Woman holding binoculars Join today and get outside at one of our 60+ wildlife sanctuaries.
Woman holding binoculars Join today and get outside at one of our 60+ wildlife sanctuaries.
Stone bridge over water with trees in background
Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary, Topsfield

Canoe Rentals at Ipswich River

Travel the Ipswich River by Canoe

May-October, Tuesday-Sunday

Canoe with us beginning Memorial Day weekend! Mass Audubon members can rent a canoe and travel the Ipswich River Tuesdays through Sundays, May through October, when the sanctuary is open.

We provide paddles, PFDs, and a key to unlock the canoe at the canoe landing on the river.

Check in at our visitor center beginning at 9:00 am to rent a canoe. Canoes must be returned by 3:30 pm, before our visitor center closes. 

Three canoes with two people in each paddling down a river. Dead trees and green vegetation on the banks are in front of them.
Ipswich River, Topsfield

Canoe Rental Fees


$20 for the first 2 hours and $10 for every additional hour per canoe.

Weekends & Monday Holidays

$30/3 hour rental, or $60/full day, per canoe.

Rules & Restrictions

  • Renters must be current Mass Audubon members and at least 18yrs of age. You may join at time of rental.
  • Availability is limited on a first come first serve basis. We are unable to reserve boats. You may call ahead to ask if we are renting.
  • Maximum of 2 canoe rentals per member.
  • Each canoe accommodates a maximum of 3 adults or 2 adults with 2 small children.
  • The canoes can only be used in the Ipswich River and within the boundaries of the sanctuary. No canoes are permitted in Bunker Meadow.
  • All renters must wear a PFD (personal flotation device) in canoes at all times.
  • Visitors are not permitted to launch their own canoe/kayaks from our landing due to accessibility concerns.
  • No alcohol, pets or fishing are permitted.
  • Canoe rentals will be suspended during severe weather warnings, which include thunderstorms, high winds, and extreme heat events. We reserve the right to refuse canoe rentals for safety concerns or otherwise.

Good to Know

  • Canoe landing and boat rack is a 0.3-mile hike (approximately 10-15 minutes) from the Visitors Center down the Bunker Meadow trail to the Ipswich River Trail.
  • Canoes are locked on canoe racks and are heavy (70-80 pounds), requiring 2 adults to access canoes from racks and get into the water.
  • We recommend paddling upstream when leaving our canoe launch and return downstream.
  • Wear close-toed shoes that can get wet.
  • Bring a dry bag, sunscreen, bug spray, and water bottles.