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Top Surf Camps for Beginners Across the Globe

by Octavia Drughi

The go-to resource for planning your surf camps. Find all you need to know about the top destinations and take your surfing to new heights.
Discover Surf Camps now

Have you always wanted to learn to surf? It might be time to get around to it.

If you’ve never surfed before, a surf camp for beginners will help you catch your first waves and learn the basic maneuvers. But even if you’ve had a few lessons before, you might still be considered a beginner or novice surfer, and a surf vacation will help you master the basics and improve.

When planning a surf trip, finding accommodation, surf lessons, and board rental separately in a new destination can be daunting. Not to mention that it can cost a pretty penny. This is where surf camps come in! They are one of the most versatile solutions for beginners looking to learn to surf without investing too much time and money just yet.

These surf camps provide tuition, all the necessary surfing equipment, transfer to the waves, accommodation, sometimes even meals, and airport transfer (depending on the package). You don’t have to worry about a thing besides getting there, catching your first waves, and progressing to the next level.

Ready for some action? Read on and find out our recommendations for surf camps for beginners across the globe:

» READ MORE: What Will You Learn on a Surf Camp for Beginners?

6 Days Amazing Surf and Yoga Holiday in Ericeira, Portugal

8 Day Unforgettable Surf Camp Experience in Ericeira, Lisbon

  • Availability: March till December
  • Price: From EUR 514 per person for 6 days/5 nights

Want to take a break from your daily routine? Or maybe just want to have an exciting holiday in a beautiful destination? Either way, this surf camp is for you! It takes place in a lovely Portuguese villa, located on the top of the hill just outside the surf town of Ericeira.

The program includes 5 nights of accommodation, 5 healthy breakfasts, 4 delicious vegetarian dinners, 1 daily yoga class, 3 two-hour surf lessons, 1-hour massage, and daily local transfers from and to town and beaches.

You’ll also have access to the camp’s facilities, including a large garden, a terrace with an amazing ocean view, an open-air cinema, a Mongolian yurt, hammocks, Wi-Fi, and free bicycle use. During your free time, you can get around the town and enjoy its wide offer of fine bars and restaurants. Or if you prefer, you can explore the Sintra and Cascais Natural Park.

Best time to surf in Ericeira for beginners

Summer months (May-September) bring smaller, less powerful waves that are great for beginners. This is also when Ericeira’s nightlife and party scene is most active.

Because of the cold Atlantic currents, the water is cool all year round and you’ll need a wetsuit even in summer. In July and August, the average water temperature is 18°C (64°F).

Getting there

The nearest airport is Lisbon Humberto Delgado Airport (LIS). Transfer from and to this airport is available upon request and costs approximately 60 EUR one way.

» READ MORE: All You Need to Know About Surfing in Ericeira

7 Days Multilevel Surf Camp in Lagos, Algarve, Portugal

beginner-surf-camp-algarve-portugal

  • Availability: All year round
  • Price: From EUR 558 per person for 7 days/6 nights

This surf camp in sunny Algarve welcomes all levels of surfers with lessons tailored to your specific needs. 

There are lots of different surf beaches near Lagos and the instructors will choose the best ones for your level, depending on the conditions of the day. If you’re a newbie, the friendly instructors will introduce you to surfing in a safe and fun environment. If you already have some experience, the team offers coaching to help you reach your goals.

Enjoy daily surf lessons, twice a day, two hours each. On a typical day, you’ll have breakfast at 9 a.m., then head out to the surf spot of the day. There’ll be two surf lessons a day, held before and after lunch. 

Stay in the heart of the picturesque historical town of Lagos, in a surf house with a kitchen, lounge area, barbecue facilities, and two large terraces. Everything you need will be right at your doorstep.

Daily breakfast and lunch are included in the price. The camp also offers complimentary surfari weeks and free yoga classes on certain dates.

Best time to surf in Lagos for beginners

May through September is the best time for beginners to surf in the Algarve. This is also when the region receives more reliable swells, compared to other spots in Europe.

The Algarve has the warmest water temperatures in Portugal. In late summer and early autumn, the water reaches 21-23°C (70-73°F).

Getting there

The nearest airport is Faro Airport (FAO), 63km from the camp. Transfer from and to the airport is available for an additional fee. 

8 Days Basic Beginner Surf Camp in Gran Canaria, Canary Islands

beginner-surf-camp-gran-canaria-canary-islands

  • Availability: All year round
  • Price: From EUR 265 per person for 8 days/7 nights

This budget surf camp in the Canary Islands offers a program specifically designed for beginners.

The main objectives during your stay will be to learn the correct surf stance, how to paddle to catch waves, how to pop up on the board, understanding the different wave types, use and maintenance of the surfing equipment, as well as the importance of warming up and stretching.

