A practical guide to kitesurfing in Kalpitiya
If you are one of those flat-buttery water fun and a strong wind seeker, then you will be in love with Kalpitiya
Hold your breath, because if you like strong winds combined with tropical vibes, then you should find out what's going on in Kalpitiya Lagoon.
Kalpitiya peninsula is developing more and more in terms of kitesurfing and it is starting to establish itself as a real international kitesurfing destination. In this guide, you will find good tips if you plan to kitesurf in Kalpitiya. Just six years ago you could see the first locals on the lagoon conjuring up their tricks on the shallow water. Since then, the region has blossomed into a real water sports Mecca. Yes, what you heard! Hold your breath cause you are about to find out about one of the most brilliant kitesurfing destinations worldwide. Warm temperatures all year round, first-class destination and good wind statistics make kalpitiya the number 1 spot for kitesurfing in Asia. For those wind lovers, we have also developed a guide for kitesurfing in Sri Lanka
The fishing village of Kalpitiya is located about 165km north of Sri Lanka’s most famous city, Colombo, and has become an attractive destination for wind-hungry explorers in recent years. In addition to the reliable winds, ideal for kitesurfing and windsurfing on the huge Kalpitiya Lagoon, the region on the Indian Ocean also attracts the natural spectacle of the whales and schools of dolphins that pass by in the winter months.
The lagoon of Kalpitiya is about 10 minutes by car from the village and inspires by its infinite number of different spots for windsurfing and kiting. Separated from the sea only by a sand dune, alternating between slashing waves and rocking flat water is ingeniously easy in Kalpitiya.
Said that, let´s see now some of the top tips to kitesurfing in Kalpitiya!
Firstly, we want to start talking about the wind conditions in Kalpitiya. And that´s because the wind arrow is carved in stone in Kalpitiya in the two seasons: From May to the beginning/middle of September you can go kiting and windsurfing in Kalpitiya with a crisp south-west wind of 5-7 Bft. calculate, sometimes a bit gusty and often non-stop. In any case, there is no need to run out too big in Kalpitiya at this time. In winter it blows in the exact opposite direction from the northeast in Kalpitiya Lagoon. December, January and February are then the most promising in Kalpitiya with moderate winds up to the 20 knot mark. This time is ideal for beginners and intermediates.
Kalpitiya wind will give you wings!
Kitesurfing conditions in Kalpitiya
Many exciting spots make the Kalpitiya Lagoon an El Dorado of opportunities for explorers – both for windsurfing and kiting. The training requirements for learning new tricks, whether as a windsurfer or as a kiter, are world-class. Especially on the sandbank between the ocean and the lagoon, the water in Kalpitya is as smooth as glass! During the southwest period, the sea has the right momentum for wave riding too.
And on the shores and in the southern part of Kalpitiya Lagoon, the lagoon is mostly shallow – perfect for learning to kitesurf.
What is the minimun required level to kitesurf in Kalpitiya lagoon?
Beginners, intermediates, advanced kitesurfers and kiters of all styles. But those who are in Kalpitiya for windsurfing will also get their money’s worth here. The summer months in particular are ideal for windsurfers.
From Kalpitiya lagoon you can go downwind to alternative kite spots depending on the wind direction. In the summer season, Kalpitiya lagoon is the perfect starting point to make a downwind trip to Dream spot. On the other hand, in the winter season, the Kalpitiya lagoon is the ending point of an excellent downwind trip from Navy Point.
When kiting downwind on the open sea in the northeast wind time, be sure to pay attention to the course of the coast, the wind blows offshore! For longer downwind safaris on the lagoons around Kalpitiya, please note: take a guide with you who knows the area, obtain a detailed briefing and start in good time before sunset. Less experienced kiters are better off with a boat escort.
Activities that you can do in Kalpitiya when there is no wind
Don´t panic if there is no wind! If the wind in Kalpitiya is too weak for kiting or windsurfing, kayak tours, snorkelling on the coral reef in the marine reserve, whale watching in winter or cultural trips to the countryside around Kalpitiya are all tempting: Buddhist temples, ancient colonial churches and national park safaris with wild animals await you there.
Where is the training in Kalpitiya lagoon?
Beginners in kitesurfing are introduced to kite control around a sandbank in the lagoon, followed by body dragging in the deeper area of the Kalpitiya Lagoon. There is plenty of space downwind in the lagoon, so kitesurfing in Kalpitiya is less stressful for beginners than at the heavily frequented spots. The smoothly ironed lagoon area is really good for the first water starts. Kalpitiya is therefore ideal for learning to kitesurf. And of course also for windsurfers.
Kalpitiya lagoon kitesurfing spot
Wanna find more about kalpitiya? Let´s go deep into the main spot for kitesurfing in Kalpitiya: the Kalpitiya lagoon
Kalpitya Lagoon is the most famous lagoon in the region. There are a number of kite stations and resorts in the immediate vicinity. It is usually set up and launched on the narrow tongue of land between the lagoon and Mehr. The resorts are tucked away among the palm trees on the opposite bank, so a boat shuttle (or alternatively a tuk-tuk) chauffeurs kiters back and forth between bed and board. With the almost continuously standing shallow water area, it can get crowded here from midday, but there is always enough alternative space. In the windier summer months, the wind on the sea side blows cross-onshore, bringing with it a small, choppy wave. No matter if you are a beginner, an intermediate or a professional – Kalpitiya works for everyone. Between sessions you can relax in the shade in the small bungalows and enjoy a cool drink or return to the resort for a long lunch break. The only downside: At the beginning of the summer season (from May) the wind can be a bit gusty. It’s still reliable, but should stabilize over the course of the summer months.
