Ever since we returned from Australia with a surfboard (a birthday present for Nick), we talked about ways that we could go surfing again now that we are in Europe. Of course we decided the best way to do this was in Wales. In Winter.
Luckily, we found out that surfing at Cardiff International White Water meant not having to dive in a freezing cold sea, but that everything would happen inside.
Have a look with me at how this works, because it really is quite inventive. And fun!
BUCKET LIST EXPERIENCE AT CARDIFF INTERNATIONAL WHITE WATER
Cardiff International White Water Center
Indoor Surfing? Yes, some clever people have managed to recreate the current of a wave through an ingenious system called Flowrider. With specially designed boards, you can hit the waves with a technique that is a bit of a mix with surfing, skateboarding and snowboarding.
And I happen to be terrible at all of them. This can only be good….
Hat Model: Sophie
Indoor Surfing Cardiff
After putting on your charming wetsuits, it’s on to the instruction video where you can see all the amazing things you can do on the Flowrider. Things you will probably never be able to do, but hey, at least you can pay attention to the safety instructions.
Then the instructor will show and tell you everything you need to know, before it’s your turn to try it yourself. It’s quite exciting the first time as the water really flows quite hard (hold on to your contact lenses!) and you have to practice your balance a bit before you get the hang of it. Unless you’re a kid, because in that case you’ll probably have this secret talent to not be scared one bit, not listen to instructions and still do better than everyone else in the class.
Learning How to Surf …Is Hard!
You start on a body board, where you begin with holding on for dear life. If you are still smiling after that, you can try to sit on it with your knees and even let go of your hands or grab the board and bounce on it a couple of times. The pro’s will bounce, then spin around 360 degrees (not kidding) and land back on the board. In my dreams unfortunately. In my dreams.
This is how we did:
Standing up on the Board
After a couple of tries on the body board, both from the side of the bottom of the Flowrider as from the top (well scary), we moved on to the surfing. Surprisingly enough, I could actually stand up on it! Nick and Dylan also did great, have a look:
White Water Rafting Cardiff
Besides indoor surfing, you can also choose other adventurous activities in Cardiff International White Water. How about kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding or white water rafting? There is also an air trail where you can cross the high ropes steel and timber terrain towering above the white water course in a harness. Or you can go gorge walking in the nearby Neath valley.
When we arrived for the indoor surfing, there was no water in the white water rafting course, but when we had finished we could see the rafters in action. It looked very cool to do! Next Time?
Of all the things to do in Cardiff, the indoor surfing was definitely one of our favourites. Even if it meant feeling a bit beat up for the next few days. Because that is how top fit we are :)
Have you ever tried indoor surfing? What would you choose to do at Cardiff International White Water? Let me know!
Want to do this activity in Cardiff yourself? Head over to the website of the Cardiff International White Water center:
Address: Watkiss Way, Cardiff CF11 0SY, United Kingdom
Price: £22.50 – £35 per person
Session Time: Approx 1h 30min (including 30 mins kitting-up time and safety briefing)
Minimum Height: 107 cm
Disclaimer: Nick and I were kindly invited by Visit Wales to experience the indoor surfing at Cardiff International White Water. All opinions and bruises are 100% our own.
Other things to see and do in Wales
Best Rail Pass to Travel Around Wales:
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Best Tours Around Wales:
- Tour of the Wye Valley (Roam Wales)
- Sightseeing tour of the Gower Peninsula Wales
- Tour of Tintern Abbey Caerleon Raglan Castle and the Welsh countryside
- Welsh Castles and Brecon Beacons Day Tour (Roam Wales)
- Coasteering Adventure
Best Single Activities in Wales:
- Llancaiach Fawr Tudor Manor House
- Llechwedd Slate Caverns – Guided tour
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More things to see and do in Great-Britain:
- Great Britain Bucket List: 40 Places Not To Miss In England, Scotland And Wales