Conversations about windsurfing in Maui begin and end with the mention of Ho'okipa Beach.
Long considered the greatest spot for windsurfing in the
world, it is definitely the epicenter of the sport in
Maui. Also a popular beach for surfers, in the winter
months Ho'okipa can be crowded (not
only in the water but also on the beach), though there
is obviously a good reason why. Nowhere else will you
get rollicking waves mixed with perfect offshore winds
– the beach has redefined the sport, and is the
capital of not only Maui windsurfing, but of the entire
Pacific Ocean. Though not invented here, Ho'okipa
is synonymous with the sport, its most popular home since
the sport's inception in the 1950's.
Maui Wind Surfing
Of course, there are other good, though not perfect
spots for windsurfing in Maui. Not coincidentally, they
often are the premier locales for surfing too. Of course, windsurfers have to pay attention to their
launch spot, whereas surfers are bereft of this issue,
thus restraining Maui windsurfing to a few less beaches
than surfers will have access too. For novices, windsurfing
Maui is one of the best places to learn the sport, though
there are far fewer schools who offer wind
surfing lessons as compared to surf schools. But there
are more than a few dotting the island, ready to make
clear to you the secrets of catching a wave (and, ahem,
holding it) while windsurfing Maui swells.
Maui Windsurfing Spots
Maui Windsurfing Beaches
The northern shores of the island are the best for Maui windsurfing, nearly year round. The ever popular collection of beaches in the Lahaina area, the Harbor area is usually where you'll find the most windsurfers. Further north you'll find plenty of other hotspots, primarily in the winter. As the calendar heads towards summer, those that decide to vacate Ho'okipa move south, directly towards Kalepolepo Beach. With the west Maui Mountains craning their necks in the background, the water is littered with the bright colors of dragonfly sails throughout the daylight hours. Red and orange, yellow and green dip and dive between the swelling whitecaps, the shimmering colors matching those of the fish that swim below.
Kanaha Beach is another great locale for windsurfing Maui, this one located further away from the usual hotspots. One of the main beaches off the bustling city of Kahului, it is a sharp mix of beginners and experts. Taking to the waves first are the newbies to windsurfing in Maui, spreading their sails and catching waves in the early morning hours. But by afternoon, the entire beach is awash with experienced windsurfers too, jetting back and forth along the speedy waves. This is because the winds get stronger as the day wears on, separating the skilled from the rest of the pack, especially at Kanaha Beach.