Maui, US


, the most famous windsurfing break on Earth, offers consistently spectacular conditions. Regular sideshore starboard trades and reliable winter swells attract the world's best sailors who'll be ripping it up off the point on any windy day, but even they get dashed on the infamous rocks when it goes wrong. Kiting's taboo when Ho'okipa's busy, hence the neighbouring break at Lanes tends to see more kiters despite the treacherous launch over sharp reef. Lanes comes into its own when the NE trades give way to SW Kona winds (fairly rare, from Dec to Feb) when long reeling left-handers provide epic port tack wavesailing. Kuau is a quieter, lower-profile spot that offers great sailing with a similar wind and wave setup to Ho'okipa – yet less critical and less crowded. Beyond Maui Country Club, Baby Beach is popular for brochure photography with fun jumping and riding – just get into the water well away from the rocks. Spreckelsville is an easier launch offering fairly modest conditions (dubbed 'Euro Beach' for its popularity amongst Europeans). A greater challenge awaits over half a mile offshore at Outer Sprecks, but beware of rips and be ready for a long swim should the worst happen. These outer reefs also offer experienced kiters some awesome downwinders from Lanes to Kanaha. Back inside, Camp One has flat water within a reef that catches whatever swell is available. It's therefore popular during the flatter summertime and for World Cup regulars who value the freestyle and cross-onshore wave conditions. The last stop along the North Shore is Kanaha Beach Park with the most accommodating parking, showers and rigging area – and conditions to suit every level. The reef protecting Upper Kanaha provides clean, predictable waves and remains a fun wavesailing break during bigger swells. Calm water and a sandy seabed inside the bay are great for improvers and beginners earlier in the day. It's a similar story at Lower Kanaha where windsurfers can safely push their limits on a relatively soft, consequence-free wave. Kiters get to the waves a bit further downwind from Naish Beach – plenty of space downwind and a huge flat-water area also endear the inside to beginners and freestylers. The only drawback is a slight wind shadow behind the lifeguard tower. And finally Kite Beach offers pretty similar conditions, yet with no windsurfers at all. But there's more to Maui than the North Shore, although conditions tend not to be as consistent or alluring. Lighter cross-onshore port tack conditions can be found up at Waiehu, more a kite spot of late but still popular amongst the PWA crowd as an alternative training venue. Up in the north-west, Kahana is a good call when the wind's northerly and the North Shore's an onshore mess. A big north swell can deliver incredibly long rides over the shallow reef here. Down south, Windy Spot is rarely sailed yet renowned as Maui's windiest venue where the NE funnels through the neck of the island to over 35-knots, bolt offshore. The long sandy beach at Kihei boasts a couple of great blasting spots and picks up a good wave during summer south swells. La Perouse a big south swell to work – but, while its turquoise water and black lava are beautiful, that same sharp rock coupled with the profusion of surfers vying for a single peak make it a challenge. But that's not all, back up on the North Shore's outer reefs is THE legendary big wave spot: Jaws – or Pe'ahi. The monster roars into life just a few winter days a year, it's only accessible by boat and the fearsomely big waves are strictly for pros. But when it's 'on', the view from the cliffs above is exciting enough.
Kite and Windsurfing Guide
Ho'okipa, der bekannteste Windsurf-Break der Welt, bietet durchweg spektakuläre Bedingungen.
Ho'okipa, the most famous windsurfing break on Earth, offers consistently spectacular conditions.