There are more than 3 million people in the United States alone that surf at least once per year, with hundreds of thousands doing so at least once per week. Around the world, the number is even larger as there are plenty of global beaches that surfers flock to religiously because they have the best waves and are easily accessible for surfers.
With plenty of options to choose from, it can be hard to narrow it down to just a few beaches around the world that rank as the best. However, we did our best research and concluded that these five were the best of the best. So grab your board and make sure that your passport is handy so that you can enjoy these fine beaches.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Southern California has at least one entry on the list as the stereotype around the world is that everyone from the area is laid back and loves surfing. The Los Angeles area isn’t the only part of SoCal that’s known for surfing, as you can travel south down the Pacific coast to find some amazing spots in the San Diego area.
Swimmers are encouraged to stay away from getting deep into the water due to the swells, but experienced surfers will find Black’s Beach appealing for the same reason. The beach itself is beneath Torrey Pines in La Jolla, which many know for its amazing golf course, but the surfing is just as big (if not bigger) of an attraction. Just make sure that you dress warmly as the water can be awfully cold throughout the year.
Sticking in Southern California, we head back up the coast to an area that’s synonymous with surfing: Malibu. Though the official name of this area is the Malibu Lagoon State Beach, there’s a reason that it’s known as Surfrider Beach to those that live nearby. In fact, this beach was the first to be dedicated as a World Surfing Reserve, earning that honor in October 2010.
Surfing became popular around the world thanks to this beach, which started seeing an uptick in people during the 1960s. Now, it’s considered one of the Meccas of surfing and has areas for those of all skill levels to try their hand at our favorite water sport. The late summer is the best time to visit Malibu and ride the long waves.
Most of the people of Australia live on the eastern coast, and for good reason. Not only is this where all of the favorable weather is, but it’s also home to some of the best surfing in the world. More specifically, the Gold Coast of Australia is where the surfers down under heads to have a good time.
Situated in the state of Queensland, the Gold Coast has a sunny climate that allows people to head out for surfing on a year-round basis. Even as far back as the 1920s, the Gold Coast has been drawing in surfers with signs and buildings dedicated to the sport. Even one of the suburbs of the region is called Surfers Paradise, and it’s hard to argue with that name when the waves and weather are so perfect.
Like Southern California, you can’t think about surfing in the United States without mentioning the state of Hawaii. The 50th state brings in surfers from around the world all year, and there are a lot of beaches to pick from. If you were to ask all of the expert surfers what their favorite spot in Hawaii is, though, there’s a good chance that they would say it’s the Banzai Pipeline.
Known by some simply as “The Pipe”, this area of the Ehukai Beach Park is in Oahu and is where a reef break creates some of the best waves that have ever been seen. It wasn’t until the 1960s that it became a popular destination for surfing, and since then has been home to a lot of competitions. Be warned, though, as the waves at Banzai Pipeline can be so large that even the most experienced surfers can face danger.
We end the list with a visit to South Africa where the small town of Jeffreys Bay is home to the best surfing spot on the continent. When surfing became a worldwide phenomenon in the 1960s, Jeffreys Bay exploded in popularity and was established as a “hippie” spot in the country.
In the years since, Jeffreys Bay has been known as a great tourist destination with world-class waves. Even the famous film “The Endless Summer” was shot at Jeffreys Bay, helping it gain worldwide recognition.