There’ll be daily surf lessons of two hours each, held in small groups with six students per instructor. The lessons will take place at Playa de Las Canteras in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, where a variety of waves await.

Each lesson includes surf theory, warm-up, practice on the beach, practice in the water, and stretching.

Best time to surf in Gran Canaria for beginners

Summer and autumn are the best seasons for beginners, as the water is warmer and most surf spots have gentle waves. That said, there are beginner-friendly surf spots all year round, which makes the Canary Islands one of the world’s best places to learn to surf.

The water reaches 22-24°C (72-75°F) in late summer and early autumn and drops to 17-20°C (64-68°F) in winter.

Getting there

The nearest airport is Gran Canaria Airport (LPA), 23km (14mi) from the camp. Airport transfer is available for an additional fee.

» READ MORE: All You Need to Know About Surfing in the Canary Islands

8 Days Surf & Yoga Camp in Fuerteventura, Canary Islands

beginner-surf-camp-fuerteventura-canary-islands

  • Availability: January till September
  • Price: From EUR 400 per person for 8 days/7 nights

Dreaming of catching your first waves? At this affordable surf camp in Fuerteventura, everyone shares the same goals.

The surf camp is located in the picturesque fishing town of Corralejo, north of Fuerteventura. Corralejo is Fuerteventura’s surfing capital, with several surf spots for beginners, such as Rocky Point, Flag Beach, and El Burro.

The surf courses are specifically designed for beginner and intermediate surfers. The instructors will evaluate your skills and develop the right program for you so that you can improve your technique. 

You’ll enjoy five days of surf lessons, four hours each. The time of day when the lessons are held depends on the current surfing conditions. There will also be three yoga classes of one and a half hours each. The yoga sessions are suitable for all levels and are usually held in the afternoon. All the necessary surfing and yoga equipment is provided by the camp.

The accommodation is near the beach and you’ll have access to all its facilities – dining area, lounge, gym, yoga deck, yoga studio, terrace, barbeque area, Wi-Fi, and more. The camp is self-catering and you are welcome to use the fully-equipped kitchen to whip up your own meals.

Best time to surf in Fuerteventura for beginners

Same as the rest of the Canary Islands, the best time for beginners to surf in Fuerteventura is summer and autumn when the waves are gentler. That said, there are certain surf spots, like the ones near Corralejo, which are suitable for beginners all year round.

The weather is lovely all year round and the water is pleasant, around 22-24°C (72-75°F) in late summer and 17-20°C (64-68°F) in winter.

Getting there

The nearest airport is Fuerteventura Airport (FUE), 29km (18mi) from the camp. Airport transfer is not provided.

» READ MORE: The World's Best Surfing Destinations for Beginners

6 Days Surf Camp in Tamarindo, Costa Rica

beginner-surf-camp-tamarindo-costa-rica

  • Availability: All year round
  • Price: From USD 450 per person for 6 days/5 nights

Tamarindo is considered the best place to learn to surf in Costa Rica, and as soon as you arrive at this surf camp, the instructors will assess your level and fit you into a group of similar abilities. Beginners will surf at Playa Tamarindo, while intermediate surfers can challenge themselves on the nearby waves at Avellanas, Langosta, Playa Grande, and Playa Negra.

There’ll be four days of surfing lessons, two hours each. You’ll also get free use of the surfing equipment outside the lessons so you can surf as much as you wish during your free time.

You’ll stay in a private air-conditioned room in the heart of the chilled surf town of Tamarindo. Other facilities include an outdoor swimming pool, kitchen, and Wi-Fi. Tamarindo Beach is only a five-minute walk from the hotel.

The package includes daily breakfast, one snorkeling trip, one yoga lesson, one USB stick with pictures of you surfing, and one free T-shirt.

When you’re not surfing, there are plenty of other activities to try in Tamarindo, from ATV tours to diving, snorkeling, kayaking, horse riding, and more. The staff can arrange these experiences for you for an additional cost.

Best time to surf in Tamarindo for beginners

Tamarindo has beginner-friendly waves all year round. However, the dry season, between November and March, is the most pleasant time of year. The weather is lovely, the waves are slightly smaller, and the winds are offshore in the morning.

The water is warm water all year round, between 77-86°F (25-30°C).

Getting there

The nearest airport is Liberia Airport (LIR), 28.5mi (46km) from the camp. Airport transfer is not provided.

» READ MORE: All You Need to Know About Surfing in Costa Rica

7-Day Private Surf Camp Experience in Huatulco, Oaxaca

beginner-surf-camp-oaxaca-mexico

  • Availability: May to December
  • Price: From USD 1190 per person for 7 days/6 nights

Is it your first time hitting the waves or you haven’t stepped on the board yet but planning to do so? This private surf retreat in Mexico is perfect for beginners.

