If you have a passion for riding waves, you’re likely looking for a tropical location to discover new waters.
Whether you prefer smooth waves or dangerous breaks, there’s a spot in the world with your name on it. From Europe to the Indonesian islands, let’s take a look at the best places to surf in the world.
The Best Places To Surf Around the World
We’re uncovering the best places to surf with amazing waves, and unforgettable environments. It doesn’t matter if you’re a beginner or expert surfer, explore these regions at any time of the year.
1. Canggu, Bali
Canggu in Bali is one of the best places to surf due to its variety of waves ranging from small to hollow. As a result, it’s the ideal destination for beginners and expert surfers. Canggu stretches five kilometres from Berawa to Kuta to Pereranen which is close to tourist attractions.
Canggu was once a black-sand beach with very little else. Consequently, this attracted surfers in the area to hit the waves and improve their surfing skills. Canggu’s coastline offers different black-sand beaches with surfing opportunities for people all around the world.
Surrounding the area lies rice fields, which is the ultimate area for residents to relax in-between surfing ventures. The area has a neighbourhood and surfing community which welcomes tourists from around the glove. Canggu is one of the island’s latest surf camps with an array of shops, restaurants and bars boarding the beaches.
Berawa beach offers one long beach break with small amounts of scattered reefs. Here, it’s easy to escape the crowds of surfers, or you can join in just near the road to hit the best waves. The waves aren’t extremely powerful, which means it gets less crowded, making it easier to catch some waves. Alternatively, Old Man’s beach has easy access to parking directly on the beach. Filled with black lava sand, it’s a small spot which isn’t as intimidating and there’s a welcome restaurant looking out onto the beach for a relaxing drink afterwards.
2. Sennen Cove, Cornwall
Sennen Cove is located less than two miles from Land’s End, at the very end of Cornwall. As such, the water picks up Southerly swells and waves are considerably bigger towards the northern end of the beach. Around 100 metres off shore lies the Cowloes reef. You can’t see submerged rocks in some areas, so it’s deemed as a relatively dangerous section to surf.
Sennen Cove is a mecca for surfers, no matter your standard. There are plenty of beautiful views and things to do on this beach, and it’s regarded one of the best places to surf in Cornwall. The high-quality waves make a great surfing experience, and the area looks like a Mediterranean island. You can expect to see a picturesque setting with paddlers and kayakers in the area. It’s certainly a place for the best surfing holiday and there’s a real sense of community and fun at here.
Don’t worry if you’re a learner, because you can opt for surfing tuitions or hire surfing equipment easily on the beach. Head to the beach around sunset for a breath-taking view of the sky, and when the night is over, you can relax with a bite to eat in one of the beach-front cottages. The surrounding area is filled with castles, museums and historic houses to unwind after a tough workout.
3. Waikiki, Hawaii
Waikiki in Hawaii is one of the best places to surf for amazing views and clear, open waters. If you head to this infamous beach just after sunrise, you’ll likely catch dolphins in the calm waters. Waikiki’s rolling waves are friendly and inviting to those intimidated by large waves and big crowds of experienced surfers. You need a little patience for the best waves, but this is the beauty of this destination because you can enjoy stunning views of the sand and greenery surrounding the waters.
Hawaii is where surfing began, making it a dream destination for surfing lovers. Waikiki is the neighbour of Honolulu and a dream place to learn because the water is warm and clear. When the waves aren’t there, you can stand up and enjoy the crystal waters and soak up the sun. As it’s a popular destination amongst tourists from around the globe, there are plenty of places to eat, drink, shop and relax within walking distance.
Learning how to surf here is easy and not frowned upon. Experience riding the rolling waves back to the shore with confidence from the guidance of professionals. This south-shore spot is filled with white sand beaches, gorgeous sunsets and friendly people. During the 1800’s, surfers headed to Waikiki to dedicate time to surfing. As its popularity grew within the following 30 ears, the island built a road for visitors to easily access the beach.
4. Algarve - Lagos, Portugal
Algarve is one of the best places to surf if you’re an advanced surfer. Here, you’ll find serious waves with enclaves which often go out of sight. Therefore, we don’t recommend this beach for beginner surfers. The Algarve beaches experience huge tidal waves in-between dead-low tides. It’s important you know when to enter to suit your surfing skills. If you arrive at midday, you’ll find no-one else around, as people tend to wait an hour or two either side of hide tides. As soon as the high tide session appears, surfers arrive in huge groups, so be prepared for a crowded scenery.
