Full instruction is available on the latest gear from Cabrinha, while experienced kiters will be ready to schedule some KiteSafaris and epic Downwinder adventures. The most abundant services available at Vela Turks & Caicos are geared towards experienced kiters, there is also a remarkable beginner area plus top-level instruction from the school including all gear and boat-support during your lessons. Note that instruction can take place at one of various launch sites depending on your skill level and the conditions each day.
LONG BAY: The most common spot where the instructors teach, Long Bay Beach, next to the Shore Club entrance. Located on the North Eastern tip of Provo about 5 minutes from the Vela Turks & Caicos office, Long Bay faces the Easterly trade winds. Its orientation sets up perfect cross on conditions ideal for learning how to kite. The beach is powder soft and the water is waist deep for hundreds of yards. Instructors can walk next to you while you learn. For those who love to ride Long Bay offers miles of open space with a constant consistent breeze. There is usually always some there to help you launch and land. Kite down-winders can also start at Long bay and end in Five Cays about 8 miles away.
GRACE BAY: Due to the crescent shape of the bay the wind can be dead offshore at the northern eastern end to cross off towards the western end during the normal trade winds. However, when big north east systems roll through all of Grace Bay is on-shore riding. The water is overhead deep and riders must be accomplished in riding upwind and water re-launching their kites. The barrier reef can produce excellent kitesurf conditions. WARNING: THE RIDING HERE IS CROSS OFF MOST OF THE TIME. EXPERT RIDERS ONLY ARE ADVISED TO RIDE HERE. Guided Wave Surfaris are available.
LEEWARD: This is the gateway to our Wave Surfaris and the end point of our backcountry Kitesafaris. As its only 2 minutes from the shop, we often teach our land lessons “the basics” here. While it is possible to ride here it is an area for intermediate – advanced riders only. WARNING: THE CURRENTS HERE CAN BE FIERCE, THE WIND FICKLE AND THERE IS A LOT OF BOAT TRAFFIC.
As is true of any launch on the planet: if in doubt, don't go out, and check with the local staff for assistance so you can get dialed into the best spots each day. Here's a sample of what you can expect on the menu ...
“The basics” introduces the beginner, on the beach, to the principles of wind direction, wind speed and how it relates to the dynamics and technique required to fly a kite. Students are taught how to safely launch and land a trainer kite, where to fly and where not to fly a kite. They are introduced to the “Power Zone”, the parts that make up a kite and how to work with a partner. These kite FUNDAMENTALS lead the student on a natural progression toward the second lesson. Learn to fly trainer kites on the beach, these are normally Ram Air kites or small C-kites. Areas such as safety, set up, launching, piloting the kite, landing, water re-launch and self rescue are covered.
This is where the fun really begins and we increase the size of the kites and enter the water. "Getting Wet” starts with a detailed lesson on the beach introducing the student to the inflatable kites and boards used in kiteboarding. The instructor demystifies the different aspects of the kite bar, the kite lines, the pulleys, the depower, the power up, leashes, quick releases, the harness, loops etc and will then take the student into the water for the first time applying the knowledge gained in lesson 1 and 2 to then safely SET UP the kite gear, land and launch the kite, while understanding where to safely fly the kite.
This often starts near the end of Lesson 2 but this next step is usually the most tricky and difficult one. It requires patience, dedication and PRACTICE. At this stage students who are serious are encouraged to get their own gear so that they can actively pursue and follow the lessons and guidelines set out by the instructors on the water. Time on the water is key and while lessons help students understand how to get on the board, the feeling comes from trail and error conducted in a safe manner.
Private one-on-one lesson time is geared towards your needs and requests. Already very popular, these courses are often booked in advance to accommodate and family, a couple, friends or a solo artist. The flexibility offered means that instruction can be as intensive as need by or as focused as required to learn the next step advanced or beginner.
For those not fully confident to ride / learn on their own, they can opt to be supervised while the instructor(s) are at the beach teaching. Here they are able to help land/ launch the kite give tips while they themselves are in the water or on the beach teaching.
A variety of incredible Kitesurfaris and Downwinder tours are available for some serious fun. Each 3-4 hour trip is scheduled with up to 8 kiters with guides to take you though the mangrove cays and channels, across the turquoise seas, and into some of the many hidden "back country" stashes. Butter smooth water, ankle deep in places is ideal for boosting mega airs, fanging kiteloops and any thing else you feel like trying. Each of the Kitesafaris cover lots of terrain but with the wind on your back the trips can take as long as needed, with peace of mind knowing a boat is there waiting at the end. Your guides are there to help and carry spare screws, waterproof phone for pick-ups, and are even ready to "swap" their own gear if you have an equipment failure.
Drop in on some new skills with surf lessons at one of the many reef breaks available here!