Kayaks glide serenely through the South Bay as the sightseers dip paddles into the water or stop to take pictures of migrating birds. Led by a docent for the Living Coast Discovery Center with five years of experience, Chula Vista Kayak’s tours navigate these oft-overlooked waters in search of rare sights, such as the local Pacific green sea turtles coming up for air or the abundant wildlife including raptors, great blue herons, and egrets. Tours welcome beginners and seasoned kayakers alike; no matter their experience level, guests brush up on water safety with a 15-minute introduction before they’re clear to push off and explore.
Operating under auspices of Pacific Beach Sports, the standup-paddleboard enthusiasts of SUP Diego lead adventures on the waters of Mission Bay. During lessons, instructors teach standup-paddleboard fundamentals, such as stance, paddling form, and which dance calls forth which water god. For more experienced riders, they also rent their fleet of standard-size boards measuring 142 inches long and 33 inches wide. Further activities include tours and yoga-based fitness classes that includes the added challenge of remaining balanced despite the water's gentle undulations.
More than half the coulda-shoulda-woulda lists drafted in this country mention kayaking among their top five, followed closely by "vanquish a boisterous monk with a quarterstaff," "fly around the world on a floating continent," and "eat one's weight in penguins." Today's Groupon lets you mark kayaking off the list, at least: for $55, you get a season pass along with a one-time free wetsuit rental from Aqua Adventures (a $200 value). The season pass extends over three consecutive months and gets you unlimited rentals during which you can cultivate a rapport with the water. Today's deal also gets you 15% off a purchase of paddle and life jacket from Aqua's retail store and 25% off all lessons you schedule when you redeem your Groupon.
Mission Bay Aquatic Center, which was voted 2010 Best Water Activities in San Diego by CityVoter, expertly guides more than 15,000 waternauts yearly in the ways of wave roving. Harboring one of the world's largest instructional seaside facilities, MBAC immerses beginners in basic sailing lessons held in four three-hour installments. Let the marine mavens fill your brain with essential sailing theories and boat handling tips while you man a Sabot, a single-handed boat that leaves your other hand free for high-fiving dolphins.
Enthusiastic instructors at OEX Mission Bay invite beginning and experienced adventurers into the cerulean waters of the Pacific. The outpost began as a kayak and freediving center, but has since branched out to include standup paddleboard, outrigger canoes, and poker tournaments with local sea bass. Staff members happily help sea student get fitted with the perfect-sized gear and train them in basic safety before their expedition over and under the blue bay waters.
What started as a camp founded and staffed by schoolteachers has turned into a year-round surf school for one reason: people love to surf. Today, the school offers everything from lessons for first-timers to professional surf clinics for advanced surfers. Their teaching model focuses on private and small group lessons, which they believe is the quickest and easiest way to learn to ride the waves. And for their graduates, they’ve even created a surf team that is cheered on by countless adoring seagulls.