Average CostsBeer: R15
Restaurant Meal: R75-150
THE LUREConsistently the spot of choice for the world's best riders in freestyle and waves, from October to March. Why? Because the wind is unbeatable, the area boasts 30+ kite spots, offering a huge variety of riding, from flat water to five or six metre waves. Also, unlike most good kite spots, one of the world's most vibrant cities is a short drive away offering endless entertainment, from the stunning wine lands and the culture of the city for the adults, to the parks and wildlife centre visits with the kids.
If you're a pro and your job requires wind, you'll be banging in the overtime around here. Most kiting is in the northern part of the Cape Peninsula and depending on the day, you can find everything from flat waters, to bump and jump kickers to big waves. Driving north from the city, Sunset Beach is the first spot to benefit from the consistent southeaster Cape Doctor wind system kicking in. The wind here is slightly cross-offshore and can be a little fickle on the inside, but it's the first place you look for wind. Waves feature here and at all the next spots...
A little further around the bay you come to Dolphin Beach (Table View), popularly known as Kite Beach, featuring cross-shore winds in the southeaster. Many kiters stay in Table View and this is the area's main beach with special views across the bay to its namesake mountain. This is a long open stretch of beach of several kilometres and downwinders from Sunset Beach, along here to Doodles restaurant at the far end of Table View are very popular. However, many often carry on their downwinder round a section of rocks to Big Bay.
'Big Bay' comes next with a pleasant grassy area next to the beach with bars, resturants and shops. A lot of luxury residential development can now be found here too, and this is a hugely popular kite spot as there are more facilities here to keep the family amused while you kite. This spot is also busy with windsurfers actually in 'Big Bay' (which is actually quite a small bay within two sets of rocks, and most kiters now ride 150 yards or so down the beach and beyond the downwind rocks at 'Karmers' which can feature a nice clean wave and another long beach. The wind is cross/cross-onshore from the left.
Drive north a few clicks (or downwind from Karmers) and Haakgat is a small beach holding a big, advanced rider's wave. Melkbosstrand (Melkbos) requires a little further drive to get to along the coast, but works when other spots to the south are getting blown out. As a rule; when the sou'easter is cranking, head north in search of less wind. The beach is huge here. Cross-shore winds and beach-break conditions.
Scarborough and Cape Point south of Cape Town provide serious wave riding conditions. Flat water can be found, most notably at Langebaan 90 minutes up the road with warmer water, too! South of the city down the west side of the Cape are some world class wave spots, such as Misty Cliffs, Scarborough and Cape Point, but some serious experience is required to ride here. Head southeast of Cape Town city and you'll reach Muizenberg where the wind comes cross-on from the right, but head east from here along the Garden Route and the Indian Ocean is much warmer. Far too many spots to begin mentioning those!
WIND, WEATHER AND WATER:The southeaster (known as the 'Cape Doctor' as it clears any pollution from the city) comes in cross- and cross-offshore from the left on the northern beaches and is generally reliable and strong during the summer, from October to March (December and January being peak wind season). Moderate in the morning, it frequently builds to 30+ knots by mid-afternoon. Get up early or drive further for less wind. 25 – 35°C / 77 - 95°F are typical day air temperatures in the summer, dipping to around 20°C / 68°F at night. Contrasting with the hot air, the Atlantic Ocean is relatively cold, averaging 14°C / 57°F. Head southeast of the city to the False Bay / Indian Ocean side where it jumps up to 19°C / 66°F. Wear a spring / winter suit at most spots.
ACCOMMODATIONAs you'd expect from an area close to a big city, there's plenty of choice in accommodation, from guest houses, hostels and luxury self catering homes and apartments in Table View, Sunset Beach and Big Bay, to budget and extravagant hotels in the city. Almost anything is available (although for hotels, you're really looking at the city). Check out the Endless Summer Beach house / Mystic house if you want to be in the thick of the action, like a crowd and are keeping the budget tight and the fun large (www.themystichouse.com / www.endlessummerbeachouse.co.za).
Cape Town Guru are also very useful for searching out the right house / apartment for you, as well as lots of other needs you might have: www.capetownguru.com
SCHOOLSThere are a lot of shops and schools in the area. Check Shift One for more or Kiteworldmag.com.
BEST KITEBOARDING AFRICA are located on the beach front in table view, next to the popular coffee shop, Carlucci's. Teaching all levels, seven days a week, they also have lots of demo gear on offer and a shop stacked with Best and Dakine gear. Surf, SUP rentals and demo days also run.
