Top 10 Surf Trip Ideas For Fall

For most surfers, nothing beats surfing in the fall.

It’s the only time of year when surfers could enjoy crisp mornings, offshore winds, cooler water, and a mix of swells.

Plus, there are fewer tourists, which lets you enjoy the waves more!

There are lots of good places to surf this fall and in case you are looking to jump start you surf trip idea brainstorm we put together this quick list of options.

Here are some of the top and the best surf trips you should definitely consider this fall.

California

Fall is indeed the best time for surfers to visit the Golden State. Aside from the magnificent warm (early Fall) weather and water.

Enjoy endless morning offshores, evening glass-offs, and swells the NW and W. And since kids are back to school and summer is over, most beaches in the state are less crowded giving you more space to enjoy the waves.

This is surely the perfect time to go surfing as waves are continuously forming, beachbreaks are still peaky and points are starting to turn on.

I personally look forward to this time of year and it's when I plan not to travel—because I live 20 minutes from one of the best waves in the world (see video below). You can definitely indulge all by yourself this fall by surfing those lesser know surf breaks.

Some of the best beaches you could go to in California this Fall include Malibu, Zuma, Leo Carillo, Ocean Beach, Santa Cruz, and Ventura. These all promise amazing waves throughout the fall—in fact, most everything fires in the fall and is the best time to visit California for surfing.

Southwest France

Perhaps one of the top places in the world to go in the Fall. September and October are definitely the best months to surf in Southwest France. Most of the tourists have already left, leaving you alone with the lines of swells and beachbreaks.

It is most advisable for surfers to visit in September, when weather patterns are shifting resulting to low-pressure systems in the North Atlantic, which creates continuous swells in France’s beaches and shores.

If you’re looking for perfect waves, Southwest France will never fail you. You can enjoy green beachbreak barrels, solid rock shelf peaks, and the great river mouths.

And if you’re too tired to surf (not likely) then just sit back, relax, and enjoy France’s fine wine, great food, and the gorgeous women lounging around the beach.

If you are serious about this trip you can read my detailed post on Surfing Souther France.

Scotland

When speaking about surfing and waves, it’s impossible not to mention Scotland. It’s only of the most stunning surf destinations on the planet and is always among the top surf spots everywhere.

The best months to visit the country for surfing are September, October, and November when there is warmer water temperatures and mellow-ish weather. When winds are stable, you can be assured that continuous and undisturbed swells.

Northern Spain

If you want to visit Spain, do that during fall and you’ll be rewarded with endless swells and waves including one of the best waves on the planet that you can catch at the Mundaka beach. Plus, the weather is perfectly warm during the fall season, helping you enjoy your surfing more.

While there are an endless number of tourists milling in Spain’s beaches, you can still have the waves all for yourself early in the week as there are few people during these days.

Aside from the Mundaka beach, there are other beaches that you could visit in Spain in the fall— Playa de los Caballos, Isla de Santa Marina, Menakoz, Bakio, Roca Puta, and Playa de la Zurriola.

For more detail about surf tripping in Northern Spain see this article.

Baja California

Baja, Mexico, is a great trip any time of the year and one of my favorite and most visited spots on the planet. I'l been going there for decades.

Looking for uncrowded lineups and sick waves—who isn't, right?

Baja is south of the border of California and the peninsula expands 1300 miles. The entire Pacific coast has tons of surf and lots of unknown places.

During fall when tourists are starting to go home, the lingering summer gloom has lifted, and winds start blowing offshore. YEA.

You’ll enjoy south swells and north swells. Baja catches everything. Some of the hottest surf spots in Baja California that you might want to consider include Baja Malibu, San Miguel, and Isla Natividad.

We have 2 great articles for you on Baja, Mexico:

There are so many great waves in Baja—you could spend a lifetime driving up and down those 1300 miles and never surf them all.

Portugal

Ok, there is a theme here . . . all of southern Europe goes off in the Fall.

Portugal is perfectly situated so it can pick up everything that the Atlantic Ocean sends its way. If you want super consistent waves and swell, you should definitely check out Portugal in the Fall. 

Be warned—some days might be so big that you can't surf. Massive swells can move in and out in just a few days. Conditions tend to change rapidly in southern Europe and Portugal catches most everything brewing.

Weather during the fall season in Portugal is generally stable with the North Atlantic low pressure cells sending lines of groundswells throughout the day.

More on Portugal here.

Canada

Even though Canada is most famous for its cold climate, there are still some places for a good surf in the country. 

Some of the best places for surfing in Canada include Toronto, Lawrencetown Beach, Ingonish Beach, Kincardine, and Lake Superior.

During fall, one of the best places to surf in the country is Nootka Island. 

If you are interested in a surf trip to Canada check out Fir and Feathers.

Ireland

Fall months in Ireland are from September to November. This are the perfect months when the North Atlantic starts sending low pressure systems to the country’s beaches.

The best part of surfing in Ireland during these months is the warm weather and fewer tourists, making accommodation plentiful and cheaper.

During your stay, expect at least one solid double overhead swell.

Ireland’s beaches have never failed and there is as much fun happening out of the water as there is in it—did anyone say Guinness?

More on surfing Ireland here.

Japan

Despite its relatively smaller size than other countries, Japan still boasts of admirable surfable points that sometimes produce world class waves.

Among the many surfing spots in the country are primary found in Chiba, Shonan, and Shizuoka.

If you’re looking for Indo class waves with reef break options, Japan is definitely where you should be. 

There are more surfers than you would think.

Taiwan

There are lots of surfing spots in Taiwan including Daxi, Honeymoon Bay, Fulong Beach, South Bay, Shanyuan Resort Beach, and Jia le Shuei.

Every part of Taiwan gets swell—especially in the North coast. Taiwan’s fine surfing condition is a result of the monsoon weather and a consistent ocean swell.

You got any other favorites? Let us know what you think by leaving a comment or if you'd like to submit your favorite location drop us an email.

Free Surf Trip Checklist PDF

Download this QUICK AND EASY surf trip check list. Packing for your trip is stressful enough. This check list will HELP YOU remember the important things and remove the guess work. Designed by Derek after thousands of surf trips, here are his top three: 1) Ding repair kit - 2) Condoms - 3) Pepto Bismo.


Derek Dodds
 

Derek Dodds is founder of the world's first ecological surf company Wave Tribe, surfboard shaper, world traveler, author and Mini Simmons enthusiast.

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