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Kitesurf - Cabecera - kanala

Kitesurf and Windsurf

We look forward to
seeing you at the Hemingway Kanala House.


Sailing activities in Urdaibai are nothing new and in fact enjoy a long tradition thanks to the excellent conditions of the wind. Its intensity, direction and nobility are key aspects of sailing sports. The Kanala shipyard built hundreds of vessels, and the majority of the yachts which sailed the waters of the estuary for centuries. The year 1978 saw the start of windsurfing on the estuary, and it wasn’t long before the spot became a national favourite for all lovers of the sport.

Later, in 1998, people started to regularly enjoy new power sports including the buggy, mountainboarding and, of course, kitesurfing.

Kitesurfing was normalised in 2005 with the appearance of Bow-type kites, a technological revolution simplifying this noble sport. Today the kitesurfing federation has around 200 members in the Basque Country. In the near future, kitesurfing will become an Olympic sport alongside its sibling, windsurfing.

Kitesurf 3 - Kanala

Why do people kitesurf and windsurf in the Urdaibai reserve?

And where?

Sailing sports need a series of specific conditions to be carried out properly and safely, and the choice of the Urdaibai estuary is no coincidence.
It has the best statistics for wind quality in the whole Basque Country, with more than 100 days of laminar wind flow (force > F3). Most of the winds are whipped up by squalls, and a small part are related to the heat during the summer months (June, July, August). But take care, swimmers always have priority, and this is an estuary with strong currents! The contrast between the temperature of the sea in the warm summer months means that wind in the estuary is even stronger.
At high tide, the mouth of the estuary measures 1km, while the area of San Antonio beach only measures 0.5km, generating a fabulous natural funnel which creates a phenomenon known as the Venturi effect. The wind speed is greater in this area and means that you won’t invade the small space available to beach goers. On summer days the kite of choice is 12-16m2 for lovers of the most contemplative freeride, taking care not to disturb other nautical activities such as canoeing, stand up paddle, etc.

Recomendaciones para navegar - Kanala

Squalls are frequent, bringing us prevailing winds from the Basque Country. The westerly winds are divided into north-westerly (from Galicia) and south-westerly (Erreka haize).

The estuary is sheltered from the north-westerly wind (coming in from Galicia); on days when it blows, kitesurfers take to the beaches where it typically blows all year round, such as Ereaga or Arrigunada, near Urdaibai.

South-westerly (Erreka haize) and southerly winds generally blow in autumn and winter. These are stronger winds, perfect for freestyling or free-waving on the fabulous Mundaka wave. Warning! The offshore wind is only for the most experienced and should never be tackled alone. The most common kites are 7-9m2.

Lastly, in springtime the easterly winds appear, to take advantage of which you should head for Salburu reservoir or Laredo beach.

Kitesurf 5 - Kanala

Recommendations for kitesurfing on Kanala beach

On Kanala beach (love beach) you can even kitesurf in summer, but always with respect for others.

The Mundaka estuary is a specially protected area of wetlands used by birds to build their nests. That’s why you should leave from the upper part of Kanala beach, where the wind is always better (as indicated by the black arrows). If you have difficulty riding upwind, make sure not to pass the red line where practising our beloved sport is forbidden. A hint: at low tide, set up your kite in front of Sandindere Island and next to the Kite beach point rock (orange buoy). With all the material assembled and ready to go, and with the incoming tide, riding upwind will be easier.

The beach is a public place for everyone’s enjoyment, respect others and they’ll respect you. Bathers, canoeists, etc.

Try not to stay too close to the beach on either bank, or when riding upwind. Don’t come within 50-100m of them. Bathers are plentiful in these areas.

Respect the basic kitesurfing rules (see attached image)

Lastly, we hope to see you soon in the water, lending even greater strength to this noble sport where man uses the force of the wind single-handed to skim the waves.

Lagunak Lagunak


Loft suite

Lagunak, or Hemingway’s friends, is our loft suite, fully equipped to guarantee a great holiday, and with fantastic views of the estuary.

Fully equipped Loft

The Andreak suite is fully equipped to guarantee a great holiday, with fantastic views of the estuary.

Andreak Andreak

Liburuak Liburuak

Fully equipped loft

Liburuak is a loft fully equipped to guarantee a great holiday, with fantastic views of the Atxarre chapel.

Cuba Cuba

Fully equipped room

Cuba is a room fully equipped to guarantee a great holiday, with fantastic views of the Atxarre chapel.

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