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Find A Wave To Rave About

Aug 21, 2008
If you are looking for a true surfer's paradise, you need to jog on round to New Zealand. This remote island is blessed with all the things that make for the perfect surf. Strong winds, the force of the Pacific Ocean, currents to liven things up a little and surf shops in abundance supplying every type of wetsuit, surf board, sex wax and surfing paraphernalia you could possibly wish for.

New Zealand is one of the most beautiful countries you could possibly wish to live in or visit. Life is as laid back as any surfer could possibly dream for. The scenery is absolutely breathtaking and every road leads to a beach with breaks that will challenge you and beg to be conquered.

However, underlying the serenity of New Zealand there still simmers a debate about land ownership between New Zealanders that originate from the West and Maoris. This will still come up from time to time and surfers have encountered this exact thing. Donned with wetsuits and boards, they have recently found themselves turned away from two of the favourite surfing beaches, Sky Williams and Mangahume at Taranaki. This, some say, is because the Maoris want to reclaim this land but even the surfers themselves believe it is not so.

The land is privately owned and is home to three cemeteries that restricted access is protecting. Maoris hold a lot of store by their ancestors and even by Western standards it is only right to respect burial grounds. Taranaki is on the Western coast of New Zealand, near New Plymouth, and surfers from all over the world will head there in the summer to catch a few waves. There is concern that shutting two of the favourite hotspots will affect the tourist industry but having been there myself, I doubt this very much. New Zealand has vast amounts of coastline, all ideal for surfers to dip their wetsuits.

Next best surfing opportunities after New Zealand have to be Hawaii, the true home of surfing. World famous competitions are held here due to the perfect waves. Any new producer of wetsuits would do well to have their product showcased in Hawaii, that's one thing that will propel them straight into main stream surfing circles.

Originally, surfing was considered a sport of royalty who could afford to move around the world throughout the year, always having access to the best waves. It has now become a sport for all and is one that will keep you fit and strong and tanned.

For Hawaiian surfing, you are best to pack up your wetsuit and board and head north between November and March. Waves generated from Alaskan winter storms head into Hawaii creating a surfers paradise. The make-up of the ocean floor on Oahu's north beaches are perfect for riding monster waves and endless barrels. For wind surfing, Hookipa Beach at Maui is where you need to be.

You would be wasting your time trying to surf north Hawaii during the summer months as the sea is as smooth as glass. It's tropical storms in the south Pacific that send their shock waves in the form of surfing waves to the south of the island during summer months. Waikiki Beach at Oahu and Poipu Beach at Kauai are where you need to be for surfing and boogie boarding conditions.

There are surfing possibilities around the world all year round. True dedicated surfers will follow the waves and compete to be the best. For the rest of us it's a seasonal past time that requires a dust off of the old surf board that's been propped in the garage for the last six months and a deodorizing spray of the stinky wetsuit.
About the Author
Watersports expert Catherine Harvey looks at the best place to don a wetsuit and mount your surfboard.
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