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Kitesurfing Guide – Viana do Castelo, Portugal

Matt Pearce with the GKA checks out Cabadelo beach in Viana do Castelo, Portugal during the 2018 world tour.

Cabadelo beach / Photo: Diogo Cardoso / Photo: Diogo Cardoso

 

Righteous rights! / Photo: Juvenal Vieira (Feel Viana)

This is the first time the tour has visited Portugal, and it’s got a lot of potential to become a firm favourite of the KSWT. If you’re thinking about checking out Viana do Castelo yourself, then here’s an overview of what you need to know.

CONDITIONS

Generally speaking, this area gets some of those most consistent wind on the entire Portuguese coastline. The most reliable months for wind are from May to September, when the thermic El Nortada winds blow in cross / cross-off from the right. That makes it an ideal spot for wave riding when the Atlantic swells roll in.

Protected, clean and glassy. Dreamy / Photo: Juvenal Vieira (Feel Viana)

The waves don’t get huge here, but they’re usually clean and peeling and the wind direction helps them to hold up nicely for some lengthy down-the-line rides.

Viana is on Europe’s Atlantic coast of course, so a wetsuit is required but a light one will do the trick in summer and a 4/3 will be enough for the rest of the year.

For an idea of what it’s like when the conditions are on in Viana, watch this Charlie Wise and James Carew’s video filmed just before the KSWT Portugal.

THE TOWN

The crew takes in some culture / Photo: Ydwer van der Heide

Viana do Castelo is a lot smaller than nearby Porto (where the closest airport is) but that’s part of the appeal. The GKA riders went exploring this week and discovered a traditional, charming town with an authentic old town, enchanting hidden little streets and epic views across the river and over the kite spot from the Santa Luzia church that sits high above town.

The local food and wine is also pretty epic, and you can find everything from traditional dishes to unreal sushi in Viana itself.

Culturally and architecturally it’s totally unlike anywhere else the GKA KSWT has visited up to now, so the riders and crew were stoked to spend some time checking it out!

STUFF TO DO

Wind is a fickle beast but that’s when finding other activities to do becomes key. Luckily that’s pretty easily done in Viana. Viana do Castelo also has its impressive mountain backdrop of the national parks to explore which are just a short drive away. Watch the video below to get an idea of what Viana’s all about and to find out what the competitors have made of it so far.

Viana do Castelo, Google Map

Best Months: May to September

Upcoming Viana do Castelo Forecast