Brazil’s and Australia’s vast coastlines offer legendary surfing, with few places elsewhere being able to compete with the huge waves, warm waters and fantastic breaks at these destinations. Indonesia is an up-and-coming surf destination, while the quality waves in Mexico and the US have been ridden since the 1950s.
If you want to test your skill against world-class waves elsewhere, there are a number of spots providing decent breaks. Try England’s Cornish beaches or Portugal’s Algarve for medium-sized waves, while Morocco has some less popular, but equally good surf spots.
Copacabana, Ipanema and Florianopolis, Brazil Brazil’s vast 4,500-mile long coast offers some of the world’s best surfing conditions, with the entire length of it being suitable for the sport. Check out the legendary waves at Copacabana and Ipanema, or hit the Atlantic-facing Florianopolis.
Bells beach - Victoria, Australia The waves at Australia’s internationally recognized Bells beach are superb, with the beach hosting the Rip Curl Pro Surf competition each year. The beach draws plenty of surfing enthusiasts so don’t expect to be on your own in the waters here.
G-Land - Java, Indonesia Asia’s premier surf attraction and one of the best surf sites in the world is G-Land, at Plengkung bay. Here surfers will find the world’s quickest and lengthiest left-hand reef-break, with the best conditions being in July and August. Located on the Indonesian island of Java, at the island’s southeastern tip, G-Land sits in a national park, meaning you need a permit to surf here.
Mazatlan, Mexico Mazatlan first gained a reputation as a surf spot in the 1960s and has since developed into a popular holiday resort. The surf here is top-notch, with the resort having been labeled the original ‘surf safari’. Expect huge waves suitable for long boarders.
Kuta beach - Bali, Indonesia The warm waters at Kuta are always busy in-season with surfers, who come here for the impressive waves. The resort is an attraction in itself, catering to surfers and other holiday makers with lively nightlife and affordable accommodation.
Surfrider beach - California, US Having gained notoriety as a surfing beach on the 1950s after featuring in the movie Gidget, the aptly named Surfrider beach is perhaps Los Angeles’ best surf spot. Hit Second Wave for high performance surfing, First Point for long board action and Third Point for surfing fun with the locals.
Lavata, Solomon islands Best suited to experienced riders, the surf at Lavata is best enjoyed in the summer months, when left and right breaks can be had. This little-known surf spot rarely gets crowded, making it a hidden gem on the Asian surf circuit.
Algarve, Portugal An ideal option for European surfers who don’t have the resources to experience Brazil or Indonesia’s legendary waves, the Algarve has year-round, quality surfing and is a good value-for-money surf destination.
Bude – Cornwall, England The UK has a burgeoning surf scene, with Bude being the epicenter. The Cornish beaches at and near Bude, including Summerleaze beach, Widemouth bay, Crooklets beach and Sandymouth beach, offer good surfing conditions.
Agadir, Morocco A suitable surf beach for beginners, Agadir in Morocco has mid-sized waves and lengthy beaches. The warm waters here present few challenges for surfers, making this a top North African surf spot among less experienced surfers.