What does it take to make a great kitesurfing destination? Is it only a question of great wind and water conditions? Is the weather, the ease of access and the numbers of other riders on the water equally as important? When we were compiling this list of ten great kitesurfing holidays outside of Europe, we had to take it all into account.
So, have a look below and see if you think we’re right. Or if there any other other kitesurfing spots that we might have missed. And if we have, will you be generous enough to share or would you rather keep it as your little secret?
Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt
In the news for the wrong reasons over the last few years, this is still one of the great kitesurfing holidays outside of Europe (and also one of the most convenient for European riders). With abundant facilities, a well developed tourism infrastructure and reliable wind conditions it ticks all the boxes. The relatively flat coastal landscape lets big winds sweep across the crystal clear waters, meaning that even if it is a little politically volatile, it’s well worth the risk.
El Yaque, Venezuela
One of the hidden gems of the Caribbean, the beach at El Yaque is stunningly beautiful, with abundant palms and warm turquoise waters meaning no wetsuit is required. It’s not exaggerating to say that this is one of the best places in the world for kitesurfing, largely thanks to the shallow waters, all year round sunshine and constant trade winds. Plus, the fact it’s not as hectic on the water as some more established destinations gives it a few extra points.
El Yaque beach has bars and restaurants dotted along it’s length. There are banging happy hours for party animals and excellent cuisine for that well deserved dinner after a full day on the water. For those that need more from the night time El Yaque has 2 night clubs which will take you into the early hours of the morning.
Margarita Xtreme Watersports Center has been running professional kitesurf courses in El Yaque since November 2000. As one of the original IKO affiliated schools we have successfully taught over 4,000 kitesurfers. We only work with qualified instructors that have prior teaching experience and hold all First aid certificates and rescue boat licenses. Using all new Cabrinha equipment each year and having rescue boats on hand you can learn in confidence.
For more information about kitesurfing in El Yaque or to book your lessons contact Margarita Xtreme Watersports Center on +58 412 359 7030, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit their website: www.margaritaxtreme.com
The coastal city of Agadir is a top base for great kitesurfing holidays, with some of Africa’s best riding spots found here or near by. The large sandy beach along the city’s waterfront is popular with kiters. If you have time, the two hour trip to Essaouira is well worth it too, with a vast sandy beach and powerful winds, it’s also a little less crowded.
Located in the north east of this vast country, Cumbuco has the large flat lagoons and big north easterly winds that many riders can only dream of. With warm water temperatures and miles of flat water and sandy beaches to explore, it is not surprising that it is very popular. Winds blow hard here, so bring your smaller kites or things could get out of control.
Cabarete, Dominican Republic
This small Caribbean town has built a big reputation for kitesurfing, with some of the world’s top riders choosing this as a regular training spot all year round. The trade winds and thermals make for consistent wind throughout the year, with almost 300 days of kiteable weather on average each year. Water temperatures are also very comfortable at around 26˚C so you won’t need a wetsuit.
Fishermans Hut, Aruba
The beach at Fishermans Hut on the stunning island of Aruba is situated far enough away from the high rise hotels to give you uninterrupted winds throughout the year. The warm, flat and waist deep water also provides perfect conditions for beginners to learn. And a little off shore things heat up for the more experienced riders. Add to that hours of glorious sunshine and a Caribbean way of life to envy, and it’s easily one of the great kitesurfing holidays outside of Europe.
Ellington Wharf, Fiji
Found in the northern part of Viti Levu, this is probably the most famous kitesurfing spot in Fiji. There is a windy passage between the mainland and some of the surrounding islands that provides a good chance of wind throughout the year. All levels of rider can find some suitable conditions here, and for those looking for something a little more serious, the other nearby spots of Sandy Beach and the island of Nananu-I-Ra offer a bigger thrill.
Borocay Island, Philippines
A beautiful tropical island lying in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean, it’s little surprise that Borocay Island is a very popular spot with riders. It has been rated as one of the world’s ten best beach destinations by Yahoo Travel and has steady, consistent winds for kitesurfers to enjoy.
As you would expect, the waters are warm, so you won’t need a wetsuit, although booties are recommended as the waters are rich with urchins. If you’re looking for a little spot of paradise to kitesurf, this could just be it.
Playa del Carmen, Mexico
Located just down the Caribbean coast from the huge resort town of Cancun, you’ll be just far enough away from the high rises and scores of tourists to make the most of the big winds here. The Caribbean coast of Mexico is unbelievably beautiful, with huge stretches of shallow turquoise waters and white sandy beaches to enjoy.
There is also a truly international kiting scene here, making it another one of the great kitesurfing holidays outside of Europe. The area, known as the Mayan Riviera, has also hosted some of the world’s best kitesurfing competitions, including the PKRA.
This tropical island resort in the North Malé atoll offers kitesurfers something a little different. It’s a serene and calm place, apart from the wind, which can get up. The pearl white beaches and azure waters are just begging for some kiting, and that’s exactly what many people choose to do here. Explore the waters of the coral lagoon and get your kicks, before heading back to the luxurious island to enjoy a little bit of pampering. If only all kitesurfing holidays were like this.
Le Morne, Mauritius
OK so this is number 11 but we couldn’t leave out Mauritius. This 45 x 65 km island gets steady trade winds, meaning 300 days of perfect kite conditions a year. The waters here are uncrowded, with versatile and easy to ride conditions that are suitable for all levels of rider. Enclosed lagoons, flat water, reef breaks and some spectacular surf mean all styles are catered for. Also Mauritius is stunning, with gorgeous beaches and luxury hotels – it is popular for honeymoons for a reason.
So, as you can see, there are plenty of great kitesurfing holidays outside Europe to enjoy. With a perfect combination of weather, wind and facilities, some of the above destinations could lay a genuine claim to be the world’s best.
We’re not going to tell you which would be top of our list and we don’t claim that these 10 are ‘the best’. In fact having got to the end of the list and not having included anything in the United States, Australia or Sub Saharan Africa it feels like we will have to write a ‘part 2’. The good news is there are lots of great kitesurfing holidays outside Europe to be explored!