Feel like some WARM water?
Cabo is one of the few spots on the planet where you are exposed to two major swell directions within a one hour drive. It’s usually not flat in both windows, north and south. a surfers guide to Cabo was born out of my passion for travel to Mexico.
It’s 2017 and I am updating A Surfers Guide To Cabo, this living guide for the 10th time after my, yes you guessed it, my 9th trip in the last few years.
Things are changing in Cabo. Violence is on the rise and the drug cartels seem to be moving in. I spoke with lots of locals about this while there in September and most reported that tourists had nothing to worry about. I didn’t feel unsafe, but I could feel a bit more tension in the air.
The jump in killings in Los Cabos — accompanied by a rise in other crimes — has pitched residents into a state of fear they say they have never felt before.
I still think this is a great trip and I’ll keep going down unless things go upside down with the violence. I wouldn’t worry to much about what you hear, but keep your wits about you while in Cabo and don’t get mixed up in any shenanigans.
Here is a great podcast on staying clear of violence, anywhere in the world.
⚡ Update September 2017 Trip Highlight
Lidia caused major damage to roads and infrastructure, grab a 4×4 to get to breaks;
New paved road to the Pacific side now complete (Toll);
New paved road to Eastern Cape complete;
New hotel in Cerritos – Tortugas Cerritos Beach front Hotel;
Discovery of best place to eat (Pacific Side) Hierbabuena;
Officials now charging $50 if you lose your departing customs form..
I have surfed all over the world and ridden some of the best waves on the planet. I have traveled to far off locations around the globe: Africa, Asia, South America, Mainland Mexico, and Central America. I even drove from California to Panama and wrote a guide about the adventure, grab it for $29 bones if you feel like taking that trip.
A surf trip requires lots of planning and usually a long ass plane trip, but sometimes you just want a no hassle easy surf escape. Two hours after taking off from LAX you can be surfing in warm water, with easy access to two swell windows.
Stuff your face with Mexican cuisine and drink cheap beer by the bucket load—you can also drink good boutique brewed beer at the Baja Brewery, nothing like having an IPA after sucking down watery Mexican beer for a few days.
I’ve been traveling to Mexico for a few decades now and every time I go back, I am reminded of the jewel just south of the border. Is it safe? I’d say traveling to Baja is getting more and more safe. I go down every few months and things are looking better with each visit.
I hope this guide assists you along the way. Please drop me a line and let me know of any additions or useful updates. If I end up adding your content in the guide, I will send you a free Wave Tribe surfboard leash as a gift.
Have a wonderful trip!
Derek, Wave Tribe Founder
Before we start, grab this free download. It’s the perfect map for your trip.
Surf trip require lots of planning and usually a long ass plane trip but sometimes you just want a no hassle easy trip. Here is where Cabo fits the ticket. Two hours after taking off from LAX you can be surfing in warm water with access to two swell windows.
Stuff your face with Mexican cuisine and drink cheap beer by the bucket load—you can also drink good boutique home brewed beer at the new Baja Brewery, nothing like having an IPA after sucking down watery Mexican beer for a few days.
I’ve been traveling to Mexico for a few decades now and every time I go, I am reminded of the jewel just south of the border.
I used to travel to mainland Mexico every year and surf the beaches of La Ticla and the surrounding region, but as violence has percolated in those areas I have diverted my surf energies to Baja—see our other article on Surfing Northern Baja Mexico 2016.
Book your airline ticket for about $350—you’ll want to fly to San Jose Del Cabo (airport code SJD).
I like Alaska Airlines because they treat surfers right at $40-$75 per board bag—no matter what you put in it or how many surfboards you stuff your bag with. Speaking of surfboard fees, check out our fee surfboard baggage fee guide before you pull the trigger on a plane ticket.
Flying with Alaska is down right fun and the planes are super comfortable. If you are flying someone else to Cabo you are missing out on a great airline.
Going through customs is easy and you don’t need a visa if you are an American citizen, but you will need a valid passport. For information on getting a passport head on down to your local US Postal Office or check out this link. As of 2017, passports cost $110 and take a few weeks to process.
The Cabo airport sits about 20 minutes from downtown San Jose and about 30 minutes from San Lucas. There are two roads to San Jose, the toll road ($2-$4) and the free road. Spend the few dollars to jet straight to the break, you’ll be stoked. To get to the toll road from the airport go left out of airport (toward the mountains). The road will curve back around toward the beach.
* Going to the Pacific side? Take the toll road toward toward San Jose, 2K from the exit for San Jose veer left toward Todo Santos. This road will cut 30-40 minutes off your trip and the road are excellent. You can also go to San Lucas this route.
If you are into the party thing then you’ll want to head towards San Lucas and hang out with the college trippers, strippers and overweight cruise ship retirees.
However, for a more relaxed setting check out San Jose or Todos Santos depending on the season you go and, of course, the surf forecast. No matter where you stay you’ll be an hour’s drive to all three top surfing locations, which are listed in order of quality:
The three main breaks in San Lucus are Old Man’s, Zippers, and The Rock. All of them are within paddling distance of each other and offer a progressively faster wave, check out the names and you’ll know which is which.
You can see all breaks from the road (just head towards San Lucas along the coast going west out of San Jose). Below Zippers there is a dirt parking lot below the bridge and for Old Man’s you need to park behind the Cabo Surf Hotel (just after the bend in the road) and walk through the sewage tunnel (yep, if it’s raining I wouldn’t surf here).
Word on the street is that they are going to privatize the access to Old Man’s with a new development going in, so that break might become less accessible in the near future.
Try and book something before you go, there are a ton of rental agencies at the airport. Though the rental agencies they say in airport, they are a short ride across the street from the airport. They will pick you up outside of the airport terminal and they do have agents just outside the customs area just in case you get freaky lost.
If you can afford it (you can) get something more 4x4ish than not. Or at least something a but bigger for your boards. I like to keep my boards in the car for obvious reasons (theft and brutal Mexican sunshine) but if you ride a bigger board then you’ll need some good soft racks.
I’ve been stuck in the sand and had to be pulled out by a 4×4 on 2 of the last 6 trips, not bad odds for Baja. If you are in an economy rental, your chances of getting stuck are higher. You might also have to pay for damages that happen when you try and pull that plastic heap from the sand. We rented a car from Ace in June 2016 and had a great experience.
Yea, I know you bought insurance online and they said you don’t need to buy any at the car rental office—but this is Mexico bros.
Don’t buy the web insurance! It is useless in Mexico.
There I said it, but I know you are still going t buy it. Yea, your American Express card says they’ll cover your ass too but don’t take the risk in Mexico because you’ll have to fork over the money before you are able to leave the country. I guarantee American Express isn’t going to wire you the 20K you need to extricate yourself from the Mexican cha cha you got yourself into.
How do I know? Bro.
Unfortunately, I have had two major accidents in Mexico over the years including a head-on collision in Michoacan. I’ve been through the shit ringer in Mexico, and I want you to have a fighting chance in case you got to throw a Mexican Hail Mary after a car accident.
So get out your wallet because you’ll need to get the full coverage that they offer you up at the rental agency. Full coverage in Mexico means if something happens, you are fully covered. If you get anything else, half coverage with your credit card, or some other policy you found online at Orbitz then you won’t be fully covered. Yea, they got you by the cajones.
There is a hotel right in front of Old Man’s called Cabo Surf Hotel. If you got the cash (like $250+ per night) this is your best location because you are steps from the surf.
It’s a really nice hotel with a pool and good food—you can grab a meal here after your surf if you are feeling like hanging in this area. Watch your bros hit the lip while you stuff your face with a fat burrito and some tasty guacamole.
Right next to the fancy Cabo Surf Hotel there are perfectly situated condos. I did find one for rent that looks spectacular for $175 a night—it’s called Las Olas and it sits in the middle of all the waves in that region in a group of condos.
Another popular spot for surfers wanting central access to both the Eastern Cape, at only $75 per night, is the Drift San Jose. It has 8 private rooms, a communal kitchen, secure parking and a pool, centrally located in the historic center of San Jose del Cabo, surrounded by great bars and restaurants.
An alternative to resorts the scene is pared back, do-it-yourself—like an upscale hostel—with great social atmosphere. Booking available through Airbnb with a link to the listings here.
Check other hotels here on Trip Advisor. When you land you’ll need to rent a car unless you are just going to surf the waves in town and stay close to the breaks.
The only hotel near 9 Palms www.vidasoul.com located at Punta Perfecta and 3 miles North of 9 Palms. They have great food and service and 16 rooms. They cater to surfers and surf photo shoots and videos.
*The owner Joan Hafenecker sent me this info, I have yet to check it out but the pics look good.
Depending on where you surf you can find all types of waves in Cabo, from beach-break on the Pacific side to endless points breaks on the Eastern Cape.
As I mentioned before, within one hour driving you have two coasts—and swell directions to choose from—the Pacific side is exposed to north swell and will pick up most wind swell or ground swell from the north (and a little south).
San Jose and the Eastern Cape pick up anything with a south in it—any kind of south.
I shouldn’t have to remind you, but please be respectful to the locals. Every surfer that visits Cabo is an ambassador and you need to remember that we are visitors in their home.
Most locals are really cool and they will go out of their way to help you or give you a wave—if you get snaked in the water it will usually be by another gringo who has moved to Cabo and usually acts like as d-head.
If you need a guide or some help finding your way you can check out SurfinCabo.com and ask them to take you around. I met the owner and he was a nice guy that rips a SUP. They got boards for rent and will take you out to the waves along with a few friends, if you desire.
Now let’s check the realtime surf:
Right in town (San Jose) hit up Old Man’s for a meow session or paddle down to The Rock or Zippers for more challenging waves.
To the east and at the end of hotel row in San Jose are some waves at The Estuary. This was actually the first wave I surfed in Cabo and it can get really fun.
I did learn later that it is one of the most polluted breaks when the river mouth breaks and sewage comes pouring our of the riverbed. Don’t let hepatitis ruin your trip.
I had an epic session at The Rock, one of the best I have had in a while. Super fun! You can paddle to The Rock from Old Man’s or check it from the cliff. For best positioning, sit just behind the big rock and pick off the sets—watch the locals, they’ll show you how it’s done.
Once you are ready to experience the Eastern Cape, head east towards downtown and cross the large concrete bridge towards La Playa. You’ll make a few twists and turns along the way but just keep following the signs for Eastern Cape.
The road out to the Eastern Cape is dirt and can be full of potholes. Get the insurance on the rental car—if you don’t, the roads will rip apart your wallet and you’ll be faced with unexpected (‘mordidas’) fees at the end of your trip.
The drive out to the Eastern Cape is about one hour depending on where you go, it’s not a bad drive at all. You might want to consider camping out on the beach a night or two if the swell is pumping.
Camping is free in most places and totally safe, but you’ll need to take some shade with you to protect yourself from the relentless heat during the day. Trees? Nada.
A word on the heat—the south swell window is basically March through August and the closer you get to August the more horrendous the heat is.
If you are like me and not a fan of heat then I would lean towards an earlier trip—April is the most comfortable and you might even need a spring-suit, but the south swells can be a crapshoot—plan accordingly.
The winds tend to come up around 9 and mess with the lineup, so you’ll want to get on it early. The good news is that they also tend to back off around 4pm, allowing you a few hours to get in a good evening session.
Here is a great resource for the wind on the eastern cape, I used it my last trip and planned several good sessions based on the data, it is very accurate: Eastern Cape wind conditions. Anything under 5 knots is acceptable and watch out for those nasty easterly gusts.
The road turns into dirt about ten minutes in and you’ll start to see the swells slamming into the coast. The first fun wave you’ll come across is called Shipwrecks, about 40 minutes out of town to the East. Shipwrecks is a nice right-hander off a beautiful point and is a hotdog wave where mostly short-boarders hang out.
There is a left in the middle of the beach too. When you see the Virgin Mary library you know you have found it. Really, I am serious. Oh, and the ship is gone, so don’t look for that.
Nine Palms is another break another 15 minutes down the road. It is a super fun point-break with some long rights and the occasional left.
When the swell is right the wave will bend and toque on the outside and can spit and barrel in the mid section. It can throw and be heavy but mostly it is forgiving on the takeoff and allows for several turns and the occasional lip section to whack.
Between 9 Palms and Shipwrecks is another fun wave called La Fortuna which offers a few options in the bay and also a right that breaks fast off an inside rock and another section off to the left of the rock that is a little slower but will hold a big south swell.
There is a good restaurant at La Fortuna and has better camping than the other locations.
If the swell is huge (or if there is a hurricane) you can continue on past 9 Palms and you’ll find a few more waves. The further along the cape you go the smaller the surf will get.
Did you forget wax or sun block?
The best surf shop in town is Costa Azul Surfshop. I bought a rash vest that I used every day while there and a pair of booties that I never put on (I’ll save them for Bali).
There is another shop in town next to the Kiss Brew and Rock bar on the main drag called Salsipuedes that has a good selection of gear and a few Firewires hanging in the window.. There are also a few shops popping up near Zippers, so if you snap your board and need one you’ll be able to pick one up.
Shooters downtown has a really good vege burger and cold Coronas for 10 pesos.
The best place to eat in town is the Guacamaya. This is of my all-time favorite Mexican eateries and this is always the first and last place I eat at when I arrive to Cabo. The ingredients are super fresh and the chile selection is insane. I promise, you’ll love it!
People tend to like The Drunken Sailor in La Playa area (across the bridge) for good seafood and some nice chill atmosphere. I thought their Margaritas were tops.
This entire area is growing and has a nice feel to it, they just put in a beautiful hotel called El Ganzo right on the marina, might be worth taking your lady there for a drink or a night away from downtown.
If you are chilling with your woman or want to go out and have an excellent organic meal, then head for Huerta Los Tamarindos out in the fields towards the Eastern Cape.
Finding the place is not easy and I am not going to even attempt to explain it, but it’s worth taking the effort to visit. They have a great wine list and some of the best views possible, this is by far my favorite place to eat in Baja.
Mexico isn’t known for its wine, but there are some nice reds coming out of Northern Baja; and though I have found it hit-and-miss (mainly miss), I do like the reds being produced by La Cetto and I have been pleasantly surprised by their quality. Los Tamarindos has it on their menu and it’s worth getting or grab a bottle at the wine store in the Pescadero Plaza (same plaza of Rock & Brews).
For some good Italian food cooked to your liking check out Rustico and say ‘Hola’ to Perla and Javier, the owners. Sit at the bar, you’ll enjoy talking with the owners and sharing their passion for food.
For the best coffee and Italian ice cream in town, check out the The Dolce Villa, they got organic beans from Oaxaca and a real Italian coffee machine. They make all there ice cream with top quality organic ingredients and offer more flavors than a Los Vegas hooker has tricks (not that I would know about that second part).
If you are looking for a surf instructor while in Cabo ask for Victor at La Dolce Villa and he’ll find you one.
I know you came for warm water and point breaks, but sometimes you just got to go where the surf is and that might very well lead you to the Pacific side of Cabo. I had done several trips to southern Baja before I ventured onto the Pacific side and I have to report that I really enjoyed both the atmosphere and surf in this region.
You’ll have to trade your long points for beach break and cobble stone reefs, but when you pull up to A-frame peaks or barreling green mountains you’ll be stoked that you ventured over to the Pacific. From San Jose head toward San Lucas and just before you drop down towards the spring-break marauding streets of San Lucas, you turn right towards La Paz and Todos Santos.
About 30 minutes later, thanks to the newly paved four-lane highway, you’ll find yourself at Cerritos. Cerritos is located off to the left of the highway and it is the first major establishment (if you can call it that) since leaving the suburbs of San Lucas.
You’ll see several hotels out on the beach and you need to head north toward the right that you’ll see breaking off the point. This is a fast wave and can be very ledgy at any tide and I find that it tends to get better at low tide with more markable sections.
You can park at the restaurant on the beach as long as you buy a cold beer after you surf—worth the peace of mind you’ll have knowing all is good with your vehicle—also worth the cold beer and delicious guacamole they start serving at 11:30am.
We stayed at a new hotel right on the beach, an epic place with an awesome crew. The official name is the Tortugas Cerritos Beachfront Hotel. They have about 12 rooms and offer a delicious breakfast and lunch menu. Each room has an awesome ocean view. Great location, wonderful staff, and fantastic rooms. You feel like the surf is under you pillow you are so close to the water.
Aide, Bertha, Noe, Juan Carlos, Diane and Drew all made us feel like we were at home—I can’t wait to go back and stay here again.
We booked our room on airbnb and it cost us about $100 a night, not a bad price for sleeping steps from the beach. You can’t miss the hotel, it’s the one next to the new condo monstrosity going up just south of them.
In town you can find some great food, a good cup of coffee (Baja Beans) or an internet connection to check the swell. I recommend hitting up Baja Beans for a quick coffee anytime but please don’t miss the jewel of the Pacific—Hierbabuena!
Hierbabuena (Peppermint in Spanish) is as “locavoric” as is possible. Set in and amongst a beautiful and bountiful organic garden from which over 50% of each meal’s ingredients are sourced quintessentially represents “farm-to-table” dining.
Please do not leave the Pacific side without eating at the Hierbabuena organic restaurant. This indoor/outdoor extravaganza is perhaps the best meal I have had in any location in the last few years.
We rolled up after a surf session with beers in our hand, walked in, grabbed a seat, and the staff walked right over and asked if we were ready for another cold one. Of course we were! Epic.
The pizza is amazing and the kale stuffed enchiladas are exquisite, the wine list impeccable and the staff full of smile, laughs and downright stoke—can you tell if I liked it or not?
Getting here is a little tricky, departing Cerritos drive toward Todos Santos. The first town you will come to is El Pescadero. Turn left on the road before the Pemex station, you’ll see a small sign on the road. If you hit the Pemex station, double back and turn right onto the dirt road and follow the signs about half a mile down.
Past Cerritos is Pescadero, here you will find a great right point-break called San Pedrito which is a great wave and can hold some big swell that swings off the point.
Just before Cerritos there is a break called the curve. I have never surfed it, but I could see from the road that it had a good set-up. Past Cerritos is Pescadero, here you will find a great right point-break called San Pedrito which is a rippable wave and can hold some big swell that swings off the point.
Todos Santos is a laid-back town with excellent surf, great food and some good old fashion Mexican cowboys walking around. It’s a bit artsy and rustic with just the right amount of hippy. Todos Santos reminds me of what northern Baja used to be like when I was growing up, before the narco problems invaded the Tijuana surroundings.
There is a feeling of things being a bit wild-west like, yet with enough comforts of home that you don’t feel totally disconnected (though you can unplug easily if desired).
The main break in Todos is called La Pastora. You need to drive through town to get to the beaches to the north. Between Hidalgo and Obregon, turn left onto Camino A Las Playitas.
You’ll go down a hill and along a riverbed. The road will twist and turn and a few miles from the town you’ll come to a clearing to the left where La Pastora is located. Don’t drive too far toward the beach unless you have a 4×4. Park where the dirt look compact and walk to the see the swell.
This is a really fun wave with lots of sections. Be careful of the rocks on the shore when getting in and out. I tore a chunk out of my toe the last trip while excitingly jumping off a rock with a sharp barnacle. Not fun.
Two places with great grub and an awesome atmosphere in Todos Santos are Café Santa Fe and La Esquina. La Esquina is a more casual hang-out and conveniently located near the beaches to the north of Todos Santos.
Café Santa Fe is where you go to take your gal or to have an excellent meal after a long surf. It is a little pricy but WAY worth every peso.
Hotel California is also worth a visit with some excellent local dishes and live music most days during the high season. There is surf to the south and north of Todos Santos and likely tons of waves I don’t even know about, it’s the end of the road but in many ways feels like the beginning.
There are quite a few airbnb places available online for Todos Santos. This June we stayed at an awesome location just a few minutes from the main surfing beach.
