Surfing is becoming one of the most popular sports worldwide. Every year people of all ages head to their local beaches or more exotic destinations to fulfill their surf fantasies. And every year more and more Surf Camps pop up along coasts (and inland) all over the world.
There is a lot of information online about the most ‘epic’ waves around the world. But if you are learning to surf for the first time, it’s important to think carefully about where you’d like to go. Let’s consider the Best Surf Camps for Beginners.
For starters, we like beaches that aren’t too dangerous. That generally means lots of sand and no reefs, rocks or major hazards. We also like the right kind of wave. That means small and reasonably consistent. And if possible, we want spots that are friendly towards learners, and not too crowded with other surfers.
When you are learning to surf it is important to feel safe. We want qualified instructors who teach proper surf technique, water safety and surf etiquette.
And, why not make your holiday about more than just surfing? Visit an exotic culture, sample new cuisine, explore a beautiful city… try yoga.
We’ve considered all of the above to put together a list of the 5 Best Surf Camps for Beginners.
SURFIVOR SURF CAMP
Matosinhos Beach in Porto is one of the best protected open beaches on West Coast of Europe. As such, it is considered an excellent place to learn to surf. Surfivor Surf Camp is one of the oldest and most renowned Surf Camps in Portugal.
The beginner surf course provides you with a step-by-step introduction to the practical and theoretical basics of surfing waves. Surf Lessons are available Monday through Saturday and typically last 3 – 4 hours. Classes are led by highly qualified local surf instructors.
Twice a week there is a theory and pop-up practice coaching sessions in the surfcamp. You will be taught how the oceans really works and how to read the weather conditions needed to generate the best waves for surfing.Surfivor provides guests with a wide range of surfboards and wetsuits. Wetsuits come in all sizes and more than 50 surfboards ranging from Softboards for beginners to Mini Mal’s, Shortboards and Longboards for intermediates. You also have the option to change boards during your course. You may use this equipment during your entire stay and have it at your disposal, even on days without lessons (Sundays).One of the best parts about the local beaches is that they are almost never crowded. You can learn to surf in a safe environment free from any concerns. The surf at Matosinhos works all year round. This beach can get draw a lot of beginners in the summer. As such, our top tip is to visit anytime other than the high season. Prices and cheaper and the waves are uncrowded but still excellent.
Surf and City
Surfivor Surf Camp Porto has excellent seaside location in one of Porto’s most historic town quarters. This makes it the perfect option if you are looking to spend a fantastic vacation surfing in Portugal. Porto was voted the European Best Destination 2017. Visit Porto to discover a truly authentic and culturally rich city! The Porto Surf School and Hostel is open all year round.
From the hostel you can be in the heart of Porto within 15 minutes by bus or tram. Here you can enjoy a wide choice of attractions, nightclubs, bars and restaurants serving all kinds of food and drinks. This makes the hostel the perfect choice for travellers looking to discover the laid-back and friendly Portuguese lifestyle.
Ahangama SRI LANKA
LAPOINT SURF CAMP
Sri Lanka is a tropical island offering some of the most learner-friendly waves on the planet. Situated among palm trees, beaches and the Indian Ocean, Lapoint surf camp in Sri Lanka is perfect for experiencing the waves, yoga, culture and adventures which makes this tropical island so special. Long beaches, many inspiring places to visit, exotic cuisine and fantastic surf. Sri Lanka is an exciting destination for a surf trip out of the ordinary.
Sri Lanka is a great place to learn to surf thanks to year round waves, warm waters and a laid-back beach vibe. Near the Lapoint Surf Camp in Ahangama there are calm waves which are perfect for beginners.
Lapoint boasts an amazing all around holiday, with surf plus new friends and lots of activities. Staying with Lapoint in Sri Lanka, after the surf lessons you’ll have the option of joining social activities like yoga, safaris, excursions and activities at the camp.
Ahangama is a short tuk-tuk ride away from the camp. It is a small city with countless stores and restaurants where you can taste the incredible local cuisine and immerse yourself in the rich culture.
The Ahangama and Midigama area feature the most consistent, and likely the best, surf in Sri Lanka. It maintains a relatively low-key vibe with a mix of surfer-friendly accommodation and the odd villa. The coast features sandy bays and a few rocky outcrops or reefs for more experienced surfers.
