Enjoy dry Meltemi winds all summer long and acres of flat water riding – plus there’s even a park with kickers and sliders! The food and lifestyle is excellent here, too.
This is an amazing freeride and freestyle lagoon with a huge expanse of waist deep, flat water. The bottom is a mixture of sand and earth and you can walk between 250 and 500 metres from the shore, making it a perfect place to learn. Better riders have a couple of options: just in front of the Urla Surf House chillout area is a 400 metre stretch of flat water that’s perfect for freestyle; then, upwind of where the schools teach, the spot gets deeper and small kickers form – ideal for boosting off when the wind gets up or for foiling. Long tacks are possible here as the lagoon is over five kilometers wide.
Upwind of the spot, the water remains flat thanks to the small harbour that reduces the lumps and bumps on its leeward side and is where wakestyle obstacles are set up. Urla Surf House has one of the four kite parks that are legally opened for kiteboarding in the world and for the past few years it has been a regular stop for the Kite Park League. So, should you tire of the various other disciplines, there are kickers and sliders to learn to hit!
There’s another spot, somewhere unknown to the internet, other than from a few scarce instagram posts, oh, and Aaron Hadlow who headed there to shoot part of his 2012 web movie, Aspire; his fourth and final movie with Andy Gordon, which is widely considered his best. Urla Surf House can take you there, where you’ll be treated to a wind over sand spit that creates dead-flat water on the downwind side and a hurdle to jump over, (should you have the courage!) as seen in Aspire.
WEATHER, WIND AND WAVES
The spot works all summer long with the Meltemi winds that blow from the north. They’re the Aegean’s powerful, dry breezes that are stronger in the mornings before calming down in the afternoon. Despite the wind getting up to 35 knots on occasion, the wind brings clear skies and remains steady – mainly between 15 and 25 knots.
The best months are June, July and August, but April, May and September can be good, too. You’ll need your whole quiver for kiting here during the peak season. Urla’s spot is blessed with an 80% success rate for windy days, of which the wind will blow all day long. In the low season, the spot can be windy for a week straight before going four to five days without, so it’s a bit of a gamble, but one worth taking if you keep an eye on the forecast and are able to book last minute.
URLA SURF HOUSE is a one-stop-shop for all your accommodation and tuition needs. They teach in groups of a maximum of four people, using the latest gear from Ozone and there’s everything you might want to hire, including foils.
THE URLA SURF HOUSE also has its own bar and restaurant, known for its burgers that are served all day. Kitted out with a pool, ping pong table and a skateboarding mini ramp, they offer different types of accommodation directly on the spot. All budgets are catered for, from nice family and comfort rooms, to backpacker rooms and there’s even the option of pitching your own tent!
Should you need some time off the water, the town is surrounded by viticulture, with lots of vineyards that are worth a visit for the wine tasting and the atmosphere. Hop in a taxi from the spot and just a short journey away you can find amazing restaurants offering typical Turkish cuisine, fresh fish and fusion food.
For the hikers among you, there is a 709 kilometre historical trekking route in İzmir peninsula, but you don’t have to do it all at once; there are 49 paths. The total route combines six ancient Ionian cities through lots of varied terrain and rural Turkish villages.
If you want to visit historical places you can go to Ephesus and the House of Virgin Mary, then visit Sirince village and taste fruit wines. Alternatively, head to Pamukkale see the travertines, visit Hierapolis Antique City and then swim in the Antique Pool.
Izmir Adnan Menderes Airport is 45 minutes away and car rental or transfers are easy, however, you only really need a car if you want to venture beyond the local area. Otherwise everything is at the spot and taxis are available for town visits.
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