Stand Up

Paddle & Pedal Boarding

Cardiff’s iconic reservoirs

Brought to you by Welsh Water

Following an unconfirmed case of ‘swimmer’s itch’ at Lisvane and Llanishen Reservoirs, open-water swimming sessions and stand up paddle-boarding are postponed until further notice.

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Stand-Up Paddle & Pedal Boarding in Cardiff

At Lisvane & Llanishen Reservoirs, we welcome beginners, seasoned pros and everyone in between.

You can bring your own kit and pay to launch your craft or hire all the equipment you’ll need from us.

Stand Up Paddle Boarding

Stand-up paddleboarding is an offshoot of surfing where instead of laying on the board, you stand up and use a paddle to propel yourself. The board itself is larger than a surfboard too. One of the UK’s fastest growing sports, paddleboarding is a fantastic all-body workout and fun for all ages.

We also have our Jumbo SUP which is a paddleboard large enough for eight adults to paddle at the same time. This board is extremely stable and a good choice for those who need a very stable platform or extra support.

Stand-Up Pedal Boarding

Stand-Up Pedal Boards are a new watercraft that combines the fun of a SUP, with the comfort of handlebars. You step on two pedal pads on the board and this drives two fins side-to-side beneath the board propelling you forwards with incredible efficiency and speed…

Take Care

All of our activities are planned and delivered in such a way as to work with and preserve the very delicate natural environment we have on site. As such, we restrict numbers, access and types of activities to ensure our programme is delivered responsibly. If you have any questions, our team would be happy to explain.

Swimmer’s Itch

Regular monitoring shows that the water quality is excellent at Llanishen Reservoir. However, a naturally-occurring microscopic worm has been found in the reservoir and it may cause a condition known as ‘swimmer’s itch’.

What is swimmer’s itch?

Swimmer’s itch, also called cercarial dermatitis, appears as a mild skin irritation or rash caused by an allergic reaction to certain microscopic worms that infect some birds and mammals. These worms are released from infected snails into fresh and salt water (such as lakes, ponds, and oceans). Swimmer’s itch is found throughout the world and is more frequent during summer months.

To reduce the risk of swimmer’s itch

The swim course & launch point have been moved away from the shallows and into colder, deeper water.

For open water swimming sessions and activities where there is a high risk of immersion such as stand-up paddleboard hire, users are required to take the following precautions:

— wear full length wetsuits and swim caps

— cover any cuts and grazes with waterproof plasters

— clean any wounds as soon as possible after leaving the water

— try not to swallow the water

— take a warm shower with soap immediately after exiting the water, and rigorously towel dry

What are the signs and symptoms of swimmer’s itch?

Some people are more susceptible than others to getting affected. A little bit like mosquitoes who seem to go after certain people.  Symptoms can include:

— tingling, burning, or itching of the skin

— small reddish pimples or small blisters

Because swimmer’s itch is caused by an allergic reaction, if you are repeatedly exposed to the worm, you may get more severe symptoms.

Although uncomfortable, symptoms generally only last a few days, but they can last longer. You can’t spread the rash to other people, and it doesn’t need treatment. If you have swimmer’s itch, it is important that you don’t scratch the rash – scratching may cause the rash to get infected. You may find it helpful to try over the counter treatments to help relieve/reduce any itch symptoms you have – speak to your pharmacist or another health professional if you need advice.


Watersports activities are undertaken entirely at participant’s risk.

It is important to remember that swimmer’s itch is not the only thing that can give you a rash or make you feel unwell after being in contact with open water. See a health professional for advice if you feel unwell after contact with open water or if you have symptoms that are unexplained or getting worse.


For further information about Swimmer’s Itch at Lisvane & Llanishen Reservoirs, read our statement here.

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