Kiteboardins is growing in popularity as a sport with more than a 1.5 million kiters to date. It is much like water-skiing but without the boat. Instead, a bed-sized kite is the driving force.
With your feet strapped to a board, just crouch in the water and hold on tight. Wind fills the kite and once you get the hang of it, you’ll move as fast as 25 miles per hour. The sport is popular with thrill seekers, but for those ready to “get their feet wet” with kiteboarding, new easier-to-control kites are making the sport novice friendly.
This short list of National Parks offers destination options for those ready to give it a try.
Assateague Island National Seashore
Assateague Island in Maryland/Virginia, offers the opportunity for novice kiters to take advantage of the calmer side of the sound while more advanced kiters can take advantage of the Atlantic’s big waves. Assateague Island provides a variety of locations so kiters can take advantage of different wind directions.
Lessons are available locally at East of Maui Surf Shop.
Buck Island Reef National Monument
Located in St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, the weather at Buck Island is perfect with year-round temps in the low 80s and winds blowing between 15-20 knots. It’s a perfect destination for experienced and novice kiteboarders with flatwater and wave-riding locations.
It’s also a great beach destination with un-crowded wide, powder-sugar-sand beaches. Inexperienced kiteboarders and those who want to improve their skills can take lessons at Kite St. Croix.
Cape Hatteras National Seashore
Cape Hatteras North Carolina features 64 miles of ocean beaches with steady winds most days. On the mainland side of the barrier islands the waters are warm and a great place for novice kiteboarders to practice. On the other side of the islands, experienced kiters can launch from the ocean side.
Kiteboarders learn to harness the wind in a large power kite that propels them across the water. It’s much like snowboarding but combines aspects of windsurfing and paragliding and is considered an extreme sport. If you’re looking for adventure, kiteboarding offers that and more.