Surf Maroc was founded in 2003, but has become one of the best reputed Surf Camps in Morocco. With a great expanse of coast and lots of spots on offer, Taghazout in Morocco is the best place to learn to surf in Africa. Internationally renowned amongst travellers, surfers, and yogis for its laid back pace and world-class waves, Taghazout is a unique gem on Morocco’s Atlantic coast. It’s a great option for any traveler to get year round warm water, perfect waves, and a unique cultural experience.
Surf Maroc has four stunning oceanfront locations and boast only the best customer service. Expect amazing waves, delicious food, great weather all year round, beautiful accommodation, good people, and good vibes.
Surf Coaching is perfect for people who are looking to improve their surfing, or beginners to learn the right way. It provides all your equipment plus an in depth and structured coaching curriculum according to your level. Beginners will learn the basics as well as ocean and tide theory. The local guides know the best spots and split groups by ability, so you go to waves that suit you – meaning you can improve your surfing faster.
Something for the Ladies
Surf Maroc runs a Girls Surf Package which is great value for money. This package includes daily surf lessons in a group of girls only, taught by a female instructor. The week also features daily yoga, meals and other excursions to explore the surrounding areas and Moroccan culture. It’s a great option for girls because you can tackle the waves together during the day, but still chill with the guys (and other guests) back at camp.
KIMA SURF CAMPS
Bali’s plethora of surf spots (more than 40 of them) are suitable for all surfing levels and with water temperatures of 26-30 °C, you can surf all year round. Kuta’s mile-long beach and some very soft reef breaks are ideal for beginners. If the swell is too big at the beach, the surf guides always know one spot or the other with nice little breaks for beginners.
Kima surf hotels in Bali feature everything from the classic dorm to the luxurious villa or suite in six different locations. Relax a bit at the pool and treat yourself to a delicious mix of local and international cuisine in the camp restaurants. The vibrant nightlife of the surrounding cities is also at hand for those who want to go exploring.
Tradition and Friendliness
A large majority of Balinese are Hindu and have managed to maintain their traditional beliefs and religious lifestyle. It’s still normal for the Balinese to make offerings to their gods three times a day and take part in these daily rituals with the family. You’re still likely to come across small offerings and feel the mystic flair of the islands of the gods. And wherever you go, you’ll always be met with the legendary Balinese smile.
In Bali, if you’re open for new experiences, you will get to know many captivating people, discover the unbelievable beauty of nature and maybe even manage to take some of this peace and serenity home with you. Large stretches of the interior around the volcanoes and the north and east coast still contain unspoiled nature.
Traditional Balinese village life – Kampung – is still very much alive. The breathtaking scenery with its tropical vegetation and the famous rice terraces is the setting for ancient ceremonies and worship. The mystical atmosphere is still evident.
You really have to experience the wonderful island of Bali for yourself during your surfing holiday, and appreciate its wealth of culture, nature and mysticism – and of course its perfect waves. Keep your eyes peeled and always be ready for a new experience.
Kima Surf Seminyak
Tamarindo COSTA RICA
WITCH’S ROCK SURF CAMP
Playa Tamarindo is a stunning 1.5 mile stretch of beach situated along the Guanacaste coastline in northwest Costa Rica. The locals consider Tamarindo a learning beach. You don’t have to worry about upsetting anyone or getting in other people’s way around here. Tamarindo’s waves break gently on a vast sandy beach, allowing learners to easily catch a lot of them.
Witchs Rock Surf Camp is located directly on the sand with the best waves right out in front. This means you’re only a few steps away from surfing. Tamarindo receives consistent surf throughout the year from south, west, and north swells. After your time here you’ll be able to paddle out at your home break confidently, or at other surf spots around the world.
Just a one hour drive from the Liberia Airport (LIR), this small yet bustling surf town offers an all-inclusive vacation experience in itself. You won’t need to rent a car here. You can walk to everything including beaches, restaurants, shops, parks, and a wide array of activities. Enjoy the ease, diversity, and beauty of this culturally eclectic and naturally beautiful slice of heaven on Earth.
Tamarindo’s beaches, ocean and estuary are simply stunning landscapes. It’s no wonder Costa Rica has declared Tamarindo a National Marine Park. Tamarindo is paradise for any nature or animal lover. Witness over 200 species of animals in their natural habitat including howler monkeys, crocodiles, sea turtles, tropical birds, and iguanas.
The weather in Tamarindo is perfect just about every single day. 88 degrees, sunny skies and warm water is the norm. The wind blows predominantly offshore, creating ideal surfing conditions and cooling things off just a bit. The rainy season is driest in northwest Costa Rica, making Tamarindo a perfect vacation destination any time of the year.