01690 720214

White Water Sea & Surf For Families

Course Overview

You've decided you like kayaking. Now it's time to experience racing down the face of a surf wave, bouncing down a rapid and running a tide race. These five days of white water fun will give you an introduction to all the techniques you need to handle a boat in the exciting wild water of British rivers and sea. You'll also be introduced to Eskimo rolling and we guarantee you'll have plenty of opportunity to develop your cold water roll!!

Experience Required

Confident flat water paddler with the ability to manoeuvre your craft with ease

Scheduled Dates

Detailed Course Notes

You should be 8 years old to attend this course.

Who is it for?

This course is for kayakers who have mastered the basics and would like to broaden their experience. White water, sea kayaking and surf kayaking each demand different skills and techniques, which we will introduce. You should have basic kayak control skills, and be able to paddle a kayak round a predetermined route on flat water.

Course Content

The week starts with consolidation of your existing skills, making use of our heated training pool and local venues. After an induction session, students may use the training pool without staff supervision for extra practice during any spare time. Later we will travel to canoeing locations around North Wales for coaching and training on white water, sea and surf skills. The following is a list of the canoeing techniques we aim to cover:

  • Revision of the foundation skills and preparation for more challenging environments

  • Eskimo roll

  • Trip preparation, coaching and planning

  • Kayak equipment and clothing

White Water

  • High crosses

  • Eddying in and out

  • Surfing waves and stoppers

  • White water safety and rescue procedures

  • White water grading

Sea Touring

  • Running tidal white water

  • Coping with wind and waves

  • Strategy on coastal trips / navigation

  • Rescues, safety and security at sea


  • Paddling out

  • Catching waves

  • Diagonal runs

  • Bottom turns

  • Rides and turns

Useful Books

Kayak by W. Nealy
White Water, Safety and Rescue by Franco Ferrero
Sea Kayaking by Nigel Foster
White Water Kayaking by Ray Rowe

What's Included In The Price?

Whether you choose to stay with us or you have alternative accommodation nearby, the following items are included in the total cost.

    Free tea, coffee or selected hot drinks for the duration of your visit
    Afternoon tea & homemade cakes
    Kayak or canoe hire
    Secure boat storage (if you choose to bring your own boat)
    Equipment hire
    Free (low-speed) wifi access in the bar & dining room
    In course transport
    Railway station pick up & drop off (please call to arrange)
    Parking with CCTV surveillance
    Free use of climbing wall, gym, MTB skills course & rolling pool

    If you choose to stay with us, these items are also included in the total cost:

    Accommodation the night before your course
    Accommodation during your course
    Breakfast & evening meal
    Bar Lunch/packed lunch

Accommodation For This Course

Plas y Brenin Main House

Your course is based at Plas y Brenin, The National Mountain Sports Centre in Capel Curig, North Wales, LL24 0ET.

If you are staying with us,

If you have chosen to add accommodation onto this course or holiday it is usually in the main house in a comfy en-suite room (normally shared with another guest). Each room has tea and coffee making facilities and all bed linen and towels are provided.

This includes accommodation the night before your first day. Your room will be available from 6pm. On your last day you will need to vacate your room by 10am. It is sometimes possible to arrange to stay an extra night please phone 01690 720214 for availability and cost.

Secure storage facilities, showers and toilets are available for you to use on your departure day once you have checked out of your room should you need them, please ask at reception.

Also included, if you chosen to add accommodation, are all your meals - breakfast, packed lunch, afternoon tea and freshly baked cakes and a three course evening meal. Please bear in mind an evening meal is not provided on the night before your course or on the last day of your course but our bar will be serving meals from 7.00pm until 8.45pm.

If you are are not staying with us but coming in each day,

If you choose to come in daily for your course or holiday you will need to arrive ready for a 9am welcome talk on the first day. For the rest of your course or holiday you will need to be here for 9.15am. We return from a full day of activity, usually in time for tea and cakes at 5pm (included).

There are more activities from 5.30 - 6.30 on some days of your course or holiday, please check on the first day.

For most of our awards and qualification courses there will be further evening sessions on some days which you need to attend, please check on the first day.

There is an 8pm adventure talk by one of our coaches on Saturday, Monday and Wednesday evenings which you are welcome to come to. Find out more about the upcoming talks here.

On the final day you will be finished by 5pm.

