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Kite Boarding in Victoria and Southern Vancouver Island

Kite boarding – sometimes called kite surfing – is a surface watersport that harnesses the power of the wind to propel the surfer across the water on a small board. Victoria and the Southern Vancouver Island region is a kite boarder’s paradise. A meteorologist could explain WHY it can get pretty windy around here, but watersport enthusiasts who rely on wind don’t care and are just happy that it does. 

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In addition to the many great locations in Greater Victoria, one of the premier kite boarding destinations in North America is located just 150 km northwest of Victoria at Nitinaht Lake (perfect for Kiteboarding vacations). 

Kitesurfing at Nitinaht Lake is not recommended for beginners without lessons due to strong winds and narrow, rocky driftwood-covered beach. Consider using one of the local skilled instructors listed below for a safe and enjoyable experience. 

Elevation Kiteboarding

  • 7073 Railway Ave, Courtenay, BC, V9J 1N5
  • 604-848-5197
  • kiteboarding instruction
  • gear rental

Strong Kiteboarding

  • Nitinat Lake, BC
  • 250-813-0035
  • kiteboarding instruction

Regardless of where you enjoy water adventure activities, always be aware of the location-specific hazards such as reefs, sand bars, drifting logs, floating debris, beach logs, cliffs, trees and other people. 

Best Spots to Kite Board Near Victoria

  • Dallas Road/Clover Point – also known as Kite Beach is the most popular spot on the south end of the Island and for good reason. It’s conveniently located, you get magnificent views and the airstream is fairly consistent. (advanced to expert)
  • Esquimalt Lagoon (beginner to intermediate)
  • Island View Beach (beginner to expert)
  • Willows Beach (beginner to expert)
  • Gordon’s Beach (beginner to expert)
  • Cordova Bay (beginner to expert)
  • Elk Lake (beginner to intermediate)
  • Cattle Point (advanced to expert)

Check out LocalKiteSpots for relevant information related to wind speeds and temperatures for kiting spots across the province. 

What to Wear While Kite Boarding

Your needs will vary depending on the time of year and the location you choose and will range from shorts and a t-shirt to full wet or dry suit. Many of my friends who regularly participate in water sports love these UV tops and paddling pants. A paddling life jacket is also recommended. Check out these local businesses for watersport gear and accessories. 

HtO Surf Shop

  • 101-3680 Uptown Boulevard, Victoria, BC
  • 250-920-5511 or
  • 2042 Otter Point Road, Sooke BC
  • 778-425-3866
  • features hand-shaped and locally made surfboards

Ocean Rodeo

  • 41 Cadillac Ave, Victoria, BC, Canada
  • 778-734-2696 or 888-544-4969
  • kites, boards, accessories, drywear and apparel

Instruction

Two local companies (see above) for kiting instruction both operate from Nitinaht Lake. A word of caution that access to the Nitinaht River Provincial Park and Nitinaht Lake is by active logging roads. It is highly likely you will encounter a loaded logging truck en route. Logging trucks have the right of way and drivers should use caution and yield to logging trucks. And because of the remoteness of getting to the park, we recommend you carry a backroads map with you. Cellular service is not reliable in the area so you are best to be prepared with an old-fashioned map.

Check out the best deals on all adventure water sports in the region. 

Equipment

You will need a kite and board (you probably already guessed that, didn't you!). Seek expertise from people in the industry before purchasing any equipment to ensure you get products that suit your kiting abilities and goals.   

Weather

Ideal weather for kiters is when there is a consistent wind of between 10 and 30 knots with rider weight and kite size factoring in as well. Beginners should aim for wind between 7 and 20 knots. The air temperature should be warm enough to be on the water but not too warm that you overheat. Other factors are the water temperature, tides and currents, wind direction, precipitation, lightning and fog. 

Victoria experiences very little in the way of lightning and thunder but it is important to get off the water as quickly as possible if you see lightning.

Best Time of the Year to Kite Board

Avid Vancouver Island kiters take to the waters all year long but the best time is May through September, weather permitting. 

What You Might See While Kite Boarding in Victoria

As a beginner, you’re going to see a whole lot of water and sky :). There will be so much to learn when you first start out, you won’t actually see much of the marine life that surrounds you. But the more time you spend on the water and develop your skills, the more time you will have to enjoy sightings of:

  • Harbour seals
  • Blue herons
  • Moon jellies
  • Oyster catchers
  • Sea lions
  • Whales
  • River otters
  • Bald eagles

Check out the best deals on all adventure water sports in the region. 

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