Jason, the owner, lives with his family on the property but they have a detached unit several few away from the main house with two bedrooms and a great rooftop vantage point of the surf—get up and check the surf from your room. Check it out below:
Hotels Cabo San Jose
Las Ventanas al Paraiso, A Rosewood Resort
Telephone no: 00 1 888-767-3966
One & Only Palmilla
Telephone no: 00 52 33 4164 2110
JW Marriott Los Cabos Beach Resort & Spa
Telephone no: 52-624-163 7600
Hilton Los Cabos Beach & Golf Resort
Telephone no:00 1 855-605-0316
Hyatt Place Los Cabo
Telephone no: 00 52 624 123 123
Cabo Azul Resort
Telephone no: 00 1 888-725-5669
Hyatt Ziva Los Cabo
Telephone no: 00 52 1 877 394 9146
Secrets Puerto Los Cabos Golf & Spa Resort
Telephone no: 00 52 55 5350 9603
Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton Los Cabos
Telephone no: 00 1 855-605-0317
Marisol Boutique Hotel
Telephone no: 00 52 624 132 9089
Royal Decameron Los Cabos
Telephone no: 00 1 844-238-5587
Melia Cabo Real All-Inclusive Beach & Golf Resort
Telephone no: 00 34 912 76 47 47
Holiday Inn Resort Los Cabos All-Inclusive
Telephone no: +63 1800 1 888 1025
Barcelo Grand Faro Los Cabo
Telephone no: 00 34 518 88 95 70
Bel Air Collection Resort & Spa Los Cabos
Telephone no: 00 52 800 400 2040
Cabo Surf Hotel
Telephone no: 00 52 55 4170 9258
Mar Adentro Cabos
Telephone no: 00 52 33 4164 2134
El Delfin Blanco
Telephone no: 00 52 624 142 1212
Hotel & Suites Las Palmas
Telephone no: 00 52 81 4170 7121
Restaurant & Bars Cabo San Jose
Don Sanchez Restaurante
Telephone no: +52 (624) 142 2444
12:00 pm – 4:00 pm
5:00 pm – 10:30 pm
Flora’s Field Kitchen Restaurant
Telephone no: +52 1 (624) 355-4564
10:00 am – 2:30 pm
9:00 am – 9:30 pm
Sardina Cantina Restaurant
Telephone no: 526241726365
8:30 am – 10:30 pm
La Forchetta Restaurant
Telephone no: +52 624 130 7723
5:00 pm – 11:00 pm
Blue Fish Cabo Seafood Restaurant
Telephone no: +52 1726652
11:00 am – 9:00 pm
Teo Restaurant Bar And Grill
Telephone no: +52 624 105 2408
9:00 am – 12:00 am
Retro Burger Bar Restaurant
Telephone no: +52 624 130 7042
11:00 am – 12:00 am
Habanero’s Gastro Grill Restaurant
Telephone no: 52 624 142 2626
8:00 am – 10:30 pm
El Herradero Mexican Grill and Bar Restaurant
Telephone no: 624 14 26350
7:00 am – 10:00 pm
Mariscos La Pesca Restaurant
Telephone no: 624-130-7438
11:00 am – 10:00 pm
El Matador Restaurant
Telephone no: 526241570443
Mi Cocina Restaurant
Telephone no: (624) 1467100
8:00 am – 11:00 pm
Telephone no: (624) 142 1760
1:00 pm – 3:00 am
Telephone no: +52 624 142 5928
6:00 pm – 10:00 pm
7 Seas Seafood Grille Restaurant
Telephone no: 8589645117
7:00 am – 11:00 pm
Petit Masala Restaurant
Telephone no: 526241040013
2:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Cuervo’s House Restaurant
Telephone no: +52 624 142 5650
7:00 am – 4:00 am
Dvur at Casa Don Rodrigo Restaurant
Telephone no: 624 142 04 18
11:00 am – 11:00 pm
La Salsa’s Restaurant
Telephone no: 526241727009
12:00 pm – 9:00 pm
CJ’s New York Deli Restaurant
Telephone no: +52 624 105 2566
9:00 am – 9:00 pm
Telephone no: 624 146-9900
9:00 am – 11:00 pm
Mi Casa Restaurant San Jose del Cabo
Telephone no: (624) 146-92-63
4:30 pm – 12:00 am
Bars San Jose
11:11 Disco Room San Jose
Telephone no: +(52)016241420271
The Barn Bar
Telephone no: 52 624 100 7892
6:00 pm – 12:00 am
La Reserva Rock & Beer Bar
Telephone no: 6241298635
5:00 pm – 10:00 pm
La Casa del Vino de Baja California
Telephone no: 624-142-3885
La Lupita Taco & Mezcal
Telephone no: +52 624 688 3926
2:00 pm – 2:00 am
Shooters Sports Bar
Telephone no: +52 624 146 9900
2:00 pm – 2:00 am
Telephone no: +52 624 130 7267
1:00 pm – 12:00 am
Telephone no: +52 624 171 8226
12:00 pm – 3:00 pm
5:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Telephone no: +52 624 146 7000
6:00 pm – 10:00 pm
El Wine Shop
Telephone no: +52 624 105 2065
8:00 am – 7:00 pm
La Vaca Tinta
Telephone no: +52 624 142 1241
5:00 pm – 11:00 pm
Hotels Todos Santos
Posada La Poza
Telephone no: 00 52 55 4164 2560
Todos Santos Inn
Telephone no: 00 52 612 145 0040
Guaycura Boutique Hotel Beach Club & Spa
Telephone no: 00 52 33 5004 7273
Telephone no: 00 52 55 5350 8725
Hacienda Todos Los Santos
Telephone no: 00 52 81 4160 5457
Villa Santa Cruz
Telephone no: 00 1 760-230-4855
Telephone no: 00 1 760-230-4855
Telephone no: 00 52 33 4170 8561
Villas de Cerritos Beach
Telephone no: 00 1 747-200-1533
Cerritos Surf Colony
Telephone no: 00 52 55 4164 2330
Restaurant & Bars Todos Santos
La Casita Tapas – Wine & Sushi Bar Restaurant
Telephone no: +52 612 145 0192
Tequila’s Sunrise Bar & Grill Restaurant
Telephone no: (612) 145-0073
11:00 am – 6:00 am
La Copa Cocina Restaurant
Telephone no: +(52)612 145 0040
5:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Los Adobes de Todos Santos Restaurant
11:00 am – 7:00 pm
La Esquina Restaurant
Telephone no: 016121450851
7:00 am – 7:00 pm
Rumi Garden Restaurant
Telephone no:+52 612 145 1088
12:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Tacos Y Mariscos El Sinaloense Restaurant
Telephone no: 526121450336
Website: https://www.facebook.com/Tacos-Y-Mariscos-El-Sinaloense-206627032712641/ Open Hours:
12:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Chez Laura Restaurant
Telephone no: +52 612 145 0847
La Coronela at The Hotel California Restaurant
Telephone no: (011.52) 612.145.0525
5:30 pm – 10:00 pm
Ristorante Tre Galline Restaurant
Telephone no: 612-145-0274
5:30 pm – 10:00 pm
Telephone no: (612) 145-0568
8:00 am – 9:00 am
Michaels at the Gallery Restaurant
Telephone no: +52 612 145 0500
Telephone no: +52 612 145 0130
12:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Telephone no: +52 612 175 0800
Posada La Poza Restaurant
Telephone no: 011-52-612-145-0400
1:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Shut Up Frank’s Restaurant
Telephone no: 612 145 0707
Gallo Azul Pizza Bar & Art Restaurant
Telephone no: 612 145 0707
3:00 pm – 10:00 pm
El Gusto Restaurant
Telephone no: +526121450400
Bistro Magico Restaurant
La Santena Restaurant
Telephone no: 9704754120
Surf Schools & Tours
Costa Azul Surf School
Telephone no: 6241422771
Mario Surf School
Telephone: 52 1 612 142 6156
Open hours: Sun 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Mon – Sat 8:00 am – 7:00 pm
Eco Adventures: tosea.net (hiking, whale watching, fishing trips, bird-watching, etc.)
Cabo Magic: Sportfishing Adventures
San Jose Spas and Massages
There is nothing like a good deep massage after several days of surfing. Every time I return to Cabo, I see more and more spas springing up. The one I have been going to for years is next to the Pescadero mall (where Rock & Brew is located).
The spa is called Moonlight and they offer one hour massages for $40. I highly recommend this place—no happy endings here, I am sure you can find those types of ‘treatments’ elsewhere in Cabo. Tel. +52 123 51 40 Email. email@example.com
Did you love Cabo so much that you’d like to move there or maybe build a surf shack to escape the winters? Check out these site for real estate investment opportunities:
“I’m preparing to get bent over by luggage fees but no way I’m surfing on strange boards.”
~ Steven W from Soda Springs on his way to Mexico.
Welcome to the 2017 Airline Surfboard Boardbag Fee Guide For Surfers.
Every year we contact all the airlines and find out how much they are going to charge us for taking along our sleds to far-away destinations. I got sick of getting burned by the airlines and wanted to do something about it so we created this list of baggage fees and we ask for your help to keep it up-to-date (together we are stringer).
We do this as a service to you, the traveling surfer.
This is what we always look for in an airline. Great work KLM.
Most of the following airlines include a surfboard as part of your regular bag allowance and let that sled fly for FREE. These are our preferred ‘surfer friendly bro airline’ airlines and we recommend that you travel with them. You might have to pay a little more to book your ticket but it’s better than paying an extra $400-$600 to take your quiver both ways.
There are a few airlines that charge a nominal fee for your boardbag, I don’t mind paying that . . . free is better but nominal is almost as good. I have been flying Alaska to Cabo (see our surf travel guide to Cabo) for the last few years and they charge between $50-$75 for a stuffed to the rim boardbag. Thank you Alaska Airlines for keeping it real.
The following is the list of ‘you kinda suck’ airlines and charge over $100 each way, which in this day of age doesn’t seem that bad but still kinda sucks cause all those golf dudes usually give their club on for free.
The following is the list of ‘ kook’ airlines and charge over $150 each way—nobody likes a kook in the water and especially one that is taking money from your pocket.
The following is the list for surfers that have ‘daddy warbucks money’. Unfortunately I’ve been caught by both Swiss Air and Thai Air personally. On Thai Air I had three boards in my bag coming back from Bali ($150 x 3) and they charged me some ridiculous tax on top of the $450. Can you imagine? I will NEVER fly Thai Air again and I hope that this list will prevent you from getting caught with your pants down.
We have a new category called the bend you over airline. If you are a surfer traveling with your boards on this plane, you had better have lots of cash, a rich mama or a jar of KY with you.
~Derek, Wave Tribe Founder & Your Boardbag Bitch
P.S. Sign this rad petition for Surfers Against Discriminatory Airline Surfboard Fees.
Surfboard Fee: €30 or €40
Specifications: For flights between Ireland and North America surfboard is part of the free allowance, normal excess baggage rates apply if the passenger carries excess to the free allowance.
There is no charge for Surf Boards for passengers traveling in Business class.
*Please contact Reservations Department in order to book your bags in advance.[box type=”info” size=”large” style=”rounded”]Please note that Surf Boards must not exceed 9’0 ft (277 cm) in length and must be packed in cushioning material such as bubble wrapping so as to protect them against damage. On regional flights, surfboards must not exceed 6’7 ft (205 cm).[/box]
Surfboard Fee: Free – $150.
Surfboard Fee: Undetermined.
Notes: Please contact airline for more info.
Surfboard Fee: $40 or $50
$40 if purchased by phone reservation. $50 if purchased at airport.
*Fee is applied per board bag, up to three surfboards per bag.
Notes: We recommend that you call Aero Mexico to confirm surfboard fees, and make sure to get the name of the person you’re speaking to. Why? Some of our bros have been charged $65 by airline staff at airport check-in, and after they mention phone conversation and employee’s name, they change it to $50 (original fee). They’ll often try to trick you!
Surfboard Fee: Vary from the airport you fly.
Telephone: Malaysia +60 085-9999.
“Must be packed in a recognized surfboard bag weighing not more than 44lbs (on its own). Anything in excess of 44lbs will attract Excess Baggage Fee at the prevailing rate of the airport.[box type=”info” size=”large” style=”rounded”]Must not exceed 9ft.[/box]
Notes: none at this time.
Surfboard Fee: €50 to €120 (depending on short/medium/long-haul)
Surfboard must be packed in soft case or similar.
Notes: Since the space available in the cargo hold is limited, we recommend that you register your baggage well in advance. Surfboards and other sports equipment must be registered 48 hours before departure.
Surfboard Fee: $50
The handling charge is $50 (plus tax), it applies per surfboard to one-way flights and for each way of travel on round-trip and multi-segment flight. Max length 6’6 ft (203 cm).
Notes: *Two handling fees apply for two (2) surfboards packed in the same container. Air Canada is not liable if and to the extent that any damage results from the inherent defect, quality or vice of the baggage.
Surfboard Fee: 1.5% of your fare. Typical fight to China is around $1000, so you’d be paying over $150.
Telephone: US & Canada 1(800)-882-8122.
Maximum weight allowed is 50 pounds beyond which the normal flight charge for extra baggage is applicable—if you ride a board smaller than 5′ then it goes free. Everything else is calculated based on your ticket price of 1.5% surcharge.
Surfboard Fee: €150
SURFING EQUIPMENT (windsurf, surf board and kit surf )Surf equipment may consist of a surf board, mast, sail or a surf board or kite or parachute, a bar and a board. Surfing equipment is not included in the baggage allowance. For each equipment checked-in a charge of €150 will be applied per one way.
Notes: none at this time.
Surfboard Fee: $55 to $150
If the length of your surfboard is between 107 and 300 cm (42″ and 9’8 ft), 23 kg (50 lb) maximum per board, you must purchase an additional baggage allowance at the airport, determined according to your trip:
Surfboard Fee: $200
The will be charged 50% of the excess baggage charge. Such kit can be pooled in the Free Baggage Allowance but only 1 per passenger. Excess weight due to additional kit shall be charged as an extra piece.[box type=”alert” size=”large” style=”rounded”]More than 23 kgs up to 32 kgs (51-70 lbs) – USD 100.00 per piece. 3rd and each additional piece upto 50 lbs – USD 200.00 between India and US.[/box]
Notes: Golfing Kit/Surf Boarding equipment – The will be charged 50% of the excess baggage charge. Such kit can be pooled in the Free Baggage Allowance but only 1 per passenger. Excess weight due to additional kit shall be charged as an extra piece.
Surfboard Fee: Free (but only if you meet their requirements)
Free as part of your baggage limit but if its exceeds that the charge is $150 (first bag) or $200 (second bag) for flights originating from USA. Two surfboards can be taken in a single bag.
Notes: Please note there is a maximum weight restriction of 32kg (70lbs) per item and 2 meters (6’5 ft) long.
Please contact airline prior to trip for more information.[box type=”alert” size=”large” style=”rounded”]Wave Tribe bro Grant comments: “Air New Zealand charged me $200 on a flight from Auckland to Toronto, Canada. I was not happy as Air New Zealand never used to charge. I complained but they say this is something new. Board bag was a standard 2m or 6’6 length.[/box]
Surfboard Fee: $50 to $100
Notes: These charges apply to surfboards exceeding 158cm (5’1 ft) but not exceeding 277cm (9’0 ft) in total dimension, at a maximum weight of 23kg (50lbs).
Surfboard Fee: Free
One board bag allowed free of charge. If it does not exceed 50 lbs (23kg) maximum weight and 8’2 ft (250cm) maximum length.
Notes: In all cases the second piece and/or adding another item of sporting equipment, are subject to published Excess Baggage Charges (Extra Piece/Oversize and/or over weight as applicable)
Surfboard Fee: $50
Telephone: US 1(800)-247-8726 or 1(866)-247-2428.
Surfboards will be accepted for a fee of $50 per item each way when packed in a case designed to prevent damage to surfboards and only upon completion of a Limited Release Tag.
Surfboard Fee: CA $100 per flight segment
Dimensions: Maximum 3.65 m (12 feet) long, Weight:Maximum 32 kg (70 lb.)
Surfboard Fee: $40-$75
I have always had a great experience flying with Alaska, several times stuffing 3-4 boards in one bag and they never hassled me. One of the most friendly surfer airlines I have flown.
We are allowed to fly with two surfboards inside one board bag, 118″ in length (9’8 ft) and pay oversize baggage fee of $75. The 115″ linear measurement, as stated at website, applies for other sporting equipment, not for surfboards. Please mention this to Alaska Air staff at the airport.[box type=”info” size=”large” style=”rounded”]Notes: Alaska Airlines will accept surfboards as checked baggage provided each piece is properly packed in a soft or hard sided case designed specifically for it.[/box]
*Update 8/17: WT FB bro Vinnie P. says “Prices recently dropped on Alaska, check website. Big savings.”
Surfboard Fee: $75 to $260 (depending on destination)
Surfboard must be 6’5 to 9’8 ft (200-300 cm) and less than 50 lbs (32 kg).
Notes: Depending on the size of the aircraft, surf and windsurf boards may not be accepted on board. Because of the variety of sizes of this type of surfboards, please contact Alitalia before booking/checking in. Please note that for the check-in and shipping of a surfboard you must:
Surfboard Fee: $150 or $300
Telephone: US & Canada 1(800)-235-9262.
Within 50 pounds the price is $150 or $300 depending on the size:
Notes: Limit length permitted: 9.5 ft
Surfboard Fee: $150
Surfboard fee, $150 regardless of the number of checked bags. Lightweight surfboards packaged in a single bag that weighs less than 70 lbs. will be accepted as a single surfboard for charging purposes. Maximum weight and size: 70 lbs and 10’5 ft. Acceptance conditional on aircraft size and load factors.
Notes: For travel through, to and from Brazil, surfboard charge for first board checked is $37.50; any additional surfboards are charged $75..
*Update 9/2015- Wave Tribe’s FB friend Cindy said “American Airlines charged my husband $200 one way for his surfboard and it was a Harbour Pope bisect (a board that comes in two pieces). It was within the size limits of a regular bag and just because it was a “surfboard” they charged him. We won’t make that mistake again. Not surfer friendly!”
*Update 11/2015- Wave Tribe FB bro Eddie said “American Airlines actually charges you $150 each way for a board bag under 70 lbs. Pretty lame.”
Surfboard Fee: $150
$150 regardless of the number of checked bags.Lightweight surfboards packaged in a single bag that weighs less than 70 lbs. will be accepted as a single surfboard for charging purposes.
Through and from Brazil: Surfboard charge for first board checked is $37.50; any additional surfboards are charged $75.00.
Notes: Maximum weight and size: 70lbs and 10.5 ft long.
Surfboard Fee: Complicated
Telephone: US 1(800)-227-4262.
Depends on the route you are traveling and the departure city. No cost if this is within the limits of the free baggage policy. Bag should not exceed 6’6 ft and 70 lbs.
Notes: Talk about complicated policy.
Surfboard Fee: Undetermined.
Information not available on the website and no one taking the call.
Notes: You can follow their partners’ baggage policies. Delta, United, and American Airlines.
Surfboard Fee: $70 to $150
Telephone: US 1(800)-843-0002. Austria +43 (0)5 1766 1000.
Notes: try the beer.
Surfboard Fee: $100-$150
Surfboard Fee: $65
Telephone: US 1 (800)-222-4262. Bahamas 1(242)-702-4140.
Treated as a checked bag, the first bag is free. One board per bag. For international flights:
Notes: enjoy the warm water.
Surfboard Fee: € 100
100 Euros per flight for each surf equipment and snowboard on international flights of the Carrier’s towards Africa, the East, the Caribbean and the Americas, plus, in general, for all intercontinental flights.
Notes: enjoy the pizza.
Surfboard Fee: Free to $60*
B.A. will accept surfboards as checked baggage providing they do not exceed the maximum weight restrictions for checked baggage and are packed in a recognized bag or case to safeguard against damage.
Surfboard Fee: Undetermined*
Free of charge unless it exceeds weight and length, then fees are applied per kilogram.
Notes: Surfboards are subject to the applicable standard excess baggage charges if in excess of your standard free baggage allowance. Acceptance of any bag over 70 lbs (32kg) or over 6’0 ft (203cm) is subject to prior approval and notification upon booking/reservation.[box type=”info” size=”large” style=”rounded”]Please contact airline prior to purchasing ticket, for more information.[/box]
*9/2015- Wave Tribe Bro Heb said “Hi, Just got back from Australia flying with Cathay Pacific. Looked into getting a 9ft board back to the UK as extra baggage. They wanted 60 US Dollars per kilo! Say conservatively the total weight would be 10kg that’s 600 US dollars on top of the price of the board. Needless to say it didn’t happen.
Surfboard Fee: Undetermined.
Notes: Please contact airline for more info.
Surfboard Fee: Undetermined.
Telephone: U.S. 1(888)-338-8988, direct call 1(323)-653-8088
NA. Please contact airline.
Surfboard Fee: $65 to $98
Notes: Up to 66 lbs (30 kg). Max. dimensions: 13 ft (400cm) length x 27″ (70 cm) width x 21″ (55 cm) height*.
Surfboard Fee: $50 to $75
Telephone: US 1(800)-359-2672. Panama +507 304-2672.
Notes: Copa Airlines will transport a maximum of two surfboards, packed in the same bag, per passenger. Any additional boards must be checked as cargo. Please contact airline for more information, prior to purchasing ticket to reserve space for luggage.
Surfboard Fee: Undetermined.
NA. Please contact airline.
Surfboard Fee: $100 to $150.
$150 (€105) traveling to all regions (excluding Brazil). $100 traveling to/from Brazil.
Delta Connection carrier surfboard acceptance and charges may vary. Please contact airline for more information.
Notes: Please be advised, between Honolulu and Maui, there is a $20 fee.
*12/21 Update: Wave Tribe bro Robert says “It looks like Delta Airlines changed their size restriction from a max length of 9’5″ to linear dimensions: Linear dimension (length + width + height) cannot exceed 115 inches (292 cm). We recently has a customer that was refused when she tried to check in a 9’2 board on Delta from Honolulu to France. This was possible before for $150. Now you can only take shortboards, even a small longboard or SUP will be too big for this linear dimension measurement.”
Surfboard Fee: $20-$50
Easyjet people say “Buying weight allowance for sporting goods gives you a 12kg extra weight allowance. You must be traveling with sports equipment (as listed in the booking process), although the exact weight distribution between items doesn’t matter. For example: One passenger traveling buys a bag and an additional sporting allowance. This gives an allowance of 2 items (which must include 1 sporting item), at a total weight of 5o lbs (32kg). However, if the sporting item is 40 lbs (18kg) and the bag is 30 lbs (14kg) then that’s fine with us!
Two passengers are traveling with one hold bag and two pieces of sports equipment. This gives an allowance of 3 items (which must include 2 sporting items), at a total weight of 97 lbs (44kg). The exact distribution of weight between baggage items doesn’t matter, subject to the maximum weights detailed above for health and safety reasons.”
Notes: You can usually add a surfboard to your ticket fir a reasonable price.
Surfboard Fee: $70
Telephone: U.S. 1(800)-223-6700.
Surfboards can be flown as part of your baggage allowance.
Notes: where you going?
Surfboard Fee: Surfboards not allowed. They need to go as cargo.
Telephone: US 1(212)-581-5600. UK +44 0844-822-1110. France +33 1-4494-8500.
If you are carrying special sporting items EGYPTAIR applies special excess baggage rates to these items.
