The upper reaches of the Hamble are a jewel to explore on a lazy summer day, where the wind rustles through the reeds, the swans glide serenely on calm waters and you can dip your toes over the side into the cooling waters.  It sounds beautiful and it’s all accessible from Fairthorne Manor.  For the first time, you can now access this unique riverside setting for your adventure either by launching your own craft or by hiring one of our stand up paddleboards, kayaks or canoes.

Tide times

In line with changing government guidance we are closed from Wednesday 6th January and will reopen as soon as restrictions are eased. Please continue to visit the Facebook page for the latest tide updates.

As we are so far up river, access is limited to when there is sufficient tide available.  Please see the below schedules and check the pinned post at the top of our Facebook page for the latest access times, including any changes we need to make due to weather conditions.

Please ensure if you are using the river during the week you stay on the river bank once parked and do not wander about the site.  We will review this arrangement regularly and will remove weekday access if necessary.

The current and forthcoming schedules can be viewed below:

Car parking is available on a first come and right beside the water; if the waterside car park is full more space is available on our main field. Our staff are available at the river to ensure those hiring equipment are suitably briefed.

Covid 19

During the COVID-19 pandemic, a number of measures are in place so please follow the instructions of YMCA staff.  These measures include card only payments, social distancing at point of hire, handover of equipment protocols, checking in on the Test & Trace app and cleaning processes.  We now have toilets available for river users – please speak to a staff member about which ones are available during your visit.

Canoe Adventure

Launch your Own Craft

Launch your own kayak, canoe, stand up paddleboard or small dinghy for just £5 per craft per visit.  Launch is from our pontoon and the slipway.  The slipway is relatively steep for dinghies with no vehicle access, so dinghies are limited to 6m and maximum 10hp.


Craft Hire

The calm waters are perfect for gentle paddles in a canoe, sit on kayak or stand up paddleboard with hirers permitted to travel up river towards Botley.  Hire our following range of craft by the hour (max. 4 hours) which includes a buoyancy aid per user:

SUP – 1 adult or 1 adult & 1 small child

Sit on top kayak – single or doubles

Open canoes – combination of 2 adults/2 children, 1 adult/3 children, 3 adults/1 child, 3 adults (4 adults not permitted)

As we have a limited number of craft, hires are subject to availability.  See our River hire agreement below for more information.  Last access is 90 mins before end of hire session to ensure hirers make the most of the time.

jess and maxine full size pic

What to wear & bring

If you’re hiring our craft please remember to bring a towel. At certain times of the year the water is cold so a wetsuit is advisable if you have one (YMCA does not provide wetsuits). Footwear must be fixed at the rear; flipflops and crocs are not permitted. Please ensure all mobile phones, keys and other personal possessions are not taken out onto the water. YMCA does not provide any waterproof bags with your hire, but can be hired separately subject to availability.  Please speak to reception when organising your hire.


Prices & booking

Booking and payment is made on the day.  During the current COVID pandemic, payments can only be made by card.  See below for information on prices.  Contact us on 01489 785228 with any queries, but please note during COVID-19 leave us a message and we will respond as quickly as possible.  Alternatively, see our Facebook page and send us a message.

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