All about surfing in Tenerife
Welcome to the Hawaii of Europe! Warm weather, a warm mentality and incredible waves all year around.
Tenerife has one of the best climates in the world with average temperatures between 22-28°C and water temperatures of 19-23°C.
A dozen world-class surf spots provide endless possibilities, no matter what level of experience in surfing you have.
Tenerife combines a great variety of beach and reef breaks that bear comparatively little dangers. This makes Tenerife one of the top surfing destinations in Europe, if not in the world.
Tenerife is a regular destination for many pro surfers and every year the island is host of top international competitions.
No matter whether you just want to escape the grey winter in the North or need the perfect waves for your ideal summer holidays: Tenerife is the place.
Tenerife’s cosy temperatures
Besides best surf conditions and beautiful beaches Tenerife offers you a lot more: Laurisilvas and pine forests, a unique flora and fauna, lava landscapes and the third highest volcano on an island in the world – a stunning view when you are sitting on your surfboard.
The North is the greener part of the island and has a flourishing subtropical flora and fauna. The South is situated within a warm African atmosphere with less rain.
The people on the island are considered the friendliest in Spain and the island is popular for its diverse traditional parties and ceremonies. Low prices for accommodation, car hire and consumption goods make this island even more enjoyable.
What to expect from surfing in Tenerife
The island offers nearly every kind of wave throughout the year and can be divided into a Northern and Southern region from a surfer’s point of view.
You will find the most frequented surf areas in the South at Playa de Las Americas and Los Cristianos. At the same time it is also the most touristic region of Tenerife.
The most popular surf spots in the North are close to the city of Puerto de la Cruz, Bajamar and La Laguna. The Northern region is definitely less touristic and more quiet.
What both regions have in common is the reef-rocky topography that works best at high tide. It produces nice barreling waves.
Tenerife has a volcanic origin and a typical characteristic of the beaches is the black or dark sand. Looks pretty awesome. If you expected a Whitehaven kind of sand it may disappoint you though.
Biggest waves from October to February
From October to February the Northern part of the island has very powerful waves and during that time it provides a huge amount of spots for experienced surfers. However, there are a good number of spots suitable for beginners as well.
During these months the South of the island offers a bigger variety for both kinds of surfers, pros and beginners.
There is a little phenomenon happening during the Winter. The powerful waves suck away the sand from the beaches and they appear rockier than they actually are. This creates sand deposits in the water near the beach and surfing can become more comfortable because you will have more sand at the bottom.
Later during the Summer it takes place the other way around and the beaches seem to gain volume again.
During the Summer the waves become less powerful in the North and you can find a huge range of spots for any surfer. Summer is a great time to spend it in the North unless you are hunting the giant waves. Then you should rather book a flight between October and February and travel to the North.
The South offers a high number of spots where you can go crazy during the Summer.
It doesn’t really matter where or when you are on that colorful island. You will always find a great spot near you.
Surfing doesn’t have to be expensive
Although it is warm all year long it can get windy at the coast. To really enjoy surfing on a windy day it is recommendable to take your wetsuit with you. If you are too lazy or you don’t have your own stylish wetsuit yet, rent one for a few euros.
There are surf schools and surf shops at almost every spot. A wetsuit will cost you around €10 for half a day. If you need a board you can get a good one for around €20 for half a day. There are some good offers if you need material for a longer time. Renting a board for 7 days costs more or less around €100.
Have a blast!
If you are a beginner or you want to boost your surfing skills there are numerous attractive offers. A two hour lesson will cost you around €30, including all the material you need.
Or get picked up by a van with other surfers and instructors that takes you to the best surf spot of the day, providing a board, wetsuit, lessons and a lot of laughs. Trips like these take about 4 hours and cost you around €40 – cool offers and lots of fun. Watch out for nice group discounts.
A very recommendable surf school in the South is KontraOla. It is situated at Playa de las Américas, close to a lot of top spots. A very experienced and friendly surf school. So if you are hanging around in the South say hello or check out their website (by clicking on the name).
When you are surfing in the North you can drop in at the surf school La Marea in Puerto de la Cruz. The school is right at the black beach Martiánez. Awesome instructors and passionate surfers themselves. Click on the name to check out their website.
Too many days of surfing in a row?
When your muscles hurt because you have been surfing for too many days in a row you can take a break! It feels great to recover in Tenerife’s pure nature, like at the Teide National Park.
Or check out some orcas and white tigers at Loro Park. If prefer something more refreshing go to Siam Park. This is the best water park you will ever visit, promise.
If you still feel like surfing on your day off, you can try out the biggest artificial wave in the world at Siam Park! Yes, people here are crazy about surfing!
In Tenerife you will also find a great nightlife and there are numerous traditional festivals. From cosy small festivals to big ones like the famous carnival, the second biggest on the planet – pretty huge, lots of funny people!
You are not a party kind of person? Grab your board plus tent and go wild camping. Discover some secret surf spots. Later more about that, but please don’t tell anyone…
Low living costs
Where to get delicious food and a good sleep? The local food is fresh, creative and most importantly – very tasty. For dessert you should go pick some local bananas or discover new subtropical fruits! Eating out can be cheap and €5 should leave you satisfied.
If you want to create your own tasty dish you will find out that prices in the supermarket are a little cheaper than in most European countries.