The following special baggage will be checked as cargo and should not be packed in sporting travel cases:
Bike-Tandem, Bulk baggage, Hang Gliders ,Kayaks, Surfboard 🙁
Notes: check out the temples,
Surfboard Fee: Emirates the policy in 2015. It is now a maximum of 300cm on the L + W + H
If you are more than that , your board bag will have to go directly on fret.
Telephone: US 1(800)-777-3999. UK +44 844-800-2777. France +33 (0)1-5732-4999.
Emirates will accept surfboards, as checked baggage and part of your standard baggage allowance, provided they are less than 10’0 ft (300cm) in length.
For surfboards, the following precautions must be taken:
– Fins should always be removed, or, if they cannot be removed, should be firmly packed with polystyrene foam.
– Both nose and tail should have bubble-wrap or neoprene foam attached for protection.
– The rails (sides of the board) should have cardboard down the sides to absorb shock.
– The board should be packed in a properly padded surf-bag.
*Wave Tribe bro Joao comments: I already traveled a few times with Emirates and also on Singapore, and they are fully free and recommendable. About the Board sizes, never had any problem with Singapore or Emirates.
*08/15 Wave Tribe bro Yen reports that on his trip from Europe to Indo “emirates up to 30Kg surfboards free.”
Surfboard Fee: Free
Telephone: US 1(877)- 690-0767. UK +44 845-6081225
Eithad Airways state that a surfboard would be free of charge as long as:
Notes: Please contact airline before flight.
Surfboard Fee: Undetermined.
Telephone: US & Canada 1(800)-695-1188. UK +44 20-7380-8300. France +33 1-4143-9111. Taiwan +886 3-3510022.
The baggage allowance depends on airport and destination. Two allowance systems are in use. Different regulations and charges apply to special baggage, e.g. golf clubs, surfboards, windsurfing equipment etc. Please contact EVA AIR reservations 24 hours prior to your departure.[box type=”info” style=”rounded” border=”full”]Notes: Please be very cautious when traveling with your surfboard with Eva Air. They might give you confusing information and charge you more than the established fees. On the phone they will give you an amount to pay, and on airport another one on top of that.[/box]
Surfboard Fee: $150 (Approx.)
Telephone: US 1(404)-856-1000. Customer Relations 1(404)-856-1433.
Express jet operates on behalf of continental airlines and United Airlines, so the baggage rules applies by Continental and United. Surfboards are allowed but for certain costs.
Surfboard Fee: $0 to $200
Surfboards with a maximum length of 190 cm (6’2 ft) and maximum weight of 23 kg (50 lbs) are considered standard baggage.
Notes: surfing in Finland?
Surfboard Fee: £35 to £60
Surfboard Fee: $20-$75
Telephone: US & Canada 1(800)-432-1359.
$20 up to 11 feet and 50 lbs overweight charges $75. Cannot exceed 99lbs. Some checked items, such as surfboards will be charged a fixed handling fee because of size, fragility, or other handling requirements while others may be checked in lieu of one of your checked bags. If you plan to travel with a surfboard, please contact Frontier Airlines directly to confirm packing regulations and fees. The following limits for length apply based on aircraft type:
Free within the limits of free baggage policy.
Telephone: US 1(800)-342-7832. Call Center at +62 80-4180-7807 (Within Indonesia region only) or +62 21-2351-9999.
All Sporting Equipments, including but not limited to Golfing, Surfboard, Bicycle and Skiing equipments maybe included into applicable passengers Free Baggage Allowance/FBA according to their actual fare paid. Important to notify the airline 24 hours before your take off.[box type=”info” style=”rounded” border=”full”]Notes: Maximum weight permitted 33lbs (15 kilo).[/box]
Surfboard Fee: Undetermined.
Telephone: US & Canada 1(855)-862-9190. Other countries +598 2403-8007 (24 hrs, Uruguay tel.)
Surfboards, bodyboards, skateboards, skis, bowling balls and other equipment must be transported inside cases designed for their transportation or in their original packaging. Balls must be deflated. If equipment is not appropriately packaged according to the stipulations listed above, airline employees are authorized to refuse to transport the items.[box type=”info” size=”large” style=”rounded”]Note: Baggage whose linear measurements exceed 158 cm (5.2 ft) or weigh more than 32 kg (70 lbs.) per item will not be accepted, not even as excess baggage. [/box]
Surfboard Fee: NA
Gulf Air is delighted to accept surfboards as long as each piece does not exceed 32 kg and are within the dimensions set for extraordinary baggage 190 cm (6’2 ft) x 75 cm (20”) x 65 cm (25”). We would not be able to accept larger dimensions as checked baggage. Gulf Air would be happy to carry them as cargo in these circumstances.
Notes: Please contact airline for more info.
Surfboard Fee: Each charging standard unit is $110.
Surf boards Hainan Airlines allows surfing gear to be transported as checked baggage. The total size (length+ width +height) of each piece of surfing set should be less than 277 cm (9 ft). Hainan Airlines does not allow surfing gear to be included in the free baggage allowance. Only one set of surfing equipment for each passenger can be applied to special charging policies, namely being charged a fee of 50% of a standard charging unit. [Annotation: Each charging standard unit is 110 UD dollars. If RMB is used for payment, the exchange rate on the date the overweight check is completed shall be applied.] Other surfing gear shall be charged according to ordinary charging standards of over limit baggage.[box type=”info” size=”large” style=”rounded”]Notes: Some checked items, such as surfboards and bicycles will be charged a fixed handling fee because of size, fragility, or other handling requirements while others may be checked in lieu of one of your checked bags.[/box]
Surfboard Fee: $35 to $150.
Surfboards will not be included in determining the free baggage allowance and will be subject to the following charges each:
Exception: For travel between USA and Australia or New Zealand, boards will be included in the free baggage allowance when travel is non-stop, direct and/or connecting Service. Boards in excess of the free baggage allowance and/or when en route stopover exceeding 24 hours occurs, will always be subject to the applicable baggage charges.
Maximum weight for Surfboards is 23 kgs. or 50 lbs. Maximum length 9’5 ft.
Notes: Fin must be removed or well padded. Entire board must be protected by a suitable container. Limit of two boards per container. Charge will be assessed per container.[box type=”info” size=”large” style=”rounded”]Wave Tribe bro David comments: Just FYI… Hawaiian allows one free board bag on flights between the USA and Australia/New Zealand. Though if you are flying on one of these flights it’s helpful to screenshot this page from their website as many agents do not know this: http://help.hawaiianairlines.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/90[/box]
Surfboard Fee: €150
Surfboards will always be treated as excess baggage with a fixed charge of €150 per leg, payable exclusively at the airport. When the trip originates in America, Nigeria or Israel, the charge will be $150.
Notes: Its carriage will be subject to availability of space on the flight. Surfboards should be properly positioned and packed, fastened to prevent breakage or cause problems or injury during boarding and carriage.
Surfboard Fee: Undetermined.
Notes: go to Sri Lanka bro, good waves there.
Surfboard Fee: Free
Max weight is 52 lbs for domestic flights and 110 lbs per passenger for international flights. Max size permitted, 8’9 ft. Any excess baggage will have a fee of $50.00 pesos (approx $5) plus tax for each additional pound.
Notes: add a corona.
Surfboard Fee: Undetermined.
Notes: no surf in Iran bro.
Surfboard Fee: $50 to $150
Charges for each carry bag will be assessed according to the route.
Japan, Asia, India, Oceania Hawaii, North/Central/South America, Europe, Middle East, Africa:
Between Japan and Asia, Guam, Oceania:
Japan Domestic flights:
Surfboard Fee: $50 if its exceeds the weight of the free check-in baggage.
The maximum size of a surfboard allowed is 5’2 ft, 50 lbs.
Surfboard Fee: $50
Surfboards are accepted on domestic flights for a fee of $50 per board each way and will count as one of your checked bags. International flights, customers will be charged a fee of $50 per board each way and will count as part of the checked baggage allowance.
Notes: One surfboard per case. Items weighing more than one hundred pounds (100 lbs) will not be accepted as checked baggage. We recommend that surfboards travel in a hard-sided (rather than soft-sided) case to prevent damage.[box type=”alert” size=”large” style=”rounded”]Wave Tribe bro Jake comments: They literally charged me TO THE PENNY when returning to NY from Puerto Rico. Said they wouldn’t put my bag on the plane. They charged per board and luckily only saw 2, I had 3.[/box]
Surfboard Fee: Free*
Weight and size must not exceed 50 lbs (32 kg) and 6’2 ft (domestic flights & short-haul international) and 9’0 ft (international long-haul); or else excess baggage will be applied.
Notes: Please contact airline for more details. Checked baggage fees are usually applied anyways and might vary.
Surfboard Fee: $55 to $150 (depending on destination)
You can bring a surfboard of max. 42″ (107cm) instead of a suitcase or instead of an extra suitcase bought in advance. Larger surf equipment can only be taken at a special fee. Fees for surfboards between 42″ to 9’8 ft ( 107 and 300 cm) in length, max. 50 lbs (23 kg):
Notes: Please contact KLM telephone reservations prior to trip. You always need to reserve for any type of surf equipment.[box type=”alert” size=”large” style=”rounded”]Wave Tribe bro comments: “KLM high prices and for not taking any responsibility in case the boards get damaged. The damage may occur, once the equipment is inspected and not left the way it was packed.[/box]
*9/2015~ Wave Tribe bro SurfKaravaan reports~ “Surfboards free of charge.” Check their dedicated website: https://surf.klm.com/#!/destinations
*11/2015~ Wave Tribe bro Roy reports~ “KLM does not charge anymore , you can bring your surfboard instead of a suitcase, or as an extra bag…”
Surfboard Fee: Free*
Telephone: US 1(800)-438-5000. UK +44 0-800-413-00.
Maximum weight & length allowed, 70lb (32kg) and 9’0 ft (277cm). Take precautions when packing surfboards. Fins should be detached and thereafter boards safely enclosed in suitable bags. Surfboard will be charged per bag (or container). Korean Air assumes no liability for damage to sports equipment that is not contained in a hard-sided case designed for shipping with protective internal material.[box type=”info” size=”large” style=”rounded”]Notes: Up to $200 if free baggage allowance is exceeded, and depending on destination.[/box]
Surfboard Fee: Free*
Surfboards may be considered part of the free checked baggage allowance provided that it does not exceed the permitted allowance (according to the route and flight cabin). Maximum length & weight permitted for surfboards 9’8 ft (300 cm) and 50 lbs (23 kg). If exceeded, you must pay the excess baggage fee. *($30 to $90, depending on destination flights)
Notes: beautiful flight attendants.
Surfboard Fee: $70 to $150
Must be less than 70 lbs (32 kg) and/or 6’5″ (2 meters).
Notes: safest airline with good service.
Surfboard Fee: Varies
One surfboard to a maximum length of 8’1 ft (2.5 meters) . Items over 8’1 ft in length shall not be accepted as checked baggage.
Additional surfboard restrictions and exceptions:
Notes: hot chicks.
*10/15 Update: Wave Tribe friend Izzy said: “You could add Malaysian to the bro list I flew a couple of times with them to Bali and it was free to bring boards. They damaged one of my boards once though but they paid for the damage without complaining.”
Surfboard Fee: $35
Surfboards and paddle boards with lengths 6 feet and less on a limited basis. Every effort will be made to accommodate these items. A fee of $35 ($30 for tickets purchased on or prior to Oct. 31, 2013) will be charged for transportation of these items.
Notes: que honda?
Surfboard Fee: $75
Telephone: US 1(888)-882-9994, 1(877)-801-2010.
One-way per bag, Max 8’3 ft.
Notes: Please call Mexicana Airlines, for more information.
Surfboard Fee: £35 / €44 per item, per sector.
These fees can only be booked at the airport.
Surfboard Fee: £40 to £60
Telephone: Denmark +45 3247-7200. US 1(800)-432-1359
Surfboards are charged at £40 short haul/short haul plus and £60 long haul for the return trip.
Notes: high roller.
Surfboard Fee: $100 to $150.
Telephone: US 1(404)-209-3434. UK +44 871-221-1222. Brazil +55 0800-761-7070. Spain +34 902-810-872.
$150 (€105) traveling to all regions (excluding Brazil). $100 traveling to/from Brazil.
Notes: Please be advised, between Honolulu and Maui, there is a $20 fee.
Surfboard Fee: Free
Telephone: US 1(201)-205-2115.
Sporting Equipments as listed below may be accepted for carriage as checked in baggage and as part of passenger’s standard baggage allowance. If the free baggage allowance (FBA) is exceeded, normal excess baggage charges apply.Specifications & Fees
Following need to be taken into account. Items are less than 300 cm (10 feet) in length, any sails are detachable and collapsible and the equipment is appropriately packed in a hard shell packing case, if not limited release tag will be required.
Notes: Items up to 400 cm (13 feet) in length may be accepted in exceptional cases, provided detailed information is forwarded to us.
*Update 10/15: Wave Tribe Bro Scott said “Oman changed their policy on surfboards. No Longer Free Must Pay a lot.”
Surfboard Fee: Undetermined.
Surfboard Fee: $150.00
$150 within a size of 9ft, if it exceeds that, the cost would be $300. Surfboards are not included in the free baggage allowance, and thus shall be considered as automatic excess baggage.
Notes: Exception: For travel between Australia and Philippines, surfboards shall only be accepted if enclosed in a surfboard bag that must not exceed 70lbs in weight and 9ft in length. Board can be included in the free baggage allowance. The number of surfboards can be more than one, but must not exceed 70lbs. When the combined weight of the board exceeds the free baggage allowance, normal excess baggage rates shall apply.[box type=”alert” size=”large” style=”rounded”]Our Wave Tribe bro Tim, comments: Flew with Philippine Airlines from Bali to Shanghai via Manila. They charged me 33USD/Kilo. He had 13kgs! Their surfboard policy only stands for some destination, make sure you don’t get screwed like he did.[/box]
Surfboard Fee: Free*
To carry a surfboard as baggage, fins must be removed where possible and placed in an enclosed compartment or taped to the board. Qantas Check-in will attach a Fragile tag to the bag and you must complete and sign the limited release portion of the baggage tag. Australian and International routes:
The board needs to be less than 9’8 ft (3 meters) and 50 lbs (23kg). If this is exceeded, a fee will be applied and boy it is a doozy.
*7/17 Update: WT FB bro Rob said: “I flew Qatar the last two years and they did not charge for boards.”
*2/16 Update: Wave Tribe bro Jaime said: “I flew Qatar from IAD to KUL in Nov. 2015. They said the policy changed in 2015 and wanted to charge me $133 USD after measuring my board bag which was 8 foot and had two boards in it, one 7’4″ and one 7’6″.”
Surfboard Fee: 80 euros
Telephone: US 1(800)-344-67 26
Surfboard allowed, 80 euros each way for a minimum weight of 66lbs (30 kgs), 6’6 ft (2 meters).
Notes: royal with chese.
Surfboard Fee: €50 to €60 (depending on advanced purchase or at airport)
Telephone: UK +44 0-871-246-0000. France +33 0892-562-150. Rest of the world+44 871-246-0002.
Surfboards, among other sporting equipment, are inherently unsuitable for carriage by airlines operating fast turnarounds such as Ryanair. However, these items may be carried in the hold of the aircraft in addition to your personal checked baggage allowance up to a limit of 44 lbs (20 kg) per item upon payment of a discounted online fee of £50/€50 per item, per one way flight.
If the item is purchased at the airport or through a Ryanair call centre a higher fee of £60/€60 per item/per one way flight will apply). Any sporting and musical item weighing over the 44 lbs (20 kg) allowance will be charged for the excess at the applicable excess baggage rate per kilo.[box type=”info” size=”large” style=”rounded”]Notes: *Useful surfers’ tips who have flown with Ryanair: http://community.magicseaweed.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=35970[/box]
Surfboard Fee: Undetermined.
Telephone: Russia +7 (495) 777-9999.
Notes: Please contact airline*
Surfboard Fee: $150-$300*
Telephone: US & Canada 1(800)-472-8342, 1(571)-722-1800.
Saudi Arabian Airlines accept Sporting equipment and musical instruments as checked baggage if it is properly packed or inserted in special bags and its weight shall be counted as a part of free checked baggage allowance, in case the weight is more than the free baggage allowance excess baggage charge shall be collected as Saudi policy. Most likely surfboards will fly as excess baggage. Please read dimensions and weight allowed.
Notes: The standard dimensions for all bags from/to USA and Canada should not exceed 5’10 ft or 70 lbs. The standard dimensions for all bags to other destinations, except USA and Canada, should not exceed 6’7 ft or 70 lbs
Surfboard Fee: Domestic:€120/$175 ($160), Europe & Scandinavia: €180/$260 ($240), Between Europe and Asia/USA: €250/$325 (***$345)
Surfboards are only be accepted on certain aircraft types and specific dimensions apply per aircraft type. Please contact your travel agent for details. The board must be checked in no later than 2 hours before departure and you must notify SAS in advance. If the board exceeds the limits for the specific aircraft type, it must be sent as cargo.[box type=”info” size=”large” style=”rounded”]Notes: Surfboards/kiteboards The maximum length allowed is 6.5 ft[/box]
Surfboard Fee: Undetermined.
Notes: Please email airline for more info.
Surfboard Fee: Free*
As part of your two bag limit. After two boards it’s $109 each way going from US to Singapore (other destinations may vary).
Excess baggage charges will apply if your sporting equipment and your other check-in baggage exceed the free baggage allowance.
Notes: For travel to/from US/Brazil, most sporting equipment is treated as one piece of baggage. Canoes (per unit) are treated as two pieces of baggage.[box type=”alert” size=”large” style=”rounded”]Our Wave Tribe bro Joao comments: I already traveled a few times with Singapore, and they are fully free and recommendable. About board sizes, never had any problem with Singapore.[/box]
Surfboard Fee: $20
Transportation of surf boards, bicycles, golf clubs, skis, snow boards, archery equipment, and fishing equipment is charged at a flat rate of $20 per item. No more than two surfboards may be included in any one pack. Each pack must not weigh more than 70lbs (32kg).
Please note: Carriage of surfboards is subject to space availability. – Confirmed on calling.
Surfboard Fee: Free
South African Airlines will allow a surfboard as an additional piece, not exceeding 50 lbs (23 kg) and 6’5 ft (200 cm), free of charge per passenger.[box type=”info” size=”large” style=”rounded”]Notes: A surfboard bigger than 6’5 ft (200 cm), to be accepted strictly as cargo.[/box]
Surfboard Fee: $75
Telephone: US & rest of the world 1(800)-435-9792.
Surfboards will be accepted as Checked Baggage for a $75 each way charge.
Notes: Overweight items from 51 to 100 pounds and oversized items in excess of 5’1 ft but not more than 6’6 ft (e.g.; surfboards) will be accepted for an overweight and oversize baggage fee of $75 per item.
Surfboard Fee: $50
Telephone: U.S. 1(888)-545-5757. Spain +34 97-191-6036 and +34 90-213-1435.
Surfboard allowed (if ticket purchased in the airport or the call center)
Notes: Please contact airline for more info.
Surfboard Fee: $100
Telephone: US/Canada 1(801)-401-2200.
Maximum two surfboards in one bag, $100 each way.
You can bring your surfboard as checked baggage on your next trip for an extra charge ($100 each way). Please make sure to remove or protect your surfboard keels and/or kedges to prevent damage to it and other checked baggage. To save you more, you can put up to 2 similar items in a case together for the same price. Don’t worry – overweight and oversize fees do not apply to surf equipment. To add surf equipment to your reservation, please contact one of our reservation centers or visit a Customer Service Agent at the airport.
*A limited liability release will need to be signed when traveling with surf equipment.
Surfboard Fee: Free*
You can bring one surfboard for free, allowed as checked baggage. Any excess weight (exceeding 50 lbs) will be assessed at the normal excess baggage rate. Please contact airline.
Surfboard Fee: $70 to $150 (€50 to €100)
Telephone: US 1(877)-359-7947. UK +44 845-601-0956. France +33 (0)892-232-501.
One surfboard (up to 6’5 ft) goes under category ‘normal baggage’:
For flights within EU: $70 (€50)
For intercontinental flights: $150 (€100)
*Swiss does not accept sports equipment of more than 70lbs (32kgs).
Notes: For smooth execution please check-in your sports equipment no later than 1 hour before counter closing. In Switzerland and Germany you can also take advantage checking in the night before your flight.
*Swiss Air might charge more at airport. Please print page with fees to show airline staff, and make sure they don’t charge more than necessary.
Surfboard Fee: Free to $75
Telephone: US 1(888)- 235-9826. UK +44 (0)20-8741-2005. France +33 (0)1535-3800. Rest of the world 786-972-3060.
Surfboard with a maximum length of 8’9 ft (274 cm) and 50 lbs (32 kg); can be included in Passenger’s Luggage allowance. The number of boards shall not exceed 3 (notwithstanding the number of cases).
When applied, an excess-luggage fee of US$75.00 will be charged, and the correct packing of these items will be the total responsibility of the passenger.
Surfboard Fee: €35 to €90
Telephone: US 1(800)-221-7370. UK +44 (0) 845-601-0932. Portugal +351 707-205-700. France +33 0820-319-320.
Fee per one way trip:
– Domestic flights, €35.
– Europe, Morocco & Algeria flights, €50.
– Intercontinental flights (to Sal, Praia, Sao Vicente, Dakar, Bamako, Accra, Bissau and Sao Tome) €75
– Other intercontinental flights, €90.
Notes: Maximum weight advised per set 70 lbs (32kg).
Surfboards must always be carried in a suitable bag and packed appropriately. Passengers must always fill in the respective Transport Declaration form. In the absence of this document, inadequately packed equipment will not be accepted at check-in and may consequently be refused transportation.
TAP Portugal does not accept liability for possible damage to inadequately packed boards during travel and recommends that an insurance policy be taken out.
