How to plan a surf trip

There are reasons for us, passionate about surfing, to dream about the long awaited surf trip. Escaping the crowd from home, the flat sea out of season and surfing perfect waves all day are the main reasons. It was to get to know cultures completely different from yours, people, make new friends and collect experiences that no money can buy.
How to plan a surf trip

Everything you need to know to plan a perfect surf trip

There are reasons for us, passionate about surfing, to dream about the long awaited surf trip. Escaping the crowd from home, the flat sea out of season and surfing perfect waves all day are the main reasons. It was to get to know cultures completely different from yours, people, make new friends and collect experiences that no money can buy.

These are all just some wonderful things that make us look forward to the next surf trip. To help you in this endeavor, we have listed here the main tips so that you don't miss anything and everything goes well on your surf trip. Regardless of whether you are going alone, with your (your) girlfriend (o) or with a group of friends you will need to decide some issues.

How much do you want to spend?

This will determine how far you can go. A ticket to Indonesia is much more expensive than to Central America, of course depending on where you live. A surfboat (boat that hosts and takes you on the peaks) is much more expensive than a surf camp for example.

Your comfort level will depend on the amount of money you will be able to spend and, on the other hand, traveling with friends can be cheaper, because it will be able to share expenses such as car, gas and accommodation.

In short, you don't have to be a millionaire to make such a trip, just good planning and an exact notion of how much you want and can spend on your surf trip.

What is your surfing level and what kind of wave are you in the surf vibe?

This is the coolest part of planning, for sure! There are infinite surf spots around the world of all types and for all tastes. You can stay a life choosing on the websites and magazines the next destination of your surf trip. Water temperature, wave regularity at the peak, crowd, easy access, right, left, tubular wave, long wave, absence of sharks, rocks, corals ... are some of the issues to consider and choices to be made.

If you are a beginner you will want a less hard peak, with fuller waves,  sandy bottom   ... if your surf is advanced you will probably go for perfect tubes, heavy waves without caring too much if the bottom is coral or stone.

What will be the destination of your surf trip?

Yes, you have to choose one, unless you are planning to take a year to be traveling after the waves of your dreams ... Think about the type of experience you want to live, if it is only the waves that matter or if you are also interested in culture of the place you want to know. If you want to infiltrate nature or if you want to go for a walk at the end of the day, eat good food, meet people and have a beer.

If you want some tips from us, we have some articles that talk about interesting peaks within Brazil to know:

Where to stay?

Of course it depends a lot on the country you chose and as I said before your budget but here are the main options:

Surf camp, surf camp or surf hostels

The surf camp attracts solo travelers a lot, as it gives you an opportunity to meet and interact easily with other surfers and make new friends, a great way to resolve the issue of “loneliness” on a surf trip. Despite the name they are not usually campsites but surf hostels around the world and most of the times very economical options as they give you the option of private or shared rooms, food, surf lessons and equipment for rent included.

Surf boats or surf boat

If you have a very high budget, willing to travel far away like Mentawai and Indonesia and the Maldives and the only thing that interests you is the waves, being close to them and living only on this surf trip this is the best choice for you. But if you choose this option make sure that the boat is reliable, ask for a referral to that friend who has already gone and research his evaluations well on trip advisor if you don't want your trip to turn into a disaster.

Car trip

If you are adventurous and want to skip the part of choosing where and how to stay this is for you. It is the easiest and cheapest way (if you go with friends and share expenses) to get to know a lot of different spots and places in the country on the same trip. Just make sure that the car you are going to rent goes according to the type of road and that it fits all suitcases and of course the boards.


This option is for you who do not insist on any extra comfort, are low on money and all you care about is surfing good waves. Eat, surf, sleep, repeat. Choose the peak according to the wave you want, find the campsite, make sure it is safe, that you have a place to eat nearby and you will be happy. There are several types of camping around the world, more agitated or more calm, just look.

Rent apartment / house / Villa

If what you want is a good surf and a comfortable place to stay with your friends, you always have the option of renting an apartment or a house near the peak and that's it. Nowadays with Airbnb there is nothing more simple and easy.

When to go?

Each place has its wave season that is not always at the same time so look on the internet and make sure that the place you chose on the date you are going to have wave, simple as that. If you choose a place in Europe, know that in the summer there is a crowd and it is chaotic and that in the winter it is cold but without crowd and with a more consistent swell. Nothing like checking the forecast before, right? As always…

What to take?

Of course, what to take will depend a lot on the place but a few important things to remember:

  • Make sure the country you are traveling to does not require a yellow fever vaccine, or visa.
  • If the country requires an international driver's license if it is a car trip.
  • Take your favorite boards according to the type of wave of the place, depending on the place you only need to take one. I think more than 3 boards is overkill, believe me, you will end up using a maximum of two…
  • Pack your board very well and carefully, we know that airlines do not take the slightest care with them, so pay special attention to this task before boarding so that they arrive in their destination in one piece. Be very careful on the way back.
  • A set of extra fins
  • Keel wrench
  • Paraffin
  • Water resistant sunscreen
  • Mr. John if the water is cold
  • Your lycra
  • your bootie (if the bottom is coral)
  • repellent
  • speaker and headphones
  • a good book
  • a good hat to protect you from the sun when you're out of the sea
  • A kit for small board repairs

And remember, a good attitude is the secret to the success of your surf trip. Go with an open heart and head to discover new cultures, meet people, and try new things. You will be amazed at the amount of things you will learn. Do not throw garbage on the floor. Be kind and polite to the locals, don't forget, you are a visitor at their home and they will give you the best tips or take you on the secret peaks. You will live experiences that you will be able to keep in your memory and return home with your soul washed, lots of history to tell and thinking about your next surf trip.


Frequently Asked Questions

What are essential considerations in planning a surf trip, and how can surfers ensure a successful and enjoyable experience?
Essential considerations include researching surf spots, understanding local conditions, securing appropriate gear, and considering accommodation and travel logistics. Surfers should also be aware of local cultures and environmental practices to ensure a respectful and enjoyable trip.

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