Kayaking on Windy West Lake


Among a vast expanse of West Lake, listening the sound from water movement of kayak oars and feeling cool wind blowing through; surely drive away the heat on summer days in Hanoi.

Kayak is kind of familiar canoe to Vietnam people because a lot of tourism areas supply the kayaking service to tourists. However, for those who do not have time to travel far, they still have chance to experience kayaking in Hanoi. Especially, on hot summer days, more and more people choose the kayaking as an exciting heat reducing.

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West Lake on every afternoon- an interesting destination for a number of people

In language of Eskimo people, kayak means a canoe of hunters and be transcribed from word “Quajao” that was invented by hunters during their time of hunting. This kind of canoe is typically designed with long, taper and slender body, made of light wood covered with watertight seal skin or animal skins and totally controlled by human force. The length of kayak depends on body size of each person. Usually, the length of the boat will triple the length of an outstretched arm while the width in main cockpit is the width of the hip plus two fists.

According to the original design, this boat has a deck and one or more cockpits; each seat has a paddle. Besides, to prevent water come inside, the cockpit will be covered with a lid against waves and water jets. But under gradual development, kayak has been changed more; for example the material is not only made of wood, but also molded of rubber, composite plastic or fill with air. The seat on cockpit also varies from one up to several on the same boat.

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Kayaking for driving away the heat and discovering West Lake

Kayaking looks seem simple but it is not easy as a lot of people think. For everyone who wants to take part in this activity must be trained and practice beforehand. The training includes the work of making familiar with the small boat and how to steer the boat on water. The most difficult step for newbies is to learn how to control the boat on water surface. Due to the long body of kayak, it will be difficult to control it in areas with unpredictable currents or continuous turns. However, the West Lake does not have much big waves; it is easier for new participants. It is reason why training steps are much shortened.

Normally, West Lake starts busy on early morning and after rush hours. For those who like airy and fresh atmosphere, they can also start at dawn and for those who want to enjoy sunset over the lake; the time of the sun beginning to fall below the horizon is the ideal choice. At this time, the lake surface is not too hot and creates comfortable feelings for each participant.

When putting the kayak on water, beginners will feel awkward because they can not steer the boat on the direction they want, but when they are familiar with paddles, remember to trained skills, controlling the boat becomes easier. Then they only need to slowly steer it and exploring vast West Lake’s surface. Many people said when they put the kayak at the lake center is also the time of conquest feeling to a familiar destination.  They have expressed their interest right from the first try.

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