Maui Windsurfing

Hookipa Windsurfing
Hookipa Windsurfing

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
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 Spots
Maui Windsurfing Beaches
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 Windsurfing
Kanaha Windsurfing

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.

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