With over a thousand miles of coastline and 600 miles of beaches stretching from the top to the southernmost tip, Portugal offers surf to suit every level.
When to Surf Portugal
The mild, mediterranean climate means you can hang up the wetsuit from late March until September, particularly in the stunning Algarve region to the south, where the warm mediterranean sea waters meet the cooler Atlantic Ocean.
The surf is at its most spectacular in the winter, though, which is when you’ll find the more experienced, wetsuit-clad surfers on swells of almost any size. In fact, American-born surfer Garret McNamara holds the world record for riding the largest wave ever surfed, at 24m, off the coast of Nazare, two-hours north of Lisbon.
In the summer, swells tend to settle around the 1-2m mark, making them great for newbies looking to dip their toes and climb aboard for the first time.
Where to Surf Portugal
The best surf spots lie in central Portugal, near Lisbon, and to the south, around the Algarve.
Ericeira and Peniche (45 mins and an hour and a half north of Lisbon, respectively) are two of the most popular surf towns in Portugal. Ericeira is a small fishing town with a big surfing reputation - think cobblestone walkways, sandy beaches and consistent year round surf. The surrounding swells offer good variety to all levels and it’s relative proximity to the capital makes it a popular and lively destination, with plenty of nightlife and some fantastic fresh seafood.
Peniche, while not quite as pretty, is arguably Europe’s surfing Mecca. Home to the world famous Supertubos Beach, site of the MEO Rip Curl Pro Portugal, as well as some long sandy bays and a couple of reef breaks.
To the south, the pristine beaches of the Algarve region are some of the most beautiful in the world. Praia de Dona Ana is a great example, reached via just a 25 minute walk from the centre of Lagos, as is Praia do Camilo, a little further on, and Meia Praia, whose sands stretch for 4 km east of the city. Lagos itself boasts a beautiful old town and a pumping nightlife.
West of Lagos lies Praia de Luz, another popular fishermen town with surfing for all abilities. Luz, as a village, has all you need, with a range of restaurants, bars and hotels, all in a picturesque portuguese setting. On the south-westernmost corner of Europe, the village of Sagres sits atop dramatic sea-carved cliffs surrounded by a protected national park. These features, and its position at the end of the country, gives it an isolated feel. The village has a relaxed and laid-back vibe popular with a surfing crowd and offers easy access to some fine beaches.
We can help you find itFinally, just 30 miles north of Sagres, Arrifana is a scenic surf spot that provides some of the best surfing in the Algarve.
How to surf Portugal?
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