After looking at a half dozen different companies that offered kayaking trips, we decided on Anacortes Kayak Tours (AKT) and we were extremely happy with our choice. We choose the Cypress Island trip.
Briefly, the company communication was great, the guides were highly trained professionals and were a lot of fun to be with. The food was delicious and tailored to our preferences and dietary needs (in my case, vegetarian). All necessary equipment was provided and was new and of high quality. Our guides were attentive to our every need and making sure we were having a fun, exciting and memorable trip. Now for more specific details…
To start with MEGAN, the owner, was very friendly and helpful over the phone and emails were answered promptly and thoroughly. We had lots of questions and she addressed each one. Definitely an A+ for communication.
We met our guide GARY and were pleasantly surprised to find two new guides WHITNEY and ALEX were also joining us. Both of the girls were 1st year with AKT so were “shadowing” GARY to learn company procedures. Let me emphasize that these guides were NOT some kids just looking for a fun summer job. Each of them was a very experienced kayaker with a wealth of education and diversity (and some great stories that they shared with us along the way). Now I know most people won’t get 3 guides (except for larger groups) but I was really impressed with the skill, training and experience of the guides AKT hires! You will get a guide that is an expert in the tides, weather systems, plants, animals, safety, equipment, first aid and HAVING FUN!
For example, GARY pointed out plants and animals, from soaring eagles to sea stars to playful harbor seals. WHITNEY cooked up some rockweed (a kind of kelp) for us to try that popped like popcorn! ALEX showed us native plants (on Cypress Island, where we stopped) such as mushrooms that were edible (although we didn’t eat any). All of them – GARY, WHITNEY AND ALEX – all seemed to be having fun and were certainly fun to be with. In planning our specific activities and route, they took into consideration our abilities and interests and made suggestions around those things.
The equipment was definitely top notch. The kayaks were new, very comfortable and a good quality. They even included a comfy cushion to sit on in the kayak. All the paddling gear was provided and suited the trip and conditions.
Like I said before, the food was delicious. Lots of fresh fruits and veggies. It was great. Plenty to eat, including snacks along the way.
Lastly, just a few suggestions. Sunscreen and lip stuff with SPF in it is a must. I accidently grabbed a chapstick without SPF in it and my lips got a bit burned. Second, if you have a waterproof camera (bring a strap for it to hang around your neck) there are lots of picture taking opportunities. Like us, you might get a cool shot of an eagle or a harbor seal. But you will definitely see some gorgeous scenery. Our guides were also willing to use our camera to take pictures of us paddling, which was cool.
In summary, you will not be sorry if you book with AKT. They are definitely a great company. We spent 10 days in the Washington area doing all kinds of sightseeing and our kayaking excursion with AKT was definitely the highlight of the trip. That’s all we’ve talked about since getting home! If I lived closer (I live in Florida) I would definitely book with them again soon. But I will keep them in mind for my next trip to the area.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
June 20, 2013
We are so glad that you had a great time with us Karen!
Report response as inappropriate
Gary, Alex, and Whitney are such great people and we are happy to have them as part of our team this summer. I appreciate that you recognized the professionalism of our guide staff. You are correct, we do not hire kids just looking for a fun summer job, we want well rounded leaders with strong skills in kayaks. Anyone taking folks out on the water has a "higher duty of care", and we owe it to our guests to make sure their trips are conducted safely.
I am also glad that you enjoyed the meal plan. Megan works very hard at making every trip a culinary delight, she is the backbone of Anacortes Kayak Tours in so many ways.
Thanks for taking the time to post this review, we hope to see you out here again some day!
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.