EUROPE / PORTUGAL / VIANA DO CASTELO
CABADELO BEACH VIANA DO CASTELO, PORTUGAL
A stunning destination for those in search of action, adventure and sports for the whole family or solo.
WHEN TO GO: Peak Season: April – September Air Temp: 24 – 30°C / 75 – 86°F Water Temp: Summer – 20°C / 68°F Winter – 12°C / 53°F
CONDITIONS: WAVES – 4 FLAT WATER – 4 BEGINNER – 4 WARM WATER - 2.5 STRONG WIND – 3
A vast, safe space ALL PHOTOS: Feel Viana
ON THE WATER The area of Cabadelo beach in Viana do Castelo, northern Portugal, is gaining steady recognition as one of Europe’s premiere kiting locations with consistent winds and extremely varied riding. Large breakwaters protect the entrance to the port of Viana do Castelo, offering up butter-flat water inside the harbour while you can find world-class waves elsewhere in the bay (the GKA Kite-Surf World Tour previously had a stop in Viana!). The best winds come through consistently in the summer from May to September and it’s normally light in the mornings, giving ample opportunity for an early morning surf, before picking up nicely for beginners and foilers by lunch time and increasing in strength towards the afternoon with the strongest winds later in the day. The wind blows cross-shore from the right, ramped up by thermals as the day continues. There are lifeguards on duty during the summer and a rescue boat too, should you ever need it.
On the same beach there are three different areas: one that's more protected next to the pier delivering butter flat water; another more centrally in front of the Beach Sport Center of FeelViana with side-shore wind; and the third is in the south area of the bay with more onshore wind. In the area downwind of Cabadelo beach you can get some excellent wave riding. The bottom is sandy right in the central area of the bay and you only need to be aware of some rocks in the southern area. When there is an Atlantic swell, it is the perfect place to kitesurf waves. The waves are average, but consistent. A perfect spot for all ages and levels. In times before Covid, Progression Sports regularly run their foil and wave coaching camps here due to the fantastic conditions and set up. Alternative spots nearby include the waves of Moledo to the north, and the flat waters of Esposende (although access by boat is usually needed via one of the schools).
Strong wind session
Technical support at the spot
Soft sand launch
WIND, WEATHER AND WATER Air temperatures are peachy but not stifling around here with highs of around 27 - 30°C / 80 - 86°F in the summer and a very pleasant average throughout the season. In winter you’ll want a light jacket (but it’s still nice by Northern European / North American standards). Water temps peak at 20°C / 68°F in summer and drop to around 12°C / 53°F in winter, so you can get away with swimwear or a very light suit in summer but will need 4mm rubber in winter. The wind is consistent here throughout the year but peaks in the summer due to thermic effects (which aren’t reflected by the wind stats) and from April through to September you’ll be able to get out almost everyday if you have a foil. The main wind is a thermal from the northwest anywhere between 16 – 35 knots. 20 – 25 knots / Eight to 12 metre kites for twin-tip riders is the norm (surf and foilboard riders go smaller), but if a strong Nortada wind comes through then you’ll be out on your smaller kites for sure.
“Viana is a perfect gateway for a northern Portugal adventure and has nearly every activity imaginable!”
Portugal's Atlantic surf cleans up beautifully in the bay
OTHER SPORTS & OFF THE WATER ACTIVITIES Viana do Castelo itself is a smallish city, but has everything to complete your holiday, including bars, restaurants, supermarkets and shops as well as historic sites. The area also holds a lot of interest culturally and architecturally and the local wine is fantastic. Viana is a perfect gateway for a northern Portugal adventure and has nearly every activity imaginable! FeelViana hotel can help with the arrangements and has plenty of activities already on site too! They can also recommend local villages to explore, sights to see and help with 'off the beaten track' options. Just 40 mins drive away is Peneda-Gerês, Portugal's incredible national park where you can find superb mountain pools and there are plenty of beauty spots even closer for hiking, mountain biking and even canyoning! The historic city of Porto is well worth a visit, especially if you like taking in the culture while drinking the port wine it's named after!
This whole area is a true adventure playground! If it’s not windy then there’s often some steady Atlantic swells for surfing or SUP. FeelViana guests can go on a bike tour or visit their on-site pump track or cable park, wakeboard behind a boat, or simply enjoy a sports massage at their five star SPA. The nearby hills are great for trail running, hiking or mountain biking or head to nearby cities such as Porto to take in some culture. This is also a great venue for sailing and FeelViana Sport Hotel has its own 18 foot sailing yacht.
Amazing terrain to explore
Surf suitable for all the family
Hotel Feel Viana
ACCOMMODATION There’s plenty of accommodation to be found, including luxury ‘wine hotels’ and spas, as well as self-catered properties and a very popular option is the four star FeelViana Sport Hotel which is right on the beach and beautifully integrated into the surrounding pine forests, with an excellent sports centre and kite school attached. There’s also a well-equipped gym and a yoga studio with pilates and stretching classes. FEELVIANA SPORT HOTEL fits seamlessly into its natural environment with 46 stylish rooms and nine bungalows set just back from the beach. There’s an excellent restaurant, lounge terrace and bar, plus a very well-equipped sports centre, complete with gym, pump track, a bike shop and cycle hire. They can arrange lots of outdoor activities from watersports to bike tours, trail running and trekking and it’s also a great place to chill out and relax! www.hotelfeelviana.com firstname.lastname@example.org
Porto International (OPO) is an hour’s drive away and you can either rent a car at the airport or make use of FeelViana’s shuttle service.
SCHOOLS FEELVIANA SPORT HOTEL has a modern Watersports Center which is well equipped with a wide range of the latest gear for kitesurfing and other water sports which is all available for hire or purchase. Kite lessons are available in a range of languages and windsurf, surf, SUP, bodyboard hire and SUP tours are also available. www.feelviana.com email@example.com