With nice weather finally here, it’s time to get outdoors and enjoy everything the beautiful Pacific Northwest has to offer. And what better way to reconnect with nature than by taking a tour by water with Kayak Nisqually: Puget Sound Adventures. It’s a completely different way to observe the area that we see every day.

“It’s kind of like going for a walk versus driving a car. You’re going to notice things when you go for a walk that you might just pass by if you were on the freeway,” owner Sam Kaviar explains. And judging from my recent excursion with him, I have to say he’s right.

Kayak Nisqually
At Kayak Nisqually: Puget Sound Adventures you don’t need any experience to enjoy a tour. Photo courtesy: Kayak Nisqually: Puget Sound Adventures

When Sam took me out on a tour, I had no idea what to expect and also no experience, but luckily it really doesn’t matter. He is more about connecting people to their surroundings and just getting out on the water and enjoying it, than he is about technique. Although he will make sure to show you how to paddle and stay safe, he wants you to relax enough to fully experience your time with him. “Being in a kayak is a very intimate way of being in the water. You’re right down in the element. You can reach down and touch it. You get to be a part of it,” Sam says.

Although Sam is happy to take individuals on tours, he’s also discovered the positivity and fun that can come from business retreats as well. “There’s a lot of research that shows being in nature is really good for the brain and sparks creativity. It allows people to be more productive,” he explains.

Karen Warwick with Warwick Chiropractic was the first to give it a try and says, “Everyone from age 5 to 40 to forty had a great time. It was family friendly for those who brought kids and still challenging and fun for those who didn’t.” Karen says the best part was being together as a team, enjoying nature and the picnic lunch on the beach. “I would definitely recommend Sam and the kayaking experience to other business groups. He was an excellent, safety conscious, well-educated guide,” she adds.

Sam Kaviar
Owner Sam Kaviar says he’s always been most comfortable out in nature. Photo courtesy: Kayak Nisqually: Puget Sound Adventures

“It helps build a sense of belonging and it helps people to know each other in this totally different way than how they normally interact at work. It’s super positive with everyone working together for a goal, but in a very fun atmosphere,” Sam shares.

So whether it’s an extended lunch tour or something longer, Sam is happy to accommodate whatever a business’s needs might be, even if it means changing up the scenery. “I’ve got the capacity to travel to other locations if that’s more convenient. If a group doesn’t want to come down to Nisqually, then I could run a tour in a lot of different places, but honestly it’s perfect down here for what I do and worth the drive,” he says laughing.

Recently Sam decided to add yoga to his repertoire by becoming a certified instructor so he can include that in his tours as well.

Kayak Nisqually kids on beach
At Kayak Nisqually: Puget Sound Adventures all ages will find enjoyment. Photo courtesy: Kayak Nisqually: Puget Sound Adventures

However, even with everything Sam has to offer, what really sets Kayak Nisqually: Puget Sound Adventures apart from the crowd is Sam’s personal wildlife knowledge. It’s not just a kayak tour, it’s truly an education in nature. With a biology background focused on observing animals in the field, Sam is quick to point out exactly what you are seeing and often things you may have missed on your own. For instance, spring is perfect for watching birds and Sam knows just how to approach the seals so they don’t spook. “There are ways you can teach people to observe wildlife that’s gentler on them. It’s all about just being here and being in the moment. It’s an exercise in patience.”  If an educator is interested in a kayak tour as a field trip, Sam has graduate-level education in animal behavior he can offer.

Kayak Nisqually sunset on water
Not only does Kayak Nisqually: Puget Sound Adventures offer day trips, but sunset tours are also available.
Photo courtesy: Kayak Nisqually: Puget Sound Adventures

Currently, Sam can take up to 10 people on a tour at a time, but he hopes in the future to expand his business to include more kayaks and other guides. Adventurers can choose from half-day, full-day or sunset bioluminescent tours. And he even offers some overnight tours as well. So whether it’s a date night, bachelorette party, birthdays or business retreat, kayaking is a great way to connect with yourself, others and nature no matter what the occasion. “I’m so excited to be back on the water. You never know what you’re going to see when we go out, it’s always different.”

To book your own tour or find out more information, visit Kayak Nisqually: Puget Sound Adventures.

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