Cape Town, South Africa

Cape Town, has gained its fame in the kite community as  early as in the late 90ies when there were already many kiters at blouberg beach. The red bull king of the air has turned it in one of the world’s greatest kiteboarding hubs for the southern hemisphere. There are many spots with various conditions from flat water to huge waves. When the clouds are hanging over table mountain, count 10 to 15 minutes and you ll be on your 7m. The strong Cape Doctor winds like they call it blow out of the southeast almost every day from october till may.

The majority of kiting around the Cape Peninsula happens in Table View, north of the city, where the wind blows from the left. Sunset Beach is the closest to Cape Town city.  Here the southeaster wind kicks in first and it can take while before it reaches the other spots further downwind. 


Ross-Dillon Player (RSA) in action on Day One of Red Bull King of the Air 2019. Image credit: Tyrone Bradley / Red Bull Content Pool.

Further north passed the bay you will come to Dolphin Beach and then Kite Beach, where the wind blows cross-shore. Dolphin Beach is a nice spot to start a downwind because there are many spots up north, all the way up to ‘Big Bay’ and beyond. 

Round the corner at Big Bay there’s a pleasant grassy área next to the beach with some bars, restaurants and shops, what makes it a nice pit stop if you re traveling with your wife or family. Expect to share the spot with windsurfers and sharks, but don t worry, there has not yet been registered a shark attack on a kiter in those areas. And the windsurfers: most kiters tend to ride slightly downwind from the windsurfer. Do so at Kamers, First Stone or Eerste Steen, Derde Steen and Horse Trails but these spots are much less crowded!

Further up there is an advanced wave spot called Haakgat. Even further up you ll see Melkbos which is the last spot on this stretch of coastline. General rule is if it is too strong south: head up further north for less wind.

WIND & CLIMATE

It blows generally reliable and strong during south african summer (December and January being the peak). There is mostly no Wind during the morning, but  30+ knots by mid-afternoon.

Summer has very pleasant temperatures of 25 -35 C in contrast to very cold atlantic water temperatures averaging 14 C. Head southeast of the city to the Indian Oceans to get up to 19 C. You’ll have to suit up, sometimes even a 4mm with booties and gloves.

OFF THE WATER

Plenty of things to do beside kitesurfing in and around capetown. Go hiking or mountainbiking in the beautiful mountains around Capetown. Visit the winefarms or go for a safari in the national parks. You can go see the pinguins at the cape, or go cage diving and see the great white shark from up close.  

Capetown is famous for its great food at cheap prices. It `s a great place to go healthy with lots of juice bars, fresh seafood restaurants etc. For accommodation most kiters prefer to stay around Sunset Beach / Table View / Big Bay (but also Muizenberg, southwest of the city) where there’s plenty of choice, from guest houses and hostels to luxury self catered homes. Around camps bay you can rent a 4 or 5 star villa for a reasonable price and you will be close by, to crash one of the many fashion parties in that neighbourhoud. To go shopping there are many options with many shopping malls spread over the area.  

It is easy to get around with a rental car, beware to drive on the left though. Crime can be an issue, so stay alert, and don `t drive into the townships.     

Dakhla, Marocco

La Dune Blanche by Marilou Beteta

Season: March | April | May | June | July | August | September | October | November

Located at the edge of western Sahara, the Dakhla península is separated from the Atlantic ocean by 45km long lagoon which offers great kiting. But the Dakhla surraoundings offer world class wave riding as well for example at Foum La Bouir and a number of other spots along the coast. The GKA Kite-surf World wave Tour will be held this year at Foum La Bouir for the second time in a row.

     The lagoon Works both at high and low tide. Picture ideal conditions for freestylers and freeriders for beginner kiters with waist deep and flat water during low tide. Most of the action happens around the kite camps.

     Winter swells deliver the best waves and this is when the schools organise transfers to the wave spots. Downwind lovers will embrace the ride from the kite camps all the way to Dakhla town.

     WIND & CLIMATE

     Dakhla has great conditions all year round. The wind generally blows out of the northeast around 17-25 knots during winter,  up to 30 knots in the summer months. At the wavespots the wind is often a bit weaker than at the lagoon. Thermical winds gain in strenght throughout the day untill sunset when it dies out again. 

