Water sports in Europe

Among all kinds of sports, water sports is the most popular when you think of vacations. Be it Europe, US, Africa or South East Asia, water sports is something which we all look forward to.

So wherever you travel on holiday (except mountains), there’s a good chance there will be some great water sports activities for you to take part in. I don’t participate in all of them, but have tried quite a few and enjoyed them too. From established favourites like surfing and diving to more unusual activities like stand up paddle boarding and even bog snorkeling, there’s an increasingly eclectic selection to be found in Europe alone. Take a look at this pick of the top four to try out on your next holiday in Europe.

Stand up paddle boarding in the Netherlands
Invented in Hawaii back in the 1960s, stand up paddling, or SUP, has found a passionate fan base in the Netherlands. The low surface elevation and abundance of canals throughout the Dutch capital makes it an ideal venue for SUP, as it requires still water with minimal winds. But beware! It’s tougher than it looks.

Diving in Cyprus
There are few better diving hotspots in Europe than Cyprus, thanks to the warm, clear water and unusually long season. If you’re planning on visiting Cyprus and getting involved, look out for one of the many sites offering truly astonishing wonders in the depths of the Mediterranean. Between ancient shipwrecks, vibrant coral reefs and rare sea turtles, you’re certain to see something amazing to make your holiday memorable.

Bog snorkeling in Wales
Don’t expect the same level of visibility here, though, or anything like the same water temperature! A strange and wonderful subculture has built up around the phenomenon of bog snorkelling, which requires competitors to wade through 120 yards of bog water without using conventional swimming strokes, relying instead on pure flipper power. The world championship is held every August bank holiday at the Waen Rhydd bog near Llanwrtyd Wells. A wetsuit and a good sense of humour are both highly recommended.

Surfing in Lanzarote
Lanzarote is known as ‘the European Hawaii’ thanks to its spectacular surfing conditions, and Famara Beach is the standout location on the island for those in search of great waves. Situated at the foot of the Risco Mountain, Famara Beach has hosted several international surfing competitions and continues to be a popular destination. The mixture of visitors from all sorts of cultures united by a love of surf makes for a generally laidback vibe – if all you want to do is hit the water all day long, you’ll be in good company here.