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Foil & Fly

Erin Paviour-Smith meets watersports junkie Christian Harris and quickly learns that thrill seekers need not only apply.

Virgin Gorda’s North Sound is a playground for watersports enthusiasts . Visitors and residents, including Sir Richard Branson are regularly seen playing on the water around the area with much aplomb.

The foiling craze so prevalent around the world has of course become the norm in the BVI and in particular the North Sound due to its protected waters and prevailing wind conditions.

Eager to find out what all the fuss is about I met with BVI e-foils manager and passionate ocean-extraordinaire Christian Harris, who is based in the North Sound where he coaches anyone who is keen to hop on a foil and have a blast.

Talking to Christian is like a breath of fresh tropical air. He is open, friendly and has a way of instantly putting you at ease. We have a chat about his career on the water.

Duotone wing foiling gear is available from Deep Bay Watersports. Inquire about rendezvous e-foil lessons while on charter

He tells me that he grew up on the coast of North Wales in the UK. By the age of 18 he was a qualified RYA (Royal Yachting Association) Sailing Instructor and Offshore Yacht Master with his 200-tonne Power Boat Captain’s license – and that is just for starters.


As he lists his wide-ranging experience in the industry from dive master and instructor, sailing and windsurfing instructor, yacht delivery Captain all around the Mediterranean and North Africa, to assisting with the launch of the first e-foiling school in the UK and then running it – I’m thinking that if I were to try foiling, this is the guy to learn from.

“All of this eventually lead me here to the BVI” he says with a smile. A family connection, previous time in the BVI and the opportunity to launch and manage the first LIFT e-foil school in the BVI lured him back.

BVI e-foils operates from Deep Bay Watersports based at Oil Nut Bay Marina Village. They are the BVI’s LIFT e-foil dealer and offer not only e-foiling lessons, but sales and rentals, SEABOB sales, lessons and rentals and wing foiling lessons.

Christian in action!

I ask Christian what guests can expect when they book a lesson with BVI e-foils.

“Our lessons are two hours and we can take one-on-one lessons, right up to larger groups” he says.

“We start off with an initial safety briefing and guidance on land where I give the guests a session on the skills and drills before moving onto the water. Once there, I guide the guests through the basic steps from lying down on the board and building confidence to eventually standing up”.

Guests can either take their lessons in and around Deep Bay and the North Sound area, or Christian and assistant coach Maye, can rendezvous to teach guests from their charter boat around the waters of the BVI.

In March, the Company expands to a second retail store location at Leverick Bay Resort & Marina where they will have DUOTONE wing foiling equipment, LIFT e-foils and SEABOBS available for purchase.

As we finish up our chat, I realise that even I’m sold on foiling with Christian.

To book your BVI water sports adventure with Christian, call +1 284 542 7484.

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