Aug 2011 18

Best Places for Vancouver Water Sports: Kiteboarding, Windsurfing

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Kiteboarding by Ingrid Taylar Kiteboarding by Ingrid Taylar

An essential part of summer is having fun in the water. Water sports have been part of Vancouverites’ summer routines for a long time. The proximity of the ocean and numerous lakes helps create ideal conditions for individuals and families to hit the waters of BC.

Here are the two most exciting water sports and places where you can find them.


Kitesurfing by Chris Willis Kitesurfing by Chris Willis

This sport is for the most adventurous. Kiteboarding is a mixture of snowboarding, jet ski, and flying kites — only you don’t ride on snow, but water, and you’re not pulled behind a motorboat, but by a kite that you control.

Sounds exciting? It is! It’s a sport that requires patience, though, since you have to train for at least a week to master the technique up to the level where you’ll be able to kiteboard independently and wherever you, not just where your kite wants.

First, you should start with a trainer kite to learn how to fly it properly. This basic kite costs around $200. After you’ve mastered it, you should take at least three one-hour lessons on the water; the cost is about $250 with all the gear supplied. If you decide to buy your own kite, harness, and board, you should be prepared for prices around $2000.

There are many places to go kiting; however, you always have to check for wind and tide conditions to be able to tell where you should go. Squamish, Crescent Beach, Ferry Terminal, and 3rd Ave are very popular places, with kiteboarders always willing to help.

To buy your gear, you can visit some of the finest BC kiting shops: Airtime Boardsports in Vancouver or Northshore Ski & Board in North Vancouver.

If you’re interested in lessons, here are some kiteboarding schools with good customer feedback: Vancouver Kiteboarding School in Vancouver, Squamish and Boundary Bay, Squamish Kiteboarding School in Squamish, Elevation Kiteboarding, Marie in Nitinat.


Windsurfing by Piotr Jaczewski Windsurfing by Piotr Jaczewski

British Columbia is one of the world’s most suitable places for windsurfing. The English Bay is one of the most popular places for beginner windsurfers, crawling with professional schools, eager to teach anybody brave enough to stand on the surf and take the sail into her or his hands.

Another place favoured by windsurfers is the three-kilometre long Jericho Beach. Only 40 minutes north of these spectacular beaches in Vancouver, Sir Richard Branson, owner of Virgin and notorious adventurer, wind-surfed not that long ago. Where? Of course, in Squamish. The Squamish Spit, where the Squamish River meets the Howe Sound, is ranked by windsurfers as one of the top ten locations to go windsurfing. If you’d like more information, contact the Squamish Windsports Society. The Squamish area is also very suitable for High-wind sailing.

For more information about summer sports and places where you can find them in and around Vancouver, stay tuned on Jay Next time: diving, kayaking, sailing, and rafting!

One Response to “Best Places for Vancouver Water Sports: Kiteboarding, Windsurfing”

  1. James

    Very interesting article. Just wonder if I am too old to take up the challenge of these water sports.
    Thanks Jay.

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