     Dakhla has a very pleasant climate with temperatures ranging from 20-30 C dropping to a fresh 12-15 C at night. Bring just boardshorts for the summer, and a shorty or a 3mm will do for most of the year. 

     OFF THE WATER

      Dakhla has great kitesurf to offer but is still very quiete off the water. Staying at a kite camp will make your trip more social and the camps offer transfers to town and back. They usually include rescue boat cover too (if you aren’t staying with them you can buy a voucher). If you stay in town it is best to rent a car.

     The small souks and spice markets in town are a nice excursion. Try the restaurant at the oyster farm or the local food on the water’s edge on the way  to town.

Paje, Zanzibar

Pwani Mchangani Beach

 

Paje is a small village and a great kitesurf spot in Zanzibar which is still not too crowded. You’ll find butter flat sea lagoons and a fun little wave out on the reef all in tropical blue waters.

     Undergoing the tide, conditions chance drastically. Low tide is flat inside the reef, and as tide comes in, so does the chop and the kickers. There are bouys showing you where there are safe passages, and where not to go at low tide. There are also seaweed farms and áreas with sea urchens marked by bouys. 

     WIND & CLIMATE

     The two windy seasons go from January to February and June to August but there’s a breeze on most of the days outside this periods as well. Especially with a foil, you will have fun on most days. The wind blows cross-on from the left in the winter season and cross-on from the right in summer. During summer it blows an 13-25 knots, during winter months up to 20 knots. Zanzibars climate is pretty hot, around 30 C with warm water temperatures of more or less 27 C. 

     OFF THE WATER

     Paje is small but it has a good variety of hotels and guest houses, most of them close the kite spot. Eight quilometres south of Paje you’ll find a large sea lagoon protected by a sandbank.

     If there is no wind you can choose out of many excursions. Zanzibar has a pretty well developped tourist infrastructure. Visit the spice plantations and visit the colourful markets of Stone Town. Zanzibar has great diving, or you can go fishing or go on a boat tour.

     Paje is pretty quiete at night but there are some parties at nearby Uhuru Beach on the weekends. There’s a small supermarket in Paje for basic groceries. Local food is cheap but hotel restaurants are more expensive.

     Getting around is easy as taxis are cheap. Crime is minimal but use common sense. 

 

Mauritius – Indian Ocean

Le Morne by the Sky in Mauritius

Spots: Le Morne Lagoon, Inner Reef, Manawa, Chameaux, One Eye, Kite Lagoon, La Prairie, Baie du Cap, Riambel / Pomponnette, Blue Bay Reef, Point d’Esny, Belle Mare Lagoon, Belle Mare Reef, Ile aux Bénitiers, Les Salines, Petite Rivière Noire, Cap Malheureux, Anse de la Raie.

Season: April | May | June | July | August | September | October

 

     The epic conditions, incredible surroundings and amazing hotels have put Mauritius on just about every kiteboarder’s bucket-list.

     The corner of the island Le Morne is a wave kiters dream. Trade winds blow from the left over a reef that lies half a km off the beach, with flat water on the inside. Passed that protective barrier there are a few reefs that create ideal waves for kiters: ‘Small reef’ is a fun, easy wave close to the beach. ‘Manawa’, 1 km inside, works best at high tide and is bigger and better shaped. The notorious ‘One Eye’ lies to the right, and is only for experienced kiters.

     At the same lagoon but 15 minutes drive up wind from Le Morne is Belle Ombre with some high standard hotel and less kite crowd. 

     At Mauritius’ east coast you can kite as well, especially around Belle Mare. The winds are cross-onshore and less strong than in Le Morne.

     Anse Le Raie is 45 minutes further towards the north with a large protected sea-lagoon. The waves passed the reef are generally smaller as in Le Morne. Ask the locals or the kite club for advice how to get passed the reef. 

     WIND & CLIMATE

     Best winds are from April till November when it blows average between 15 and 25 knots. July, August and September are the windiest months. There’s less wind and chances of rain between December untill March. The biggest swells role in between July, August and September when it can get epic for wave riding.

     Mauritius has pleasant temperatures of 20 C – 25 C in their winter (july, August) and up to 30 – 35 C during their summer (January – February). The water doesn t go below 20 C in winter and is around 28 C in summer.