*Update 1/2016~ Wave Tribe bro Matt said: The info for TAP Portugal needs an update: Boards (up to 200 cm):
Domestics, Europe, Morocco and Algeria: EUR 50; Intercontinental Flights: EUR 100
Surfboard Fee: $60 to $119
Telephone: US 1(800)-426-5204. UK 0844-561-0911. France +33 1-5568-8070.
Surfboards will not be included in the free baggage allowance.
One board not exceeding 9’0 ft (277 cm) at 50% of excess baggage charge: $60
Any surfboards exceeding 9’0 ft (277 cm) will be charged the full excess baggage fee: $119
A second surfboard shall be charged at the full excess baggage rate: $119
Notes: Please Contact Thai directly for more specific information. *Thai might charge more at airport. Please print page with fees to show airline staff, and make sure they don’t charge more than necessary.
Surfboard Fee: £40 short haul/short haul plus, £60 long haul
Telephone: US 1(800)-432-1359. Denmark +45 3247 7200. UK +44 0871-895-0038.
Surfboards are charged at £40 short haul/short haul plus and £60 long haul for the return trip.
Surfboard Fee: “For Surfboards Short haul – £35 return. Mid haul – £45 return. Long haul – £60 return ”
Telephone: UK +44 0844-871-1603
You can take sports equipment on your flight with us, providing you contact us two months before on 0871 231 4787 (calls cost 10p per minute plus network extras) and pre-book the carriage of these items. Space in our aircraft is limited, so if you do not pre-book carriage
Surfboard Fee: Undetermined.
Telephone: US 1(800)-875-8875. France +33 825-800-902.
For sports equipment that are in excess of the 70lbs (32 kg) weight limit, a fee will be charged. Please contact airline.
Notes: Please contact airline for more info.
Surfboard Fee: Free*
Telephone: US 1(877)-747-1191. Russia +7 (495) 788 8080
*70 pounds of weight allowed but if exceeded $50 is charged.
Surfing equipment weighing up to 44 lbs, with dimensions of 6.2 ft x 2.4 ft x 2.1, for one passenger in addition to the free baggage allowance:
Surfboard Fee: 40 euros per flight.
Telephone: UK +44 0906-6800065. France +33 0892-058888. Rest of the world +35 2-270-027-28.
Confirm before 72 hours.
*Our buddy Bill shared this info with us:
It’s €40 per board per single journey.
The most annoying part I recon is the sentence: “if the surfboard/waveboard, etc. is packed in a bag, you are now allowed to add clothes and/or any other items to this.”
The word “now” was confusing for me because at the hang glider it says: ” if your hang-glider is packed in a bag, you may not add clothes and/or any other items to this.”
So I called them and they told me that its a mistake on the website, it must be “not” instead of “now”. Imagine standing there with your boardbag stuffed…
Meaning that you need to pay €80 just to bring your board, but what if you are a windsurfer (add boom+mast is a seperate €40 each way) or kitesurfer? You need to bring it separate and the prices for check in luggage is excluded from the ticket price:
15 kg € 15
20 kg € 20
25 kg € 25
30 kg € 35
40 kg € 45
50 kg € 75
Surfboard Fee: $40*
Telephone: Germany +49 0180-6000-120.
Surfboards up to a maximum weight of 66 lbs (30 kilo), can be carried for an administration fee (per item, per flight segment) of USD $40 / €25 / £20, on international flights.
*Our Wave Tribe bro Stift comments: One Kitepack, also above 140 cm (55″) will be charged with 65 Euro. I can´t post a source, because you need to have a flightnumber to get the price. From 01/05/2014 you get only one piece of luggage with 15 kg (33 lbs) for free.
Surfboard Fee: $100 to $200.
Telephone: US & Canada 1(800)-864-8331. UK +44 0845-607-6760. France +33 01-71-23-03-3.
United Airlines will accept one surfboard or one surfboard bag containing up to four boards per customer as checked baggage, weighing 50 pounds or less for a service charge fee of $100 (each way) for travel between the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, and $200 (each way) for all other travel.
This service charge is in addition to any excess and overweight baggage charges that may apply.
Notes: Boards and board bags combined weighing more than 99.9 pounds (45.3 kg) will not be accepted as checked baggage.
The fin must be removed or well-padded. The entire board must be encased in a suitable container to avoid scratching. United is not liable for damages. Excess valuation cannot be purchased for a surfboard.
Surfboard Fee: $200
Telephone: US & rest of the world 1(800)-428-4322. Travel agent help desk 1(800)-231-3131.
“Surfboards will be accepted as checked baggage for a charge of $200 per direction. One item of surfing equipment consists of 1 surfboard.
When packaging a surfboard, keels and/or kedges must be removed or crated in such a manner so as to prevent damage to other baggage.
Surfboards will be accepted on US Airways Express flights. However, their acceptance may be restricted by length on some aircraft. A US Airways Reservation agent can provide additional information.”
Surfboard Fee: $42.50/$85
Telephone: 1(800)-468 2744
Under 109″, $42.50 per board each way, Over 109″, $85 per board each way.
Surfboard Fee: Free
Telephone: US & Canada 1(800)-862-8621. UK headquarters +44 0844-209-7777.
Free, limit one per customer. Must not exceed 9’0 ft (277 cm) and must not exceed 50 lbs (23 kg) in weight.
Surfboard Fee: $40 – $60. *Free as part of checked baggage. Check dimensions and weight allowance below.
Telephone: US 1(855)- 253-8021. UK +44 0800-051-1281. Rest of the world +61 7-3295-2296.
Sporting equipment can be accepted as checked baggage. The maximum dimensions for sporting equipment are as follows.
Weight: 70 lbs
Height: 38 inches
Length: 9 ft
Width: 32 inches
Each piece of sporting equipment will count towards your piece allowance, with each item classified as one piece.
*Our Wave Tribe bro Tom comments: I know Virgin America charges $75 and so does SouthWest.
*Update 11/2015- Wave Tribe FB bro John says: “Virgin Australia is free”
Surfboard Fee: $20 to $50
Lightweight surfboards packaged in a single bag that weighs less than 70 lbs will be accepted as a single surfboard for charging purposes.
Surfboards and windsurfers will be accepted in checked baggage when under 9.8 feet (3 metres) long.
All boards must have the fin removed, be padded, and packed properly to prevent damage to the board, sail and other baggage.
Notes: $20 dollars is it counts as second item. $50 dollars, as third item.
Surfboard Fee: Undetermined.
Notes: Please email airline for more information.
Surfboard Fee: Undetermined.
France +33 (0)9 69 32 09 12.
Rest of the world +33 3 22 19 25 04.
Notes: surfboards, need pre-approval from Prepa Voyage department mandatory (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Colombia has some amazing surfing beaches on both its Northern Caribbean Coast and its Western Pacific Coast. Surfing in Columbia is gaining popularity as this beautiful country opens it’s heart to the rest of the word.
Some of them are easier to get to than others but any surfing enthusiast would be happy to know that there is opportunity for all types of experience levels and preferences.
The surfing beaches on the Caribbean coast are much easier to get to, are more tourist oriented, and tend to be a bit calmer. The Caribbean beaches are the best if you are a beginner, are learning how to surf, or are experienced and just want to get out and catch a few waves.
Surfing beaches along the Caribbean are usually closer to city centers and there is road access, walking access, and more amenities and accommodations.
The Pacific Coast, while much harder to get to, has some of the best surfing in South America. The beaches around Nuqui are the best in Colombia and are an adventure lovers dream.
Unfortunately, the travel is a bit difficult and accommodations are scarce among most of the popular surfing beaches. If you are a foreigner, it is important to have a guide or travel with someone who knows the area.
Most of the surfing beaches can only be accessed by boat or plane and that you are really trekking off the beaten path in many situations.
The good news is that you will be rewarded for all your hard work. Untouched paradise awaits you along with roaring waves and phenomenal scenery.
Hotels in the Pacific Coast are limited so plan on camping or sleeping in a tent. Make sure to be friendly to the locals as they are not used to seeing a lot of tourists.
The best time for surfing in Colombia is December through March and July through September.
Keep in mind that in Colombia the waves come from the South West between April and December and then, in January and February, from the North East. Waves are higher between April and December normally.
The surfing beaches of the Northern Caribbean coast are easy to reach and are more centrally located than the surfing beaches of the Pacific Coast. Most major beach towns have surfing beaches, some of which are easier to find than others.
Although the waves are not as strong as the waves on the Western Pacific Coast, there are beaches for all levels of surfers.
Predomar is a very popular surfing beach so it can get a little crowded. Try and go during the week. There are some fun bars along the beach and there are a bunch of locals. Consistent waves for all levels.
Barranquilla – Accessible by Car.
Warm Caribbean waters makes this a great beach for a laid back surfing vacation. Great for beginners, the break at Cartagena is located on the west end of Cartagena Beach.
This powerful beach for experienced surfers and is a great place to practice and learn new tricks. When you get to Puerto Colombia, ask for El Muelle and everyone will know what you are talking about. Puerto Colombia is just outside of Barranquilla.
Suitable for all surfers ranging from beginner to experienced. From Santa Marta take a bus from “El Mercado.”
A powerful wave for experienced surfers, accessible by car.
This empty beach is great for all surfing levels. It’s easy to reach by car or foot and you will have hours of consistent waves and definitely run into some interesting and curious locals. Go to San Andres, Punta Sur is on the south point of Island.
This easy-to-find beach has very strong waves and winds. Here you will find some of the most powerful winds on the Caribbean side without the crowds. Be careful of the current and sharp rocks. Leave for Barranquilla.
Located in Tayrona National Park, by the Mendihuaca Hotel. Great waves for the Caribbean. Keep in mind that Tayrona National Park can be expensive.
Located 30 minutes from Cartagena, 4×4 recommended. Nice wave.
The center of it all on the Pacific side is a sleepy little town called Nuqui. This has become a common base in the area for surfers as conditions have improved and new beaches have been discovered.
From Nuqui, you can find the right guide or tour to take you to your destination. There are various hotels in Nuquí, from eco-lodges to hotels—the people are friendly.
The best way to get to Nuquí is by boat from Buenaventura or by plane from Medellin.
For experts only and accessible by boat. If you are surfing here, you not only know what you’re doing but have some inside information.
Most locals don’t even know how to get here. This is one of the best surfing beaches in Colombia but is dangerously rocky and only for the seasoned expert.
We recommend finding a local guide at one of the hotels since you will probably not be able to find it yourself. The beach is a short ride from Nuqui and is uncrowded.
The place is surrounded by Jungle so don’t be surprised with all the birds, foliage, and animals you might see. Take a plane from Medellin to Nuqui and make arrangements through the hotel or a local business to take you to Pico de Loro.
Juan Tornillo is another isolated but fantastic spot for the experienced surfers. Like Pico de Loro, it is just a short boat road south of Nuqui. Talk to a local guide or hotel concierge for information on how to reach this great surfing beach.
El Valle is also only accessible by boat. To get here, arrive in Nuqui and then have a local bring you to this small town.
There is cheap accommodation and tourist friendly people here. The waves here are pretty intense so we recommend traveling with a guide. El Valle is known for its frequent, consistent surf, uncrowded beaches, and it’s beautiful landscapes.
A short boat ride from Nuqui, these beaches are more of a beginner friendly. Swells can reach up to 8 feet. Great place for lessons.
You can only get here by boat or plane. Waves are some of the best in the world. There are no hotels here at the time of writing this guide. Locals are friendly but travel with friends since this part of the country can be shady at times. Take a boat from Buenaventura. Then walk to the beach.
Colombia’s biggest international airport is Bogatá’s Aeropuerto Internacional El Dorado . Direct services from Europe to Bogotá are offered by Iberia (Madrid and Barcelona), Air France/KLM (Paris), Avianca (Barcelona and Paris) and Lufthansa (Frankfurt). Avianca also operates flights from Madrid to Cali and Medellín.
In North America, Air Canada connects Toronto to Bogotá, Lan and American Airlines connect Bogotá with Miami, while Delta links Bogotá with New York, Chicago and Atlanta, and Jet Blue flies to Bogotá from Orlando and Fort Lauderdale.
It’s also possible to fly from Miami directly to Santa Marta, Cartagena and Medellín.
In South and Central America, Lan links Bogotá with Lima, Santiago and Quito; Copa offers regular flights from the capital to Panama City, and Tam links the capital to São Paulo.
Avianca also flies to Buenos Aires, Caracas, Guayaquil, Lima, Mexico City, Panama City, Quito, Rio de Janeiro, Santiago (Chile) and São Paulo.
Frequent bus services cross Colombia’s borders into neighboring Venezuela and Ecuador, though there can be security issues with both borders, so check in advance. Ormeño buses cover several international routes to and from Bogotá, including Quito, Caracas and Lima.
There are three main overland border crossings with Venezuela, the most popular being Cúcuta–San Antonio/San Cristóbal.
The Maicao–Maracaibo crossing at Paraguachón is useful if you are traveling directly to or from Colombia’s Caribbean coast. Expreso Brasilia operates a coastal bus service between Cartagena, via Barranquilla and Santa Marta, which passes through Maicao in the remote Guajira Peninsula to Maracaibo (1 daily at 7am; 20hr; COP$220,000).
The Panamerican Highway runs south into Ecuador, with the Ipiales–Tulcán crossing being the most popular and straightforward, though slow.
There is no overland crossing between Colombia and Panama due to the presence of drug traffickers, paramilitaries and smugglers, and the threat of kidnapping in the Darién Gap.
From the Amazon region it’s possible to cross to or from Colombia into Manaus, Brazil, and Iquitos, Peru, by taking a riverboat.
From Cartagena, adventurous travelers with plenty of time on their hands can take a sailboat to Puerto Lindo or Colón in Panama via the remote tropical islands of the San Blas archipelago.
Trips take four to five days and cost around COP$750,000 per person. Rough seas can make traveling between November and February dangerous.
Costeño Beach is an old coconut farm turned ecolodge and surf camp. Situated in the ocean front, along the beautiful Caribbean coastline of Colombia. It is just an hour drive from the colonial town of Santa Marta and 5 km from the world famous Tayrona National Park.
Costeño Beach is the only Surf Camp and Eco-lodge operating on the Caribbean coast of Colombia. The Ecolodge offers 5 beautiful rooms built from the finest local wood by skilled artisan builders.
All rooms have private bathrooms, ocean views, comfortable beds, and solar powered electricity. Beach huts and hammocks are available.
At this camp they offer accommodation, delicious meals served by the on-site restaurant, beverages and snacks, surfboard rental (18 to choose from), and surf class if needed. They also offer nature walks to waterfalls, rivers, and nearby Tayrona National Park.
El Cantil has been catalogued by Lonely Planet Colombia tourist guide as the number one ecolodge in Colombia, and has also been featured in National Geographic Traveler’s favourite hotels in South America.
The surf lodge at El Cantil’s is the best place to learn to surf. You will have all the freedom you need to learn on an empty beach with easy waves to start with.
You can be sure there won’t be crowds of surfers on the waves and you will learn the basic skills you need on boards specifically designed for teaching beginners.
Oh my, crystal blue waters and no wetsuit.
That’s what we all dream of, right?
Maldives surfing redefines the concept of luxury surfing vacation where you can experience the warm kiss of the waves washing your body and refreshing your mind and spirit. The best time to surf Maldives are April through October.
Emblematic of high-end serenity, Maldives surfing transports you to another time—the crystal clear blue waters will wash away all those mental dramas racing through your brain and bring you back to serenity.
Amongst the tourism atolls, most known surf is in North and South Malé Atolls. The resorts on the eastern reef of the atoll are ideally placed for the avid surfer. Here you can plant yourself in the resort and forget anything else ever existed.
The Outer Atolls, approximately 300 miles to the South, contain at least a dozen, potent world class reef breaks that are rarely surfed. This zone is fickle, with the right winds occurring only in two narrow windows generally from February to April and September-November.
This area can only be accessed by means of a well-equipped surf charter vessel. The surf in the Outer Atolls is usually a few feet bigger than the North Male Atoll—hallow and shallow—similar to Indonesia style breaks.
Wikipedia defines an atoll as the following:
An atoll, sometimes called a coral atoll, is a ring-shaped coral reef including a coral rim that encircles a lagoon partially or completely. There may be coral islands/cays on the rim. The coral of the atoll often sits atop the rim of an extinct seamount or volcano which has eroded or subsided partially beneath the water. The lagoon forms over the volcanic crater or caldera while the higher rim remains above water or at shallow depths that permit the coral to grow and form the reefs. For the atoll to persist, continued erosion or subsidence must be at a rate slow enough to permit reef growth upwards and outwards to replace the lost height
The best waves can be had from April to October, with the biggest swells likely to occur in June to September. During these months the conditions are predominantly off-shore all day due to the monsoonal winds from the Indian Subcontinent and the swell generated from the south.
The surf generally ranges in size from 3-8 feet—however larger waves have been experienced.
A great variety of reef breaks exist ranging in intensity from quite mellow shred able walls to gnarlier hollow pits. There is something for everyone.
Weather in Maldives is influenced by two monsoons the northeast monsoons and the southwest monsoons. The Maldives surf season begins from late February to mid November with the best waves coming in during March to May and then again in September till the end of November.
During the surf seasons, the average size of the reef breakers ranges from 4-5 feet, sometimes hitting 8 to 10 feet (plus).
There are principally two major Maldives surfing areas and thus two swell seasons:
April looks like the best time to surf Maldives and gives you the possibility to hit either swell window.
Following are of the most important surfing points in Maldives:
Dhonveli Beach and Spa, formerly Thari Village, is reputed to be the best surf stop-over in the Maldives. The resort has access to two of the best surf spots in North Male. Surfers are given accommodation at Dhonveli Beach and Spa itself and in the nearby resorts. If you want to surf outside of North Male’ atoll, you will have to book a reservation on a boat.
Every surf traveller should experience the uncrowded, consistent and perfect waves of the renowned Pasta Point while enjoying the comforts, service and sensational food of the four star Cinnamon Dhonveli Maldives resort. This place is definitely on my bucket list.
Pasta Point, is a long peeling left with exclusive access to Thari Village. Five miles away you find the Honkys and Sultans. Honkys is a long wrapping left and is reputed to be the best wave in the Maldives. Sultans is a right with barrels. The average size of reef breakers is 4-5 feet, rising to 8-10 feet during the surf monsoon.
Here is the skinny on staying at Dhovveil:
Reef breaks are sometimes quite tricky to surf; the water is quite shallow on the surf and the coral beds sharp and protruding. Surfers are advised to bring all their equipment with them.
To book your trip you need to go through The Atoll Travel Company:
Check out this link for a good boat trip option.
Planning a surf trip to Brazil can be a little tricky, most people don’t realize how big the country is and might plan to visit north and south regions by car in two weeks.
Sorry to tell you, but you would spend most of your time inside your car and not surfing—not a good idea.
First of all, decide how many days you have, and start from there. If you have 2 weeks or less, it’s best to choose one region and explore a smaller region—I assure you will have plenty to see and surf.
Here is a surfers guide to Garopaba, Santa Catarina – Brazil.
Before you buy your ticket, don’t be a kook and check our updated Airline Surfboard Boardbag Fee Guide for Surfers.
Currency: Brazilian Real (BRL). U$ 1,00 = BRL 4*
(* today’s conversion 11/15—get an update here)
From April to September, the weather is mild or even cold (south Brazil) and southern region catches east to south swells. From November to March, is meltingly hot summer, during this time northern Brazil catches northern swells. Nevertheless always bring your full 3/2 wetsuit when you visit the south of Brazil.
In this post we will talk about Garopaba, a small coastal region in southern Brazil located on the state of Santa Catarina, known as the surfers state—you will understand why once you get to the end of this article.
Garopaba is located 55 miles south from Florianopolis (Santa Catarina’s capital) and has a population of 20K people. The region comprises of Garopaba Town and a few other small beach villages—you can surf in all of them!
The economy depends mainly on fishing and tourism. Which means: surf and beers everyday, helping the local economy. The main breaks are: Rosa Norte, Silveira, Vermelha e Ferrugem, all of them are driving distance to each other.
Just another summer day in Garopaba starts with a good surf session, while the wind is still calm. Then, go home, have breakfast, get some rest and prepare your stuff to go back to the beach and spend the rest of your day.
Chairs, sombrero, sarongs, water, sunscreen, camera, surfboards, etc. Arriving at the beach, settle down and go to the local bar/shack, order some fried shrimp and a cold Original Beer (local beer). Sit, relax and enjoy the view of beautiful people, white sand, blue ocean and the rain forest right behind you.
Surfing and napping is also mandatory along the day. At the end of the day, you will leave the beach starving, go to an “all you can eat” restaurant and be happy, or go home and make an awesome barbecue with your friends and more Original. Tomorrow starts all over again. Sound good?
First, let’s check the surf right now…
Arriving in Florianopolis Airport, you will need to rent a car. You can use the Airport Website to compare fares from different car rental companies and book prior your trip. Remember to ask for surf racks or bring your own Wave Tribe hemp travel racks and straps. Price average for a SUV is U$50/day.
Leaving the Airport you will take the freeway BR-101 direction south. After 50 miles, you will see a sign for Garopaba and turn left. You will enter a municipal road SC-434 that will take you to all the beach villages and the beautiful beach town of Garopaba.
There are many different options to stay, from luxury holiday rentals, B&B’s to simple fisherman’s shacks. The best option is to stay in a “Pousada”, they are kind of a B&B, but without the breakfast and most of them are safe (they have gates and night security).
Usually a pousada offers a self-contained apartment, simple furnished, full kitchen and a barbecue (very important!). It will cost you around U$15-20/night per person. The main grocery shop is in Garopaba is Silveira Supermarket, but you will also find some mini-markets around.
