Oahu: Surfing Lessons in Waikiki

by jenjenk on September 12, 2011

Surf Lessons, WaikikiThe original title of this post was “Paddle Board Lessons in Waikiki”.  For those of you following my twitter stream or facebook updates, you probably know that I’ve been in Hawaii for my cousin’s destination wedding from Japan. During our one free day, her brother, Dai, and I decided to head out to the beach [and left his other sister back at the hotel, near death from the flu…because we suck] to try our hand at paddle boarding.  I had learned to paddle board in Maui about a year ago and thought my cousins would enjoy the hands on activity.

I decided on Waikiki Beach Services to lead us out but when I got there and saw the rough, choppy waters, I turned to Dai and asked him if he’d mind changing to surfing instead.  The waves were just big enough to have some fun “bunny slope” surfing lessons and he had expressed an interest in surfing the evening before.  As a traveler, you just need to adjust to any situation; as a meeting planner, you always have to have a Plan “B”.

Waikiki Beach Services Surfing LessonsTrevor, our paddle board instructor turned surf instructor, patiently showed us our moves on sand before we headed out to the water.  I screamed a little at how cold the water was [it really wasn’t but I’m a wuss] and Trevor told me that I sounded like a local girl, complaining about how cold it was.

Waikiki Beach Services Surf LessonsOne thing I had forgotten about surfing was how painful it was on the arms from all the paddling that was required.  Luckily Trevor towed us out a lot.  I will not lie and pretend like I was working it when he was towing us.  I was as much of a bump on that surf board as my cousin was – one of the many benefits of a private surfing lesson.

Waikiki Beach Services, Private Surfing LessonsTrevor was with us all the way, telling us when to paddle, when to stand and giving us tips on how to correct our form.  I had so many problems with my form it was ridiculous.  As you can see from the photo above, my feet were too far to past the center line, causing me to veer left and almost tip right off my surfboard with my right heel up causing an unstable stance.

Over all, I was just happy to be standing on my surfboard for the first time.  It’s the small things in life that make me happy. It was actually so much fun this time around that I think I may actually try to surf again!

Waikiki Beach Services, Private Surfing lessonsWaikiki Beach Services
Located near the Pool area of the Royal Hawaiian Hotel
2259 Kalakaua Ave
Honolulu, HI 96815
phone: 808.388.1510
Special Notes:
Be sure to call ahead to reserve yourself a spot.
If you’d like to tip your instructor, be sure to bring cash.
Do not bring valuables besides your cellphone, Credit card, ID, room key – they have a small dry box that you can put your things in.
Things to bring [will be placed in a large communal plastic bin]:
  • sunscreen
  • towel
  • slippers
  • Rash guard will be provided for you
  • wear board shorts to lessen sand abrasion on your thighs.
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{ 24 comments… read them below or add one }

Red Nomad OZ September 12, 2011 at 10:47 am

Haha! If you’re going to learn to surf, may as well go the whole hog and learn in the home of surfing! Great backdrop too!!


Annette | Bucket List Journey September 12, 2011 at 3:55 pm

I tried to surf…once…without any lessons. Not so much funny, but really funny! Looks like you had a blast!


kelly September 12, 2011 at 6:14 pm

Aww, this post made me miss home so much. I grew up in Kailua and have surfed this spot many a times! Congrats on standing up, good shot too!


jade September 12, 2011 at 9:17 pm

Look at you on the board- standing up- you are awesome!! I would totally love to surf here, even though I’d be a tad scared, the experience is a must!


Marj Lago September 12, 2011 at 10:24 pm

I would love to go there one day:)) You were standing on the board, if that was me I wouldn’t be able to. :)


Miwa Ogletree September 12, 2011 at 11:11 pm

Great coverage on Waikiki Beach Services! Please be sure to “like” us on the facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/WAIKIKI-BEACH-SERVICES/248691767761 and follow us on Twitter @WBSHawaii http://twitter.com/#!/wbshawaii We have many pictures from Waikiki Beach, too!


Caanan @ No Vacation Required September 12, 2011 at 11:22 pm

We LOVE Waikiki. We have never tried surfing or paddle boarding, but someday we will. I would probably need to learn how to swim first.


Shirlene from Idelish September 13, 2011 at 12:07 am

Looks like a whole lot of fun! We tried surfing one time but I was only able to stand on the board ONE TIME! I have got to go back and give it another go!


ben - adventureswithben September 13, 2011 at 2:01 am

I’ve always wanted to try this in Hawaii!


Laurel September 13, 2011 at 11:14 am

I’ve always wanted to try surfing, I’m impressed that you got up and stayed up in your first lesson.


Annie - FootTracker September 13, 2011 at 12:34 pm

omg, clear water, nice weather, beautiful scenery, and hot surfer dudes….this looks so much!

I have tried surfing before. I was pretty scared because I am afraid a shark would swim by me waving its fin and say hello to me x_X

But I think your post may have changed my mind a little bit.


Amy (Gloriously Dismal) September 13, 2011 at 7:49 pm

I would LOVE to learn but it seem so hard! Okay… maybe I just want to look like those girls from Blue Crush haha 😀


Christy @ Ordinary Traveler September 13, 2011 at 9:57 pm

Hey.. at least you got up! That’s more than a lot of people can say when they are just getting started. I love these photos. Great job capturing your day of surfing. :)


InsideJourneys September 14, 2011 at 1:04 am

At least you did it. Give yourself a big pat on the back.
Great reporting, lovely photos.


Nancy September 14, 2011 at 3:50 am

Great work, Jen! No shame in being towed out to start. And now you’ll always have a photo that proves you did it!


jenjenk September 14, 2011 at 4:39 am

whoops. I guess I have a confession to make…two actually:
1.) There was someone else taking those photos of me.
2.) It was my 2nd time surfing but infinitely better experience!


David @ MalaysiaAsia September 14, 2011 at 7:59 pm

I witnessed some surfing lesson in Bali last June and kept asking myself if I should try it. I guess Hawaii is the place to do it! I hear it’s pretty tiring too.


awobblyrottenneutron September 17, 2011 at 7:11 am

Great photos! Came across your site following your comments on Marcia’ InsideJourneys recent post


Emme Rogers September 18, 2011 at 4:21 am

So impressed you got up! Mind you Trevor looked like some decent inspiration. 😉

~ Emme


Azu @ Sweetly Made September 19, 2011 at 1:19 pm

What a great experience! I can’t even imagine how difficult that must be.


Jeanette September 19, 2011 at 2:32 pm

We were just in Hawaii this summer, although I was not as brave as you to try surfing! Not sure if I could have stood up.


Lily November 27, 2011 at 6:15 am

A surfing lesson (well, enough to get me to stand on the board for at least a few seconds) is on my bucket list. Except, I’m really scared of falling in, getting hit on the head with the surfboard and then drowning. That actually scares me more than scuba diving, but I’m probably just being paranoid :)

Thanks for the photos, they make the experience look a bit less scary for me!
– Lily
Lily recently posted..Comment on Dahab, Egypt – How 5 Days Turned Into 9 by LilyMy Profile


jenjenk November 28, 2011 at 12:44 am

i can’t lie…that was a fear of mine, as well…but i got good at falling – I’ve elevated it to an art form. 😉 [plus i was riding the “bunny slopes” of surfing…]


Waikiki Beach Services December 22, 2011 at 3:00 pm

You did an awesome job on your surfing lesson.
Looking good on that surfboard riding the waves.(^-^)

Glad to hear you had a great time with us, and next time you are in Waikiki, make sure you stop by and say hi!

Have an awesome holiday season and mele kalikimaka!

Waikiki Beach Services


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