Deciding it wasn’t a good idea to take my beloved SLR into the ocean while paddleboarding, the photos you see here are courtesy of a GoPro (and in honour of one of the fellow boarder’s GoPro, which now lives at the bottom of the ocean).
Long story short, paddleboarding – or surface water surfing with a stick – is an amazing workout, lots of fun, and gives you the chance to explore secluded beaches and caves that are impossible to reach by land. There are only a few things I advise:
– Wear a hat and high-factor, waterproof SPF. Hanging out in direct sun for three hours makes you a prime target for sunburn.
– Fuel up. I wasn’t hungry enough to have a full breakfast, so ended up with low blood sugar half way through paddleboarding. While we’re not all diabetic, much of the group got exhausted after an hour or two. A little extra fuel will go a long way.
– Water. It’s an elongated workout in the sun. Hydration is essential. Take a bottle and hide it in your board’s netting.
– Be sensible when exploring. We were fortunate to have very experienced guides, but I still ended up with battered legs from rock climbing around the caves. If you’re cliff diving, rock climbing, or swimming without your board, make sure you’ve checked the area.
– Use your paddles the right way round. I spent a good thirty minutes frustrated that I wasn’t moving as fast as anyone else.
Having realised we hadn’t taken any obligatory ‘family outfit photos’, we decided to snap a few before we headed off for our final meal that evening. Obviously, regardless of great intentions, the photos ended up being completely out of focus (the un-cropped versions show beautiful detail on the pool water).
I think they might be my favourite photos, anyway.