If you are feeling cheap, you can rent a simple fisherman shack for as low as U$8/night per person. There are 2 problems with this option: first they don’t have websites, so you might have to drive around and ask. Second, they are not very safe, doors are too easy to break into. Unfortunately there are bad people always looking for an opportunity to steal from tourists.
Here are some great resources for accommodation in the area:
Ok, now you have a car and a place to sleep. Let’s check the surf!
The main breaks are Silveira, Ferrugem, Vermelha and Rosa Norte.
To get to Silveira you need to take a dirt road from the main SC-434, close to Mormaii surf shop. The waves break on the south side of the beach, a nice right starts from behind the rocks and enter the beach. The beach is not developed, there are no bars around, so bring your all your stuff if you plan to stay there for the day.
It’s just 4 miles from Garopaba, follow the signs and you will be fine. It’s also a sand bottom and works lefts and rights. In contrast with Silveira, Ferrugem is very developed with many bars, lots of beautiful people and a good atmosphere—it’s a great place to spend the day.
Watch this video, this is just another summer day at Praia da Ferrugem.
You can only get there walking on a trail from Rosa Norte, 20-30 minutes. The beach has no development at all, you will want to bring some water. The bottom is sand with some rocks. Even if there is no surf, the trail is worth it for such amazing view!
Praia do Rosa has two breaks, Norte and Sul, or north and south. Rosa Norte is more consistent, the rocks on the coast protect the break from the north wind and you can easily paddle out thru a channel right close to the rocks. To get there you can park your car at Rosa Sul and walk along the beach, or park at the parking lot up the hill on Rosa Norte, then walk the trail down to the beach.
If you are travelling with your other half and want to take her/him for a special romantic date, Tigre Asiático located at Praia do Rosa is a great option. Asian food, candle lights, you know the rest.
There are some “all you can eat” types where you pay $10, get to choose one type of protein (fish, chicken or steak) and it usually comes with: spaghetti, salad, beans, rice, french fries, fried eggs.
You can always ask for more if it’s not enough. There is a really good one on the main road in Praia do Rosa, just opposite side of the road to Ouvidor. Wooden deck, easy to find.
There are a few small surf shops in Garopaba Town, Ferrugem and Praia do Rosa that would cover your needs, but if you are in town there is a bigger and more complete shop called Mormaii located in downtown Garopaba, they also have a nice café in the shop.
The night life takes place mostly during summer time, Praia da Ferrugem is the busiest place, it’s really a party town with many bars next to each other on the main road.
A good option if you want to hang for a few beers and music is Beleza Pura, a bar in Praia do Rosa main road and is open year around with live music on the weekends—beautiful people and flirting atmosphere, if you are single, that’s the place to be.
Met someone at Beleza Pura, fell in love with the place and want to live there forever.
Ok, that happens a lot. This is a magical spot in the world. Here are a few real states if you are planning to buy or rent a house. Remember to invite me for a visit!
Almost forgot, how’s the crowd?
In the winter the crowd is ok during week but is busy on the weekends. In contrast, the summer crowd is insane. Be nice to the locals, have fun and invite them to share some beers and you’ll get more waves.
Praia do Rosa Facebook Page here , you will find information about lodging, events, surf, restaurants, etc.
Praia da Ferrugem on Trip Advisor.
“It is better to travel well than to arrive.” ~ Buddha
This surf guide is updates every few months with new and exciting information on surfing northern Baja, Mexico. Our latest update was made after our last trip south: August 2017:
A few new additions this winter to our new surf guide for all you venturing surfers tending toward a Baja experience. I am writing this at the border crossing while we wait to show our gringo faces to our borders patrol brethren.
Looking to bring you the latest and greatest surf experience possible, I’ve got some great new updates and additions to our new edition.
El Janqui restaurant for authentic tacos and quesadillas in Rosarito and for the best breakfast in town got to the Banana Republic for insane pancakes and traditional Mexican breakfast options. See more below.
The rain this winter has turned the dust bowl that we all know and love into a wonderland of rolling green hills and fantastic views. The river at K38 broke in early February and the sandbars are setting up nicely. Construction continues on the hillsides of Northern Baja and new houses litter the footsteps of the stature above K38.
I have been a big fan of surfing northern Baja all my life. I started going to Baja when I was 5 years old. In fact, my great grandmother’s sister immigrated from Norway and moved with 5 kids to the mountains of Baja.
My uncle Ron, the family expert on such matters, says that they exported marble from Baja to the USA. Soren Meling (1855-1917) was my great grandfather.
In case you have been in those mountains above San Telmo on the way to the Observatorio Astronomico Nacionale, their place was called Meling Ranch. Baja is in my blood and has been for a few generations. That pic up top was taken early days Meling Ranch and is a shot of my Great Grandmother.
When I started surfing, I stopped going to the ranch. I keep going to Baja though, likely for the same reason my ancestors went there, to try and find some solace in my life—always imagining that once I crossed the border something magical would take place.
And it usually did—and still does.
Driving around the backroads of Baja feels like the Wild West. As you cross the border from the USA into Mexico you are transported into a new reality. A different reality. It’s poorer, dirtier and less developed that most parts of America. Nonetheless, there is a charm that transcends everything logical.
Here is the deal, Northern Baja gets all those step angled swells that just race right by us in Ventura—but down in Baja this creates an entirely different kind of magic. Look at this chart of a 305 degree swell, Baja is getting lit up like a Christmas tree.
Be safe. Be smart. Don’t take drugs or guns across the border. Always remember, you are guilty until proven innocent in Mexico.
You’ll need to get yourself a passport if you want to go surfing northern Baja, that’s the law these days and don’t think you’ll be able to say you forgot it because the borders are not like Disneyland.
Immigration & Customs take crossing the border seriously and they don’t give a rat’s ass about your long winded tequila-breath story of how your wife lost your passport when you guys took that all-you-can-eat cruise to Jamaica.
However, if you did actually lose your passport report it officially and if you have a driver’s license then you’ll be able to pass back home without too much problem.
You’ll need a few weeks to get all the information needed for your new passport and you’ll also have to wait for the Feds to process your application. Processing time is 4-5 weeks or you can pay extra to have it done in 2-3 weeks.
Got extra cash that you love to throw away? You can get it done in a few days with an expedited agency. Here are the step-by-step instructions below:
1. Fill Out Form DS-11: Application For A U.S. Passport
2. Submit Completed Form DS-11 In Person
3. Submit Evidence of U.S. Citizenship
4. Present Identification
5. Submit a Photocopy of the Identification Document(s) Presented
6. Pay the Applicable Fee
7. Provide One Passport Photo
Here are the complete directions for passports-are-us: travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/passports/first-time.html
If you have kids under 16 and want to take them along, you’ll need the original, or a certified copy, of their birth certificate. A photocopy of the original won’t work unless it’s certified.
You can get one of those at the County Clerk’s office—the county your little rebel rousers were born in bro. Or do what I did and just leave them down in Mex to watch the trailer and surfboards between surf trips.
You MUST get Mexico car insurance. If you get in an accident in Mexico without insurance you will likely go to jail. It will cost you $40 for the weekend or about $300 for the year if you make multiple trips.
And no, your USA car insurance will not cover your ass in Baja. I like getting mine online before I go while sipping a beer in front of my computer Homer Simpson style.
Here is the one I alway use, it’s called Mexico Insurance Online.
If you forget to purchase it before you go, then you need to grab it on the way to Baja. Exit the 805/5 at San Ysidro. There are a ton of drive-though insurance companies that will issue you insurance anytime of the day or night.
The border crossing has become more ‘advanced’ over the past few years than it ever was before, if you get the red light or the wave-over you need to go to Mexican secondary.
My theory is that the Mexican border officers want to give to US Citizens a dose of their own medicine by doing random searches and giving us Gringos the classic ‘secondary’ experience.
Don’t get me wrong, we probably deserve it, but it sucks to be bent over—both coming and going.
We got secondary on our last two trips (June and September 2016). They wave you over to a search area where you have to exit your car and stand about 100 yards away as they examine and x-ray the entire vehicle. It could take up to an hour.
Back in the day with my father we used to bring guns in under the hood, as we were avid hunters and liked to bring our own shotguns to the Ranch. When I got older I traded the guns for surfboards and on occasion. A decade ago we used to bring herb across with us—I am telling you now, those days are long gone.
Need some inspiration about surfing this region—and you like to read—see this epic novel Tijuana Straits by Kem Nunn.
I don’t care who wrote your prescription for that Triple Purple Humboldt Gold, leave that shit at home or you might end up in a Mexican jail. Just in case you didn’t follow directions and you are now reading your phone while sitting in a Mexican jail here is a list of Baja lawyers called ‘abogados‘ in Spanish. Call one.
I’ve been in the Rosarito jail, and you don’t even want to get anywhere near a Mexican prison. Here is the main difference between Mexico and the US, in Mexico you are guilty until proven innocent—not the other way around. Here is an article about Mexico’s Federal Civil Code if you are bored and are feeling brave or lucky.
If you learn nothing else from this article but this one thing, it could change your life, leave the pot at home—drink tequila for the weekend.
If you get Mexican secondary, be kind, patient and gracious. If you have nothing to hide then you’ll be out of there after they search your vehicle.
As a side note, they don’t normally search your person or make you walk through the x-ray machine. I am just saying, in case you forgot to trash that joint before crossing, throw it in your pocket and hope the drug dogs aren’t kicking it by the x-ray machine.
See this link for prohibited items if you are confused.
If you don’t get stopped by Mexican border guards, keep driving and stay to your right and head for the Tijuana beaches off-ramp. Stay all the way to the right.
You’ll hug the border fence and traverse through downtown TJ and climb a large hill before dropping into the Tijuana Beaches. Keep driving the toll road.
It’s about $2 per toll and there are three between the border and Ensenada. You can pay with dollars and at every toll there is a bathroom—usually a little past the toll booths.
Ok, let’s take a moment and check the actual swell in the area, this is real time surf check for surfing northern Baja:
I am not going to cover all the surf breaks in northern Baja, but I am going to talk about the ones that I like best after spending a few decades surfing this region. I usually stay away from surfing Tijuana beaches, unless you want Hep C or feel like taking on the sewage contaminated runoff around this region that flows from the Tijuana river.
I’d highly recommend staying away from these breaks. San Diego Coastkeepers measures the water quality and posts updates on these beaches, they even have a free swim guide which is a great resource for clear water surfing.
If there is very little swell, you got two options. Your first small swell option is going to be one of the waves you come across right along the main road called Baja Malibu.
You will come across this huge arch, and right between that arch you are likely to see some excellent waves at Baja Malibu just five miles south of the border.
This wave is a thick barrel and breaks along scattered beach break and catches swell from any direction.
This is one of the best waves in Northern Baja and a great option if everything else is flat. This wave is a surfboard-breaker.
Take the Baja Malibu exit and park in the lot next to the sign of the same name.
If you want to stay in this area there is a 3 bedroom with ocean views for $100 a night. See the dog friendly listing here. You can also try the resort to the south if you want something a bit more luxury, but I never see anyone go into the place.
If you are into the party thing, or just want to be part of the crowd, and be in a dirty beach metropolis, then Rosarito is for you. Get the full experience, ride the bull at Papas & Beer and drink bad tequila to your heart’s content with the tourists at any of the numerous bars or restaurants scattered along downtown.
Rosarito is mainly beach break, but it has a few other options if you want to hunt for them. The best surf seems to be near the pier, with the south side being better most years.
Most people stay at the Rosarito Beach Hotel in one of the 500 rooms, you can’t miss it—it’s the behemoth red and white building downtown in the middle of all the action. Here are ten other options for hotels in Rosarito if you decide that this is the experience you want.
Name: Rosarito Beach Hotel
Name: La Paloma
Name: Las Rocas Hotel
Name: Festival Plaza
Name: Puerto Nuevo Baja Hotel & Villas
Name: Rosarito Beach Hotel
Name: Hotel Pueblito Inn
Name: Las Rocas Resort & Spa
Name: Castillos del Mar
Name: Hotel Hacienda Don Luis
You might want to grab some food after surfing around K38 and this might be when you go into Rosarito. There are a few surf shops, plenty of bar and some good food options.
Realize that if you take the free road from K38 to Rosarito you’ll have to pass a military inspection station. They might mess with you and if you dropped any roaches in your can and they find them you are in for a long day. I’d recommend hoping on the toll road and getting off in downtown Rosarito to by-pass the inspection post.
My two new favorite places to eat are Banana Republic and El Janqui Tacos.
Head to Tacos El Janqui restaurant for authentic tacos and quesadillas in Rosarito. The place is a little difficult to find as it’s off the main road at Mar del Norte #115 12, Zona Centro, 22700 Rosarito. There is no sign out front, but just look for the long line of people waiting for their grub in an open court style restaurant and that’s the place.
For the best breakfast in town, go to the Banana Republic for insane pancakes and traditional Mexican breakfast options. This place is worth the drive south after your surf. Located at Blvd Benito Juarez 31, Zona Centro—right on the corner of the mall outside Rosarito Hotel.
There is paid secure parking at the Rosarito Hotel right next to the restaurant for eight dollars. If you go into the hotel cafe and buy a coffee they will validate your parking for free. There, I saved you $6, you can donate it to saving the ocean of buy me a beer when you roll through Ojai.
If you aren’t going to stay in Rosarito, but you want to chase chicks and drink all night, then I would highly recommend that you either sleep on the beach or stuff your pockets with cash for the bride you will have to pay when that cop pulls you over.
The Rosarito police are notorious for throwing shit-faced Gringos in jail and extorting money from them—you are better off pulling out your wife’s credit card and grabbing a sleazy hotel at 2am and dealing with the wrath of questioning that you will have to endure once you get home—mounting your car for that 10 minute ride back to your Baja castle down the road is a bad Gringo idea and could land you in jail.
Click here for the Rosarito surf report.
The coast between Rosarito and La Fonda is my favorite part of this entire area. Points, reefs, and beach breaks abound—lots of beautiful coastline with waves in many no name locations on the right swell.
This is an ok wave in front of the RV park—too close to Rosarito in my book.
When a big northwest swings into the bay, this place can be really fun. It’s kind of hit and miss, but I have surfed it really good with nobody out several times.
You will have to figure out where to park and don’t leave any valuables in the car. You might be able to leave your car at a private trailer park on the south end of the cove, or at the north end of the Fox studio lot.
Grab some fresh fish on your way out, the locals will be stoked and so will you. We found this recent report on just where to go once you visit the local fish market:
Click here for the Popotla surf report.
“Start off with raw shellfish, ceviches, and cocktails, and for this you only need one stand: Los Compadres de Sinaloa. Walk past the boats, fish mongers, shellfish stands, and junk food vendors where you’ll find an attractive coctelera huddled behind a wall of the typical seafood hot sauces ready to serve you. El Compadre takes care of all the shucking and cracking of live shellfish to be served au natural, or he hands it off to Erika who’ll take care of any preparations.”
People seem to enjoy staying in the Popotla the area. Cathy, a recent visitor to the area said, “The beach is cleaned everyday, one of the cleanest I ever seen. It’s also very long, so you can walk about one hour one way.”
U.S. driver’s licenses are valid in Mexico and make sure you have yours with you and that it isn’t expired. Mexican law requires that the vehicles be driven by their owners or that the owner be inside the vehicle. So if you borrowed your bros car or decided to take your roommate’s car while he was in Portland at that granola eating contest, then the vehicle could be seized by Mexican customs and will not be returned until Star Wars 14 comes out.
The next few spots are some of my all time favorites—once you make a few trips and actually get these breaks firing you will wonder why you have been surfing all those OC breaks all those years when just a few hours away these breaks were going off and uncrowded.
Calafia is one of those mysto breaks that rarely works well but if there is any south in the water there will be some waves.
It works best on a large south—it’s a rocky right point that can throw on the takeoff and then gets a bit softer on the inside.
On the right tide and swell, even the inside can stand up and offer some fun turns and slashes.
Park and eat at the Calafia restaurant or pay the parking lot dudes some cash to watch your vehicle (always pay someone).
This wave gets spiky at low tide so watch yourself, if there is enough swell and water moving around you could pull it off.
Like most places in Baja these days they are putting up condos along the cliffs around Calafia—which is good if you want to stay here, you can find some options here. People tend not to like the Hotel Calafia, so you might want to stay away from it unless you are feeling adventurous.
This one on airbnb has an ocean view and is in the newer complex called Playas de Rosarito and goes for $140 a night.
Got an extra 150k in the kitty, you might want to grab your own Baja villa—check out Baja Real Estate Group and then invite me for the holidays.
Looks like there is some decent grub at Paradise Cove Tiki Bar at K36 owned by Beau. The reviews look good with a 4.5 star rating on Trip Advisor. I am going to check it out next week while I am searching for waves and a decent beer after I get out of the water.
Little of Hawaii in Baja, with live music and hot showers for surfers.
This might be my favorite waves in North America—I know that is a big statement, especially since I live 20 minutes from Rincon, but I got to tell you, when this wave is working it has a life of its own.
People talk about this wave being the most crowded wave around but on my last few trips to Baja we surfed it solo. The break faces due south but it will pick up anything—west, northwest, west northwest, you get the picture. I have surfed it on every swell direction imaginable and it has a hundred different faces.
K-38 likes a mid-to-low-tide and breaks over a cobble stone riverbed, with bigger rocks near the takeoff zone. The right is epic, but there are lefts to be had also. If you do go left, watch out for a few shallow sections on the inside.
There are a few main peaks and when it’s big it pushes our further and further. At 10-12 foot there is a lot of water moving around, so pay attention.
Speaking of paying attention, wear some booties if you bring them. It’s a sea urchin party out there and you are invited—they tend to congregate near the rivermouth mainly, but you might find a few staggerers anywhere.
Just south of the main break are a few more waves at K-38.5 in front of the exclusive Club Marena. I’ve caught some fun lefts between the two rock outcroppings at a higher tide when K-38 was either starting to shut down or was just too crowded for my taste. There is a fun little right just around the corner that breaks into a large open bay—bigger boards are better as it’s a soft sweeping shoulder.
You can’t get to K-38 from the toll road, best thing to do is drive past it on the toll road (that way you can get a good look at it) and then make your exit another mile south at Puerto Nuevo. Drive back north along the free road and make a left after the break at the top of the hill just on the north side of the bridge.
Go down the dirt road to the first driveway and pull in to Robert’s and check the surf. If you end up staying there to surf you’ll need to pay $5 to whoever is in the lot. Your car is safe here—you can also use the showers after you surf or go to the bathroom on the property.
Many new surf shacks have been built over the last decade, you got some great options right on the cliffs overlooking the main break.
People seem to really like it and you can’t get any closer to the main peak. There are some other places to stay scattered along the cliffs and also in the large white tower to the south (Club Marena)—depends on your budget.
I did some research on the casas overlooking K-38 and this is what I found, a little pricy but you are right on the main break and can watch it in your PJs while having breakfast.
Ocean Front K-38 for $250 with 5 bedrooms, 11 beds, ocean views, 6 hammocks and—get this— a private skate mini ramp on the beach property along with psychedelic painted walls and accommodates 15.
Club Marena 2 bedroom with views of ocean and all the amenities of your home back i Orange County. $190 per night with a two night minimum.
K-38 with Hot Tub sits right on the beach (not on the cliff), accommodates 8 people and has 2 bedrooms. Looks sweet and has tons of 5 star reviews from Ron who lives (guess where?) the OC. Here is what Bree said, I am hoping she visits next time I go down.
A few more options can be found here on wavecation.
Guys go crazy over Taco Surf just up the hill on the main road north of K-38. Someone on surfline also suggested Ana Mar for breakfast, but I have never seen it open.
Besides K-38 being my favorite surf spot in Mexico it is coupled with my favorite brick oven Pizza restaurant just down the road— Ollie’s Pizza, run by an ex-pat, named after the owner’s full size poodle Ollie (thanks for the update Beau). This place is absolutely awesome fine dining in Baja—who would have thought?
Any hungry surfers around?
The staff at Ollie’s Pizza is super cool and the wine list is excellent—they are only open Wednesday through Sunday from 4pm until 10pm. From the outside it looks like a hole, but once you walk through those doors you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
I always plan my trips so I have multiple opportunities to eat here and so should you. Ollie’s Pizza is located just north of the Las Gaviotas complex: Carretera Libre Rosarito Ensenada Km 40.5, 22740 Rosarito, Baja California, Mexico. Phone:+52 661 613 2046
After leaving the K-38 area, going south, the next good wave is located in a gated gringo community called Las Gaviotas. This has been a favorite Baja refuge of mine for the last few years. It’s an easy trip from the border and there are a plentitude of rentals available from beachfront 2 bedrooms to mammoth 8 bedrooms homes for those that want to bring all their friends.
Prices are reasonable, maybe a tad high for Mexico, but staying at Gaviotas is well worth the money.
Not only do you have a private wave, but there is also a pool and jacuzzi for that post session soak—grab a beer and melt your Gringo worries away.
The waves is super fun on the right swell. Gaviotas is a reef/point break with both rights and lefts. The weekends tend to be much more crowded than weekdays and a during the winter you can often get it with just a few surfers out.
There are a handful of awesome waves just outside the iron gates, so don’t fret if all you OC bros show up, just hop in the car and drive to the next break.
You can’t miss this place, it’s one of the largest gated communities in northern Baja. Just down the road from K-38—look for the sign. To book a rental there are a few options, the official site is www.las-gaviotas.com (way old school) but I have rented homes off it over a dozen times without any issues. There are a few listed on airbnb here but they tend to be a bit more expensive.
Las Gaviotas Facebook Page
A few years ago a new restaurant opened in the area called Splash, if you are staying anywhere around K-38 it’s worth a visit.