     OFF THE WATER

     The hotels in Le Morne are quiete luxurious but you can find some affordable all-inclusive hotels. If you are more on a budget head to nearby village La Gaulette which has plenty of self catering rental options. 

     Most fancy hotels have restaurants.  You can find local food in the villages like La Gaulette or Belle Mare. Renting a car is easy but not a must since there are many buses and fairly cheap taxis around.

     Tired of kiting, but still with energy, there’s good SUP and surf conditions. You can also go skydiving, or go hiking up the Le Morne Brabant mountains.  Other attractions are swimming with dolphins,  visit  waterfalls, to name a few. 

Barra Grande, Brazil

Barra Grande – Piauí – Brazil

 

In peaceful Barra Grande you will find typical north east brazilian conditions with strong steady winds, choppy and glassy conditions depending on the tide. There is also a lagoon with tons of space.

     Barra Grande is close to the Delta de Parnaíba, with it s main spot just by the main beach. High tide will have some chop but at low tide it gets flat especially in front of BGK.

     Two kilometers downwind at the end of Barra Grande beach you’ll find La Boca, a flat water lagoon in between the mangroves. Further downwind you will reach the rivermouth called macapa. Both of these lagoons fill up when tide is coming in! Kite wave is best at praia Arrombado about 25 km further north..

     WIND & CLIMATE

     Prepare for Strong steady Wind in the season. Between September and December it blows up to 30 knots and everyday. Similar conditions like the rest of the north east of Brasil where the rain season starts end of january but you can still kite  most of the days though on bigger kites. 

     The temperature is around 31 C and leave your wetsuit at home, because the water temperature is around 28 C.

     OFF THE WATER

     Barra grande is a pretty remote fisher village that has started developing only recently. Ask your hotel for transfer services but there are no car rental companies. You can get around by foot or by donkey (no cars or buggies allowed in town).

     There are some mini markets, a pharmacy,  for the basic needs. Parnaiba city is around 50 km away. Barra Grande is safe and crime is rare but always use common sense. 

     Some hotel and restaurants accept US$ or Euro. Cards are accepted in most restaurants. 

     Some of Barra Grande’s pousadas are quite stylish and have good infrastructure. Barra Grande Kite Camp is right on the beach at the main spot. They have also a restaurant and bar, a popular spot to grab a drink or bite.

     There are many dinner options in Barra Grande as local restaurants offer many options like meat, pastas and seafood. Party or nighlife is limited. 

     The stunning Delta region offers SUP/ Kayak tours in the magroves, you can go on a trip with local fishermen to see seahorses, or do yoga.

Jericoacoara, Brazil

 

Pedra Furada of Jericoacoara

 

Jericoacoara, called Jerí by the locals, is a small village in the northeast of Brazil. It is with its pretty remote location, around 300 kilometers from Fortaleza and surrounded by dunes, an idyllic and popular tourist destination. Access is difficult and only by 4by4 vehicles. Wind is guaranteed almost everyday from June through to January, similar like other destinations on this coastline all the way from Cumbuco till Barra grande.

     Jeri counts with fantastic kite conditions along the 25 kilometers of beach downwind of the village. Right behind the big dune of Jericoacoara, where most of the kiting is done, the wind is slightly side off shore. Though a bit gusty, the small kickers are clean as skateboard ramps and once you are airborn, you will feel the G force of 30+knots. Further downwind towards Guriu river the wind is perfect side onshore. Many people do downwind untill the rivermouth or all the way till Tatajuba. Prea is about 12 km upwind and also a popular downwind into Jeri.

     WIND & CLIMATE

     The wind blows cross or cross-onshore, predominantly from the northeast. Right in front of Jeri village it’s cross off that is why most kiters head downwind passed the big dune where the wind blows more cross-shore. Forget to go sunbathing on a towel, just standing up you will get your legs sand beamed. The trade winds are enhanced by some  thermal effect so expect peak wind speeds in the afternoon. 

     The main wind season starts in June- July and goes until January-February when the rainy season begins. They call it rain season, but it is still mostly sunny and windy these months. Wind is not a guarantee though like in the windiest months which are August – November, with wind on 95% of days and often over 30 knots in the afternoon. Water temperatures are warm, so no wetsuit is needed but a lycra to protect you from the sun is a must! The wind makes it cool off in the evenings, so bring a sweater.

