"Coastal sea kayaking" is offered as an optional shore excursion for cruise ships visiting Halifax ($133 US when we traveled). Six in our party (mix of two >40 men and 4 20's young folk) were picked up at the pier alongside Carnival Victory by a comfortable tour bus that made the 45-minute drive along the coast to Lower Prospect.
We were met by friendly staff who quickly got us oriented and fitted to the equipment we would be using (paddle, PFD, skirt, and boat). Then launched in groups of 12 (three tandem boats, 6 singles, and 3 guides) for a circuit of rocky islands and capes. We saw no sea mammals, though we were told that seals, otters, and the occasional whale have been sighted. Lots of birds of course, and fish in the shallows. The route took us out to the seaward buoy where a little bit of surfing was quite enjoyable, even a little bit of adrenaline rush.
The seascape provides an excellent respite from land-bound life. The paddling is not too strenuous; a little effort combined with the sleek kayak shape and judicious use of the foot-pedal operated rudder makes for a nice pace through the water. The guides provide good advice on choices of equipment, techniques, and what to watch for.
After a 2 hour paddle that ended all too soon, we had a little barbequeue at the boathouse--lobster roll, fresh fruit, and steamed mussels. Very tasty.
ECO is a community-based company that is well worth supporting. Clean facility with toilets, changing rooms, topnotch equipment, friendly and expert staff. Highly recommended.
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