The view is spectacular and it’s an awesome place to take your gal. I thought the food was mediocre and given the choice I’d just do another meal at Ollie’s Pizza.
Splash is Located at KM 52 on the Free Road between Rosarito and Ensenada. Heading south from K-38, they are just past the sand dunes, and just after Halfway House heading north.
The Halfway House is a good option for breakfast or a beer and a game of billiards (if they still got the table). They usually have a drum kit set-up and some instruments in case you want to have a quick relive-my-youth moment (which is mostly the reason we go to Mex anyway, right?).
Just south of Gaviotas is a fun break called Raul’s—also one of my favorites. It is better on a bigger swell, but can be a good option if you want to escape the crowds of the better know places. It does best on a big south at medium to high tide.
Raul’s breaks over a shallow sloping flat rock reef and sits (for now) in front of a vacant lot. There is a church at the top of the road—that’s how you know where it is, just turn at the church and drive to the end of the road.
It’s a slower wave and better for a bigger board or Mini Simmons style, but tends to be uncrowded and super fun.
There is an off-ramp from the toll road here called Puerto Nuevo and is the best way to get off the toll road for either K-38 or Gaviotas—there is a military checkpoint just south of k-38 on the free road so you get to bypass all that drama.
There are waves every few kilometers until you get to K-55. The wave at Puerto Nuevo is supposed to get good—though I have never surfed it. There is a right-breaking reef at the north end of the beach. If you like lobster, make sure to grab a meal here before you leave.
There are waves at K-44, Cantamar, the Dunes, Hotel Cafe America and the Halfway House. On the right day, with the right swell, all of these breaks can go off, but they are a little fickle—but hell, it’s Baja, so get out there and explore.
Campo Lopez consists of about one hundred homes on rutty dirt roads that cascade toward the ocean from the Mexican highway going south to Ensenada.
You could drive right by it and not really notice it—unless you are surfer, because the camp sits on one of the best waves in Baja.
Lots of the homes are typical of classic Baja beach construction: trailers to which rooms have been attached by carpenters of widely varying talents.
Nothing about Campo Lopez is splashy. It is Baja funky—a world apart from the fancy tourist towers that spring up every year along the Baja coast.
I have had some insane days out at K-55 over the years, it seems to pick up any swell and is a righteous wave with sick barrels. There are a few reefs to chose from and a sandy beach at the north end of the beach. This place will hold on the biggest of swells. The bad news is that this is a private beach community.
K-55 surf report on surfline.
However, in our new world of rent-anything-to-anyone, you can get into this little piece of paradise. This airbnb link has accommodation listings along this entire coast and the official Campo Lopez Facebook page is here.
I could find only one listing at K-55 for a rental called K55 Beach House at $250 a night. That’s a lot to pay for a night in Mex but it could be worth it if the swell is macking.
This will be our last break for this article, I don’t think I have taken a surf trip to Baja without surfing this wave at least once on the trip.
La Fonda is a magical place that pulls in any swell—last year we went to Baja in June and the forecast said that La Fonda was going to be flat. We pulled up to head high barrels and some of the best surf I had had in a long time.
Flat huh—you just never know at La Fonda. However, the opposite can happen too—this place can get huge and will make you cry for you pappy if you get slammed onto a sandbar by an outside set. Combo swells bring the best shape, if there is too much north in the swell it can get walled and too much south at it won’t hit the sandbars right.
You can get to La Fonda via the toll road or free road, if you are on the toll road exit at Alisitos—the next exit is several miles down the road, so don’t miss this one. You can pull in to the Alisitos camping area and check the surf, they are charging $10 to pull in there these days but it’s worth it to know you car is safe on the bluff and you can take an outdoor shower after your session in the Baja luxury ducha.
If you are into camping, you can just stay here for the night. There is a small convenience store with cold beer and fresh tortillas at the entrance to the campground. As a more upscale alternative, you can walk up to La Fonda Hotel or La Mission for a meal—both just a short walk.
Careful at low tide—we had to take my bro to the emergency room in Rosarito las year—read my article in The ledInertia titled Worst Case Scenario in Rosarito.
The views overlooking the surf are fabulous and the food is ok. The banana pancakes make for an awesome meal after a long surf session in the cold water. You can also stay at the hotel, but it’s got a funky energy these days.
It seems that the previous owner was thrown out for violations of some kind and there is now a wall between the restaurant and the hotel. They used to be all one location.
There is a new restaurant on the south end of the property and the original owner, Joe Dmytri, manages the hotel. we had breakfast there in 2017 and the food was shit. I won’t go back to this place to eat. For a beer to watch the sunset is all I would recommend these days.
Here is the original story in Spanish. There was some kind of bruhaha a few years back that resulted in the division of the original restaurant and the the hotel. I wouldn’t stay there again, not unless you want to bedbugs with your pillow.
Poco Cielo is next door to La Fonda, seems like the views also compare and the food looks similar. Rooms are reasonably priced at $80-$130, all styled with different themes.
I am not a fan of any of the hotels in this area, but if you need to crash for the night then take a pick and roll the dice.
There used to be a spectacular break south of La Fonda called Salsipuedes—perhaps the best surfing in northern Baja. Well, it’s still there, accessible by boat. Salsipuedes is a legendary right point that wraps around into a beautiful bay—it’s a heavy wave and only works on a big swell, so enter with caution.
Salsipuedes was bought and was being developed by Grupo Lagza, Surfrider’s San Diego Chapter shot down an attempt by company representatives for a “surfer friendly” endorsement of the Salsipuedes project—among their promises was the claim that surf access would not be restricted.
In December 2013 the highway collapsed above the Salsipuedes development, plunging a cement truck some 100 feet toward the ocean. The driver got out and was unhurt.
The campground and access to Salsipuedes is closed—if you have a boat, you can get this famed wave all to yourself.
Your next stop is the wave at San Miguel, about 20 minutes south toward the Ensenada portion of Baja. We are going to do another article on surfing around Ensenada and south—but to end this one we want to throw in some information about visiting the wine country.
Last year while chilling with some friends at Las Gaviotas we decided to make a trek to the wine area of Baja called Valle De Guadalupe.
I know many of you (especially Californians like me) are thinking to themselves, ‘Mexican wine, yea right.’
But hold on to your inner sommelier because you are about to get your socks knocked off.
Getting there is easy, just after the last toll at San Miguel you’ll see a sign that says Valle De Guadalupe. Ver right towards the hills and in about 20 minutes you’ll come across some non Baja-esque vineyards and rolling green hills—and the wine is exquisite.
Finca Altozano is all the rage and has an excellent selection of local wines and fabulous Mexican dinning. Call for a reservation early in the week, otherwise you won’t get seated. Here is a link their Facebook page.
Monte Xanic, one of the Valle’s oldest wineries is also worth a visit. The winery is located atop a hill and looks over a lake with clear water. By the water, you can enjoy wine tastings and relax.
La Villa del Valle is a modern Tuscan-style B&B with several rooms, a nicely appointed public sitting space and delicious Mexican breakfasts.
Encuentro Guadalupe Antiresort is an eco-hotel with 20 smartly designed, box-like rooms scattered across a hillside in the middle of the valley. Hotel Boutique, with 20 rooms, gardens and vineyard views, is a new entry to the valley’s burgeoning lodging scene, as is El Cielo, which seeks luxury status.
Valle De Guadalupe is a great place to visit and has much to offer but can get really hot, so plan accordingly and visit during the cooler hours of the day or in the Spring or Fall months.
I just got back from an epic 7 day trip and I thought I would give an update on departing Baja. Follow the toll road back toward the border. After the last toll road, about one mile south, is a nice spot to stop and take a bathroom break before you get to the border crossing. It will take you from 2-3 hours to get through the USA-Mexico border crossing, so you should plan accordingly.
Remember, you need enough gas to sit in line for a few hours, and if it’s hot, you’ll want to run the air-conditioning while cueing to get back stateside.
The most convenient gas station before the border is up the hill toward downtown TJ just before you hook right toward the border crossing. You can fill up there and then double back and continue to the international traverse.
I finally got this down after doing it wrong a hand-full of times—it sucks if you do this wrong because you have to go through a TJ maze of traffic and craziness to get back to the border line—add another 30 minutes to hour and a ton of extra stress.
You will turn right at some point before going up the ramp to get to the main border area—the signs are very deceiving—but listen up, don’t follow the first lane (the one far right) follow the middle lane that goes up the ramp in a more slopped fashion.
The far right lane will take you PAST the border and into TJ.
If you take the first lane you will have to follow it to downtown and make your way back to the border crossing like a rat in a maze. Sometimes they block off the streets nearest the crossing, so you might need to maneuver a few roundabouts before making your way back. Worst case scenario (and I have done this) pay a taxi driver $5 and follow him back to the border.
🏄Looking to book a surfcamp in Bali? Click here to book a surf camp in Bali, Indonesia.
Sick and tired of surfing in a wetsuit?
Want some warm water with world class waves and consistent tropical temperatures?
Then Bali is the place for you.
Situated in the Indian Ocean, facing South, Bali is a swell magnet for almost any swell that is heading North.
Chances are if there’s a swell coming, somewhere on the island will be pumping. But what if the swell hits on the other side of the island from where your staying I hear you cry?
Well, that’s where renting a scooter with a built-in surf-rack comes in handy for an average of $55 USD/£35 GBP per month (prices dependent upon Southeast-Asia negotiation skills).
Another perk, or maybe not, is that almost anyone knows where to find the best surf spots. Thus bringing me onto possibly the only downside of Bali, crowds.
Avoiding the crowds is key when it comes to Bali.
If you are inexperienced with Southeast-Asian negotiations, the culture is just built around negotiating on prices for anything and everything. The general rule is to never take the first price they give you, because 90% of the time, unless it’s a marked price, you can knock 30-50% off it with some determination. It’s just one of those things about travelling to places like Bali— but don’t be afraid to negotiate.
Visa on arrival is the standard procedure in Bali and each visa lasts for 1 month, prices were $15 USD/ $25 AUD last time I visited. If you want to get a one-month extension, you can apply for one at the immigration bureau in Kuta. Any longer than a
If you want to get your Visa extended beyond 1-month, you have to pay for it through a bribe or leave the country and fly back for the Visa renewal Singapore is the best pace to do a quick hop in and out.
Unlike regular seasons like most of us experience, Bali has a WET and DRY season. Can you guess what that means? Yep, it rains in the Wet Season and doesn’t in the DRY Season.
We smart like that.
The ‘Wet Season‘ is great for beginners/intermediates, being from the UK I don’t get to surf anything decent for more than 4 weeks per year, so any practice is good practice.
This season spans technically from November-April although the best time to go is January-March, as the rain has stopped (for the most part) and the swells are very consistently 3-6ft.
This season is best surfed on the East-Coast of Bali, as the winds are almost always blowing from the East. This is definitely the season to come and get less crowded waves.
Unlike the West side, mostly left-handers, Bali’s East side offers some of the best right-hand breaks in the world I think and most of our friends would say the same.
So you are considering a visit to Bali during the wet months—here are some pros to consider:
As far as surf goes, avoid the Dry Season crowds and they know that they can get a wave almost everyday.
During the Wet Season there are always at least 2 to 3 ft waves at Nusa Dua. If it is too big for your level or wants then there are many other really good and perfect barrels to be had down the coast that will be half the size.
The main spots on the East side are: Nusa Dua, Mushroom Rock, Sir Lanka, Turtle Island, Tanjung Sari, Hyatt Reef, Sanur Reef (my favorite), Keramas, Ketewel and many more secret beach breaks. I will surf with you and explain each different break.
Want to hire a guide? Check these bros out at Bali Surf Tours.
As you can imagine, accommodation is all over the map. So, you are going to Bali and I can imagine you like the beach. Yep, me too. Here is a list of hotels near the beach in Sanur.
Twenty minutes north of Sanur is Kermas. There are several other breaks within walking distance including KFC’s, Car Parks and Cucukan.
Within 10-30 minutes’ drive are several other surf options, as well as speed boat transfers to Nusa Lembongan breaks (one of my all time favorite places on earth).
If you want to hang near Kermas and even surf it at night, these guys at Hotel Komune light up the break so you can get barrelled while everyone else is sleeping. How cool is that?
Komune Beach Resort has 33 spacious resort rooms, landscaped gardens, amazing pool area and a great array of sophisticated dining and drinking venues. Rooms run between $100 and $300 bones.
Your lady can sit by the pool and watch you get pitted.
The ‘Dry Season’ which runs from May-September is the ‘real deal’ when it comes to Bali. From July-September there are consistently 4-7ft swells rolling in week after week.
It is rare that you will have a flat period for more than a few days. And when you do have a flat period, it’s quite often followed by a big swell. ‘Dry season’ meaning no rain, big swells and ultra-consistent westerly blowing winds of 10-20mph all add up to
‘Dry season’ meaning no rain, big swells and ultra-consistent westerly blowing winds of 10-20mph all add up to world-class waves for months on end.
Be sure to check http://magicseaweed.com/Bali-Lombok-Surf-Forecast/55/ for the weekly forecast.
Depending on where you are flying from and in which season you intend to visit Bali, flight prices can vary quite considerably. From the UK, I have recently booked a one-way flight to Bali for £275 GBP (about $420 USD) departing in January.
Return is about $150 extra providing you shop around on websites like www.skyscanner.net. If I was to book the same flight in the dry season, June-September, it would likely cost $650-$1000 return from the UK.
Flying from Los Angeles (LAX) in January, booking at least 2 months in advance, you’re looking at $750 USD return. Whereas in July, from LAX you are probably going to pay around $1000-$1200 return.
One little trick I found, if you’re flying from Europe, try to fly to Singapore or Malaysia as they are central flight hubs for almost any long-haul flight and prices can be considerably cheaper.
Of course, this depends on whether you want the extra hassle of having multiple flight changeovers before you reach Bali, but if you shop around you can find some real bargains.
This all depends on what kind of experience you are looking for while in Bali, but I’m guessing since you’re on a surf travel blog you want a real surf trip.
Therefore dependant on your level, for almost everyone I’d recommend staying on the southern Bukit peninsula. Home to spots like Uluwatu, Padang and various other great beginner/intermediate spots, coupled with the local and cheaper experience, this is the place to be for any surfer. Unlike Kuta, the
Home to spots like Uluwatu, Padang and various other great beginner/intermediate spots, coupled with the local and cheaper experience, this is the place to be for any surfer. Unlike Kuta, the Bukit is a lot more mellow, no rowdy Aussies, no psycho salesmen, and not as much traffic (hard to avoid nowadays).
If you stay at a local homestay/ bungalow/ surf hostel, prices can be as low as £100 / $150 USD per month.
I stayed at a set of bungalows owned by a local barman, named D.Abians house, located just up from Balangan beach on JL.Balangan road. The owner Ben is a great guy who can help with everything from airport pickups, scooter rental and even magical items if that’s what tickles your fancy.
The only downside to the $150 a month price is the lack of hot water and only two bungalows currently have Aircon, depending on your tolerance to SE-Asia’s climate, this could be an issue.
If you want something more comfortable, I would recommend a guesthouse/surf lodge type of accommodation. These can be found all over the Bukit and are more expensive, around $400 per month, but have hot water, a pool, and aircon. They are all centrally located to surf spots on the Bukit and often offer day trips to surf spots with lessons. Best value and location would probably be Pecatu guesthouse, located just up from
Best value and location would probably be Pecatu guesthouse, located just up from Padang Padang.
If you are going on more of a ‘party’ type holiday rather than a full-blown surf trip, Kuta may be the place for you, despite my negative reviews.
Kuta has a great beach, awesome shopping, and more bars/nightclubs than you could imagine—but it gets crowded in the dry season and is full of pissed up tourists.
Although if this sounds like your cup of tea, I’d stay inside Kuta / Legian as it’s pretty close to the beach and everything that goes on in this crazy town.
Eating out in Bali can be as cheap or as expensive as you want to make it, prices range from $1 to $20 per dish or even more. If you eat at local Warungs (cafe/bar Indo equivalent) then prices will always be cheaper—in general prices will be $2-5 per meal on average.
Just down from the Nirmala supermarket at the top of JL.Balangan road. This place is fantastic, you can get great pasta dishes for $3 and their milkshakes are insane.
Bali’s equivalent to Nandos, this place has burgers, wraps and more, and is relatively cheap compared to the rest of the Island in general. The main restaurant is on the JL.Uluwatu road, heading down from Nirmala again as if you were heading towards Padang or Uluwatu, you can’t really miss the sign, it’s a big burger.
An average meal costs around $6, and this place is open 24/7, perfect food to prevent a Bintang hangover.
The best pizza on the island, if it isn’t then someone please tell me where is better. There’s a reason why Mick Fanning and Kelly Slater have visited this place, the pizza here is around $6 and is made up of fresh ingredients, cooked in a stone oven.
Finding this place was like being part of Harold and Kumar get the munchies, but once you do, it’s worth it. Without getting too technical; head to Nirmala supermarket on the JL.Uluwatu road, and take a left at the small statue/island outside of it.
From there head down the road and take the first left after you go over the hill, it will look like your driving into the middle of nowhere but follow the road straight up and you will see Casa on the hill. Good luck my friends.
Don’t forget to have a Balinese massage while your here too, with prices ranging from $5-15, you can’t go wrong and can find massage spa’s all over the island, just watch out inside of Kuta for ‘added extras’.
Spa locations http://www.baliretreats.com.au/
In the wet season, it’s the East coast of Bali that is going off, unlike the dry season. This is because in the months from November to April the winds change direction from Westerly to Easterly, meaning consistent offshore winds for months on the East coast.
Nusa Dua is probably one of the best all-around spots for beginner/intermediate surfers in the whole of Bali. Situated inside a 5-Star resort complex, Nusa has three spots within a 3km stretch of beach, separated with headland lookouts which are great for checking conditions before you paddle out.
Nusa consists of Blackrock, Mushrooms and Sri Lanka, all of which are ideal for beginners in the wet season as the average swell is around 3-5ft.
The most beginner-friendly is definitely Blackrock which is the third bay on the right, with a long beach and multiple peaks to play with.
All in all, a great location for practice, although if you’re looking for barrels, mushrooms (middle bay) is the one.
Located directly south of Denpasar, on the bigger of the two small islands, Serangan is a swell magnet and is often 4-6ft+ and can produce barrels.
The easiest way to get to Serangan is to take the highway up past the Airport and head East, Serangan will be signposted and if you get lost just ask any local, they will know where to go.
There is only one downside about this spot, the crowds. Even in the wet season, Bali has a lot of surfers and they all congregate at Serangan, especially when conditions get good.
Despite this, it still a great spot if you can get there early, dawn patrol or late afternoon is best. Beware, however, this spot is not the best for beginners as the rips can get pretty powerful on a 5ft+ swell, and will put you straight into the main peak.
The ‘if it’s flat here, it’s flat everywhere’ spot in Bali. Green Ball is possibly one of the most beautiful spots on the island, although don’t let that fool you, it’s notorious for strong rips, huge sneaker sets and the 500 steps you have to walk down.
Situated on the south coast of the Bukit Peninsula, it picks up almost every swell but is often ruined by cross-winds. It rarely gets good but when it does, it can pump huge barrels with the most remote backdrop to a wave anywhere on the island.
Just beware of the paddle out, try and stay directly to the right of the rip channel and follow it out to the side of the lineup. And if you do get caught in the rip, stay calm and ride it out unless you’re a strong swimmer.
The real deal, there will be somewhere on the west coast pumping more often than not, it just becomes a race to get there before the crowds in the months June-August.
Kuta is the craziest town on the island, you will be bombarded by Balinese locals trying to sell you anything from soft drinks to tasers, but it still boasts one of the best spots for beginners on the island.
Due to the location (dependent on where you’re staying) Kuta is very easy to get to and has a long stretch of beach break that is rare compared to the rest of Bali as the majority of spots are reef breaks. It has a variety of different peaks and as long as you dodge the crowds from the various surf schools, there are good waves to be had for beginner/intermediate surfers.
However, if you are confident enough, I would suggest paying the $5 return ticket for a boat ride to Kuta reef. Kuta reef is around 1km out to sea as you look at Kuta beach to the left (south), and has a consistent peak that is brilliant for intermediates looking for a taste of reef break surfing.
It can handle a decent size swell, barrels sometimes but not often and has long rides which are perfect for practicing turns.
Balangan was my local beach for two of my three trips to Bali and there is a good reason for that. It is one of the most untouched beaches avoiding hotel development left on the whole island, which is what adds to its allure.
When conditions are right, which in the dry season they more than likely are, Balangan is a mirage of barreling lines from one end of the beach to another.
Another great thing about this spot is that the paddle out is relatively short compared to somewhere like Green Ball, and there are no nasty rips when surfed on low/mid tides.
Just beware of the end section (far right of the beach) it gets VERY shallow on lower tides and many of us paid the price after exiting waves there. The local spirit is very much a part of this spot so respect them and they will respect you, and be sure to check out the local Warungs on the beach for cheap Bintang.
Chances are if your planning on coming to Bali, you’ve heard about Uluwatu, and there is a reason for that, it’s possibly the best spot on the island. With multiple peaks and crystal clear water, Ulu’s is a barrel pumping machine whether its 3ft or 13ft. It has three main
It has three main peaks; the peak (first peak you see in front of you from the cave), outside corner (far right, best on big swells), racetracks (left of the main peak, favourite of mine) and temples (furthest down on the left).
As this spot isn’t really for beginners I wouldn’t recommend it but if you fancied a challenge then go down to racetracks at mid tide, as you will really struggle to get a wave at the main peak. If a big swell is hitting, the wave from the main peak will connect to the outside corner and should have multiple barrel sections but you need speed.