     OFF THE WATER

     There are no hotels directly at the kite spots, but yes many hotels and pousadas in Jeri village, from basic to super luxuary. The village has no pavement roads, only sandy allies with restaurants, supermarkets and souvenir shops. The beauty and remoteness makes Jeri a popular hippie hang out and tourists adore escaping the urban life style. There’s no cash machine and the nearest one is in Jijoca, at 35 km. If your batteries run low, you can explore the nearby national park by buggy or ride a horse up to ‘Pedra Furada’, the ´pierced rock´–  symbol of Jericoacoara – a huge rock on the beach with a hole in the middle. Other activities are sandboarding, SUPing or longboard surfing at Malhada beach.

Preá, Brazil

 

Preá Beach by Eliseu Souza

Preá beach is one of the most sublime kitesurfing destinations in the world, among other north eastern Brazil spots on the same coastline. Strong cross-onshore winds blow across the large spacy Sandy beaches. Located, just 12 kilometers upwind from more famous brother Jericoacoara , many kiters make the daily trip from Jeri to Preá to kite in slightly less punchy winds (before downwinding back to Jeri) Preá is less protected so the winds come in very constant, but on the other side has a bit more heavy chop to deal with than Jeri for example. Advantage of Preá over Jeri is that you can kite right in front of your accommodation.

     WIND & CLIMATE

     The winds in Preá are similar but usually a few knots less than downwind of Jeri village. It blows an average of at least 25 knots from July till December. The strongest winds are from August to November and the temperatures average 27-30 C the whole season with pleasant water temperatures of 25-28 C The wind chill can be less pleasant around sunset, so bring some jumpers!

     OFF THE WATER

     Preá is still an authentic small fisher village. Not many tourists come here if it isn t for kitesurfing. There are a few good accommodation options, a couple of nice ones are located on the beach, but you can also stay in locally owned guesthouses and pousadas. There are some local restaurants serving fresh seafood as well as internationally inspired dishes. For more dinner options we recommend to head over to Jerí.

     There are transfers provided between Preá and Jericoacoara (12 kilometers away). You can also rent a car but you’ll need a 4×4 or buggy, so taxis or transfers come in handy.

     Preá has some basic grocery shops but you’ll find more in the nearby towns of Cruz and Jijoca at a 30min drive. There’s no ATM in the village and most hotel and restaurants accept credit and debit cards. Preá doesn’t have a party scene, instead it’s great for a relaxed break. 

     Wind is guaranteed during the season but, if it’s not blowing, go for a hike in the dunes or explore the lagoons in the neighbourhood. You can get beauty or spa treatment in some hotels, or relax by the pool.

Icaraizinho, Brazil

Sunset at Icaraizinho by Janjão

   ON THE WATER

     Icaraizinho has something for any kiter of any level. There’s flat water at southeast end of the beach, playful one to two metre waves at the north end and standard coastal chop conditions in-between. There’s plenty of space to launch and land and the beach is free of sharp shells or stones, so it’s ideal if you’re still improving and hava to walk upwind.

     There are two classic downwinders you can do that are fun and alsoaccessible for those new to downwinding. Caetanos to Icaraizinho is approximately 15 kilometers with good waves along the way. Icaraizinho to Patos is slightly shorter at 14 kilometres and you’ll find small but rip-able waves as well as some flat water sections along the way on a high tide. 

     WIND, WEATHER AND WATER

     Expect perfect brazilian board short / bikini weather with air temps ata round 35 C in the high season. The water averages remain consistente, around 30 C, so the only pretection you’ll ever need is sun cream or a rashie at most. July to January are the windiest months and thankfully feel a little cooler than the actual air temperature, with 20-25 knot average winds from the east, peaking August to November when it ramps up to 25 to 40 knots. The rainy season (February to June) has less wind.

     OFF THE WATER

     Icaraizinho is a small and simple yet picturesque fishing village with basic amenities. There are no ATMs (get cash at the airport or before you travel) and no hospital; just a small clinic that offers a limited service and a small pharmacy. The nearest hospital is in Itapipoca, 80 kilometers away. You won’t need a hire car unless you’re planing to check out other spots on your way to or from Icaraizinho.

