With thousands of miles of inland waterways and the vast Atlantic Ocean all within easy reach, Long Island is meant for paddling.
The South Shore hosts a number of waterways with a tremendous variety of conditions. The Carman's River is the only major river on Long Island free of housing or industry on its shoreline. The entire river is a protected park and national wildlife preserve. The Great South Bay and Moriches Bay both have dozens of canals reaching inland and can boast conditions for the beginner paddle or present an adventure for the experienced sea kayaker, depending upon the conditions and where exactly you are looking to travel in your kayak. Remember to be safe, keep yourself close to shore and paddle in your comfort zone.
If one goes to the Jones Beach area, you have the option of enjoying the channels around Jones Beach or trying your hand at surfing or open-water paddling through the surf. This is excellent for the more adventuresome paddler. Surf kayaking is absolutely worth a try and can be tremendous fun.
If you are looking to enjoy the North Shore of Long Island and see what it has to offer, Northport Harbor and Cold Spring Harbor are 2 excellent locations to begin with. The paddles are very scenic, but there is some boat traffic to contend with. As always, you should be aware of the conditions around you and keep yourself close to shore.
Oyster Bay and Sea Cliff are also popular destinations rich with history and beauty. If you are looking for a calm North Shore river, the Nissequogue is an option, just be aware of strong tides.
Finally, head on out to the North and South Forks of the Island and enjoy an incredible array of options. A few suggestions would be Indian Island County Park to paddle Flanders Bay and the Peconic River. Head to Sag Harbor, Montauk or the waters around New Suffolk and Greenport and look for various put-in points.
We live on a beautiful Island, so take the time to enjoy and see it from a fantastic perspective.