Each day you’ll enjoy a surfing lesson at one of the best beach spots in Huatulco. And if you want to explore more surfing spots, you only have to pay extra for the fuel to get there and nothing more. 

You’ll be staying at a deluxe oceanfront villa, in a shared bedroom. This package also includes freshly prepared Mexican-style food for your daily breakfast and lunch.  For dinner, you can check out the nearby restaurants and coffee shops

Best time to surf in Oaxaca for beginners

Oaxaca boasts a variety of surf spots fit for all types of surfers. Although Huatulco is a less popular surf spot compared to the famous Puerto Escondido, its laid-back vibe and undiscovered charm sets it apart from the rest of the surf spots. The best time to surf in the area is between March to September, with April to June being the hottest period.

Getting there

The nearest airport is Bahías de Huatulco International Airport (HUX). Airport transfer is included in the package.

 

» READ MORE: Surfing in Mexico: Your Guide to the Best Waves

8 Days Authentic Surf Camp in Tamraght, Morocco

beginner-surf-camp-tamraght-morocco

  • Availability: All year round
  • Price: From USD 592 per person for 8 days/7 nights

This all-inclusive surf camp in Morocco offers coaching for beginners and intermediates. There’ll be six days of surf lessons, with maximum five students per instructor. You’ll enjoy two sessions a day – a lesson in the morning and self-practice in the afternoon.

The instructors will take you to the best waves of the day based on your level. The surf spots may change depending on the weather, tide, and swell conditions. Beginners will start in the whitewater, where they’ll get a good grasp of the basic techniques, then progress to green waves.

Stay in a surf hotel in the heart of Tamraght, with a rooftop terrace and ocean views, only a 15-minute walk to Crocro Beach and Devil’s Rock. You’ll have full access to all the hotel’s facilities.

On a typical day, after a delicious breakfast, you’ll meet with the instructors and head out to the surf spot of the day. You’ll have a morning surf session of around two hours, followed by lunch on the beach. The second surf session of the day is self-practice under the close supervision of the instructors. You’ll then return to the surf hotel and have a three-course dinner on the rooftop terrace at 8 pm.

All daily meals are included in the package price, as well as drinks.

Best time to surf in Tamraght for beginners

The most reliable conditions arrive between October and March. The waves are friendlier in spring, summer, and early autumn, but there are numerous sheltered surf spots with whitewater and small waves all year round. Therefore, any time is a good time to learn to surf in Morocco.

Water temperatures peak in late summer, around 20-23°C (68-73°F), and drop to 16-18°C (61-64°F) in winter.

Getting there

The closest airport is Agadir–Al Massira Airport (AGA), 33km (20.5mi) from the camp. Airport transfer is included in the package price. If you fly into Marrakesh Menara Airport (RAK), you can request an airport transfer for an additional cost.

» READ MORE: All You Need to Know About Surfing in Morocco

6 Days Surf Camp with Professionals in Huanchaco, Peru

beginner-surf-camp-huanchaco-peru

  • Availability: All year round
  • Price: From USD 190 per person for 6 days/5 nights

Huanchaco has five different surf spots for all levels across more than one kilometer of beaches. This affordable surf camp in Peru is specifically designed for beginners and intermediates. The instructors will adapt the schedule based on your preferences and the swell conditions.

Stay in a small family-run surf hostel in Huanchaco, one of the most famous surf spots in Peru, and a World Surfing Reserve. The hostel is less than a five-minute walk from La Curvita Beach, with great waves for beginners and intermediate surfers. You are welcome to use the fully-equipped kitchen to whip up your own meals. 

Enjoy five surf lessons of 1.5 hours each, in small groups with only three surfers per instructor, which ensures a great time in the water and personalized feedback. You’ll also get free surf equipment during your entire stay so that you can surf as much as you wish, whenever you wish.

Best time to surf in Huanchaco for beginners

Thanks to its year-round consistent swells, any time is a good time for beginners to surf in Huanchaco. However, the best conditions can be found between April and October, during Peru’s winter. The rest of the year has smaller waves, as well as rainier and warmer weather.

The water temperature peaks in the range of 72 to 82°F (22-28°C) in Peru’s summer and drops to 61-70°F (16-21°C) in late winter. The coldest water is in October.

Getting there

The nearest airport is FAP Captain Carlos Martínez de Pinillos International Airport (TRU), only half a mile (1km) from the camp. The staff can arrange airport transfer for an additional cost. If you fly into FAP Captain José Abelardo Quiñones González International Airport (CIX), transfer is also available upon request.

» READ MORE: Surfing in Peru: Your Guide to the Best Waves

*Prices may be subject to change depending on the date of arrival.

*Cover image credit: Magikvanilla Surf Camp


The best way to get better at surfing is to surf more. Luckily, budget surf camps enable you to do more of what you love without breaking the bank.

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