Languages spoken by instructors: English and Afrikaans.
www.bestkiteboardingafrica.com / m.bestkiteboardingafrica.com
+27 (0) 21 556 2765
KITE KAHUNAS run wave camps with tuition from October - April, specialising in taking you to the best wind and wave spots, taking the hassle out of hiring a car and organising your own downwinders. They also teach all levels and are based out of their own accommodation at Sunset Beach and rent out and sell Slingshot gear.
Languages spoken by instructors: English, German and Dutch
+27 (0) 76 945 4111
NO WINDNo problem. You can easily fill every day around the beautiful Cape with endless attractions, including: Table Mountain, Lion's Head, Cape of Good Hope and Cape Point as well as sizzling night life, wine farms, wildlife, safari (we went to Aquila Game Reserve – www.aquilasafari.com a couple of hours from town), world-class surf, cable parks and much more.
Airport transfers are typically £25 / €30 / US$45, but you really need a hire car to get around here as the public transport system (although getting better) is a little inconsistent for tourists. Hire cars should cost £20 / €23 / US$30 per day / £250 / €280 / US$400 per month. We use Acker Rentals (www.ackercarrentals.co.za) when the Kiteworld team visit, who offer classic Mercedes Benz and specialise in wind sport customer rentals.
South African Rand (R)- £1 = R17 / €1 = R14 / $1 = R10
FOOD AND DRINK
Cape Town comes near the top of many a travel writer's list of recommended destinations and is renowned for great food and wine with excellent restaurants found in and out of the city. Table View has the relaxed beach-life vibe, or head to the city for more upmarket and/or authentic cultural experiences. The dining experience is fantastic for a fraction of the cost the equivalent meal would be back home. Well developed, there are shopping centres and supermarkets in Table View and Big Bay.
Cape Town international airport (CPT) is 40 minutes from Table View.
Lake Como | Italy
Just an hour from Milan and home of the Italian Freestyle Champion, Stefano Martinelli, you can be sure you’ll pack in the riding time on Lake Como. Mix your kitesurfing trip with beautiful food, historical site visits and there’s also a cable park filled with kickers and sliders just a ten minute bike ride from the spot of Colico.
Baraka Charters | The Caribbean
Embark on a week-long quest for waves and flat water spots in crystal-clear, warm seas, many that are only accessible by boat, creating your own dynamic adventure through the pristine Caribbean oceans. You’ll anchor at idyllic spots around remote tropical islands with the thrill of launching directly off the boat. Your kite spot will extend to the horizon, shared with only the handful of riders also onboard. A change of scenery everyday, this is the the freshest of experiences you could hope to have.
Cocos Keeling Islands | Australia
Warm, flat aqua-blue waters that you’ll find here are like the kiting conditions you see in your dreams. Perfect for beginner and advanced riders wanting 15 – 20 knot winds morning, noon and night. There’s no wonder that The Cocos Islands are growing in reputation for blissful kiteboarding and if you’re lucky you can kite with the turtles, reef sharks and manta rays.
Kalpitiya | Sri Lanka
Experience phenomenal kite safari opportunities or stay right at your boutique hotel situated right on the flat water lagoon, with the option of riding on the sea. You can even watch the conditions from the pool!
Ulcinj | Montenegro
A new kiting hotspot on mainland Europe is being developed in Montenegro, former Yugoslavia. Ulcinj (pronounced: ‘Ooltseenie’), the southernmost town in Montenegro features a 14 kilometre long sandy beach and super steady side-onshore thermal winds that blow every day in the summer!
Keros | Limnos | Greece
Keros is a super safe sandy kitesurfing bay with a variety of conditions, suitable for all. The whole set up is within a protected ecosystem where you can spot wildlife such as rabbits, flamingos and rare species of flora.
The Algarve | Portugal
Glassy morning wakeboarding or surfing sessions are the perfect way to kick the early hours off, then it’s over to an afternoon of regular 25 knot wind speeds for some kiting action, changing spots a few times a week.
Sotavento | Fuerteventura
A year-round kiting holiday-makers’ favourite, Sotavento has a huge wide-open tropical beach land where you can ride the warm, shallow lagoon or hop over to the bright blue ocean for more bump ‘n’ jump action. Check out the stats – it blows here!