When you compare it to the majesty of the ocean, exposed to the ferocity of the wind and elements, it’s sometimes easy to forget the unadulterated joy a simple lake can bring you. So, we’ve decided to compile a list of the 10 best windsurfing lakes in Europe to remind you how much fun you can have on smaller bodies of water.
Lakes offer panoramic scenery, tranquil lakeside towns and often local geography means reliable winds. So, all of the below windsurfing lakes in Europe might be beautiful but they’re also home to some world-class wind conditions too.
Before we dive into the top 10, remember this is just the authors opinion and in no way definitive as he has not windsurfed every lake in Europe. Hopefully it will encourage you to comment and let us know of any destinations you feel should make the top 10 windsurfing lakes in Europe.
Mountains to the north and vineyards to the south, Lake Garda in Italy is home to some stunning lakeside resorts, promenades and piazzas, but it’s on the water where it really counts. Find out more about the available windsurfing at GardaTrentino.
Home to celebrities and films stars, style and charm abound at Como, Italy. Accommodation is available on both east and west shores, and the winds getting quite big throughout the year meaning it easily makes the list. Find out more about conditions and costs at Tabosurf.com.
Strong winds start to blow up in the high Bohinj mountains of Slovenia, before they roll down the hills and across the lake, creating great conditions for windsurfing. For information about accommodation and windsurfing enquiries, contact the Hotel Stare.
Steady winds blow in the morning, perfect for beginners, with a number of spots to choose from offering lessons and equipment rental, including in the Bay of Uri. Find out more here.
Stiff mountain breezes create great conditions for windsurfing on this large Austrian lake. With windsurfing centres close to the town, there’s everything you need for a break on the water. The Windsurf Center Zell am See can tell you more.
This little known lake on the Macedonian and Albanian border is one of the most beautiful places in the world. You can also windsurf here if the conditions are right. The hotel Grebnos offers accommodation for windsurfers.
Home to one of the UK’s largest watersports centres, Bray Lake in Berkshire may not be the most famous stretch of UK water, but with some of the best facilities, it’s well worth checking out. The perfect place to develop and build on your skills check out www.braylake.com for more information.
Another Swiss lake, Silvaplana is home to strong winds in the summer that can rival Tarifa, caused by the warm air of northern Italy meeting the cold air of the Engadin mountains. Located in the Engadine Valley near St Moritz, this is where kitesurfing began. Windsurfing Silvaplana offer lessons and tuition here.
Only a stone’s throw away from Vienna, the capital of Austria, it’s a popular lake for windsurfing. It’s very shallow, at less than two metres deep across its 285 square kilometres, and with warm temperatures, sunshine and wind, it’s a great spot. Find out more at www.surf-schule.at.
This amazing crescent shaped man-made lake covers 30 square kilometres and is a little known, but very good, windsurfing spot in the southeast of France. One of Europe’s biggest man-made lakes, it gathers the waters of the Durance and Ubaye rivers. You can learn more about the windsurfing here.
Of course, there are plenty of other windsurfing lakes in Europe but we’ve tried to give a selection of both big and small, popular and relatively unknown. Let us know what you think, and if we’ve missed any major destinations please leave a comment below.