Where can you take a boat ride in the Phoenix area? While there are several lakes within and hour or two from Phoenix where you can actually fish, water ski and enjoy powerboating. If you are looking for a simpler boating excursion you can do that right in town at Tempe Town Lake on the Rio Salado (Salt River) near downtown Tempe. Tempe Boat Rentals operates a watercraft and boat service to give visitors to Tempe Beach Park and Tempe Town Lake even more recreational choices.
Tempe Town Lake is an urban lake just north of the Mill Avenue District in downtown Tempe and is near Arizona State University. You won't get lost on Tempe Town Lake -- it's only about two miles long and less than 1/4 mile wide. At its deepest point, it is about 19 feet deep. The lake is periodically stocked with fish, including bass, sunfish, catfish and rainbow trout. Standard fishing license requirements apply. Tempe Town Lake is a popular place for rowers, and there are rowing and boating classes and clubs that operate there. Each year the Ford Ironman Triathlon uses Tempe Town Lake for the swimming part of the competition. Please note, however, that public swimming -- people or pets -- is not permitted in the lake.
You can enjoy skating, walking, biking, picnicking and playing in Tempe Beach Park, which is adjacent to Tempe Town Lake. You can take a Segway tour of the park, too. Then head right over to the boat dock for some relaxing watercraft fun. There are single and double kayaks, pedal boats, hydrobikes, pontoon boats and electric skiffs available to rent. Whether you want to do the work, or you want a motor to do it, whether there's just one or two of you or a bunch of you, you have plenty of options here.
Tempe Boat Rentals is accessible by METRO Light Rail!
What is required to rent a boat at Tempe Town Lake?
A driver's license and credit card are required in order to rent a boat at Tempe Town Lake. There must be someone 18 years old or older out on the water with any underage boaters; they may not go out by themselves. There are some human-powered watercraft that may be operated by someone that is underage as long as they are big enough to operate the equipment. For instance, they have to be able to reach the pedals on the pedal boats or the pedals on the hydrobike.
Here are a few more things that you should know before you venture out to Tempe Town Lake for a boat ride:
- No pets are allowed.
- No special attire is required.
- The water is calm, but you may experience wake from other boats.
- If you renting watercraft from Tempe Boat Rentals, a Tempe Town Lake boat permit is not required.
- You may not leave the watercraft during your rental period.
- There's no swimming in Tempe Town Lake unless you are participating in a special event (which you won't be if you are renting from Tempe Boat Rentals).
- Life vests are provided, and children 12 and under must wear a life vest while they are out on the water.
Location and Cost of Tempe Boat Rentals
Tempe Boat Rentals is at the dock on the south bank of Tempe Town Lake. This is not the same place as the marina or boat launch area for those that have their own boats. The best place to park to get to Tempe Boat Rentals is in the lot just north of the intersection of Rio Salado Parkway and Ash Avenue, on the west side of Tempe Beach Park. That lot might not have available spots on a day when there is an event taking place at Tempe Beach Park. You can check for street restrictions and closures at Tempe Beach Park here.
Tempe Boat Rentals Address:
72 W. Rio Salado Parkway
Tempe, AZ 85281
Tempe Boat Rentals Phone:
Here is a map with directions to Tempe Town lake/Tempe Beach Park, including instructions for access by METRO Light Rail.
Human-powered boats (kayaks, standup paddleboards, pedal boats) are available on a walk-up basis only. Larger, powered boats may be reserved in advance. You will be charged for a one-hour minimum rental. Time over one hour will be prorated at 15-minute intervals. The rental for human-powered boats ranges from about $15 to $25 per hour. The largest-human powered craft is a Deluxe Paddleboat and seats four people.
All dates, times, prices and offerings are subject to change without notice.