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Kayaking at Cabarete

Listed under Kayaking in Dominican Republic.

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Photo by Hal Peat
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While it is best known for its explosion of popularity since the Nineties in such extreme water sports as kiteboarding and windsurfing, the Atlantic shore line bordering the mecca town of Cabarete on the Dominican Republic's north coast is also fine for the experienced paddler. Best time to go, however, is likely to be the slow season for the other extreme sports - so rather than mid-summer, choose the winter season months when winds are not at their peak and there are no summertime kiteboarding or windsurfing championships happening here.

There is an outer reef running along the coast here, and this marks the boundary within which you might also want to stay within for calmer waters with less undertow. Otherwise, get ready to enjoy the frequent swell. There are still considerable waves even inside the reef, because the winds never entirely die down - but again, choose the time of day as well as the time of year to match your skills. Check in with one of the local beachfront operators offering both kiteboarding/windsurfing for your ocean kayak rental by the hour, and get their opinion on current daily conditions beforehand. Cabarete Windsports Club is one rental option, or if you are staying locally at water sport oriented resorts like The Windsurf resort, you can also get one hour free per day with your stay. Once you have launched offshore from the central part of Cabarete Beach, and paddle a hundred yards out, you already have a spectacular view of the curve of the bay and the variety of activity which never totally lets up - more likely than not, the air will be dotted with kiteboarders. Ocean kayaks seem to be mostly the sit-on-top molded plastic variety; bring your own water and sunblock, the sun is consistently intense at all times of year. On your return to the beach, be ready with your surf kayaking skills since so much of the shore sees waves breaking most of the time.

Written by  Hal Peat.

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