The Arrifana Reef is one of the best features of Southern Portugal, and entering and exciting the water is relatively uncomplicated. The wave breaks wide to clear rocks sticking out of the water to help guide you of the best time to surf. Do be aware of currents and never go out into the water without someone accompanying you, or if you’re not confident in open waters.
Another great place to visit is Zavial which offers a huge swell running, although it does get crowded often. Due to the northerly winds, the water comfortably travels for a couple hundred metres which offers a smooth ride for surfers. Algarve is a historic and lively city filed with glorious beaches, a charming sceneries and numerous activities to enjoy.
5. Hossegor, France
Hossegor is one of the best places to surf in France, and it’s an infamous spot amongst keen surfers from all around the world. The beach’s fast, hollow waves make it a distinctive surf spot, despite only being three kilometres long. What can you find here? Warm water, consistent swells and turquoise barrels. In addition, the area is booming with a French lifestyle, including food and drink on hand.
Depending on the season you visit Hossegor, it can be greatly populated or calm. Between July and August, the beach becomes overwhelmed with travelling surfers due to the small and fun waves. Consequently, this is a great time to feel a part of the surfing community if you travel alone. Although summer offers smooth waves, you’re guaranteed to get weeks even in the height of summer. During May and June, the waves are swell and the large tides calm down, though you’re still likely to catch waves. It’s a quiet time for tourists and the water’s wonderfully warm.
For a quiet and warm surfing experience, September and October is the best time of year to visit Hossegor. The weather and water is slighter cooler than other times of the year, but the waves begin to pick up after tourists leave. Accessing the beach is easy with plenty of walkways and lifeguards constantly watch the beaches to keep people safe.
6. Tofo Beach, Mozambique
Tofo beach offers 2,500km of coastline for all surfers, as well as tropical blue waters and white sandy beaches. It’s stunning to look at and a waiting adventure for adrenaline junkies. The beach is photo friendly with greenery surrounding the water, and your locals visit for a day out. It’s certainly one of the best places to surf and a perfect choice for beginners.
The southerly winds protect the water and provide a gentle swell for a safe environment. As you travel farther down the beach, larger waves form, so we recommend avoiding this area if you’re a newbie. The Indian Ocean waters are warm and the waves are world class.
When you’re tired from surfing, embark on getting to know the locals in nearby bars and restaurants for some chill out time. The rough sandy roads aren’t far from Tofo beach so getting there and back is relatively easy. This beach is amongst the best places to surf in the world because of its white sandy beaches, tropical waters and large coastline. It’s also recognised for its reefs amongst scuba divers. Come at the right time and you might even spot a whale in action.
7. Huntington Beach, California
Huntington beach is the United States’ surf central and beginners to expert surfers explorer the Californian waters all year round. There’s a spot for everyone to indulge in here. This beach offers the classic beach break and catches any swell in its way. Often, the water catches big waves which is great for experts. This space offers an endless summer with a beach culture and open spaces for beach sports.
Huntington Beach offers warm, mild temperatures and the sun all year around. After you’ve finished surfing, enjoy a variety of outdoor activities such as kayaking, horseback riding and biking along the beach with a beautiful scenery. Surfing is part of the culture here and you can feel it in the air. You can surf all year round and many surfers call this Beach home.
You can expand the adventure to discover ocean sports to enjoy the surfing culture. Head downtown to surf shops and outdoor food venues with a beautiful view of the ocean. The vibe is eccentric and there’s always something to do here. Beginners should probably avoid this beach as the waves can be unpredictable.
8. Byron Bay, Australia
Byron Bay has a selection of beaches for Australians and tourists to enjoy surfing. Belongil Beach is an ideal destination for all levels of surfing and it works most effectively with a south westerly wind. The Pass Beach is another of the best places to surf in Byron Bay, Australia. With a swell of 2-3 feet and south easterly waves, it offers the most beautiful water you could ever see in Australia.
Clarkes Beach is a great spot for surfer learners to ride small swells. Not too far from the Main Beach is The Wreck, which is popular amongst residents in the Byron Bay area. The waves are generally hollow due to the beach’s history of a shipwreck and offers amazing east swell winds.
Not all surfers look for the same things when searching for an ideal spot.
It’s important to analyse the crowd, as if you’re new to surfing, it’s best to avoid crowds. This is because you risk endangering experienced surfers in the water by getting in their way. Your safety will always be the most important thing, so don’t try big waves if you’re not comfortable. If you’re completely new to surfing, ask an employee for recommendations for beginner waves. Never enter a territory you’re uncomfortable with. Even still, you'll want to remember that the most important thing is to try your best and have fun.
Where are your favorite surf spots? Let us know in the comments below and share this with your surfing friends!
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