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Canoe Annapolis County

Route 19 – Annapolis River

Record #: MCA0385
Last Modified: 11 Apr 2019
Last Full Update: 08 Feb 2018


Public Bulletin To view additional access locations between the towns, go to 'Click Here' in the information section.


Located In Annapolis County
Where To Find Us
Access: Kingston
Bridge St
Other Site Locations Access: Middleton
Bridge St
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Access: Lawrencetown
Lawrencetown Lane
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Access: Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Park (Bridgetown)
Highway 1
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Access: Boat Launch & Annapolis County Park (Annapolis Royal)
Highway 1
Granville Ferry
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Areas Served Annapolis County

Description & Services

Information The route follows the Annapolis River from Kingston to Annapolis Royal, beginning as a shallow, meandering stream flowing through forested areas. As it proceeds westward, it becomes both wider and deeper, flowing through rich cultivated farmland. The river is generally flat, moving water with low to moderate wind exposure with no portages. However, fallen trees and other debris can obstruct a waterway. Caution is advised in the spring and after intense storms. A pipe across the river west of the highway bridge in Lawrencetown may present an obstruction during very low water levels. 
Although the route passes through developed and intensively farmed areas, the perspective from the river is surprisingly of remoteness and solitude, and offers a reasonably safe, enjoyable paddle throughout its length. The river may be entered and exited at a number of points, allowing the paddler to experience as little or as much of the route as time allows. A complete traverse of the route from Kingston to Annapolis Royal will require overnight stops on the river, but many day trip opportunities can be enjoyed as well. The river is relatively narrow and protected from wind between Kingston and Bridgetown. The river between Bridgetown and Annapolis Royal widens dramatically, and is prone to strong winds. This section is more appropriately suited to kayaking and sailing, but is an excellent paddle by canoe with appropriate attention to wind and weather. 
West of Paradise, the river becomes tidal, and water levels and currents will fluctuate. This section, where salt and fresh water meet, is referred to as “estuarine”, and is one of the reasons the Annapolis River is so well known for its variety of fishing opportunities - bass, salmon, trout, smelt, mackerel and many others depending on the season and location along the river. Clean Annapolis River Project is a non-profit organization dedicated to the ongoing stewardship and protection of the river habitat. In 2015, they held their first annual Annapolis River Festival. 
It is very important when launching from, or approaching the causeway at Annapolis Royal, to avoid the two Nova Scotia Power control gates. There are floating booms across the approaches to the gates. The gates control the flow of water between the Annapolis (west side of the causeway) and French Basins (east side of the causeway), and water flows are strong, turbulent, and pose a serious hazard to small craft. Refer to Landmark 9 and 10, Map 10. 
Click HERE for launch location(s), map and route details.
Trail or Water Route Map