The ocean is your playground; all bodies of water, for that matter, even those that are artificial. The water offers many opportunities for fun and leisure. Consider recreational boating and water sports—these activities will afford you either relaxation or an adrenaline rush, depending on what floats your, well, boat.
Recreational boating allows you the kind of adventure you won’t experience on land. Whether you’re aboard a sailboat or a canoe, you’re bound to have a rewarding journey. If you want time for reflection, you can go to it alone. Alternatively, you can invite friends and family and multiply the fun.
As for water sports, your options run the gamut, and they will depend on whether you want to go solo or be part of a group. For water sports you could do on your own, there’s paddleboarding, wakeboarding, skimboarding, bodyboarding, surfing, kite surfing, kayaking, parasailing, windsurfing, jet-skiing, flyboarding, snorkeling, scuba diving, cliff diving, and good old swimming.
Meanwhile, water polo, rowing, rafting, dragon boat racing, fishing, and cave diving are some of the most popular team water sports that you and your friends can enjoy.
Yes, you won’t run out of things to do once you’re in front of the sea, lake, or even a water sports park. However, do not just wing it. To get the most out of your time, make sure to plan your boating adventure and water sports escapade thoroughly. That’s most practical now that we are amid a pandemic, and there may be health protocols and safety restrictions you need to know about.
Things to consider
Before you head out to your next boating or water sports adventure, look into the health requirements imposed by your area of residence as well as that of your destination. Some places may require you to show proof of vaccination before you are allowed access. Some localities may also impose upon visitors a 14-day quarantine before they are allowed to go outside. These restrictions will affect your plans.
Consider getting tested for COVID-19 before pursuing your plans. That is, even if it’s not required by the place you want to visit. That should give you peace of mind, and you’ll have more fun that way. Before traveling home, get tested again. The last thing you want to happen is to bring the disease to your loved ones. These will require you to shell out more money than usual, but consider them essential expenses.
While you’re in the thick of fun and action, be mindful of your safety still. Wear a mask and social distance if possible. On top of that, check all equipment before heading out into the water. A life jacket won’t make you less awesome, so please wear them even if you’re a seasoned swimmer. Lastly, do some stretching to get your joints and muscles nimble and ready.
Top places for recreational boating
Your boating bucket list should include these places.
1. Marina del Rey, California
Those living in LA and Sta. Monica are lucky to have this precious boating destination. This small-craft harbor is the largest in the United States. It has enough space for 4,300 boats. Frequented by the rich and famous, Marina del Rey is as highbrow as they come.
2. Key West, Florida
You can’t go wrong boating along the rest of the Florida Keys, but its jewel is arguably Key West. Get ready to spot large barracudas and small sharks while whiling away the hours on your boat’s deck.
3. Lake Havasu, Arizona
This boating destination is popular among the younger crowd—by that, we mean college-age boaters throwing frat parties on their daddy’s yacht. If that kind of vibe’s right up your alley, head to Lake Havasu and explore its waterways stretching for 60 miles.
4. Seattle, Washington
When you hear Seattle, you probably don’t picture a boating paradise. But for boating enthusiasts, that’s exactly the case. Here you get to sail through hundreds of miles of saltwater with the majestic Olympics and Cascade mountains in the background.
5. Maui, Hawaii
If you want to venture out and away from the mainland, consider taking your boating expedition to Maui, Hawaii. Immerse yourself in the island’s exotic sceneries and genuinely tropical vibe.
Top places for water sports
If you are a water sports enthusiast, do not miss out on what the following destinations have to offer.
1. Old Orchard Beach, Maine
Here you’ll find seven miles of the Atlantic coastline. For over 170 years, this destination has been a must-visit for travelers with a thirst for adventure. Water sports you can do in Old Orchard Beach include canoeing and kayaking, among others.
2. Lake Pleasant, Arizona
Lake Pleasant is a haven for water sports enthusiasts. It offers exciting activities such as jet skiing, wakeboarding, paddleboarding, kayaking, and more. Being the Phoenix’s biggest lake, it is also a destination for boating adventures. The lake is perfect for family vacations, weekend trips with friends; plus, it’s a dog-friendly destination!
3. Lake City, Minnesota
AKA “Land of 10,000 Lakes,” this place lives up to its moniker. It’s also where water skiing originated. That alone should give you a hint on how water sports run in the veins of this place.
4. Valdez, Alaska
Those who prefer their water sports in a chilly climate should head to Valdez, Alaska. Marvel at the sight of Prince William Sound’s deep fjord while kayaking.
5. San Diego, California
San Diego’s mild temperatures year-round attract those in perpetual search of summer. Spots to explore for water sports include the Oceanside Harbor, Mission Bay, and the San Diego Harbor.
Go get wet
You deserve some time away from your busy schedule. Recreational boating and water sports will take your mind off your stressful career or business or whatever your preoccupation happens to be. To maximize your adventure, choose the best places ready to welcome you, such as the ones on this list. Even if you need to spend more, it’ll be worth it. Plan thoroughly.
As soon as you get the chance, have your swimsuit ready and head out for the sea, lake, or water park. Just make sure you adhere to health protocols so that you can keep yourself and others safe from COVID-19 or water activity-related accidents. Lastly, please have a blast. After all, that’s the goal.