The most essential and exciting part about summer is taking a dip in the cool waters to escape the sweltering heat. Wondering where to visit in order to beat the heat? Here’s a look at the best water sports destinations in the US.
The sizzling sun’s glare sure gives us a perfect reason to go for a swim, and water sports make this activity all the more fun. The array of water sports available today, definitely invokes the water baby in you, promising a time filled with fun and excitement. The best part is that you can enjoy most of these sports even if you can’t swim.
While children are seen frolicking at the beach, or theme park, adults find such locations as the perfect getaway to relax under the sun. Such places are always a favorite among families, especially during the spring break.
So, let’s take a look at the most popular destinations in the US that offer a slew of fun-filled water activities, while serving as the perfect escape.
Most Popular States for Water Sports in the US
Whatever be the reason, Hawaii is one of the best destinations to visit. O’ahu is one such small island that is widely regarded for its water sports activities. While snorkeling and scuba diving top the list, other activities, such as jet skiing, windsurfing, kayaking, and parasailing are not far behind. O’ahu’s North Shore is popular for The Vans Triple Crown of Surfing that takes place in the months of November and December.
» More on the Horizon: Kauai and Maui are the best spots for kayaking. A generous amount of parasailing and windsurfing opportunities are offered on the Big Island, Maui, O’ahu.
☀ Best Time to Visit: Year-round; although the period between spring and fall is generally preferred.
✩ Tips: Kayaking in the ocean is not recommended for beginners. They might want to start with river kayaking, like the easy tours available on the Waimea River.
If you want to up your fun quotient, visiting California and San Diego gives you what you’ve always wanted a dream vacation to be like – adventurous, yet relaxing. Most of the water sports take place on the three bays of this city – San Diego Harbor, Oceanside Harbor, and Mission Bay. The most popular sport among tourists and locals alike is board surfing, which is a famous sport in Mission Bay. Kite-surfing and jet skiing are other activities practiced in the Pacific Beach, with popular kayak tours beginning from La Jolla Shores beach.
» More on the Horizon: In San Francisco, the Golden Gate Sailing Tours is famous for its sailing expeditions.
☀ Best Time to Visit: September – October
✩ Tips: If you do not want to rent heavy and expensive equipment that is essential for other water sports, then body-surfing is just for you. For beginners, the shallow white waters of the Pacific Beach is an ideal start.
With the longest coastline in the United States, it does not come as a surprise that the state of Florida is the place to be, if you want to experience the wide range of activities they have to offer. Buzzing with energy, Miami should be on your list if you are an ardent fan of jet skiing, paddle boarding, kayaking, and snorkeling. Jet ski tours take you close to nearby islands, promising to give you an exciting experience.
» More on the Horizon: The Clearwater Beach of Clearwater city is famous for its highly regarded family spots, owing to its pristine locales, kayaking, scuba diving tours, and activities for amateur surfers.
☀ Best Time to Visit: December – August; the period between September – November is hurricane-prone; so needless to say, these months are lighter on the pockets.
✩ Tips: Light rainfall takes place during summer and fall, and even though they are not serious enough to cancel your plans, do carry a raincoat, or an umbrella.
If you are a water baby, the subtropical climate of North Carolina is idyllic. The Outer Banks solely offers a plethora of water activities that are bound to let you extend your stay. Outer Banks is popular for its windsurfing and kite-boarding activities. Kitty Hawk Kites in Nags Head and Blow Kite in Buxton offer lessons in kite-boarding for all ages.
» More on the Horizon: While Kitty Hawk Surf Co. in Duck provides several surfing and kayaking activities, Manteo has almost all sorts of water sports tours and rentals available.
☀ Best Time to Visit: April – May
✩ Tips: The weather conditions at Outer Banks are ideal for learning any type of water sport. With world-class training facilities available, make sure you undergo training in at least one sport while you’re there. Take my word; it’s worth it!
Water Theme Parks
If the nearest beach from your city is miles away, then water theme parks are the answer to your yearning for thrilling water rides. Water theme parks are another way to let your hair down, and what better place to go than Florida? Although there are one-too-many water theme parks in Florida to mention, Wet ‘n Wild and SeaWorld Orlando are the most popular and tailor-made destinations for a family day filled with excitement.
» More on the Horizon: California is not far behind with spots, like Six Flags Hurricane Harbor in Los Angeles and SeaWorld San Diego being good enough destinations to help you enjoy the crazy summer.
☀ Best Time to Visit: April – September (the rush rate of visitors depends on the holiday season.)
✩ Tips: Make sure you conduct a thorough research on the types of passes available at each water theme park. These may vary from a daily pass for kids and adults, to annual passes for locals and tourists.
National Parks also offer one of the best rides for adrenaline junkies out there. Right from the Grand Canyon National Park (Arizona), Yosemite National Park (California), Yellowstone National Park (Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho) to the Rocky Mountain National Park (Colorado), these destinations are world-famous for their rafting and kayaking adventure tours in river rapids.
» More on the Horizon: Biscayne National Park in Florida is almost entirely made of water, with rich offshore barrier coral reefs. This national park is one of the most famous destinations for scuba diving and snorkeling in the US; other activities include boating and fishing.
☀ Best Time to Visit: April – September
✩ Tips: Rafting is recommended for those with a strong upper body physique as the sport is mainly done sitting down. It is advised not to go for rafting alone as the rapids can often get tumultuous.
Both the eastern and western coastline of the United States will definitely have certain activities that suit your liking. You can broaden your search for alternative destinations by checking out the official websites of the cities.