Winter’s coming, the weather’s getting colder and many sit on top paddlers simply can’t face donning rubber and facing the chill. But fear not, you don’t have to hang up your boat for the season just yet. Simply pick one of these awesome warm weather kayak destinations, book your ticket, jump on a plane and get gone.
Here are Sitons’ top five winter paddling destinations.
Grenada is a firm favourite here at Sitons HQ. Our friends Conservation Kayak run an eco paddling set up out of Woburn Bay on the Atlantic facing coast of the Spice Isle. Specialising in circumnavigation and touring trips this is a chance to explore a fantastic Caribbean island, top up your tan, learn about the fragile marine environment and sip a rum punch or two.
Oops! Grenada bail out
For a more in depth look at Grenada check out our full travel trip write up from earlier in 2014 – Spice Island Kayaking www.sitons.com/articles/spice-island-kayaking-grenadian-paddling-vibes/
Komodo National Park, Indonesia
Fancy the chance of meeting the fearsome looking (but friendly) Komodo Dragon as well as pulling a blade? The stunning and warm waters of Indonesia should indeed be on every sit on top kayaker’s bucket list. With over two dozen islands to explore, plus the chance of meeting aforementioned exotic beast, kayaking in Indonesia’s Komodo National Park is for those who fancy escaping from it all – if just for a fleeting moment.
Fearsome looking Komodo Dragon
With its amazing marine life – manta rays and turtles – Komodo National Park is where paddlers can interact with nature while exploring this stunning part of the world.
Paddle sports are synonymous with the Polynesian islands and none more so than Hawaii. The Valley Isle of Maui has (probably) the biggest fraternity of outrigger canoe clubs across the chain meaning you’ll be in good company should you choose a kayaking holiday here.
Maui’s south shore
While the north shore of Maui is pounded by gigantic swells in winter it’s south shore sibling offers a more chilled out affair with easy going waves to choose from. If you’re into touring then paddling along the coast from either Lahaina or Kihei is good fun. If you’re not feeling that energetic then simply drop a line and see if you get a bite.
Lanzarote, Canary Islands
A little closer to the UK and you’ll find the much frequented Canary Islands – in particular Lanzarote can offer a great deal for the visiting sit on top kayaker. Costa Teguise is just a short transfer away from capital Arecife and here you’ll find a few different put ins leading to open waters.
Canaries kayaking fun
There’s plenty to explore, going either right or left, along the coast from Costa Teguise, while on bigger swell days the reef separating the two bays kicks up a lump to play on – just watch out for windsurfers and kiters. If you’re after a ‘Brits abroad’ post paddle après session then head into Puerto del Carmen for a bit of a rave up.
The French Riviera is where you’ll potentially rub shoulders with starlets and celebs, witness huge luxury super yachts coming into port, eat deliciously exquisite seafood, enjoy a culturally rich city, indulge in some blissful kayaking and soak up the sunny micro climate.
Even though you’re right at the foot of the Alps, Nice experiences decent warm weather right through the year. Of course the area gets its fair share of rain and blustery conditions, but the mild climate keeps visitors flocking during winter months.
Paddle wise; right off Nice’s seafront you’ll find azure coloured water that gives access to plenty of coastal touring options either left or right. Keep on going east and you’ll eventually end up in the principality of Monaco – but that’s a bit of a jaunt.
For most it’ll be a case of exploring the main bay before sipping a sundown aperitif along the seafront promenade that’ll set you up for some fine dining in one of the many city eateries. Although not a million miles away from the UK, Nice is a fabulous place for a spot of winter sit on top paddling.
These are just a handful of what’s available for a winter sit on kayaking holiday, there are loads more global destinations to choose from. Wherever you plump for, we’re no doubt you’ll enjoy some fabulous kayaking in amazing surrounds.