Kitesurfing in Hawaii
The Hawaii Islands are home to almost every geographic formation, climate and terrain in the world. This fascinating archipelago attracts outdoor enthusiasts from around the world year after year. Explore the rainforests filled with breathtaking waterfalls or summit a mountain for magnificent views where rugged landscapes meet the turquoise blue ocean. The culture of Hawaii is very diverse with densely populated urban, metropolitan areas combined with wild rainforests and deserts.
The year-round trade winds attract windsurfers and kiteboarders from around the world, the main kitesurfing season in Hawaii is over summer months when the wind is most consistent. Kitesurfing is not allowed on all beaches in Hawaii through the ones that do have amazing conditions with options for beginner-advanced riders. The two main kitesurfing spots in Hawaii are on Maui and Oahu:
Kitesurfing in Maui, Hawaii
Maui is a prime kiteboarding destination with more windy days than almost anywhere else in the world. The water is warm and the wind is consistent from May through October and continues to blow throughout the year just less reliable. Though Maui is famous for its monster waves, there are great spots for a beginner, intermediate and advanced riders.
Kite Beach is the best and safest beach for learning on the north shore because there is a nice landing zone downwind in case learners fail to ride upwind. Other kiting locations on the north shore include: Ka’a Point (for expert riders only because of the turbulent wind shadow and rocky downwind obstacles), Flash Beach (great for advanced and intermediate riders but it has lots of downwind obstacles including people, windsurfers, and a shallow reef), Lanes & Ho’okipa (expert wave riders only, there are large waves with dangerous downwind obstacles).
There are many regulations and guidelines in place to keep kiters and non-kiters safe on the beach and on the water. Before visiting Maui, be sure to do your research and know the rules before you go. Most importantly, speak with the locals -kite schools are always helpful- to make sure you are aware of all the obstacles, dangers and rules. If you are unsure, take a lesson!
Kitesurfing in Oahu, Hawaii
Turtle Bay, North Shore Oahu, Hawaii, by Benjamin Zieber. Source: Flickr.com
Kailua Bay is the best kiteboarding beach on Oahu Island. It is a north facing bay on the southeast side of the island. The trade winds blow year round and can range from 15-35 knots coming from the ENE. This direction is a perfect side-onshore wind safe for kitesurfing. The Bay offers riding conditions for everyone including flatwater, waves and chop.
Like the beaches on Maui, there are rules and guidelines in place to keep the beach safe for swimmers, kiters and people enjoying other watersports. There is a large grassy area at the north end of the beach park for rigging. It is important to get all your gear ready before getting to the beach so you can launch straight away and get out and away from the swimming area. Kiteboarding is allowed anywhere on Oahu and the locals would like to keep it that way, so following the regulations is compulsory.
Kitesurfing Lessons in Hawaii
There is a large selection of schools to choose from, which makes Hawaii a great place to take kitesurfing lessons. As a beginner, lessons are necessary and with warm weather and consistent wind, Hawaii is a great place to learn. It is also suggested for advanced riders to take a lesson from a local instructor to get the know the spot, rules, and regulations, learn about the wind patterns as well as any obstacles at the spot. Hawaii also offers an incredible opportunity to learn and advance in wave kiteboarding. Here is a list of schools:
Hawaii is an amazing country to explore with wind throughout the year and a variety of no wind and outdoor recreation activities. Enjoy hiking, mountain biking, sightseeing, camping, surfing or just hanging out on the beach. Hop island to island exploring the diversity of the country or spend more time in one area. A Hawaiian kiteboarding vacation is great for beginners-advanced riders with conditions from flat water to large waves.
See some of the best kite spots in the United States