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Canoeing on the River Spey
River Spey

Summit to Sea in 4 days

From £475 per adult

Departure days

  • M
  • T
  • W
  • T
  • F
  • S
  • S

May — October

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An extraordinary journey taking you from over 1200m above sea level in the heart of the Cairngorm mountains, down the River Spey by Canadian canoe to the sea on the coast of Scotland. An awesome wild experience for the adventurer in you.

This tour is available on a 'request-only' basis for a minimum of 4 people

An extraordinary journey taking you from over 1200m above sea level in the heart of the Cairngorm mountains, down the River Spey by Canadian canoe to the sea on the coast of Scotland. An awesome wild experience for the adventurer in you.

You will camp for 3 nights in wild campsites, taking in the wonderful surroundings of the Cairngorms National Park and Spey Valley.

Day 1 – scaling the heights of the Cairngorms

Meeting in the bustling Highland capital of Inverness at 8:30AM you and your fellow adventurers, will travel towards the Cairngorm Mountains to start your 4-day adventure.

Your objective today is to reach the summit of Braeriach the UK and Ireland’s second highest summit. The walk is relatively straightforward for reasonably fit walkers but no technical skills are required. 

We can also offer less adventurous groups an alternative walk that isn’t quite so strenuous. This walk would take the group via An Lochain Uaine (the Green Lochan) towards Ryvoan Bothy and then up over Meall a Bhuachaille, offering amazing views over Loch Morlich and beyond. Please contact us about dates if you prefer this option.

Having conquered the heights of Braeriach, we have a little surprise for you before you descend.  You are unlikely to have heard of Loch Coire an Lochan, but this is the highest named loch in the UK at 1000m above sea level. If you’re up for it, you can take a quick wild swim the old-fashioned way, with no wetsuits, in just your swim-suit!  It’s not for everyone, but the opportunity is there for you, if you’re up for it. 

After your day on the hill, we’ll collect you and take you to the next leg of the journey. After arriving at Cromdale on the River Spey, you’ll pack your canoes and make your way a short distance down river to camp at an awesome island campsite. With a campfire flickering and the tents in place, it will be time for a 3-course meal to replace all that energy used up on the hill during the day.

You’ll have no trouble sleeping this evening with tired legs after a day in the Highland fresh air.

Day 2 - the river adventure begins

After your short introduction to the river on Day 1, things start to get a bit more interesting today as you start to get a feel for the character of the River Spey. No big rapids today, simply an appetiser for the next day. A relaxed day getting a bit of coaching if you need it, learning a bit about the River Spey’s rich cultural and industrial heritage and looking out for wildlife.

Day 3 – the River Spey shows its true character

A very exciting day today as you progress downriver through the heart of the Speyside whisky region. You’ll encounter the well-known ‘Washing Machine’ rapid early in the day, test your new-found canoe skills on the Knockando rapids and continue down river towards Craigellachie. We’ll aim to reach one of our favourite wild campsites on the Spey.

Day 4 – the coast in sight

After the adrenaline-fuelled day 3, day 4 will be a bit more relaxed, as the river meanders its way towards the sea. You’ll notice the character of the landscape around you change markedly and start to smell the sea air as Spey Bay approaches.  As the expedition reaches its finale at Spey Bay our driver will collect the group and return all to Inverness for onward travel by train, bus or plane. If anyone needs dropped off at accommodation in Inverness, we can do that as well.

This is a wonderful journey, led by an experienced guide travelling through a variety of landscapes from the alpine plateau of the Cairngorms to the salty sea at Spey Bay.

Minimum age: 15 years old. No previous canoe experience required but is beneficial. Must be able to swim 25m.

Contact details

In Your Element
14 Cabrich
Aviemore Inverness City Centre
Boat Kayak Walking
Private Small Group (1-16)
Adventure Canoeing/Kayaking Family Landscapes Wildlife

Tour prices


  • £475 Per Adult
  • £475 Per child
Book now

Prices are subject to change depending on season


Tour company information

In Your Element

In Your Element is a mobile outdoor adventure activity company offering fun days out, activity holidays & amazing outdoor experiences across Scotland. IYE have bases at Inverness & Loch Ness, Aviemore in the Cairngorms National Park, Loch Tay in Perthshire and at Loch Lomond Shores near Glasgow. We offer a range of ready-made, canoe-based experiences and holidays, but can also tailor-make holidays for groups based on particular requirements. Please do get in touch if you would like more information.

Opening times

We offer activities and experiences throughout the year, but mainly from May to October. Please check our website for up to date availability.

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