Lake Powell is hands-down the most fun place to waterski in the Southwest. The lake is filled with interesting geologic formations, making it a scenic as well as fun place to go. Lake Powell is fairly expansive, so you’ll have plenty of room to zip along the surface, and there are many lesser-traveled areas to claim as your own for the day. Plus, the weather is usually nice at the Arizona-Utah border, so you’ll have a very low chance of getting rained out!
The coolest rafting trip in the States is the Grand Canyon in Arizona. Floating down the Colorado River is the best way to see the majesty and sheer magnitude of the Grand Canyon! Get to the heart of this wonder of the world when you raft through the river. The best time to do this is in the early summer or late spring, when the monsoons and crowds are still far away but the weather is warm enough to enjoy the cool water of the Colorado. This is definitely a trip of a lifetime.
California is pretty awesome by land, but it’s ever better by sea. Rent a powerboat in San Diego Bay for the ultimate ocean experience! It’s fun, it’s luxe, and it’s a day you’ll never forget. If chartering a boat is out of your budget, never fear; there are many powerboat tours you can join for a day of fun at sea.
If you think that snorkeling is cool, wait until you try diving! You can get closer to the reef and go deeper, where you’ll see bigger and more incredible sights. There are many wrecks to explore along the coast, and you never know what you’ll find. Fish, whale sharks—hammerhead sharks? If it sounds adrenaline-pumping, that’s because it is. You’ll be hard pressed to find another water sports experience that compares to scuba diving in Maui.
Surfing is harder than it looks but easier than you might expect. It’s also the biggest thrill you can get on the water! California is famous for its surf spots, and there’s a reason why. Monterey Bay’s southern end has several surf spots, some crowded and some not. If you’re a newbie, you can take a surfing lesson from a local surf school. If you’re a hardened pro, you can brave the sharks, rocks, and big waves of the more isolated areas.