Guatemala is a tropical surf destination in Central America with over 300kms of volcanic black sand beaches on the pacific coast and stunning white sand beaches with beautiful turquoise water on the Caribbean coast. With a warm climate, offshore winds and some of the most entertaining beach breaks around, Guatemala is totally overlooked as a surfing destination. Not to mention the empty line-ups. Even in the busy season which to be honest, in comparison to neighbouring countries is almost non-existent, there remains to be very few surfers on the busiest of breaks and should you encounter anyone while exploring the rest of the coast, it is usually seen as enjoyable to be able to share the waves with a one or two fellow surfers. Best enjoyed in the mornings before winds pick up around 11:00am. Though in the same breath it does come with its own set of difficulties. The lack of coastal roads mean that it can sometimes take a while to get from break to break, which means checking out spots can become tedious. The lack of surf shops anywhere on the coast can be problematic if you’ve forgotten to buy wax or refill the ding repair box. Not to mention that due to its straight coastline the riptides can be fierce.
La Empali zada, Sipacate, El Paredon, El Punto are lovely beach breaks will often give you hollow waves that break both ways. Not to be missed.
Iztapa – A lengthy right-hander that breaks across the river mouth sandbar. One of the best around with rides of up to 200 metres of hollow pleasure.
Champerico– This left hander breaks off a jetty and can handle a reasonable amount of swell. A good ride on the right day.
Where to stay: Guatemala surf resorts
El Paredon Surf House
This stunning thatched roof beachfront surf resort was developed by friends who after travelling to Guatemala for many years and revelling in the fantastic weather and surfing conditions, decided it was time to build a surf house. They have since added beach bungalows, a pool and a range of activities for their guests.
There’s loads to get up to in the El Paredon area. Ocean fishing, exploring the beach, horseback trekking. Central America’s most populated city, Guatemala City is the capital.
Surfing by Season
October through to early May is the dry season in Guatemala which offers really nice conditions for learners as the swell is calmer and thus more manageable. Waves are on average waist height throughout the year but will really start pumping in the autumn from June to October. There is significantly more rainfall in the wet season, which starts in late May and continues to the beginning of October.