in (hand carry) Must be Elks member
  • Commodore Park across channel on Magnolia Side, hand-carry


Paddling / Boating Shops

  • Surf Ballard – Surf/SUP shop across from the Ballard Elks (opens in May) Open during Round the Light Race
  • West Marine – in Ballard Blocks by 14th St Boat Ramp
  • NW Outdoor Center (NWOC) on Westlake and Lake Union in Seattle. Kayak and SUP. Great store.
  • Urban Surf – Surf, kite, foil and SUP shop, north end of Lake Union


What to Do / See

  • Sea lions most of the year from the Ray’s Boathouse dock
  • Visit the Ballard Locks to see the water go up and down, fish ladder and gardens
  • Golden Gardens Park to beaches
  • Shilshole Marina
  • Ballard Ave – Historic district with shops, beer, food, Kavu Store, and Sunday Farmer’s Market 


Puget Sound Weather Links

“I’ve had many SUP, surfing (and beyond) lessons world-wide but I haven’t found an expert in the area that compares to Rob’s level of quality experience, competency and teaching skills. Rob emphasizes safety first and caters to each individuals personal learning style in delivering quality instruction to paddlers of all levels. He truly went above and beyond and has set the bar extremely high for a business model that I hope to mirror. I will definitely return to him for further training.”
- Amber W

West Point Lightouse
Shilshole Bay