09/13/2011 04:21 pm ET Updated Dec 01, 2011

7 Ultimate Kayaking Trips (VIDEO)

Tourist boards seem to wheel out the kayaking photos whenever they want to promote a place as an aspirational destination, often regardless of the reality on the ground. We've gotten used to the Canadian tourist board touting shots of sea kayaks floating yards from pods of killer whales, but are visitors really going to Ethiopia for the kayaking as the large posters in the Addis Ababa arrivals hall would have us believe?

Which brings us nicely along to the topic of the day: The best places on earth to go kayaking. In contrast to tourism board practices we've limited the selection to those places that are at least accessible to a beginner paddler.