Base Camp Hawaii

Kauai Windsurfing
By Carol Greenhouse
Windsurf of Anini Beach
Lining up for liftoff (or letdown?) (Photo © Corel)

GPS Adventure Coordinates:
Anini Beach, Kauai

Primary Objective:
Mastering windsurfing as avowed since its invention. Beginners will sail in the first three-hour lesson ($75, then $25 an hour for board rental), swears Foster Ducker, owner of Anini Beach Windsurfing (; 808-826-9463). Pros can jibe and plane and do waterstarts on high-performance short boards for $75 a day. Or if kitesurfing tops the life list, head to Hanalei Bay for a crash course: $400 for five hours of book learning and body drags. Everyone flies in one to three sessions, at $100 per hour after the initial $400 outlay, including gear. But it will take the full week for beginners to master the technique.

Secondary Objectives:
Snorkeling Anini's reefs, or those at Ke'e or Haena, renowned as some of the best fish- and turtle-sighting spots on the island. Pick up gear for $20 a week in Kapa'a on the way (Dive Kauai:; 808-822-0452). Alternately, renting a full-suspension mountain bike for $150 a week and taking on the skein of singletrack between Kealia Beach and the Anahola Trail, a five-mile cycle south of Anini Beach (Kapa'a Cycle:; 808-821-2115). Or renting a boat from Wailua Kayak Adventures (; 808-822-5795) to paddle through the jungle in search of the trailhead for 120-foot Secret Falls, named for its remoteness and believed to make the dreams of those who find it come true. (The hike in will take about an hour.)

Base Camp:
Call a county campsite at the beach home for the week. Each site has a grill and access to toilets and showers; all campsites are closed for maintenance on Tuesday. The price is right: $3 per person per night. Permits are needed; contact the Kauai Parks and Recreation Department at 808-241-6660.

Practical Knowledge:
A rental car is recommended to get you to the starting line. Reservations are also recommended with Anini Beach Windsurfing; sailing starts at ten o'clock each morning.

Gear List:
Mountain Biking the Hawaiian Islands by John Alford (Booklines Hawaii, $15.95) is the fat-tire fanatic's bible. Otherwise, outfitters supply everything from aqua socks (Anini Beach Windsurfing) to dry bags (Wailua Kayak Adventures). The only remaining chore is a supermarket run on the way to pick up a week's edibles.

Published: 25 Aug 2003 | Last Updated: 14 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication



Sign up to Away's Travel Insider

Preview newsletter »