Surfing, Kite and Windsurfing

Introduction to solo board sports

Board sports are a great way to meet other people and can be easily pursued by the solo traveller. In many cases you can learn by having lessons with other beginners.

Surfing for solos

Surfing is more popular now than ever and can be pursued in any ocean facing country (depending on your cold threshold!).

The best way to learn is to take some lessons. You don't really need private one to one lessons while you are learning. All you need is for someone to show you the basics and keep an eye on you when you are out on your own in the water.

There are too many cool places to learn that are on the independent travellers circuit but here are a few places to check out.

Kuta Beach in Bali has to be one the best places to learn for the solo traveller. There is an abundance of surf shools, heaps of other people and Bali on the whole is very cheap. That coupled with the warm Indian ocean and the crazy nightlife then you cannot go wrong. Of course Kuta may not be everyone's ideal tropical paradise but if you are looking to learn to surf on a budget then Bali is the place.

Byron Bay in Australia is another backpacker's centre and is on all but a few itineraries for the trip up the East coast of Australia. This laid back hippy ville has forgiving waves for the learner and loads of surf schools eager for your tourist buck.

South West France is the surfing hub of Western Europe and is an excellent place to learn your craft. In the summer the waves tend to be smaller and therefore more suited to learners. There are always lots of other travellers around to hook up with as well in the summer months.

Once you have learnt to surf then meeting people out on the waves is a great way to hook up with other travelers. Places such as Bali seem to have a year round supply of solo travellers.

Surfing is a very individual sport but having other people around you is great. It can also be dangerous to surf on your own. If you are surfing where there are sharks just by having one other person with you halves the chance of attack! (I would like to stress that shark attacks on surfers are so rare they make World news when they happen!

Here are some links for further reading on surfing.

Wanna Surf is a truly immense site with info on virtually all spots. They even have reports on places like Norway, China and Canada!

Surfing Waves is also a good resource for surfing and has a lively message board if you are looking for information or you have a question to pose.

Kite \ Wind Surfing for Solos

Using the wind to surf is no better way for ripping up a few waves. Wind surfing has been around a while while Kite-surfing is a new and very fast growing sport.

These sports both offer the opportunity for the solo traveller to try something new and meet new people. they can be quite affordable if you have lessons over a number of days. We would also recommend learning over a number of days rather than just a one off as they can take a while to master.

We would suggest looking for a week long windsurfing course and maybe three days for kiting. Kite surfing tends to be slightly easier to get the hang of but the safety risks are more compared to windsurfing.

Kite and Windsurfing are popular all over the globe and there will be great places to learn. You could try Tarifa in Southern Spain or the Canaries. Egypt also has good conditions for these sports.

The sports are also popular in Australia and New Zealand so you should be able to pick up lessons there.

Here are some resources for further research.

Windsurfing magazine is an excellent online resource for all things windsurf. They have an excellent and in depth section on equipment. is also an extensive site with information on all board sports.

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