If you don’t like kiting with crowds, then Swartriet is the place to go. (Until this kitesurfing guide came out). Swartriet is a private reserve, so you will need to pay a small fee to enter. On good days it is definitely worth it.
To get to Swartriet drive towards Langebaan, then towards Saldanha. From here about 10km along the coast until you pass by the farm at Swartriet. Stop at the reception and ask for access and pay the fee. Then follow the “Dagbesoekers” signs. Park at the parking lot, rig your gear and walk over the dune to the beach.
Excellent waves. The swell can get quite large out here, as Swartriet is totally exposed to the Atlantic swell. Deep-sea reefs in the ocean results in two peaky waves in the bay. Waves here are generally twice the size compared to Cape Town (Sunset Beach). If you get there early in the morning, you can catch some sweet waves before the wind arrives.
The rocky points on either end prevent the stronger currents that flow with the wind. Which allows for excellent jumping conditions. Intermediate wave riders can kite on the windward side of the bay where the waves are small, and break on a sandy bed.
Experts can kite the main peaks but must take care of the treacherous rocks on the downwind side of the bay and the shallow reefs on the inside. Definitely not a beginner spot. On massive days it is still possible to get out on the water, ride a few triple overhead waves. There is plenty of space to ride around the peaks. When the wind is light (early mornings), Swartriet is an excellent surf spot with consistent beach break waves. Avoid the rocks on the Northern side of the bay. Take care of the shallow reefs on the inside.
Swartreit, West Coast – KITEFACTS:
- Best winds: October – March
- Wind direction: SE, S, SW or NW
- Water Temp: 4/3, 3/2
- Water Type: Small to big waves
- Riding Type: Free-Ride, Wave riding, Big air
- Beach Type: Sand, rocks on either end of the beach
- Experience: Beginner to Pro
SE winds are the norm for summer with NW in the winter. Just after a passing cold front, the wind turns South East at Swartriet while it is still blowing South West in Cape Town. Swartriet also gets a strong North wind before approaching cold fronts. The wind starts blowing here a day before the NW starts blowing in Cape Town.
This is actually a privately owned farm. However, the owners do allow kiteboarders to ride here, as long as they check in to the reception on arriving. It is essential that you do this because if they get the impression that kiters are not paying for their entrance, they might limit the access.
Once you have been to the reception, follow the DAGBESOEKERS signs (Day Visitors) to the beach. The owners are quite strict about the opening and closing hours. This can be tragic if the wind is up, and the waves are good, and the sun happens to be setting at 20:00. The only way around this is to spend the night on the farm. Costs for day visitors are R10 per car and R5 per person.
This kite spot picks up most swell directions.