Hello lovely readers!
As the summer is fast approaching and 2017 is quickly disappearing before my very eyes I thought I would write about an awesome activity I did in London last summer. For those of you that read my blog posts you know that I love to try absolutely anything new and different that London has to offer – I’ve been that way since I moved down here two years ago.
Last summer my friend Rosie and I decided to try our hand at wakeboarding at the Royal Victoria Dock. We were looking to have fallen upon an unusually warm and sunny day and were surprised to find a small man made beach in the docks and ‘The Shack’ was situated at the end of said beach.
The staff there are super friendly and helpful and look more suited to working in Thailand or Australia than in central London, but on that particular day it did feel as though we were a million miles from London.
We were given a wetsuit and helmet and quick briefing session by one of the staff on how to stand up, speed up, turn and stop on the boards. I had thought it would involve being attached to a speedboat and zipping through the sea as you often see abroad, but instead you clung to a wire that ran through the dock and dragged you in a straight line deep into the water before you attempted to turn and bring you back to shore.
The two guys before Rosie and I made the whole thing look easy. There were some ramps built into the path that you could climb and flip off ( I knew immediately this was something I would not be doing, I’m too much of a wuss) along the way, and they skidded to a halt at the shore with the ease of a pro.
I went first, more to get the whole thing over and done with as I had started to feel slightly anxious about the whole thing. What if I drowned? What if the wire wrapped around my neck and killed me? What if tried to jump off the ramp and smacked my head on it? There were too many what ifs.
The instructor helped me strap my feet onto the board and had to drag me into the water for my first go. I had done my fair share of windsurfing, surfing and sandboarding in the past so thought I wouldn’t struggle with wakeboarding, how different could it be?
Turns out, it’s very different.
It took me about 12 attempts to reach the end of the wire, I fell into the water approximately every 6 seconds as I found it near on impossible to find my feet. Every time I steadied myself on the board, I leant back as though I was on a surf board and was dragged into the water in a heap.
My friend Rosie found the whole experience hilarious and captured most of my epic falls on camera ( but I was able to get my revenge).
Eventually after a solid 20 minutes of screaming and face planting the water, I was able to steady myself on the board and last an entire lap without falling into the water. When I think of the Thames I usually think of muddy, murky water, but in this part of London the water was so blue and transparent it felt more like the sea than a river.
We had an hour taster/beginner session for £30, but they also do paddle boarding lessons for the same price.
If you fancy something a little different and fancy getting away from the hustle of London to something more relaxed, I would recommend checking out Wake Up Docklands : https://wakeupdocklands.com/
I would love to know if any of my readers have ever tried this place? Or if not, if you can recommend any other water sports or similar activities to do in London?