Best School Premier Destination: Rio Kitesurfing School
Kitestore/Vandals test center is located on Barra da Tijuca Beach in Rio de Janeiro. The center is based at Kitestore located on Main Street of Barra neighborhood. The store hours are 10 AM to 8 PM and 1 PM to 4 PM on Saturdays. On Sundays we are at the kite beach (500 meters away from the store) whenever the wind is blowing, until the wind dies. If conditions permit, you can ride in the dark as lights on the beach are really powerful. At the beach you can use the air pump, others will help you assemble your kite and lockers and water are available for a small daily fee (around US $10). They offer rescue cover for all clients. This means an inflatable rescue boat is on standby in the water at the kite zone all day. Staff members are on hand on the beach watching out for kiters and helping with kite launching and landing.
Kitestore/Vandals test center is well equipped with a wide range of Best kites. We also offer a wide selection of boards in various sizes for the most advanced rider to the absolute beginner.
The usual wind blows port tack cross-shore at varying strengths (12 to 25 knots) through the year. The windy season goes from August to March. But you can have light wind days out of the season, as well as very strong winds during cold fronts when it changes for starboard tack.
Buzios (a very fancy town) and Araruama Lagoon (famous flat-water sand bar) are very good options out of the season and are located 1 hour 45 minutes away by car through very good and scenic roads. We can provide directions, maps and updated wind info for you. We have a test center and schools on both locations.
Water and Air Temperature
The water is usually warm. It might get cold for a few days, but this is pretty rare. (17 C degrees is the worst, but the air is warm when it happens) But, usually no wetsuits are needed! Air temperature is 25 to 36 C during the summer. Temperature varies from 15 to 25 C during the winter.
Waves and Conditions
The magic in Rio is that conditions vary a lot. It might look like a Caribbean blue lagoon many days and change to Hawaiian-style, double overhead, very powerful waves the very next day. The kitesurfing area is marked by signs on only 300 meters of the beach where you are allowed to go out and in the water. But, when the waves are big and beach is empty, incredible 10 kilometers down wind runs are tolerated (at your own risk and responsibility). You can get back to the spot on US $1 city buses. Whenever the waves are not big, there are inflatable boats that will rescue you for a small fee, if you have a failure. Check if you are not in the test center’s area. Rio is great for all riders. But, when the waves are big, intermediate and advanced riders head for Buzios or Araruama lagoon.
Courses are available throughout the year and are provided by IKO trained instructors.
Rental gear is available, but we do have to check your skill level to be sure you do not need classes. There are lockers available for kiters who bring their own equipment. Kite service includes use of the center facilities, showers, compressor, etc.
If The Wind Does Not Show At All
Rio is an amazing town by all means. If you are really into sports, you might surf, scuba dive, tandem fly or trek thru the biggest forest in the world located in a big city. If you are single male, Rio has the best beach in the world. If it rains, cultural options are available. Or rent a car and drive to fancy Buzios where you can have marvelous dining experiences as well as a great scuba dive or surf.