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Kitesurfing in La Ciotat – Grande Plage

Superb spot in a strong southerly wind with some nice waves in front of the breakwaters. You need to be confident launching, landing and staying upwind as the road runs parallel to the beach and there’s not a lot of room to set up. Kitesurfing’s banned within 300 m of the beach during the summer holiday season, but local kitesurf schools can provide boat support.

La Ciotat Kitesurfing Guide

Freestyle
Wave-riding
Nice waves in a south-easterly.
Kitesurfing restricted during the summer. Dangerous near the beach in a straight onshore.

Spot Information

Spot Type

Beach

Best Wind

W,SW,S,SE,E

Rider Level

Intermediate - Advanced

Style

Freeride | Wave Riding

Best Time of Year

October - May

Summer Water Temp

22°C > 25°C

Winter Water Temp

13°C > 15°C

Hazards
Mistral blows off-shore.
Watch out for the breakwaters.

Wind Forecast

Location Map

Practical Information

Nearest Town

La Ciotat

Nearest Airport

Marseille Provence (45 min)

Latitude/Longitude

43.186939, 5.623929

Parking

Park opposite the beach in the roads off Avenue d'Aquitaine. You can park for free in the winter, but it's paid from May to September. About 200 m from the beach there's a free car park called Parking de Saint Jean.

Tourist Office

Office de Tourisme de La Ciotat
Boulevard Anatole France
13600 La Ciotat
France

Phone: +33 (0)4 42 08 61 32
Web: www.laciotat.info
Email: tourismeciotat@wanadoo.fr

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La Ciotat Kitesurfing Gallery

  • La Ciotat - deep blue Mediterranean sea and wind!

    © Flickr | akunamatata

  • Traditional fishing boats in La Ciotat's Old Port

    © Flickr | marcovdz

  • Kitesurfing Hydrofoil World Cup in La Ciotat

    © Flickr | akunamatata

  • La Ciotat is a popular kitesurfing spot when there's a bit of swell

Spot Description

La Ciotat was once a centre for ship building and huge cranes still loom over the little port. These days, tourism is the main economic driver and the lively waterfront, picturesque old port and sandy beaches on the eastern side of town draw visitors throughout the year. When the wind's not blowing, explore the streets of the old town with their boutiques and restaurants or head over the other side of the port and hike the calanques around Cap de l'Aigle.

The kitesurfing

La Ciotat is an awesome spot in a strong south-easterly when the wind can whip up some nice waves in front of the breakwaters. If the conditions present themselves in summer, you've got to suck it in, kitesurfing's banned within 300 m of the beach in July and August.

The long thin sandy beach runs parallel to the road and there isn't a lot of room for setting up. In winter, it's not unusual to see people rigging up on the esplanade beside the road and you almost have to in an easterly just because there's no beach left. If you're launching from the beach without the supervision of an instructor, you need to have a decent level of experience. It's too easy to get caught out here, and it gets busy with both kitesurfers and windsurfers when the wind is good.

Testament to the quality of the waves here, there's a dedicated area for surfing between the La Vague restaurant and west to the breakwater, and in the interest of keeping the peace, kitesurfing's not allowed in this area.

Local kitesurf schools provide boat support and will take you out beyond the 300 m limit where the wind is more consistent and less gusty. You're past the breaking waves but you have a lot more space and you can enjoy a relaxed open water blast.

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