With summer reluctantly starting to raise temperatures and spirits across the country, thoughts of snow are slowly replaced with those of surf and powder days with storm swells. To the uninitiated surfing will often conjure images of far-flung, white-sand beaches with palm trees and questionable patterned shirts. However, in our opinion the UK is home to some of the best surf spots anywhere in the world. Once you have got used to the water temperature that is.
With waves rolling in from the Atlantic and North Sea along approximately nineteen and a half thousand miles, it is no surprise that there are some incredible spots around the country for the beginner and expert alike. Below are five of our favourites.
Watergate Bay sits between Newquay and Padstow on the Cornish coast
Just North up the coast from Newquay, Watergate Bay offers around two miles of sand with fantastic Atlantic waves and a change from the busier beaches of Fistral and those closer to town. With numerous surf shops that hire kit and Jamie Oliver’s ‘Fifteen’ Restaurant, the beach is perfect for surfers and their families. The beach also plays host to many events throughout the year including Boardmasters Festival, so make sure to pick your date!
Surfs up... Polzeath is a favourite amongst beginners
Offering reliable, yet slower walls for beginners and intermediates to hone their skills whilst more experienced surfers can head to the less mellow banks towards the right-hand side. A true surf town, there are countless surf shops and pubs to fill up on supplies before and after a paddle.
As well as good surfing, West Wittering offers world class crabbing
Just a short couple of hours from Waterloo station can see you riding breaks after work. Mid-tide can often provide uncrowded left-handers ideal for longboard riders. Unfortunately, not as reliable as the South-West but fantastic when the waves are clean. A great spot for a short trip when you can’t get to Devon or Cornwall.
The Remains of Thurso castle overlooks a choppy sea
From the far South to the far North, no list would be complete without Thurso. Boasting a world-class barrel on a good day which breaks over a shallow reef, this wave attracts the best surfers from around the world. The ruggedness and chilling temperatures keeps Thurso out of reach of most beginners and those without a decent wetsuit.
Cayton Bay promises some of the best surfing in the north of England