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Surfing in Portugal for beginners

What are the 7 best surfing spots for beginners to start learning?

Learn to surf on your surfing getaway

Are you going on vacation to Portugal?

Then you probably know that Portugal is a great place for surfing.

Portugal, along with France, England and Spain, is one of the top European countries for surfing.

Would you like to learn how to wave surf right now or make progress quickly?

7 best surfing spots in Portugal

Then discover the 7 best surfing spots in Portugal to start out great as a beginner, or to become better fast.

But first;

When are you considered a beginner as a surfer?

Someone who has never surfed before, or only one or twice, is considered to be a beginner. So up to and including the level that allows you on a good day to glide along with the white water of a broken wave and stay on your board.

You surf on a larger surfboard, ranging from mini Malibu to a soft top.

Intermediates can surf down-the-line, duck dive and make at least a few turns in succession.

To be considered an advanced, you can easily go for any type of wave. You surf rail to rail easily, and you use various boards for different types of waves.

Where can you go as a beginner in Portugal?

Let’s start by briefly sketching surfing in Portugal.

  • Portugal has a coastline of 832 kilometers. (The Netherlands has 353 kilometers excluding the Wadden Sea and Westerschelde).
  • Has become better known in recent years become of the big waves of Nazaré. Not something for beginners. 😉
  • May to October are the best months to go. Nice summer weather. And the big winter wells are over.
  • The water is fairly cold. Around 17 to 20 degrees. A wetsuit is always necessary. You do not have to take a wetsuit to Portugal yourself. You can rent one on site.
  • In October, the world championship for wave surfing takes place near Peniche.

Also read the Surfing Guide for Portugal.

The 7 best surfing spots

Below you will find a surfing chart and full descriptions of our favorite destinations for beginners, because they:

  1. Provide shelter in case of a thick swell.
  2. The waves break “softly”.
  3. The environment is beautiful.
  4. You can take surfing lessons.
  5. Boards can be rented.

Surfing map

1. Matoshinos

Matoshinos is located at Porto.

It can therefore be quite busy. But all facilities (rent, surf lesson) are present here. And because of some shelter from the harbor pier, the waves are often nice. And not too wild.

And this surf spot is super fun to learn and combine surfing with a city trip.

2. Baleal

A famous surfing spot is located between Porto and Lisbon: Peniche.

Peniche is a small peninsula so that there are several beaches that each have a different direction. Because of this you will always find a relaxed wave.

Baleal is our choice.

It is a long beach and this spot works for every tide.

3. Ericeira – Foz do Lizandro

Just south of Ericeira.

More than half an hour’s drive from Lisbon, there is a nice beach with plenty of amenities including surf rentals. In the summer months you will find nice waves for beginners.

4. Ericeira – Praia do Sul

In Ericeira, next to a large hotel, sheltered from the northern wind is a nice surfing spot located. Praia do Sul.

If it is too high on the other beaches, check out this spot, because often times it is a lot lower here. You can also relax in the natural sea pool.

Looking for a place to stay in Ericeira, check out the Ola Onda Ericeira. An authentic Portuguese house run by two enthusiastic Dutch people.

Check the Ericeira Surf Guide

5. Sao Torpes

Sao Torpes does not look all that flashy at first.

It is an average beach break that every surfer can enjoy. Excellent for beginners.

The intermediates can find a bit emptier and more challenging surf spots. Search and you will find something beautiful.

6. Amado

Amado, in the Algarve. On the west coast.

A relaxed atmosphere. And various types of waves. So it often offers something for everyone. There is a surfing school. Also a very good place for when you travel with a camper.

You can park your camper for free here.

If you are looking for a good accommodation nearby, check out Casa Meranka. And taste the purity of the environment.

7. Mareta

In and around Sagres you are in a good place no matter where you are. You walk in 10 minutes from the west side, to the south side of Portugal (Algarve). If on the one hand it is too high, you lie on the other side in the water. Mareta is a fun spot where the waves are usually half the height of those on the west side.

Sagres is full of surfing schools and surfing shops.

Check the Algarve Surf Guide 

Looking for accommodation?

Looking for a nice accommodation in Portugal close to these surfing spots? Review the possibilities here.

Rather go to France?

Then check out the 7 best surf spots in France for beginners

Sources we used for this article: 

  • I Love the Seaside
  • Magicseaweed
  • Wannasurf
  • StormRider Surf Guide France
  • Our own trips to these spots

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