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Water sports in the UK

Devon – the best place for water sports in the UK

Devon – the best place for water sports in the UK

Why do we think Devon is the best place for water sports in the UK? Devon has some of the UK’s finest beaches with wilder, windswept stretches of sand to the north and calmer seas and a good choice of beaches in the South. Devon has something for everyone on these two coastlines.

In total Devon offers over 450 miles of glorious beaches and whether you’re a novice or more experienced, you will get the chance to try a whole range of wonderful water sports including surfing and paddleboarding. You can even try wakeboarding!

Water sports in the UK - beach

North and South Devon’s coastal locations naturally make them some of the best for water sports in the UK. With plenty of locations to test out your skills on the water, you will find the perfect place to suit your ability, whether you’re a real beginner or more advanced. Check out some of the most popular water sports in Devon:


Devon draws crowds of keen surfers to its shores every year. There are options for beginners as well as the more experienced who are always looking for the most challenging breaks to test their skills and technique. You can surf throughout the summer or winter months, so it really is a year-round activity. Some of the top surfing spots in Devon are found at CroydeWoolacombe, Saunton and Challaborough.

Water sports in the UK - surfing


Windsurfing offers the perfect mix of surfing and sailing. Using a modern light board gives you the thrill of a lifetime on more challenging seas or a simpler and more relaxed ride on calmer waters.  Classed as an extreme sport, experienced windsurfers do amazing tricks and you can improve your technique as you become more used to controlling the board. Windsurfing takes place across the Devon coastline.

Kayaking & Canoeing

Whether you want to take to the lakes or rivers of Devon or are experienced enough to take on the challenge of sea kayaking, Devon has it all. You can take a course at an activity centre first to give you the confidence to hit the open waters. Feel your skills grow as you become at home in a kayak or canoe. There are some great spots to try this great sport in Devon including Dartmouth, Combe Martin, and the Jurassic Coast

Stand-up paddleboarding

Stand-up paddleboarding is becoming more and more popular in the UK. This really is a fantastic way to get fit and is suitable for all ages. A lot of people start off their paddleboarding journey on a lake and then progress to the sea once they feel more confident.   Top paddle boarding areas in Devon are found at Ilfracombe, the River Dart and the Salcombe Estuary.

Water sports in the UK - paddleboarding


Wakeboarding has been going for over 30 years, but you may not have heard of it. The easiest way to describe it is snowboarding on the water. You can travel at speeds of 30mph so it’s great for thrill-seekers. Once you try it you will want to do it again and again.  Good spots for wakeboarding in Devon can be found at  Salcombe and Bideford


If you haven’t tried kitesurfing before then you are in for a real treat. Devon offers great opportunities to give it a go and there are short courses run by great coaches that will give you the confidence you need. On a windy day, you will feel accelerated as you sail through the waves, picking up speed as you go. There are some great kitesurfing spots in Devon and some of the best can be found at ExmouthCroyde and Westward Ho.

Whatever water sport you feel like trying, Devon has it on offer and once the bug gets you, you’ll want to return year after year. Many language students try these water sports for the first time here so why not combine your English studies in Devon with the opportunity to try a new hobby on the waves.

ECT Language School is a small family-owned business set in the historic market town of Newton Abbot in Devon with more than 20 years’ experience in delivering English language courses to groups and individuals (teenagers and adults). Studying with ECT will give you access to all the wonderful Devon coastline has to offer and you can even try out some of the best water sports in the UK while you are there.

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