Stand up Paddle Boarding: What’s it all about?

Stand Up Paddle Boarding (SUP) is literally the sport of kings as it was developed by the Hawaiian monarchs.

They called it Hoe he'e nalu. A more recent resurgence has seen the sport grow significantly in the last 10 years. SUP provides a versatile, exhilarating and active way to explore the coastline of Pembrokeshire.


The boards are oversized surfboards and vary in shape and size depending on the discipline, the size and the weight of the participant. There are sleek racing and long distance cruising boards, all-round shapes and shorter high performance surfing shapes. There are also inflatable boards for ease of storage and transportation.

Big Blue Paddle boarding

Fun and a great workout

The rider stands upright with a long single bladed paddle to propel and manoeuvre the board. Paddle boarding provides a great vantage point from which to explore the environment above and below the water whilst offering a mindless and effective form of exercise. Standing upright and paddling results in an all body workout, developing balance, core strength and stamina.

Outer Reef Paddleboarding


As with all watersports it is essential to seek lessons. Paddle boarding courses will typically cover types and sizes of boards and paddles to ensure you have the right equipment. The course will then cover the best techniques for standing, paddling and manoeuvring the board and how to avoid falling in. Tidal and weather information is also covered to ensure you are able to make the right decisions about where and when to paddleboard and what equipment to carry and how to use it to ensure your safety when on the water.

Get expert tuition or sample a taster session with one of the highly qualified instructors based right across Pembrokeshire

Paddle Boarding around the coast

The Pembrokeshire Coast National Park provides a world class and varied landscape for stand up paddle boarding. In calm conditions the rugged coastline with all its arches, caves and secret beaches can be explored by intrepid paddle boarders.

The waves from the Atlantic allow for some of the UK’s best SUP wave-riding with a range of smaller softer waves for the beginner and larger punchier waves for the more experienced.

Board Games Surfing - paddlboarding

Paddle Boarding in estuaries and rivers.

The ancient wooded estuaries along the Pembrokeshire Coast such as the Cleddau, Teifi and Nevern offer stunning and safe exploring for all levels of paddle boarder. There is no better way to explore Pembrokeshire than silently gliding past the stunning scenery and experiencing this coastline's rich wildlife.

If you can master keeping your balance on a paddleboard, then you must give surfing a go.

There are numerous surf schools around Pembrokeshire that can cater for all family members from the ages of 6 upwards - even younger if mum and dad give it a go too - it will be a great family adventure.

 Pembrokeshire, I want more. I shall be back!  

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Stand up Paddle Boarding: What’s it all about? - Marloes Sands
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