Day 230 on the Road
Light-up Stand-up Paddle Boards!
This evening we are doing a unique activity in New Zealand: Night SUP in Akaroa! If you liked this video and want to get more New Zealand bucket list inspiration, then jump on over to our awesome YouTube Channel for 365 Days: 365 Activities!
Today we are doing a unique night tour here in Akaroa we are going to be paddle boarding by night.
Today is a calm and relaxing day for us in Akaroa we don’t do much, we’re looking at the wildlife we’re taking the time to take a breather cos we’ve been so busy lately with all those activities and our activity today is only starting at dusk cos we are joining the team from NightSUP for a night stand up paddleboarding experience in the Akaroa Harbour.
Each time you press the button you get a different colour.
Oh wow, it’s party time.
We have seven colours.
Needless to say Jamie is super proud of his high-tech paddle boards. His and his team are getting all of them ready because we have quite a full tour today we are going to be 10 people in tour gliding around the harbour at night.
Because most people in tour and Laura and I have only stand up paddleboard a couple of times Jamie is going through the basics on how to stand up paddle board after all it would be better if we could stand up on the board right?
The team from nightsup are a well oiled machine they share all their knowledge in just a short time giving us plenty of time on the water so as soon as we have done a couple of rounds of practice on the sand, and that we all feel really confident on standing on the paddle board and how to behave on the paddle board we are finally hitting the water.
After watching a glorious sunset we are stoked to be hitting the water and checking out those light displays under our paddle boards. But of course the thing we really want to do is stand up on the paddleboard for the first time without joining the fish in the water.
There’s a really great energy in the group as everyone is managing to stand up on their boards for the first time you can hear different people whooping and screaming around our group as they are managing to stand up and stand paddling around.
Once everyone’s got their footing on the board Jamie is giving us some extra tips to be stable on our boards as we paddle around the perimetre of the Akaroa Harbour. We are heading toward a place called Children’s bay which is know for its fish and wildlife so we can’t wait to get there. Jamie is already pointing out a stingray and various other fish in the water but unfortunately we are not nimble enough on the paddleboards just yet and we just miss out on seeing them.
To be fair, I do spot a lot of fish and sting rays as well however I am not confident enough on a paddle board to be able to point the camera fast enough before they go away. It’s a really awesome experience to be able to see so much underwater at night it’s a complete new universe for me.
But obviously i just can’;t stop myself from playing with that light. There’s so many different modes so many different colours and there’s even a disco mode where I press on it and then it just starts going party time. It’s really awesome and I just play with this thing for the entire tour.
And aside from the fact that these LEDs are super useful for spotting wildlife, because there are so many fish around and because it’s not really deep water it’s rather really shallow it allows us to see everything. there’s 1,600 lumens right under our board so there’s nothing that we won’t be able to miss despite the fact that you don’t really see everything right now on camera.
And I don’t just like the LED lights on those boards those boards are really stable they are those hard boards that are great for beginners like us and the paddle is carbon fibre meaning that they are actually quite light and are not strenuous to use throughout the whole tour I basically like the entire equipment that has been given to us by Jamie and his team.
Jamie gives us information about the Akaroa Harbour, the wildlife that we’re seeing and also he’s really proud of the fact that he’s the only night sup tour in New Zealand or at least at the time we did it.
By the time we get to Children’s Bay it’s around 10pm so we are almost in complete darkness and this is when the colours of our paddleboards really illuminate the water and particularly in the Children’s Bay the plant life underneath our boards is really mesmerising to watch as it swaying back and forth with the tide.
After taking the time to take a look at some fish around Children’s Bay we start making our way back toward the main beach in Akaroa. As we are heading closer towards the township, onlookers looking at our colourful lights on the paddleboards are going ooo and ahhh as this beautiful light display is passing right by them.
Also by this time of the tour we’ve become really confident at using these stand up paddle boards. We’re just having a really cruisy time going across this placid water and that’s a really great thing about doing stand up paddle boarding in Akaroa is that it’s really sheltered by the harbour so we don’t have to negotiate any waves.
Stand up paddleboarding is super popular in New Zealand. You can find it almost everywhere but that’s the only place where you can do it at night and this tour is actually really cool. it’s super relaxing and it’s not too long. It’s only about an hour which really good because if it was any longer by this time of the night we would get really cold real fast.
Overall we had a blast and it was an absolutely unique thing to do in the Banks Peninsula.
Robin is being reminded how to stand up on the paddle board and although he does do it and he does say he’s pretty comfortable doing it her prefers to be on his knees when paddle boarding anyway so the majority of the trip he is on his knees and I am standing because this is called stand up paddle boarding this is not called kneel down paddle boarding so that is the explanation behind this really important decision.