The Ultimate Surf Seasons Guide for the Perfect Wave Riding Trip [Infographic]
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Choosing the right surfing season and destination makes the difference between an unforgettable surf holiday and possibly the worst time away.
Have you ever wondered when is the best time to catch some waves in the world’s most popular surfing destinations? From beginners to experienced surfers, there’s a season for all. We’re here to lend a helping hand, and have put together the ultimate surf seasons guide that will show you when and where you need to be!
Surfing seasons in Africa
Morocco – High season between September and April. The prime time is between December and March, when powerful, heavy waves hit the coast, suitable for more experienced surfers. Check out our guide to surfing in Morocco!
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South Africa – High season between February and November. April and May are the most pleasant months. You can expect cooler weather between May and July.
Surfing seasons in Asia & Oceania
Indonesia – High season between May and October, July being the best month. The wet season between November and April also receives quality swell. In Bali, the high season is between May and September, with good surfing conditions between November and March as well. For more information, check out our surf guide to Indonesia.
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Australia – High season between March and May, with sunny and warm weather. Powerful swells hit the coasts between June and September, when it’s also less crowded.
Sri Lanka – A year-round surfing destination, the surf season on the east coast of Sri Lanka lasts between May and September. On the west coast, the season lasts from October through April.
Thailand – The main season is between April and November. The Southern Hemisphere winter is characterized by smaller waves. However, beginners will find a good place to surf any time of the year.
Fiji – A year-round surfing destination, the best surf can be expected between April and October.
The Philippines – A year-round destination, the best surfing conditions can be found between December and April. For more information, check out the best surf spots in the Philippines.
Surfing seasons in Europe
Portugal – The main surfing season is between May and September, with warm and sunny weather and gentle waves for beginners. However, the best waves come to life during winter months, between October and April. For more information, check out our surf guide to Portugal.
Spain – Primetime is between September and April, with powerful swells and cold water. Summer months receive beginner-friendly waves. On the Canary Islands, the high surfing season is between October and February.
The UK – High season between September and May. The best surf can be found during autumn months. The water is cold all year, so make sure you pack your wetsuit!
France – The main surfing season in France is between June and October, when the water is warmer and the waves are friendlier and, therefore, more recommended for beginners. Winter months receive heavy swells, which produce powerful waves. Plus, the water can get very cold. For more information, check out our surf guide to France.
Surfing seasons in the Americas & Caribbean
California – A year-round destination, the best time to surf in California is during winter months.
Hawaii – High season is between November and March, when large swells kick in. Primetime is between March and May, with quality waves and fewer crowds.
Brazil – A year-round destination. The surf season in Southern Brazil is between April and September. In Northern Brazil, between November and March.
Costa Rica – A year-round destination, prime time to go surfing in Costa Rica is between May-October and November-March.
Mexico – A year-round destination, prime time to go surfing in Mexico is between June and September. For more information, check out our article about the best surf spots in Mexico.
Peru – A year-round destination, Northern Peru is a swell magnet. In South and Southwestern Peru, the surf season is between April and October.
Chile – A year-round surfing destination, Chile counts an average of 300 days of surf per year.
Nicaragua – A year-round destination, prime time to go surfing in Nicaragua is between May and November.
When it comes to surfing, it’s important to be in the right spot at the right time. Depending on your level of expertise, this can be a beginner-friendly location with gentle waves or some destination that offers epic big-wave surfing conditions.
Just remember that no two waves are the same, the element of surprise is ever-present and the conditions are always changing. Tides and swells can affect the waves from one day to the other, even during peak season. Stay positive and be patient. Your wave will come!
Pick your moment and learn how to read the waves. When you wish to get into the big surf, so not plunge right into it. Spend some time on the beach and observe the conditions, look for patterns and watch other surfers try their hands at them.
The surf seasons chart shared above is based on the average surf conditions in the world’s most popular destinations. Please note that severe weather changes can occur, which may affect the waves. Some places may be perfect for your level today, and be completely different tomorrow. The ocean is ever-changing and daily wave conditions must also be taken into account.
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