Racetracks are great for intermediates looking to practice getting barreled, fast, hollow and sometimes unmakeable, it definitely provides some great fun. The only problem with this spot are the crowds but dont let that put you off, if you get there early enough or sometimes in the middle of the day, you can have waves of your lives shared with only a few people.
Best surfed on mid/low tides, on BIG swells for outside corner to work it will need to be high/mid (be careful on exit if surfed at high tide, if you miss the cave your paddling round to Padang)
Padang Padang is quite possibly the best barrel pumping machine on the island. The real Padang only starts to work with a big 6ft+ NE swell, although you can surf ‘baby Padang’ which is a direct paddle out from the beach, the main
The real Padang only starts to work with a big 6ft+ NE swell, although you can surf ‘baby Padang’ which is a direct paddle out from the beach, the main peak— however, is around the cliffs to the left through a sketchy channel.
Don’t surf this place unless you know what you are doing because it can get super shallow and even suck dry in places. The wave itself is incredible, a sharp takeoff into multiple barrel sections, equal a world class left that can produce up to 5 second+ tube rides if our good enough.
If you want swell information for all the spots in Bali then head over to http://magicseaweed.com/Bali-Lombok-Surf-Forecast/55/.
Chilean poet Pablo Neruda once wrote that “love is so short, forgetting is so long”.
Planning a vacation to Santiago, Chile—Neruda’s birth place is—is a must see. Though you can’t surf in Santiago itself (except for at the wave pool), as it is about 2 hours from the coast by car, you can prepare for some excellent waves near the capital and enjoy this fabulous city before launching into the Chilean coastal towns.
It is nothing short of an adventure in Pacific Coast Paradise. There are endless surfing opportunities—with 300 days of waves per year—and plenty of other things to do as well. In this article we’ll just talk about a visit to the capital. Though Santiago itself sits in a valley not far from the sea, it will likely be your jumping off point for any trip into Chile.
Santiago is the most populated city in the country of Chile and was founded in 1541, which lent it neoclassical architecture since its inception.
Because of its more recent economic growth, it is also juxtaposed with a more modern metropolis design, giving it a neat sense of time travel while walking through it.
Mountains of the Andes chain can be seen from most points in the city and tend to trap the smog from the rapid pace of growth and development.
The city is situated in central Chile, at an elevation of 1,706 feet, which gives it a temperate Mediterranean climate, with low humidity and mild winters.
The reliable waves and plethora of attractions, have secured Santiago as an enviable destination for surfers and travelers alike.
Santiago is filled with many different parks, museums, monuments and markets, all beautifully designed and centrally located, making it easy to explore. Spicy Chile Tours offers free walking tours of Santiago, with a mix of historical information and the best anecdotes and recommendations for enjoying the city,
Be sure to check out the beautifully manicured Cerro Santa Lucia Hill, which is centrally located, making it a great starting point for your exploration and a great start to any walking tour of the city.
Across from the hill is the famous Santa Lucia Craft Market, filled with traditional artisanal crafts that are perfect for souvenirs and a great place to see what people are making with their hands. There are several dozen stores offering various styles of clothing and hand crafted souvenirs—most of which probably are typical of Chile.
Also, not to be missed in Santiago, is the food. Santiago is known for its seafood, which can be found in many of its trendy restaurants. Aqui esta Coco has been popular among the locals and tourists, alike, for its innovative atmosphere and incredible dishes.
If you are looking for a way to relax and rejuvenate yourself, you can take advantage of Yoga Luka which offers a subscription of sorts to local yoga studios for just $2 a session. This gives you unbeatable prices for a variety of styles.
As for accommodations, Santiago is one of the more expensive cities in South America, so you can easily find nice hotels and boutiques to stay in during your visit.
One of the favorites is the Lastarria Boutique Hotel, which has a great location and a very chic yet homey feel; separating it from the more traditional hotels.
It is easiest to get to Santiago via airplane. If you are flying from the U.S., be prepared to pay the $100 USD tourist tax at the airport.
From there you can catch a cab, or a shuttle to your hotel.
If you’re heading straight to the Central Coast, then renting a small car is your best option, with prices from 100-150 US$ for a week.
If you are staying inside Santiago, then you can easily rely on the safe and clean Metro, as it is well-connected throughout the very large city. Metro Santiago has a metro system with five lines and 94 stations, with many holding rotating art exhibitions.
Trains run between roughly 6.00AM and 11.00PM, with each station posting the exact hours for the first and last trains. Buses run parallel to subway lines after hours. (Grab a free PDF of the Metro Map here)
Hotel Aruma is located in Arica very close to the pedestrian walkway that goes to the wharf, shopping district, laundry and walking distance to many different restaurants and services.
They have 16 not super large but clean and comfy rooms to choose from. The Hotel has a modern minimalist design with a jacuzzi to chill in on the roof terrace. They offer a yummy breakfast made with local organic ingredients and tea, drinks and snacks during the day.
Hotel Aruma has good wi-fi and safe parking in a secure lot across the street. The service here is by far the best they will go above and beyond to make you happy and do it with a smile.
With only a $20 difference between this place and other average places nearby, I would definitely stay at the Hotel Aruma.
Hotel Loreto is located a stone’s throw away from Barrio Bellavista, Santiago’s most heterogeneous and cosmopolitan area and is very close to the capital’s city center.
They offer all the usual stuff like wi-fi, satellite tv, heat and a safe deposit box. The biggest plus for this hotel is the amazing customer service they offer. The staff and owners will make your stay as enjoyable as possible and if you’re lucky might even give you some coupons for free drinks at a bar/restaurant near by.
The rooms are very clean and some have great views. The only complaint I’ve seen is that the larger room didn’t seem to have enough furniture and no closet to hang their belongings.
Also be sure to ask for a room with a private bath if that matters to you (does to me) otherwise there are small bathrooms across the hall. Be sure to stop by the courtyard which has an orange and pomegranate tree. Level 2 balconies have roof covers in case of rain and if it does rain they even offer loaner umbrellas for when you want to take a walk to near by Central Market or the Pacific Galleries.
Just looking for somewhere to chill? Well look no further than the ChilHotel cause that’s pretty much all you’re gonna get there.
It’s affordable, safe and quiet. With less than a 3 minute walk to the metro, strong wi-fi, a hot shower and a simple breakfast it’s a perfect place to sleep in between outings.
Do not visit Santiago Chile without having a “Completo Del Domino” Domino is an awesome little place to go grab some cheap eats, a cold beer and people watch while you rub elbows with the locals.
They have a limited menu but still something for everyone. The Completo Del Domino is the most recommended by far, it’s a hot dog made “Italian Chilean style” with tons of mayonnaise, avocado and tomato.
Sounds gross huh? Well apparently it’s not gross it’s brilliant and before you know it you’ll be pouring mayo on all your buddies hot dogs at your next BBQ.
Bahia Pilolcura is a little deceiving to the eye. When you first arrive all you’ll see is a fish market until you find the trap door that leads you down a rickety set of wooden stairs to the basement “dining room”, don’t freak out though you’re not in the middle of a horror movie you’re about to have some really good food.
They only serve seafood but being as it’s located right under a fish market you can imagine how fresh it is.
Try the outstanding ceviche or the grilled swordfish or just ask the waiter what’s fresh and recommended that day.
The service is eh, honestly after your food arrives the waiter will probably forget you’re even there but that’s OK just go back upstairs and pay when you’re done.
This is a cultural experience that you should not miss out on. Super cheap but cash only.
Want to take your lady out for a nice romantic evening after all the hole in the wall joints you’ve hit up so far on your trip? Then Maracuya is the just the place.
Located just outside of the Port of Arica, Maracuya serves lovely elegant traditional Chile dishes with a beautiful view of the ocean. Locals say it’s the best restaurant around. The place isn’t cheap but offers real value for the money. Time to splurge!
Sky Costanera is the tallest building in South America! Inside it’s a multi level high-end mall with movie theaters and restaurants but the main attraction is the top 2 viewing levels.
Many people recommend going the day after it rains right before sunset. The views are incredible. You really don’t realize how big Santiago is until you see it from that far up. There’s no where to eat or anything on the viewing levels yet but that’s OK it’s totally worth it.
Some reviewers stated they wished they had some open air access at the viewing level since they have to take their pics through glass but I can understand how that would be a safety concern. There’s never really too many crowds but it does cost more on weekends and holidays. Look for the signage above every window to help you pick out landmarks!
Fantasilandia is an amusement park located in Santiago. Great for
children of all ages and adults too.
At under $15 per person (as of 9/2015) it’s a great value! It’s no Disneyland/Six Flags by any means but there’s plenty of rides and attractions to keep you busy all day.
The bathrooms are clean and easy to find and don’t forget to bring a change of clothes cause you will get wet on a few of the rides. Some reviewers recommend taking a cab or the metro to get there probably cause the parking sucks.
Around Halloween it’s pretty rad, they stay open late and everyone is dressed up in crazy costumes!
Now for the surfing and what brings people from far and wide. Fall is a great time of the year to plan a surf trip, as the water has had all year to warm up and school is back in session, so the beach is less crowded.
It is also the time before the more temperamental winter has begun. The close proximity of Santiago to some of the world’s best surfing has inspired many surf schools in the area to open up.
If you’re looking for lessons check out Magic Chile International Surf School as the top loved surf school by tourists from all over the world.
Waves suck today? Well then head on over to Wave House to get your fix. Located in the Los Condes neighborhood in Santiago they have everything from Simulators, wave pools and climbing walls.
The instructors are great and the staff is always available to answer any questions you might have. There’s no hot water in the dressing room and the wet suits are a bit worn out so if you have your own bring it.
But if you’re looking for some waves right in the middle of the city, this is the place to go.
Whether you are looking for a relaxing vacation, or one filled with action, Santiago certainly can be the place for you. Central Chile has a temperate climate, making it accessible throughout the year.
Enjoy the weather, the surf, the seafood, and the endless activities Santiago, Chile has to offer.
Panama links Central America to South America, officially called the Republic of Panama (more here from wikipedia).
Panama has some of the best surf breaks in all of Central America. Whether you like point breaks, beach breaks, hollow tubes, or long peelers, Panama has a variety of surf breaks to accommodate your style.
Panama is still virgin and you can catch most of the best surf spots by yourself with your buddies. Few people know about its surfing potential, which is a big plus for surfers who visit.[box type=”info”] Panama has started gaining popularity among the surfers around the globe but is still a wonderful surf travel destination and is nowhere as crowded as its northern neighbor Costa Rica.[/box]
Panama’s roads are of the best in Central and South America, with 4 lane highways all over the country for quick access to the surf breaks. The transportation system is very good, and buses and taxis are readily available from the international airport.
Panama is also one of the safest places in the world. In general, you can surf, roam the streets, party, or shop care free, at any time day or night.
Panama also has an excellent communications system so you can easily call your girlfriend, family or business back home at any time without any hassle. You can even rent a cellular phone for your surf trip, so you can be always in communication.
Panama’s hospitals are of the best in Central America, so in the event that you got beatings on the rocks or reef while surfing (God Forbid), you can be guaranteed that you will be assisted by well-trained health care professionals.
Panama is still inexpensive. At the beaches, you can generally get a great meal for under $4, and budget hotels range from $20 to $50 per room per night, depending on your style. Bus transportation can cost anywhere from $0.30 to $15 depending on where you are going.
The Pacific side is best in the months between April and November. The Caribbean side is best between December and March, but can get swells any time of the year except the time between September and November.
The Surf spots in Panama are scattered across the Caribbean Ocean, Pacific Ocean, Panama City, Los Santos, Veraguas, Chiriqui.
Let’s check the forecast right now . . .
On the Caribbean side the surf breaks are all spread out around the islands of Bocas del Toro, Bastimientos and Carenero. You can get to the breaks on the main island by taxi, and to the breaks on Bastimientos Carenero by boat taxi. You don’t have to worry about tides for these spots since the Caribbean ocean does not have much fluctuation of tide. One of the most famous spots is Bocas del Toro.
Isla Bocas del Toro
The islands of Bocas del Toro on the northern Caribbean side of Panama have some of the best surfing in Panama, with a wide variety of surf breaks. The best surf period is from December through March which is dry season.
Bocas del Toro has great surf spots for everyone from Beginner to Advanced skill levels and there are places to surf alone without much crowd.
Starting from the beaches in the province of Darien, travel along the coast through Panama City, then the Panama Bay Area beaches, then the Peninsula area of Los Santos and finally the provinces of Veraguas and Chiriqui. The Pacific side has so many beach breaks which would suit all skill levels.
Panama City has a few different surf breaks, however, it is not hugely recommended due to the city pollution that has gone into the ocean and the government is in the process of cleaning it up. Also, there must be a really big swell for these spots to break.
The province of Los Santos has some of the best surf in Panama, as it is located out on the peninsula of Panama. That is the part of Panama that looks like a boot that sticks out in the Pacific ocean.
To get there, you go down the Pan American highway, then take a left at Divisa, then go through Chitre, then through Las Tablas, then to Pedasi. At Pedasi, the beaches begin, and run all the way through Tonosi to the end of the road at Cambutal. There are dozens of unexplored beaches in this area.
The province of Veraguas has some of the best surf known to Panama and Central America for that matter. This is the area around the back (west) side of the Peninsula. The main breaks are all close to the town of Santa Catalina.
The province of Chiriqui has several islands in the Pacific that have really good surf. These islands are very remote and generally only those who have access by sail boat or yacht can get to them. However, there are some tour operators that offer specialized tours to these exclusive surf locations.
There is also excellent fishing in this area, and there is one particular spot in the area called “Hannibal Bank” that is world-famous for catching marlin and sail fish. Most of the big fishing charter yachts in Central America go there to fish. The surf breaks are relatively unexplored.
The city of David has several spots that are worth mentioning and they get the same swell direction of Chiriqui Islands and the Peninsula waves. This area is also relatively unexplored.
International flights arrive at Tocumen International Airport (PTY) in Panama City. Services arrive daily from the US (most are routed through Atlanta, Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston or Miami) and other Central and South American cities; KLM and Iberia fly from Amsterdam and Madrid, respectively. Flights from San José, in neighboring Costa Rica, often stop in David before continuing on to Panama City. The recently upgraded airport in David is expected to see direct international flights from and to the US at some point.
You can cross into Panama by land from Costa Rica, but due to security concerns it’s not possible to do so from Colombia. Instead, backpackers are increasingly booking passages by boat.
Hotel Oasis is located on Caranero Island just a $1 water taxi ride away from the main island. It has been described as the cleanest place in town. The staff seems to be super friendly and accommodating.
One couple missed breakfast by 30 minutes and they still insisted on feeding them and giving them coffee.
A few other reviewers said that they had been able to check in way earlier then the hotel’s scheduled check in time because their flights arrived early.
Jose and his wife (the owners) are very helpful and will go out of their way to make your stay enjoyable. They know every tour guide in town by name and will hook you up with the best deal they can. All rooms come with A/C and cable TV.
The rooms with balconies and hammocks are $10 more per night but totally worth it since they’re right on the water. They also have an outdoor deck area above the water to chill and read a book. No toiletries are provided other than soap so bring your own shampoo! And make sure you bring a lot of dollar bills. No not for the strip club this time 😉 for the water taxi rides back and forth. Oh and the hotel only takes cash as well so hit up an ATM on your way there.
Hotel Caribbean View is located on Isla Bastimentos. It’s more of an affordable, basic or maybe even rustic type of place. The food is excellent! Cooked by Luis and assisted by his wife, daughters and grandchildren.
In one of the reviews one person stated that it was “The best Lobster I’ve had in Central America” and she was from Maine so that says a lot. The lobsters even arrive in the same boat as you. The restaurant also offers a very good breakfast including pineapple pancakes and a decent cup of coffee.
The rooms like I said are pretty rustic. Nice and clean but basic and the bathroom was described as small and dark. All of the rooms come with A/C and free WiFi. When you’re ready to head to the main island you can grab a water taxi right from the dining room on dock over the water.
The owner’s son is also available to take you out on boat trips at our convenience. There is no ATM on Isla Bastimentos so stop in Isla Colon before you get there.
Hotel Villa Romana is an oceanfront hotel in Puerto Escondido (Pedasi), Panama. Pictures just don’t do it justice it’s a very beautiful hotel as the reviewers on tripadvisor.com said over and over again.
They have 21 Ocean view suites that are simple yet comfortable. A nice pool with a separate shallow pool for the kids and chairs under wooden framed covered vines so they don’t get sunburnt.
Villa Romana has an amazing restaurant that has a 180 degree view of the ocean and you might even see some whales pass by if you are there just after whale season starts.
Jessica the manager and Anna are very helpful and friendly. Nothing is too much trouble for them. They have cool night shows and even a children’s mini disco! Reviewer tip: Look for discounts or deals before you book you just might luck out.
Capitan Caribe is a food truck located in Bocas Town. Don’t let the term “food truck” scare you off though.
The Captain Caribe burger is described as being the “Best burger in all of Central and South America!” and their burritos are even better! Luigi the chef and the rest of the crew are really fun, friendly guys that love their job.
The food is super delicious, affordable and made with fresh and local ingredients. They even have vegetarian options that aren’t listed on the menu if you just ask.
There’s outdoor seating or you can just order it to go and take it back to your hotel. Just make sure you get there before 7 or else the lines will be crazy long or they might even run out of food. Try the Bocas Love Smoothie while you’re there too!
Los Pibes located in Santa Catalina is open for dinner and late night. They are an Argentinian grill but from what I can tell from the reviews the steak is thin and overcooked.
The burgers and fish on the other hand are outstanding! The Chimichurri sauce is so good you’ll ask for seconds and they serve yummy sangria and have great wine.
Don’t expect anything fancy, this is a laid back place with smashed surfboards for decor. Great place to go with your surf bros when you want a good burger. Oh and they don’t take credit cards so bring cash.
The Sea Monkey is located in Isla Bastimentos just a 10 minute water taxi ride from Bocas Town. It’s one of the highest recommended places I’ve seen in Panama and for good reason.
Ryan and Stacey are the owners and are some of the most friendly welcoming people you will ever meet. They treat each guest like royalty.
They have a very user-friendly menu varying from International, Fusion, Mexican and Asian dishes. Try the “famous” ravioli and curry while you’re there.
The only complaints I’ve seen were they should have “finely chopped the salad more” and “the portions should have been bigger cause it was so good I would’ve eaten it all again”. Enjoy some fun cocktails under the fairy lights while listening to music at this very yummy yet affordable establishment.
Located on a pristine island off the Pacific coast of Panama, you will have wave after wave to just you and your friends. Multiple islands surround Morro Negrito and each one provides its own unique wave.
From fast hollow point breaks to sand bottom beach breaks, everything is covered. Morro Negrito surf camp is a wonderful place for almost anyone to go. The surf breaks range from a beginner level to a professional level.
Oasis Surf Camp Panama
Oasis is sheltered by coconut palms and other shade trees, on the long sandy beach of Playa Estero.
This public beach is great for families, beach picnics, and offers the best spot for beginners to practice surf lessons. “La Punta”, which breaks 0.5km offshore, has a sharp lava reef and is as powerful as it is dangerous.
Surfcamp Guanico Inc.
Bocas Surf School Panama
Bocas Surf School is located in the thriving island town of Boca del Toro. The warm waters and numerous surf breaks provide the perfect environment to experience a full range of surfing curriculum.
BSS has established courses and can also custom design a course for individuals, couples, families or groups. Manuel the instructor is very patient, speaks perfect English and is 100% dedicated to getting you up and surfing.
He always knows where to get good waves even if the other surf schools are closed he’ll take you in his own boat to get there. If you decide to stay in the hostel which is very very clean and not a party hostel at all but only a 5 minute walk to midtown where all the parties are they’ll give you $5 off your surf lesson.
Beach Break Surf Camp Panama
Beach Break Surf Camp and Hotel is located beach front in the beautiful bay of Playa Venao.
Riomar Surf Camp Panama
RMSC is located at Playa Rio Mar in the town of San Carlos, Panama, 1 hour from Panama City. In this region of Panama,there are more than 18 different surf spots within 20 minute drive from our camp RMSC.
RMSC is a great starting point for surfing trip in the uncrowded waves of Central America. The beach break is a 2 minute walk and the right point break a 10 minute walk.
Easter Island is the most remote inhabited island in the world. Would you like to go there?
Traveling is such a gift—throw in some surf and a diverse culture at a far away location (sometimes really far) and you’ve built the perfect adventure.
A place I have dreamed about for years is Easter Island. This island encapsulates excitement, uniqueness and an unexplainable sense of mystery. Easter Island is recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage site, so it must be rad.
Easter Island holds a truly extraordinary place in the entire world. The island has a unique archaeological history. I am sure you have seen you those megalithic statues or what is commonly known as Moai on large constructed stone platforms (also called Ahu). There are 887 of those mysterious statues on Rapi Nui.
Dude, I know you have seen them. it is unknown how or why ancient Polynesians carved more than 25 million pounds of stone to make the Moai.
Nobody knows: maybe aliens?
Keep reading because we’ll examine a few of the theories surrounding the statues and also talk about where to surf on the island.
Enjoy the journey, wherever it takes you.
Easter Island is also know as Rapa Nui. It is a Polynesian island located in the Southeastern Pacific Ocean, at the southeastern most point of the Polynesian Triangle. The capital of Easter Island is Hanga Roa; bet you didn’t learn that in school.
Let’s check it out on the map so you can get an idea where the hell this place is located . . .
Easter Island is a territory of Chile (South America bro) which is about 3,600 km or 2,237 miles east of the island. The island is about 24.6 km (15.3 mi) long by 12.3 km (7.6 mi) at its widest point.
The island has a triangular shape. It has an area of 163.6 square kilometers (63.2 sq mi), and a maximum altitude of 507 meters (1,663 ft). There are three freshwater crater lakes on the island; at Rano Kau, Rano Raraku and Rano Aroi.
