Stand Up Paddle in the Heart Rome with SUP Rome!

SUPROME is an 18  KM paddle adventure that bisects the ancient of Rome and passes under ancient Roman bridges. Currently at its fifth edition, SUPRome is a total paddle experience, international paddlers will join together to feast their eyes on the eternal city.  Organiser Roberto Crosti who has been paddling in the urban and wild environment since 1980, introduces the SUPRome event to TotalSUP.

Hi Roberto, can you introduce the event?

Well let me begin by saying¬† “Rome wasn‚Äôt built in a day hey (laughing) . SUProme officially started ¬†in 2015. It evolved from the annual journey that a crazy group of paddlers on the 1st May, which they have been doing¬† for 40 years. Each year they paddle for 7 days down the Tiber river, starting from the mountains. For the first edition we decided to join them for the section in Rome. That 1st edition there were only few SUP paddlers amongst all the other paddle crafts (kayak, canoes, rafters). Each year the number of SUPrs have increased and in 2017 there was a record of 50 fifty boats in the water. Which included people¬† from several other European counties!

Can you describe the route?

After all the paddlers have met up we will head to the starting point, this is located in the northern fringes of Rome, this will be done with shuttle busses. Right from the get-go paddlers will be immersed in striking Roman architecture, immediately after the start you will be able to see the famous Rome Olympic stadium,  just before crossing under Ponte Milvio, a bridge built in ancient Roman times, around 110 BC.  The event will then end up at the southern outskirts of the city after bisecting through the city centre. We will stop for lunch under Castel Sant’Angelo from where the San Peter Cathedral can be discovered within walking distance.

All along the river paddlers will be able to admire the beautiful architecture. There is 2000 years of history to discover on the banks of the Tiber. Paddlers will be able to take it all in especially from all the different bridges  that we paddle underneath. So many different types of bridges to discover from Roman to Renaissance, late 1800, early 1900, Neoclassical and contemporary bridges all built by famous architects. My personal favourite sections is the old industrial urban area, with the iron bridges and structures, especially the old Gas factory. We will provide a waterproof map at the start to help identify all the sites from the river.

SUPRome is a journey rather than a race, so is it a mass start, or are the paddlers put into groups?

We will descend the river starting together, then we spread out along the river, paddlers will be free to chat with other and relax in the surroundings. The challenge is not so much winning but a challenge to see how much beauty you will be able to capture with your eyes, and excitingly enough, this year also with your ears! Because we have the¬† ‚Äúsailoring jazz band‚ÄĚ playing music on the Tiber whilst on an inflatable raft! After spreading out the paddling group will converge again before the rapids (where it is possible to portage).

Even though we are spread out, safety is paramount. On the river several canoe and SUP instructor will guarantee the safety for participants. We will have an initial meeting to explain the potential difficulties present on the river and how to face or portage (passing on the river banks) the rapids. Andrea Ricci, an Italian river SUP instructor will lead the safety for SUPRome. But generally, paddling on the Tiber is easy. Just to note that it is compulsory to wear buoyancy jacket and helmet during the descent!

Can you describe the ambience?

The day is a¬† paddler extravaganza. SUProme will combine with a big group of paddlers (both canoes and SUPs) that will have started the journey the one week before on the 25th of April. They will have descended all the Tiber river in seven days so to join SUPRome on the 1st of May.¬† Plus in the city other paddlers will join SUPRome, including rafters and many other boats. Different languages, different ages (including kids), different countries, different ‚Äėboats‚Äô all meeting together! Thousands of people from the bridges and the river banks will be on hand to encourage the paddlers. Also there is also a bike tour along the river banks¬† organized so that friends and relatives can follow the paddlers. In addition, SUPRome is a Single-use plastic free event, so remember to bring your water bottle, you can fill it up from every household water tap in Rome.

Why should we register? 

For the food feast¬† at the finishing line with the pizza real ‚Äúroman style‚ÄĚ ‚Ķwhat else‚Ķ
If you are excited about this epic adventure register here, do it before the  8th April and you will received an early bird discount!

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About the Author

Helen Trehoret

SUP, OC1, V6, Surfski ... and field hockey coaching, Helen is a busy British mother of two who lives in Bretagne, France with a passion for all things Ocean. Helen runs Barrachou SUP, a SUP tour company specialized in excursions around Bretagne and Scotland.

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