Dragon boating is a colourful action packed way of getting your activity group out onto the water.
The challenge is to get everybody paddling together, in time, that’s not as easy as it sounds!
We have two boats “Clifford” and “Eric”. Each boat can be crewed by up to 20 young people or 16 adults, we recommend a minimum of 12 people per boat. For smaller groups check out our voyageur.
We provide all the equipment you need, including one of our experienced helmsmen to get you organised and then take you out. It is great fun and it’s ideal for groups of all shapes, sizes, abilities and mixed age groups.
The session with one boat can be touring the lake with preparation for a time trail over a set course, if you are up for it. With two boats the session can focus on head to head racing over the same set course. This gives potential for up to 70 or 80 people in a “repechage” racing event, teams racing in a league competition.
Dragon Boat Racing has ancient Chinese origins and its history has been traced back more than 2000 years. The first participants were superstitious Chinese villagers who celebrated the 5th day of the 5th lunar month of the Chinese calendar. Racing was held to avert misfortune and encourage the rains needed for prosperity – and the object of their worship was the dragon. The dragon of Asia has traditionally been a symbol of water. It is said to rule the rivers and seas and dominate the clouds and rains.
Over the years a second story was integrated to give the festival a dual meaning – the touching saga of Qu Yuan. Legend has it that poet Qu Yuan was banished from the kingdom of Chu after the King fell under the influence of corrupt ministers. Qu Yuan spent many years wandering the countryside and composing great poetry until, on learning of his kingdom’s defeat, he leapt into the Mi Lo River holding a great rock in a display of his heartfelt sorrow. The people loved Qu Yuan very much and raced out in their fishing boats to the middle of the river in a vain attempt to save him. They beat on drums and splashed their oars in the water, trying to keep the fish away from his body.
Today Dragon Boat racing involves teams in 40 foot boats with a drummer and helm, paddling frantically to beat the other teams down the course. The drums, shouting and colourful boats make it an impressive and exciting sport both to watch and to compete in.
KIND WORDS FROM OUR GUESTS & VISITORS
Amazing morning dragon boating and canoeing with a big group aged 3 to 70+!
John was a fantastic guide and paddling coach!
So friendly and welcoming thank you!Leanne Shaw
Many thanks for a brilliant few hours on the dragon boats last Thursday.
The whole group really enjoyed it and said how fantastic all the instructors were.Lucy Mars
I’d like to thank you for a really excellent morning – the students very much enjoyed it and so did I!Tom - Sunderland Uni Students Union
Thank you so much for the event – everyone was still talking about it two days later!
It was really enjoyable and got everyone working well together.
Your guys were great and very encouraging and we felt very well looked after.
I have already recommended you to people I know in the area.Naomi - Warwick University
A fabulous experience with a thorough workout for my lungs! Thanks JohnSimon McElroy
Established in 1985, Platty+ is a small, friendly, family run water sports business based on the shores of Derwentwater, Keswick in the heart of Cumbrias Lake District.
Open 1st March to 31st October for hire. Call us if you require anything outside this period.