 

 

Cumbuco, Brazil

Cauípe Lagoon

Cumbuco is one of the few kite mecca ´s on this planet and is host to countless pro riders and travelling kiters throughout the season. It’s where Carlos Mario, grew up to become the best of the world and four-time freestyle World Champion. 

Cumbuco has increadible kiting conditions along its long sandy beach and its lagoons for example at the Cauipe Lagoon, around six km from the village center. The beach is great for downwinders and you can kite down to the lagoon and hop on a buggy to go back to towns. Along the way you’ll find some shorebreak and some sandbanks with fun waves, too. Cumbuco is also the perfect starting point for longer downwind adventures for many companies, that organize downwind trips towards the north.

Cauipe Lagoon is a freestyler’s wet dream with shallow,  flat water and perfect Wind. Many brands shoot their advertising pics there. The lagoon can get busy during the main season. Get ready to watch a mind blowing show of locals and pro ´s.  There are a couple of cheap traditional restaurants, so you can get a basic lunch at the spot.

There’s a wave spot just a couple of kilometres from Cumbuco called Pico das Almas.  Pecem is some 15 kilometres downwind where there can be clean, peeling waves. You can also make day trips towards other world class spots like Paracuru and Taiba that are within a 40 min drive.

WIND & CLIMATE

Cumbuco is only 3 degrees from the equator so warm weather and warm water temperatures all year with strong, consistent southeasterly trade winds. Blowing cross, to cross-onshore from the right, it’s windy enough to kite from June through to January most of the time, Bring a 12m for june and july although you will need a 9m as well. August onwards you’ll generally be kiting on a 9m. The further north you go the stronger the wind gets. The water temperature is a very pleasant 27 C for much of the year. It almost never rains during windy season.  Rainy season starts in february and goes until may, but mostly it is sunny and you can still kite very frequently.

OFF THE WATER

Choose between hotels and guesthouses (pousadas) or rent an apartment / house with a group for longer stays (wich many people do). Duro Beach Hotel is right on the beach with stylish, well-appointed rooms and spacious grounds. There’s a restaurant right on the beach too, and you can kite out front of the hotel before coming back and relaxing by the pool after your session!

There are over 30 restaurants in and around town serving everything form local fish dishes to European and Asian cuisine. There’s also an ATM and three basic supermarkets as well as a couple of lively clubs/bars.

During the high season this is one of the most reliable spots in the world but, if it doesn’t happen, then go quad biking, SUPing, join montain or buggy tours, do yoga classes or check into one of the local spas. There’s also a waterpark. Cumbuco is great for families with its easy access and good infrastructure.

Fortaleza is about 30 kilometres up the road. It’s a busy city of three million people, crime is more of an issue in some parts of town.

You won’t need to hire a car if you’re planning to stay in Cumbuco as you can walk everywhere. If you want to travel further, there are cars for rent in Cumbuco or Fortaleza.

South Africa

Aaron Hadlow – The Red Bull King Of The Air, Big Bay, Cape Town, South Africa

Spots:

West Coast  Langebaan, Mulzenberg, Silverstroomstrand, Yzerfontein, Peraly’s Beach, Cape Sports Bay, Shark Bay, Hobie Beach, Swartriet, Shelley Point, Elands Bay, Jojo’s;

Cape Town – Melkbos, Hagkat, Big Bay, Kitebeach, Dolphin Beach, Rietvlei, Sunset Beach, Milnerton, Whitsands, Misty Cliffs, Scarborough, Platboom Bay, Glencairn, Fishhoek e Muizenberg;

Overberg – Macassar, Strand, Pringle Bay, Stony Point, Betty’s Bay, Kleinmond, Hawston, Maanskyn Baai, Brandfontein, Suiderstrand, Struikbaai, Plaat, Kassiersbaai, Witsands;

Durban – Palm Beach, Scottburgh, Warner Beach, Durban Bluff, Bayhead, Vetch’s Beach, Durban Kitebeach, Umdloti South Side, Umdloti North Side, La Mercy Lagoon, Tinley Manor Beach, Richards Bay, Pelican Island Sodwana Bay.

Season: October | November | December January | February | March

 

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