For courses based on-site our bar will be serving lunches from 12pm until 2pm or you are welcome to bring a packed lunch.

If your course is based away from the centre then you will need to bring a packed lunch with you. Each evening our bar serves evening meals from 7pm until 8.45pm if you wish to eat here.

You can arrange to have any of the following meals - breakfast, packed lunch and a three course centre dinner, by contacting our customer services team on 01690 720214 or

follow this link for more details

What Equipment Do You Need To Bring?

  • Thin fleeces/thermals/rash vest for going indoor a wetsuit

  • Swimming costume/trunks

  • Wetsuit boots (or training shoes you're happy to get wet)

  • Wetsuit socks to wear with wetsuit boots/training shoes if cold

  • Wetsuit/Dry suit

  • Paddling cag

  • Warm clothes for when you get off the water

  • Warm hat, gloves, neck gaiter/buff, sun hat

  • Towel

  • Waterproof jacket and trousers

  • Buoyancy aid

  • Helmet

  • Drinks bottle

  • Flask

  • Lunch bag/box

  • Personal first aid kit

  • High factor sun screen

  • Midge repellant

  • Large kit bag (for wet paddling kit)

  • Notebook and pen

  • Dry bag

  • Boat

  • Paddle

  • Spraydeck (if kayaking)

The following items are available for you to borrow from our equipment stores free of charge so you don't need to rush out and buy them.

  • Wetsuit

  • Paddling cag

  • Buoyancy aid

  • Helmet

  • Dry bag

  • Large kit bag (for wet paddling kit)

  • Boat

  • Paddle

  • Spraydeck (if kayaking)

Our equipment stores stock wetsuits socks which you can purchase if you find you need them during your course

Please bring your child's car seat/booster seat with you for use in our minibuses, this is so not only is your child comfortable but safe during any journeys and ensures we comply with the law regarding seat belts.

All your meals are included but you may find that your child will need regular snacks in order to keep their energy levels up throughout the day, so we recommended bringing some of their favourite snacks with you.

Customer Reviews For This Course

Another fantastic week at Plas y Brenin

John Kennett

This was our third family holiday at Plas y Brenin so we knew what to expect and weren't disappointed.

The usual clean and comfortable accommodation, great food and cake, fantastic array of boats and equipment, plus top notch coaching and guiding in great locations.

Thanks to Adam for putting a great schedule together for us and making sure that the programme met everyone's varying needs. Thanks too to everyone working behind the scenes to make it such a smooth operation - admin staff, housekeeping, stores - and especially the catering team.

We'll be back again :)

The Best Instructors

Sean Harris

We were a mixed group of paddlers. The instructors quickly assessed our abilities and expectations and provided a program that everyone in the group would benefit from. I am returning to kayaking after many years break as my children are beginning. We all gained significantly from the instruction given.
The accommodation was high quality and the food was great.

Masses of fun!

Andrew & the boys

A fantastic week, Sid and Glen provided support and challenge for all of us on the water. Finn had only done a few days beforehand and so a highlight was seeing him surfing a river wave holding his paddle guitar fashion. Home comforts back at base were tip top and the climbing wall was a big hit.

A wonderful family holiday

Salvage Family

We spent a week at Plas y Brenin in June to extend our kayaking. We are a family of 4 with children aged 11 and 14. Chris Evans was our course leader and he was First Class, giving us a superb time and helping us achieve so much more than we thought we could. Some of us even managed to roll! We kayaked several rivers, went in Sea Kayaks and even surfed. A wonderful week, Thanks Chris, you were brilliant. We'll be back.

Jon Halewood

Great introduction to a number of different styles of kayaking, helped along by good mix of people, able coaching, and sunshine (nearly) every day.

Not found what you were looking for?

You can hire one of our coaches instructors or guides from only £250 per day. They'll tailor the day to suit your aims and aspirations perfectly.
You can enjoy one to one coaching for that cost or if you get together as a group, depending on the activity, you can split that cost between up to 6 of you. If you are a group we can run any of our courses on a date that suits you and your friends. Or you could just write your own agenda for a week or weekend and we'll price it up for you - with or without accommodation. What's more, just like out normal course fees, our private instructor hire charge covers all your equipment too. Click on the link below to fill in a request form and one of our coaches will call you back (or e-mail if you'd prefer) to discuss things in detail with you.

Fill in a Callback Form

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