Easter Island Location
Due to its remote location, the island is hard to reach. By plane it’s 5.5 hours from the nearest continent with very limited options to get there. The only regular flights are via LAN Airlines. They fly weekly to Tahiti and daily to Santiago de Chile (from Easter Island). With no competition for fares on this route, fares range between US $300-$1200 round trip from Santiago.
Getting to Easter Island can be an expensive affair but, as always, good planning and research can bring down the cost considerably. Booking a flight/tour from mainland Chile can be very expensive.[box type=”info” size=”large” style=”rounded” border=”full”]If you’re flying into Chile on Lan Chile, it’s not very expensive to add a Santiago Easter island return to your international ticket.[/box]
Easter Island can also be easily included in a trans-Pacific route if you’re flying from Australia/New Zealand via Tahiti to mainland Chile as there is a LAN Chile service from Tahiti to Santiago that stops at Easter Island, making it ideal as an inexpensive stopover for a few days. The same applies if you’re planning a round-the-world trip that covers the South Pacific and South America.
Once you have your flights arranged, you can opt to go online and book a reasonably-priced hotel and car (or hotel + tour package) separately at one of the many Chilean tour operators or online.
For more info see Wiki Travel
Archaeological evidence has shown that surfing was practiced on the island as far back as its settlement by early Polynesians, who used roughly crafted boards for transportation and fishing. Easter Island is a haven for surfers of all levels and has been for centuries.
In the early 1990s, the island found its way onto the surfing radar. The best time of year to surf on Rapa Nui is during January and February when the crystalline swells rolls in under a cloudless sky.
However, you can have epic waves at any time of year. But, be mindful of the shifting winds and the occasional rain storm. Tracking the tides is also necessary. The rocky shoreline is exposed during low tide, so you’ll want to keep an eye on those reefs and exposed spots when the tide starts to drop.
The bay at Pea Beach near Hangaroa’s town center is the optimal how-to location and good for a warm up session once you arrive. The crystal clear waters stack in perfectly at high tide, and your gal (or guy) can watch you while sipping a nice cocktail from the shore.
The best spots for adventurous surfers is along the island’s south side of the boomerang-shaped island, particularly the bays of Paka Ai and Papa Tangaroa.
On the west side, you will find large waves, much like Indo where the swells come out of deep water right onto the island’s continental shelf. Check the bays of Tahai and Mata Veri; the latter’s long waves are particularly well suited for big wave riders. The swells on both these sides allow for plenty opportunity. Rent a car and explore.
This video shows a few well known surfers that made their way from Hawaii to Ester Island and scored some great waves.
Surfing classes are informal, don’t expect Kelly Slater style lessons. The best place to saddle up with a board is at the thatched shack beside the tourist information center in Hangaroa, easily spotted by its bright orange walls. Mai Teao, local surf pro and instructor extraordinary, offers classes throughout the week barring inclement weather.
Call Teao (09-212-0473) the day before to set up a time for the following morning. He then will contact the local Chilean military outpost to get the stats on swells, tides and the forecast. A one-hour course including gear (board and wet suit) will cost 20,000 Chilean pesos for a private lesson or 15,000 pesos per person for a small group (half-day board rental only costs 10,000 pesos).
Classes are a great way to learn more about the island’s past, as Teao vividly brings to life the fascinating history of local surfing along with a retelling of the ancient myths and legends involving sea spirit worship and tribal practices. For more on surfing Easter Island see the links at the end of the book.
Dude, Easter Island is way out and there is close to no public transportation on the island. No trains, no buses and no ferryboats as well. But on the other hand, getting around on this small island is not difficult—taxis, rental cars, and scooters are at your fingertips.
Cars can be rented either by the day or by the hour. If they are rented by the hour renters usually have to take them for an eight hour minimum, and the cost is $50 USD. Keeping a car for a full day (24 hours) is obviously going to be more expensive.
Need something bigger? Did you bring your SUP?
The cost for a rental van is quite expensive running about $125 per day. The cost of gas on the island is relatively high and there is only one gas station located near the airport. You can find car rental companies in any hotel and as well as in the main part of town or at the airport.
Most people opt for a 4 wheel drive because of the nasty roads. But stay chill because taxis are always available to take passengers anywhere they want to go in the island.
You can rent a motorcycle, bike or even grab a horse (does not come with racks). With a car, it’s possible to see most of the sights on the island in a few hours. Most locals will also rent out their jeep to you (at a very competitive rate) if you simply ask.
Sample prices of car rental are as follows:
Explora Rapa Nui – Explora Easter Island features 30 rooms in one floor facing the ocean. The rooms extend to the north and south from a central building all having excellent ocean views. The lodge has welcoming indoor spaces which integrate aspects of the local culture.
Rate: $120 – $160 :: Website: No site :: Ocean Views
Tupa Hotel – Tupa Hotel is located 3 blocks from Hanga Roa City Centre and one km from Tahai Archeological Museum. Free private parking is possible on site.
Overlooking the ocean and west coast of the island, Tupa Hotel offers rooms with sea and garden views. Free shuttles to and from Mataveri airport can be arranged. A free Polynesian breakfast is offered daily.
Rate: $120 – $200 :: Website: http://www.tupahotel.com :: Ocean Views
Altiplanico Rapa Nui – Situated in Hanga Roa, this resort is close to Dos Ventanas Caves, Museo Antropologico Sebastian Englert and Te Pahu Caves. Also nearby are Ahu Kote Riku and Ahu Vai Uri. In addition to a restaurant, Altiplanico Isla de Pascua features complimentary wireless Internet access.
Other amenities include a rooftop terrace and a garden. Guestrooms open to balconies with partial ocean views and feature safes and desks. The hotel features a pool and free parking. Anakena Beach is a 15-minute drive away.
Rate: $300+ :: Website: http://www.altiplanico.cl/en/altiplanico-easter-island :: Ocean Views
Chez Joseph Rapa Nui – Peacefully located in central Hanga Roa. Chez Joseph is 50 metres from the beachfront. It offers spacious accommodation, a tour desk, bicycle rental and free parking.
The Chez is centrally located, with local restaurants and bars within walking distance. The hotel conveniently offers a car rental service. Free transfers are provided.
Rate: $95 – $160 :: Website: http://www.hotelrapanui.com/en-us/ :: No Ocean Views :: Central
Mana Nui Inn – Mana Nui offers charming villas with balconies in Hanga Roa´s lively Tahai neighborhood. It is 10-minute walk from Hanga Rora diving centre and 50 metres from Caleta surf beach.
The town centre is a 10-minute walk away. A breakfast with seasonal fruits and freshly baked bread is served daily, and guests can use the barbecue facilities. For dining, Tahai Mall offers several restaurants only 10-minutes walk away.
Rate: $120 – $150 :: Website: none :: No Ocean Views
Hangaroa Eco Village and Spa – Situated near the beach in Hanga Roa, this hotel is close to Ahu Vai Uri, Ahu Kote Riku and Museo Antropologico Sebastian Englert. Local attractions also include Puna Pau and Ranu Kau.
In addition to two restaurants, Hangaroa Eco Village and Spa features a spa tub. Other amenities include concierge desk and massage/treatment rooms. Guestrooms open to balconies with ocean views and feature televisions with cable/satellite channels. Other amenities include complimentary high-speed (wired) Internet access and sofa beds.
Rate: $250 – $600 :: Website: http://www.hangaroa.cl/en-us/ :: Ocean Views :: Luxury
Chez Maria Goretti – Situated near the airport, in the city center, this hotel is close to Ahu Vai Uri, Ahu Kote Riku and Museo Antropologico Sebastian Englert. Local attractions also include Puna Pau and Dos Ventanas Caves.
In addition to complimentary wireless Internet access, Chez Maria Goretti provides a rooftop terrace, free parking and a garden. Guestrooms open to balconies with courtyard or garden views.
Rate: $110 – $210 :: Website: http://chezmariagoretti.com/ :: Budget
Lorana Hotel – Situated in Hanga Roa, this hotel is close to Museo Antropologico Sebastian Englert, Ahu Vai Uri and Ahu Kote Riku. Local attractions also include Puna Pau and Dos Ventanas Caves. In addition to a restaurant, Lorana Hotel features an outdoor pool.
Other amenities include a poolside bar and a bar/lounge. In addition to balconies and refrigerators, guestrooms feature air conditioning along with safes and desks.
Rate: $110 – $210 :: Website: http://www.ioranahotel.cl/ :: Budget
More hotels here: http://www.easterislandhotels.com/hochezgorreti.html
The cultural development on the island has been fodder for widespread speculation. Since the island consists of volcanic rock, the early inhabitants quarried the material into giant statues, some as high as 14 feet, 6 inches and weighing about 14 tons.
This was the reason for the reduction of the rich forestry. The villagers on the other hand used the trees to transfer these giant rocks all over the island as early as AD 700. The majority of the statues are facing out to the sea and are lined along the shore. Their faces and bodies resemble similar statues in Polynesia but have evolved uniquely.
The statues represent male authority and power throughout the societal structure of inhabitants and it is believed that the statues are impregnated by sacred spirits.
Widespread knowledge regarding Easter Island’s eccentric statues has fueled many interesting theories.
One man wrote that Spanish armadas carrying elephants from Africa had been blown off course by typhoons and ended up on the island. The man goes on to argue that the elephants were then used as the force behind the movement of the said monuments. A man named Tom Gary suggests that Easter Island passes on energy to Mexico and South America, kind of like an energy beacon in the middle of the ocean.
The monumental statues of Easter Island have been the source of great mystery ever since the island was first discovered by the Europeans on Easter Sunday in1722.
There is lots of hearsay about the ancient monumental statues or Moai. According to the legend, the Moai “walked” to their respected places in Easter Island and some researchers say that it might be true to a certain degree.
On the contrary, California State University at Long Beach Archaeologist Carl Lipo and Hawaii Anthropologist Terry Hunt stated that, ancient Polynesian might have used ropes and manpower to “walk” the huge figures from the excavation to constructed platforms (reports from National Geographic). In fact, Lipo and Hunt made a demonstration; three strong ropes and as few as 18 people could possibly and easily move a 10 feet and 5 ton Moai replica a few hundred yards.
There are approximately 900 Moai or monumental statues scattered across the island. Some of these statues were placed facing towards the center of the island, on platforms or what is called “Ahu” that was build along the coasts. In local tradition, the Moai are also described as possessing “mana” or a beneficial power. All the giant statues on Easter Island have long ears, and some islanders still practiced ear elongation at the time the first Europeans arrived.
There is said to be a distinct difference between the statues at Rano Raraku and those on the Ahu which is that the statues at the crater have a pointed base, destined to be buried in the ground, while those on the Ahu have a flat base, so that they can stand on these monuments.
The statues at the crater are scattered around in a random manner, whereas the statues at the Ahu, when they were still standing, were perfectly aligned and in a group. Although the giant statues appear scattered haphazardly, they actually form three major groups on the inner slope of the crater, facing north, such that they all have their backs to the face of the volcanic rock from which they were carved.
Since researches haven’t found all the missing links of Easter Island’s culture yet, the reconstruction of their past wanders between myth and reality. One of the most characteristics legends of the island is the one of the seven explorers.
According to this legend, before the journey of King Hotu Matua, following the instructions of a clairvoyant, seven sailors came to the island in search of an appropriate place to settle and plant yams, food that was key for the nutrition of the immigrants. Two of them also bought a moai.
In fact, some deduct that the seven explorers symbolize the seven generations that inhabited the place, or maybe seven immigrant tribes, from which only one survived in order to mix with Hotu Matua’s people.
The researchers concluded that the king died 20 years after arriving to the island, and that he was succeeded by his older son Tuu Maheke.
The last member of this dynasty was Gregorio O Roroko He Tau, also known as the Child King, who died in 1886. Today, there is still a family who claims to descend from the great king Hotu Matua.
The type of religion that has characterized Easter Island from the beginning states a series of prohibitions and precepts, all of them related to what they consider sacred, and which receives the name of Tapu. The religious practice that persists in the island up to this day is called Ivi Atua, and it is based on the immortality of the soul. Their beliefs evolve mainly around Make-Make, the creator god, supreme god and he who is omnipotent.
The Mana is the mental, supernatural and sacred power shared by the chiefs of the tribes, their priests and sorcerers. In general, this power could be used for their benefit or it could be directed against an enemy in order to harm them.
It is said that the ancient islanders resorted to this psychic and supernatural power in order to transport the Moai, and that the statues walked to their destination because of it.
As for death, the islanders believed that, once detached from the body, the spirit would stay close to their family before leaving for the spirit world, located far away to the west.
For one or two years, the deceased’s body remains wrapped in vegetable bits.
Sometime later, when the decomposition ia done, the skull is detached and engraved. Finally, the bones are washed and placed in a stone chamber, where the spirit could meet with their ancestors.
However, the most important religious demonstration is the worship of the birdman, also known as the bird of luck. In the language of the islanders, it is called Manutara.
The date of establishment of this event is uncertain, whether at the end of the 17th century or the beginning of the 18th century. It is a ritual competition that was celebrated in the month of September in Orongo, a ceremonial village in front of the three islets of the island. In the biggest and most distanced of them, called Motu-Nui, the competitors assembled in the caves with much anticipation, waiting for the birds.
Whoever took the first egg of a Manutara (sooty tern) was the winner. Once they found it, the fortunate competitor swam with the egg on his head in order to give it to his chief, who was consecrated as the birdman.
Three days later, the Manutara egg was emptied, filled with vegetable fibers and placed on the birdman’s head, where it would remain for a year.
There are many beautifully crafted structures on the island, here is a listing of the main types that you’ll find and should explore.
Ahus – They are ceremonial structures dedicated to the worship of each descent’s deified ancestors, around which ceremonies, mortuary rituals, assemblies, initiations and celebrations for food distribution were developed. These sacred places protected by specific Tapu were reserved for the nobility, that is, priests, political leaders, warriors and worship specialists, as well as their multitude of servants.
According to local legends, these figures represented ancestral beings of special religious importance, and islanders believed they harbored the Mana, the impersonal and supernatural power that protected the communities that held it. The essential element of an Ahu is a high rectangular platform delimited by great blocks of carved or fixed rocks and filled with stones, gravel and dirt.
The upper part is flat and paved. It is joined with a terrace or square in front of it. Some platforms are astronomically oriented. The oldest structures date from the 6th and 7th century. Over time, these structures evolved and became bigger and more complex. Also, numerous architectonic, esthetic and worshiping elements were added, such as a frontal ramp to access the platform, lateral wings, crematoriums, statues and stone pavement.
Pukao – These are statues that carried cylinders of red slag on their heads. They can weight approximately 11 tons. Their meaning is ambiguous. Some authors point out that they are the representation of a hairstyle or bun; others say it represents a hat.
The absence of the Pukao in several statues suggests it is a more recent feature that was added with esthetic purposes.
Hare Paenga – Its shape is similar to an inverted boat. The floor is elliptic and is defined by carefully carved soleplates of basalt. The poles that supported the vegetal structure were inserted in the top side. The frontal side presents an exterior pavement shaped as a half moon. Generally, the inner space was much reduced and was used exclusively to sleep.
The average size ranges from 10 to 15 meters long by 1.50 to 2.5 meters wide. These houses were inhabited by people of high social status.
Hare Oka – They are houses with a circular floor. Their base is conformed by basalt stones. Studies point out that these houses were temporary rooms, which coincides with archeological evidence. In general, there are no domestic structures typical of other places destined for permanent occupation.
Houses of rectangular floor – Researchers have found around 250 houses like these in the higher areas of the island. The foundation is made of rectangular stones, inserted in the land with concrete. The superstructure is vegetal, but the shape is conjectural. Typically, they are associated to lithic workshops and great stone courtyards.
Tupa – These rooms were used by priests to execute astral observations and determine the beginning of the lunar year, the planting season, harvest seasons, religious festivities and the arrival of migratory birds and fish that were important food resources.
Most of the houses and rooms were built with hay walls and roofs, as well as stick shells. The houses did not have any windows, and sometimes, they presented a stone pavement in front of them.
Easter Islands Food and Drinks
When the resources were depleted and war broke out in the 16th century, the population collapsed. While relying on mainland Chile for decades, Rapa Nui is increasingly learning to be self-sustainable. For the first time in the islands history, they have begun to export products: papayas and beer.
In 2010, Easter Island began selling its first beer called Mahina, which is available as a Pale Ale (4.8%) and a Stout (6.8%). Both are one hundred percent natural and follow a double fermentation process.
Nothing like grabbing a beer after your surf or trek around the island.
On a side note, the company is partially owned by one time underwater diving champion, Mike Rapu.
You can as well drink the pisco sour, a cocktail made of spirits grape, lemon juice, egg white and powdered sugar (or pisco alone for that matter).
On Easter Island there is interesting native music that is deeply rooted in ancient traditions and legends.
The islanders are also good dancers, and seems as though their great passion is to sing and dance. The current dances and songs are stylization of Polynesian folklore and the more recent dances are the Tahitian waltz and the Rapa Nui tango.
Sau-Sau – A popular song and dance of Samoan origin that has become a characteristics dance of the island. Moreover, there are other popular songs as well as dances devoted to the gods, warrior spirits, to rain and love. This is the most important dance in every party. The women show all their grace and elegance through rhythmic movements.
Ula-Ula – This dance is from Tahiti and according to a doctor named Ramon Campbell, is a reminiscence of the original. Generally, couples dance separated from each other to the rhythm of the lively corrido, waving their hips softly from side to side, and resting their feet alternatively on the heel and the tip of the toes. The women make graceful arm movements, waving them from one side to the other in a very harmonious manner, and imitating the act of combing their hair with one hand and looking themselves in an invisible mirror with the other.
All of this is executed with a suggestive and captivating feminine grace. In this type of dance, there usually aren’t any provocative or indecent movements. The dancing is usually alternated with figures where the dancers bend their legs until the heels almost touch their backside in a crouching position, and then rises again, constantly undulating in a rhythmical manner.
Tamure – A graceful Tahitian dance composed of two main aspects. On the one hand, the dancers perform real acrobatics with their legs, as well as extraordinary rapid movements and fairly violent pelvic swings. The men who have travelled to Tahiti are the ones who perform this dance well. In counted occasions, the women dare to execute the steps and figures of the Tahitian tamuré.
Everyone like a little music and you won’t be disappointed while listening to the local music of Easter Island. Traditional music from the island consists of choral singing and chanting, similar to Tahitian music. Families often performed as choirs, competing in an annual concert.
Maea – These are hard and round loud stones that were beaten rhythmically and accompanied the singing groups. These stones were extracted from the seabed because they were resistant. The dances include rhymed sounds made with the throat, and the rhythm is marked with a wooden stick used to hit the ground, a long mallet shaped like a thin paddle called Ua.
Keho – A primitive drum made again of stone. A wide hole is dug in the ground, and then another circular smaller one in the middle, where an empty pumpkin covered with a slab stone was placed. On this stone, a singer or dancer bangs loudly with his naked feet following the rhythm of the music. The sound is obtained from the boom of the air contained in the hole, and the pumpkin served as a sounding box.
Hio (aerophone) – It is a sort of bamboo flute with holes. According to existent references, it must have had a pitiful sound. The Tahitian word “hio” means “to whistle” or “to blow”.
Kauaha (idiophone) – A naturally dissected equine jaw. The inferior maxillary bones preserve all the loose pieces in the dental alveolus, which do not fall out because of their shape. Two sounds are produced when the jaw (which is held by the front) is banged against the ground or the palm of the hand.
Ukalele (chordophone) – This instrument comes from Polynesia and also receives the name of Hawaiian guitar. The box is similar to the guitar, though a lot smaller, and it has four strings.
Guitar (chordophone) – Manufactured in the island, it was used a lot in the past. Today, most guitars are manufactured in the continent.
Upa-Upa (aerophone) – Button or keyword accordion.
Ahu Tongariki is the largest Ahu or stone platforms on the Island. Make sure that this beautiful spot is on your list. Although part of the Ahu was swept off the island in the 20th century, it has been rebuild since then and features15 large Moai. This gorgeous spot sits close to the island’s two volcanoes, the Rano Raraku and Poike. From where the Moai sit, they are perfectly aligned and face the sunset during the summer solstice.
The Ballet Kari Kari is extremely popular for tourists on the island and features local folk music. Guests can also join in the dancing and get a feel for the culture.
A must see destinations is the volcanic crater, the Rano Raraku. Located 1.9 miles from the city center, Rano Raraku was once the quarry that supplied material for 95% of Easter Island’s monolithic sculptures. About 400 moai remains in the area and show a visual record of how the sculptures changed over the years. The sides of Rano Raraku are steep on all but one side and surround a beautiful freshwater lake. The reeds that border the lake were once used by the residents of Easter Island for home construction.
You should also check out Rano Kau. This extinct volcano was formed by basaltic lava flows that date back to over 150.000 years ago. Within Rano Kau is a crater lake that features its own micro climate. The inner slope was the location of the last known toromiro tree in the wild until this unfortunate specimen was chopped down for firewood.
At the southwestern point of the island is the stone village of Orongo. The 53 houses that make up the village were discovered by archaeologists in the 1970s and were eventually restored to their former state. This village was once the center of the birdman culture. The birdman was devoted to bringing the first egg across the rest at Orongo. Orongo eventually became a ghost town until its renewal as a popular tourist site. For visitors to the area, this dramatic location offers a glimpse into the past glory days of Easter Island.
Don’t miss Anakena Beach, it is lined by Moai. The beach is very ideal spot for a swim. The road that leads to the beach passes an ancient ceremonial site that is worth a stop. The site features the Orongo or what the locals call “Navel of the Earth”.
1. Private Site
4. Research on Statues
5. National Geographic Article