Most people come to the beach to relax under the sun, waddle by the seashore or make sandcastles. But for daredevils and risk-takers, the sight of seawater and giant waves means doing something exhilarating. And if water activities are your thing, these bucket-list-worthy extreme water sports should give you the highest dose of adrenaline rush!
1. Horse Surfing
If you enjoy regular surfing, you can take this sport to the next level with a wakeboard, shallow water and a horse. Also known as horse boarding, this activity needs a surfer and a rider (plus lots of practice) to pull off. Here, one person rides a horse along the beachside while the surfer gets pulled from behind.
Once the horse starts galloping, momentum builds up, and the surfer can do all sorts of tricks that are similar to wakeboarding. The speed involved in this water sport adds thrill to the experience. If you’re skilled enough, you can even join in horse surfing competitions.
For those who are into extreme sports that involve surfing and flying, kitesurfing is your perfect match. But instead of taking on ocean waves, kite surfers use steady wind power to control a steerable kite while on a surfboard. With the right timing, kiteboarders can propel across flat-water spots or up in the air. Pros can go as high as 60 feet!
You need quite a great deal of stamina for this water sport, though. Plus, it helps if you have some wakeboarding, surfing and paragliding experience. But the best thing is, you get the thrill and a workout in one go. Also, no kitesurfing ride is the same. So, there’s something new to learn and master in every attempt!
Bodyboarding or boogie boarding is another type of surface water sport that’s somewhat similar to surfing. However, rather than riding the waves while standing up on a surfboard, bodyboarders use a belly board while in a prone position. Drop-knee and stand-up positions are also possible.
Boogie boards are much shorter and made of foam, allowing you to ride the wave’s crest, face and curl towards the shore. Like surfing, this sport depends on the power of ocean waves, which also means that boarders should be physically fit and good swimmers.
If you’re keen to try new extreme water sports, then consider a subwing adventure. A subwing is a piece of two-winged equipment attached to a speedboat or jet ski. Here, the boat rider drags the equipment to let the subwing rider swim like a dolphin and enjoy the stunning ocean view.
Once you get the hang of it, you can do various acrobatics, like spins and twists, while underwater. What I like about the subwing is that you only need to be a good swimmer to do it. It doesn’t require any specialised skill or training either. Plus, you can skip the thrilling spins altogether and merely marvel at every marine life you spot.
5. Canyon Tubing and Flying Fish
Here’s another water sport that requires no specific skill but is still not for the faint of heart. Canyon tubing is a rafting-type activity minus the paddling. All you need is an inflatable tube, helmet, life vest and a narrow stream. Once ready, you then zoom your way down the river current while enjoying lush forests and monkeys on treetops. Of course, the surprise bumps and rocky plunges make the ride even more exciting!
This fun activity is popular in Bali, Indonesia. Some canyon tubing sites even start your adventure with ziplining. While on the island, you might want to try the flying fish ride, too. Here, thrill-seekers hold onto the straps of a wide rubber boat while lying down or sitting up. A speedboat then hurls it up into the air like a kite to make you splash down to the ocean repeatedly!
6. Cavern Diving
Cavern diving is among the few extreme water sports that require specialised equipment and scuba diving experience or training. When you scuba-dive in overhead environments, presence of mind is of utmost importance. Cavern dives, after all, are extra challenging as divers cannot directly ascend to the surface. On top of that, the silt, mud, sand and other sediments affect visibility.
While it can be discomforting and dangerous, cavern diving is the ideal sport to take recreational scuba diving to a deeper level (no pun intended!). Training for this extreme sport will teach you how to handle mental and physical stress. It can heighten your sense of awareness and discipline, too. More importantly, it will make you appreciate nature’s beauty even more.
7. Cliff Diving
For the ultimate adrenaline rush, cliff diving is at the top of the list. It is, in fact, a rather dangerous sport. To do this, as the name suggests, divers would jump off a cliff that’s right next to a slightly deep part of the ocean. Expert cliff divers would even execute body spins in the air before landing into the water.
If you do want to try this one out, you need an experienced instructor to show you the ropes. A proper diving class is a must as well. Doing all sorts of extreme water sports is great, but remember, safety should always be a priority. And while they can be risky, the experience and the skills you learn from it are your best takeaways!
Ready to take the bravery test? Check out these Gold Coast water activities to showcase your fearless side!