When SUP enthusiasts get together and chat about their favorite destinations, the conversation usually centers around pristine lakes, calm waters, and stunning scenery. And there is absolutely no reason why it should not. There are magnificent places in Australia, New Zealand, and the United States.
The Path Less Travelled
I, however, have always been an advocate of taking the path less traveled. The benefit: you may just discover an absolute gem of a SUP destination. This thought drove me to compile some of the most exotic and most unique paddle-boarding destinations in the world. These places provide a distinctive experience that is just unparalleled.
The 4 Most Exotic SUP Locations
With that, I present to you the four most exotic SUP locations on our good earth.
1. Paradise Bay, Antarctic Peninsula
What better place to start than right at the world’s edge. The icy magnificence of the South Pole cannot be matched. The entire peninsula offers spots where you can cruise on your SUP, but I have chosen Paradise Bay. The reason being that this one location captures the true beauty of this frozen land. Think ice-crusted waters, pristine glaciers, floating ice, and air too cold to breathe. But that’s not all. You will also sight marine life, including Humpback Whales and adorable sea leopards, as you cruise the waters.
You think there is no way to SUP in Antarctica? Guess what Riley from livingthedreamrtw.com did it.
Getting There: Two words: Boat ride. Yup, there are no airstrips on the South Pole, so the only way to get to the peninsula is by ship. Interesting fact: the ships have their hulls strengthened with icebreakers.
Other Things To Do: You could stare endlessly at the ice-sheets that stretch to the very horizon. Or you could book a cruise that takes you around the various spots on the peninsula. Do not miss the hot water springs at Pendulum Cove. It is warm enough for a swim, and you can claim to have taken a dip in Antarctica!
2. Black Canyon, Nevada
From the ice cold glaciers, we hop right to the red-hot canyons in Nevada. Now Las Vegas is the home for everything casino, but take a look around, and you will find gorgeous natural sights, such as the Black Canyon. Time to hit the Colorado River and cruise the coast. Your eyes will be mesmerized with the 600-foot gorge that rises straight to the sky. Believe me, the experience is surreal. You kinda realize how tiny we are in the presence of such towering majesty.
Getting There: The best way to get to the canyon is by road. Take CO Highway 347 to reach the South Rim. For the North Rim, take CO Highway 92 and then turn west on Black Canyon Road. Follow the signs to the Gunnison National Park.
Other Things To Do: You could go kayaking. The other option is camping out in the park.
3. Espiritu Santo, Vanuatu
When the names of the island and the country it’s located in sound exotic, imagine just how unique they are. Espiritu Santo is the biggest island in Vanuatu – a gem located in the South Pacific Ocean. This may be hard to believe, but you may come across actual WWII relics in the form of abandoned American machinery when you are cruising on your paddleboard. Not many SUP destinations can boast that. As you paddle, all you will hear is the calming sound of gentle waves. The island is a true paradise for explorers. Follow the water trail into jungle vegetation and hanging roots. Then there are the ‘blue holes’: clear, blue water holes teeming with marine life. It will take your breath away.
Getting There: There is a direct flight from Brisbane, Australia to Vanuatu. You can then hop on to a connecting flight that will take you to the island. There are flights available from New Zealand and Fiji as well.
Other Things To Do: Snorkelling is the must-do activity. The underwater landscape is teeming with color, life, and a few mysteries. Don’t miss out on them.
4. Agadir, Morocco
Now, who would have imagined that the continent of Africa would bless us with a sublime SUP destination. Located in Morocco, the coastal city of Agadir offers a jewel that even the Nile would be proud of. The shape of the coastline drives powerful winds in the offshore direction. This means you get clean swells that are smooth and beautiful. There is a beachfront as well for Stillwater cruising. When you paddle around the shore, you will come upon exotic reefs and unpopulated shore points. For an exotic African SUP, get over to Agadir.
Getting There: You will need to fly to the Al-Massira Airport, then catch a taxi to Agadir. There are buses and ‘grand taxis’ that ply in the city.
Other Things To Do: The city is worth exploring as well. You can take in the culture and cuisine of Morocco. Not to mention the shining new promenade that connects the beach to the port. Take a walk in the evening and catch the dazzling sunset