Setting off on that first overseas surfing trip is an incredibly exciting event for surfers of all levels. Whether they’re heading to a surf camp or finally catching that legendary wave, there’s more to finding a great place to surf on an overseas vacation than just seeking out new breaks. Even the most avid surfers have to spend some time on land.
Overcrowded beaches, unwelcoming locals, a lack of suitable accommodations, and other issues unrelated to the surf can ruin what would otherwise be an amazing vacation. Instead of heading to the same overcrowded surf spots that everyone else hits, read on to learn how to find great places to surf on vacation overseas.
Step One: Determine Needs
Some surfers literally only care about catching waves, and they’d be happy to retire at the end of an epic day to a shack on the beach. Others want to find great places to surf that also have plenty to offer in the way of nightlife and accommodations. Everyone’s expectations for the perfect vacation are a little different, and determining needs before making plans is a great way to narrow down surf spots.
Step Two: Set a Budget
The best-known international surf spots also tend to be the most expensive. That may be fine for independently wealthy surfers, but it’s not a great situation for vacationers traveling on a tight budget. The good news is that there are tons of amazing surf spots that have yet to be discovered by the masses, and they tend to be less expensive. The north Pacific coast of Nicaragua is a great example of an up-and-coming surfing and vacation destination that has yet to fall prey to the high prices that come along with international fame.
Step Three: Do Some Research
Here comes the fun part. Now that surfers have set clear budgets and determined their unique vacation needs, it’s time to start investigating actual surf spots. The best place to start is online on surfing forums. International travelers are almost always happy to share their favorite destinations, so this can be a great way to determine what general area to hit.
Step Four: Take a Look
Once aspiring international travelers have some recommendations for specific beaches or out-of-the-way surf spots, it’s time to take a look. Modern surfers are spoiled compared to their predecessors in that they don’t have to fly halfway across the world and then hike through rough terrain to see if that secret spot suggested by the friend of a friend really is any good. Google Earth is a fantastic resource for those who know how to use it.
Step Five: Get Packing
There’s no sure-fire way to guarantee that surfers will find the best waves every time. Eventually, the best option will be to pack those bags and take off for a new locale. Even if recommendations turn out to be overblown or the beaches are crowded, vacationers will have access to resources on the scene that they couldn’t access from afar. In other words, ask the locals.
Plan the Perfect Surf Trip
Finding a new spot to surf can be tough when there’s no way to head to potential sites in person, but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth the effort. More often than not, surfers find that the best trips aren’t the ones that let them hit the most popular waves but those that bring them to new locales, allow them to meet new people, and create amazing memories.