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Water bike on Lake St. Clair (Michigan)
Pedalo at the Stockholm Exhibition of 1930.
A paddle boat on Geneva Lake (Wisconsin).
Boats in Japan celebrating spring with a swan pedalo accidentally running into a row boat, 2022
Pedalos in Brazil (called pedalinhos)
Human-powered watercraft, aqua-cycle water trikes in the Pacific Ocean with Diamond Head, Hawaii in the background.

A pedalo (British English), pedal boat (U.S. English), or paddle boat (U.S., Canadian, and Australian English) is a human-powered watercraft propelled by the action of pedals turning a paddle wheel.


A pedalo is a human-powered watercraft propelled by the turning of a paddle wheel. The wheel is turned by people operating the pedals of the craft. The paddle wheel of a pedalo is a smaller version of that used by a paddle steamer.


Pedalos, being particularly suited to calm waters, are often hired out for use on ponds and small lakes in urban parks, as well as in beaches when the weather allows.


The earliest record of a pedalo is perhaps Leonardo da Vinci's diagram of a craft driven by two pedals.[1][2]

Typically, a two-seat pedalo has two sets of pedals side-by-side, designed to be used together. Some models, however, have three pedals on each side, to allow a person boating alone to pedal from a centrally seated position.


  1. ^ Dumpleton, Bernard (2002). Story of the Paddle Steamer. Intellect Books. ISBN 978-1-84150-801-6.
  2. ^ "Paddle Boat". Leonardo da Vinci Exhibit: the Models. Museum of Science and Industry (Chicago). 2006. Archived from the original on 13 November 2015. Retrieved 17 September 2015.