In Tenerife you have a vast amount of cheap holiday offers plus readily available cheap car hires. Accommodation starts at €10 in a hostel. Camping costs around €5. Wild camping €0.
If you need a car you can hire one for around €14 per day. Bare in mind that refueling costs you less than €1 per litre! By the way, the other kind of “fuel”, which you can drink, is also pretty cheap.
The Canary Islands are lucky to have a special tax system until 2019. The sales tax is just 5 percent. That makes consumer goods much cheaper.
A short comment on the locals. At some surfing spots locals can get unfriendly very fast. There are several reports of incidents between tourist- and local surfers. But keep in mind that these incidents do not happen often and if you respect the locals they will respect you.
You want to be on the safe side? Check out the basic rules of surf etiquette.Try to become friends with the locals. They might even take you to some secret spot nearby and you’ll have a great time.
Surfing in Tenerife is definitely a lot of fun – no matter what time of the year you decide to enjoy a visit and where you start your journey on that sympathetic island.
It is right here.
Tenerife is proof that you don’t have to leave Europe to find world-class surf spots on a subtropical island. It is right here.
Neither do you have to spend your entire savings to make a surfer’s dream reality. This place with all its opportunities is still affordable.
Where are your favorite swimming trunks that you haven’t taken out in a long time? You should get them ready! Let the top 10 surf spots inspire you and the most important thing: Enjoy your ride!
THE TOP 10 SURF SPOTS
El Charco / La Piscina
For pro surfers and kamikaze riders only! That’s probably why it never really becomes overcrowded. Just ultimate waves that break on a rocky sea bed, very short in length and both left- and right handed. But don’t worry, there are less crazy spots in Tenerife.
El Socorro (los Realejos)
The safe address all year round with a breathtaking view. Easy access via the natural black sandy beach. The bottom is mostly sand with some flat rocks. The wave directions are right and left. The biggest wave to catch is on the west end of the bay, a left handed wave. The spot is suitable for all surfers. Compared to other spots locals are quite relaxed here. It can get crowded sometimes.
Igueste de San Andrés
Considered the best spot in the Northern part of Tenerife. Very reliable surfing possible all year long with Winter being the best time of the year. You get there from Santa Cruz via Teresitas towards Igueste. Perfect left handed waves that are very steep occasionally. The bottom is rocks and sand. At low tide avoid surfing right at the beach. If the conditions are good, especially on weekends, you should get up early to enjoy less crowded waves.
The village might be a little sleepy but the waves are definitely not. This spot is a world-class playground. Waves can stretch up to a length of 500 meters! Easy access via a pebbled beach and a fast way out of the waves through a channel. You can choose between both left- and right-handed waves. Surfing is possible at all tides. Bottom is mainly flat rocks and rocky reef.
La Izquierda – “The Left”
A left break lovers’ paradise! The finest left-handed waves in Tenerife, if not in the entire Europe. The spot is in Las Americas, one of the most touristic places in Tenerife. It never gets boring in the water and neither at the beach all year long, trust. Very powerful waves make this spot more fun for experienced surfers. The spot is very diverse and works for all tides. The bottom is made up of rocks and corals. Be nice to the locals, it’s being said that they get annoyed quite easily.
This spot never really gets crowded and is suitable for all surfers – beginners and pros. The waves are left- and right handed. The bottom is rocks and reef. The low tide during spring and summer is the best time for surfing. According to reports locals can get pretty unfriendly sometimes. Not everybody likes to share this incredible spot.
Punta Blanca – “White Point Beach”
World-class waves in a microclimate! Surrounded by mountains the temperature never drops below 20°C. The waves are very powerful and steep, breaking left- and right. Perfect for intermediate surfers. Almost empty during the week. Most fun at the low and medium tide. Rocky bottom. Best time of the year : Winter!
Feels like surfing in “little Rio De Janerio”. The spot is right in the Center of Puerto de la Cruz at the promenade. Best conditions during Winter. Can get a little crowded at the weekend. Beautiful black sandy beach. The bottom consists of sand and flat rocks. Not much paddling necessary; it’s easy to get to the waves through a channel. The waves can become quite powerful and sometimes are uncomfortable for beginners.
The perfect spot for any surfer. Very consistent waves 150 days a year; best around Winter. Sandy sea bottom with scattered rocks. Waves are left handed and can reach a length of up to 150ft. And surprisingly uncrowded on the weekends.
La Fitenia (La Playa de las Américas)
Excellent powerful right handed waves for intermediate surfers. Don’t worry, there are also easier, less powerful left handed waves. A very consistent spot, especially during Spring and Summer. There is a reef at the bottom. You can go surfing regardless of the tide condition. This spot is popular and can get crowded sometimes. But Its proximity to other similar incredible spots, such as La Izquierda and Billboards definitely make it worth going there anyways.
*The Secret Spot
You want to go wild camping and surf in total quietness surrounded by stunning nature? Grab a tent and ask for Los Patos and El Ancón. That is about one hour hike from Puerto de la Cruz and you get a similar swell there like at El Socorro.
Excerpt: All you need to know about surfing in Tenerife and the best spots to go crazy on your surfboard! Surfing in Tenerife gives you endless diversity. Are you ready to experience surfer’s paradise? Then grab your board and join us!