Kitesurfing season in Kalpitiya lagoon
Wind and weather: From December to February, the wind usually blows from the northeast at a moderate 15-20 knots, perfect for kiters of all skill levels. Nevertheless, in winter you should also have the big kites in your luggage for days with less wind. In the summer months from May to September, the motto is: “Bring your smallest kites”, as the wind blows relentlessly almost every day from morning to evening at 20 knots from the southwest. March, April, October and November are the months with the least wind and can be quite rainy. Summertime attracts the most water sports enthusiasts, so be prepared not to be the only one out on the water. With outside temperatures around 30 degrees all year round and water temperatures around 28 degrees, you can leave your wetsuit at home in the closet with peace of mind. However, you should not do without lycra or shirt as sun protection and sunblock, as the sun is burning intensely from the sky
Kite schools in Kalpitiya
There are many kite schools in Kalpitiya. The main schools are located right at the spot in Kalpitiya lagon and they have a beach hut where to store the equipment and where to organise the lessons.
If you plan to learn kitesurfing in Kalpitiya, we recommend you choose a certified school that provides safety equipment and qualified instructors. During the last years, many schools have come to the stage without any license. Remember that safety is very important in kitesurfing and choosing a good kite school can save you a lot of headaches. For this reason, here you have our recommendations of kite schools in Kalpitiya:
This certified IKO centre is located right at the spot in Kalpitiya lagoon and offers personalized lessons to all levels. In order to carry the lessons, the students are crossed to the sandbar teaching area though experienced riders can land and launch the kite directly at the spot, due to its outstanding location
Valampuri is an amazing kite camp located right in the KAlpitiya lagoon too. They provide high-quality kitesurfing lessons according to the IKO standards
Surf point Sri Lanka
On the shores of the Indian Ocean, the Surfpoint school is another great option to learn kitesurfing in Kalpitiya. Students are driven by lorry to the teaching area in Kalpitiya lagoon, where they also have a beach hut
Sun wind beach Kalpitiya
This kite school is run by local villagers with very good vibes. If you want to learn to kitesurf and have fun at the time, Sushanta and his team will make your kite lessons really unforgettable.
The rascals kite resort
When we talk about kitesurfing in Kalpitiya, the rascals is one of the first schools that came to the stage. Surrounded by coconut trees and with an amazing swimming pool, Rascals is the best option if you are looking for a refined and luxury kite school to stay
Probably, kitesurfing Lanka is the most famous kite camp in Sri Lanka. Every season, hundreds of kiters gather around this excellent resort. In the winter season, kitesurfing Lanka offers the lessons right in front of the camp due to its amazing flat water lagoon. However, due to the wind direction, in the summer season, they teach in Kalpitiya lagoon
De Silva resort
This VDWS school is the best option if you want to learn according to the german license. De Silva has a great location in Kalpitiya lagoon, so students are crossed by boat to its beach hut on the sand bar
How to get to Kalpitiya
Arrival: The flight connections to Colombo are very good from many european airports and the travel time is quite bearable for kiters. Anyone who catches a fast connection can be in Colombo in thirteen hours. If you are taking kite luggage with you, you should definitely get information from the airlines beforehand, as complications can arise at the airports. Or you can book through one of the relevant tour operators and save yourself the stress. It is just 160 kilometres from Colombo to Kalpitiya. You can take the shuttle, which is organized by the kite resorts, quickly and easily for about 70 to 80 euros. Budget foxes and adventurers can also get to Kalpitiya by public bus and train. This is much cheaper, but it also takes a good six hours. The local taxi drivers usually only offer overpriced trips to Kalpitya. An entry visa is required for Sri Lanka. You can buy it at the airport for $40 or in advance online at www.eta.gov.lk for $35.
Accommodation: As word of the good water sports conditions around Kalpitiya has spread, the resorts are springing up like mushrooms. After a short search, you will find numerous offers in all price categories. Most resorts have their own restaurants and offer good local cuisine with freshly caught fish.
In a nutshell….
The kite spot of Kalpitiya, in Sri Lanka, is located 2 hours north of the main airport of Bandaranaike (in Colombo, the capital), in a region that is still not very touristy.
On one side of the peninsula, you will find the Indian Ocean: ideal for freeriding or having fun in the waves; on the other side: the lagoon of Kalpitiya is perfect for beginners and freestylers. The huge lagoon of Puttalam has a wealth of incredible spots, mostly pristine, some flat as a mirror as it blows 25 knots. Perfect for doing big downwind and organizing kite safaris several times a week.
The wind on the Kalpitiya kite spot: From May to October the wind blows non-stop with an average of 18 to 20 knots (minimum 13 knots up to 30 knots), 24/24h, 7/7d, the conditions are simply exceptional. There is also a winter season from December to early March with windy afternoons, an average temperature of 28 degrees and a seasonal lagoon right in front of Kalpitiya camp.
The water is not turquoise like in the West Indies for example but the conditions are really good and there are often few of us in the water which allows you to progress well. Watch out for gusts in certain areas of the body of water.
There is not much to do right next to the spot, but Sri Lanka itself is a very rich country so you can easily go on walks, excursions, paddle without necessarily crossing the whole country. It’s really a great destination to mix kite and discovery.
What are you waiting for your next kitesurfing trip to Kalpitiya? Jump now from your sofa and let´s rock & roll in Kalpitiya!!