Whilst that means lots of swell hitting the best breaks across Europe, it also means very chilly water and the need for head to toe neoprene to even think about paddling out! To help keep your surf spirit up as temperatures drop, I’ve put together a short list of great places to escape to for a cheeky week out of the office and away from the cold. They’re also great “fun in the sun” alternatives to spending your winter holidays waiting in lift queues in the Alps!
The Maldives experience is one of a kind in the world of surf travel: aqua blue water, white sand beaches, palm trees and perfect, “user friendly” reef surf. To be sure to score waves at this time of year a boat trip to the Southern Atolls is the call for clean swell and light winds.
Further north in the Male Atolls, the waves are a touch smaller and less consistent, which makes it the perfect time for beginners to learn to surf there! To give you even more incentive, one of our favourite places to sunbathe, snorkel and lounge around by the pool, the luxurious Kandooma Surf Resort is offering 25% off on accommodation and 50% on speedboat airport transfers for any bookings between 1 January and 22 April 2017.
With plenty of swell pulsing down from the North Atlantic, the Canaries and Morocco are the “go to” destinations for any European surfer at this time of year. They both offer world-class surf spots, allow you to shed a few millimetres of rubber off of your wetsuit, and have great accommodation options for solo surf trips and family getaways alike.
If you want to fill up on fresh fish, share beautiful line-ups with only a handful of other surfers, and work on your big wave surfing skills, look no further than the island of Madeira.
Cape Verde and Senegal are easily accessible from Europe, yet still a bit off the beaten path. They are both far enough south of the storm systems to offer clean, long period swell and water temps warm enough to surf in a spring suit. No matter which you choose, you’re sure to score quality surf in a warm and welcoming location, with a stress free atmosphere in and out of the water.
The Caribbean islands of Barbados, Guadeloupe and the Dominican Republic are a bit farther afield, but each is a true, tropical island paradise with its own distinct style, and choice of surf spots you’ll be surfing in board shorts.
Although not in their optimum swell window, the Central American nations of Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Guatemala all offer warm weather and plenty of adventure for a fantastic winter holiday with the perfect size waves for any non-surfing family members to finally learn how!
|Kandooma Surf Resort|
From US$1,170 pp for 7 nights
Kandooma Island is located in South Male and is a stunning new resort boasting exceptional service and facilities. Perfect for couples, honeymooners and families, this resort always receives rave reviews from our clients.
From US$1,868 pp for 8 nights
The Southern Atolls of Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll, Seenu and Adu are all about 340kms south of Male, with at least a dozen high level reef breaks. Only just recently increasing in popularity, these atolls are less travelled due to their distance from Male as a domestic flight is required to get there.
From US$671 pp for 7 nights
North Male has some of the best Maldivian surf breaks. Chicken’s and Cokes, are superb waves offering a left and a right. Lohis is a quality left just outside the Hudhuranfushi Resort. Honkeys, Sultans and Jails are quality surf spots not to be missed.
From US$386 pp for 7 nights
If you dream of tranquility, sleeping, fado music and if you miss the sun in winter – you’re in the right place. Excellent motivation for a trip with good waves in emerald-coloured seas with warm and friendly people. A really original trip and not too far away from home.
From US$255 pp for 7 nights
Reef breaks, Point breaks, Beach breaks everything in place to make Senegal an unforgettable surf destination. Whether you are a good surfer or a beginner, you can find great waves here all year round
From US$333 pp for 7 nights
Barbados offers some heavy waves, but it is best suited to the surfer who enjoys chilling-out on the beach and riding fun waves with an idyllic tropical backdrop. Most of the spots break onto flat coral reefs or on beautiful sandy beaches.
From US$278 pp for 7 nights
Guadeloupe is the largest land mass in the central area of the Lesser Antilles and Grande Terre benefits from a deeper offshorre valley poiting towards the Atlantic NE swell source. A Big Norther or Westly hurricane swell will get intou Basse Terre and hit some prime spots.
From US$819 pp for 7 nights
Next to the colonial fort in the tourist hub of Puerto Plata, a channel splits the reef of La Puntilla, offering intense rights and lefts on a head high northerly swell. The city’s other option, Coffee Break is a reef peak worth checking when it’s too small for La Puntilla.
From US$178 pp for 7 nights
Costa Rica is everything you have dreamt it might be, with great waves, warm water full of dolphins and sea life and beautiful sandy beaches edged by lush tropical jungle. From one end of the country to the other, there are all sorts of waves to suit all level of surfing, the waves are not usually much bigger than head-high.
From US$560 pp for 7 nights
Nicargaua has some of the best points, reef breaks and sandbars in Central America, It’s best surf breaks are in the province of Rivas. They get the south swells from the Roaring 40’s averaging 3-5ft and average about 330 days of offshore winds.