During each season Green River Canoes dedicates some of its Inn-to-Inn Guided Canoe Trips to the idea of families with youngish children to come canoeing with us to the Belgium Ardennes and to the Perigord and Lot regions in the south of France.
These trips will coincide with the school holidays, including the breaks around Easter and Whitsun, the long summer holidays and the half-term holiday in the Autumn term (usually towards the end of October).
The trips will operate on the same schedule as our other trips to the region except that we will make special efforts to ensure that the focus is on the wants of the children especially when it comes to the amount of time spent canoeing, the activities we pursue away from the river and making sure the children are fed and watered at suitable times. This is not to say that the adults will not also have a great time.
The trips we schedule in the school holidays will be those of a shorter duration: 5, 6 or 7 days. Although of course longer trips can be arranged.
We offer a discount to children under 12 years of age of 25% for the first child and 50% for subsequent children. For young adults under 18 the discount is 15% for the first and 25% for others.
The 7 Day Trip to the Belgium Ardennes also has a discount of 10% for all adults.
For the 2014 season we are offering the following trips to coincide with the school holidays:
5th-11th April: Seven Days in the Belgium Ardennes
13th-19th April: Seven Days in the Belgium Ardennes
25th-30th May: Five Days on the Célé in the south of France
23rd-29th August: Seven Days in the Belgium Ardennes
25th-30th October: Five Days on the Célé in the south of France
On all the trips we will endeavour to engage the children not only in learning how to canoe, but also assist them in attaining a certain level of water-craft and to become involved in the natural history surrounding us in and around the rivers.
We will also encourage the children to become engaged in the history of the region we visit in particular where we can visit castles and other historical sites. Of course we realise that this is a holiday too so we will try to avoid a too heavy-handed approach and take our lead from both the parents and the children about how we spend our time.
We will also encourage the children to learn something of the local culture where we are; this will involve the local cuisine obviously but also the observation and joining in of local events. We often come across Fêtes and Fairs and Festivals during the summer months.
We will usually canoe in tandem with one adult and one child per canoe, and if the paddlers become sufficiently proficient during the week then we may allow two children to paddle together. Closely watched, of course.
Children must be 7 years of age and be able to swim 25 metres. Life-jackets are worn by everyone when on the water.
Children older than 12 may canoe together after we have observed how competent they are.
The rivers on these trips have no white-water or rapids although the river can flow quickly in places. On our first few days canoe instruction will be given and everyday we will go over the safety drill before starting the paddle for the day.
Brochures can be browsed here and downloaded for offline reading.