Stand-up paddleboarding (or SUP for short), a sport with roots in the Hawaiian Islands, has grown popular worldwide in recent years. It's available for all skill levels and ages, and even novice stand-up paddleboarders can get up, stay up, and have a great time paddling around a protected bay or exploring the gorgeous coastline. All you need to get started is a large body of calm water, a board, and a paddle. The workout tests your core strength as well as your balance and offers an unusual vantage point from which to enjoy the beauty of island and ocean.
Equipment and Lessons
Hypr Nalu Hawaii. SUP master Ian Foo is the king of the stand-up paddleboard in downtown Kailua-Kona. At his small oceanfront shop across from the pier, he stocks paddleboards and surfboards, all beautifully custom-made. They also offer OC1 lessons, rentals, active ocean gear, and apparel. He and his family are serious and enthusiastic about ocean sports and are awesome teachers. 75-5663A Palani Rd., Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, 96740. 808/960–4667; www.hyprnalu.com.
Ocean Sports. This outfitter rents equipment, offers lessons, and has the perfect location for easy access to the bay. Ocean Sports also operates rental shacks at the Hilton Waikoloa Village, Whale Center Kawaihae, Queens' MarketPlace, and at Anaehoomalu Bay. They can also set you up with cruises, dives, and charters elsewhere on the island. Waikoloa Beach Marriott, 69-275 Waikoloa Beach Dr., Waikoloa, Hawaii, 96738. 808/886–6666; www.hawaiioceansports.com. SUP rental $50/hr.