The Best Destinations for Surfing in South America

It is not unusual to see people traveling with their surfboards in South America. Often they have been surfing in Central America and decided to travel…

It is not unusual to see people traveling with their surfboards in South America. Often they have been surfing in Central America and decided to travel a bit farther south to find more action so you’ll see surf boards strapped to the top of buses along with other extra large luggage. It’s possible to go surfing in South America but you need to know where to go.

Mancora, Peru

Just a short distance from surfboards is another very popular surfing spot in the Peruvian border. Mancora, also on the Pacific coastline, is surfboards spot for travelers to relax after they have finished a hike up Machu Picchu. Located in a little tourist town, people surf all day and party all night. A lot of experienced surfers come here and don’t always share the waves so it may not be the best place if you want to learn surfing in South America.

La Paloma, Uruguay

This small fishing village offers one of South America’s best beaches and a relaxed vibe for surfers. Uruguay is one of the more developed countries in South America and just a short jaunt from Buenos Aires which makes it attractive for those who want to combine big city nightlife on their holiday. Most vacationers here are from Europe and other areas of South America. La Paloma’s waves are credited to its peninsula which faces south and creates two large bays.

Arica, Tarapaca, Chile, South America

Due to its strong economy, Chile has become of the more developed countries in South America, which is very attractive for vacationers. While it is considered one of the most expensive countries in South America, Arica remains a bargain destination for surfing in South America. Not one of the most beautiful beaches in South America, locals love the strong winds and in addition to surfing, it is very common to see kite surfing, body boarding, and other water activities. Due to it being close to Peru, many travelers combine surfing in Chile with a trip to Machu Picchu or Bolivia.

Montanita, Ecuador

Ruta del Sol, or the sunshine route, Ecuador’s Pacific coast, is known for great waves amongst surfers and backpackers. Most land in surfboards in search of a good party but the coastline is dotted with lots of great surfing if you want a more chilled atmosphere. If you’re looking to learn Spanish there are quite a few schools that offer a beginner program in both surfing and Spanish. The best time to surf in Ecuador is November to April.

Santa Catarina, Brazil

A state located in the south, Santa Catarina was first discovered by mainstream surfers in the 1970s, it’s been a hot destination for those looking for the ultimate sunshine getaway. Its capital, Florianópolis, is often compared to Hawaii for its beauty and the region is always busy with plenty of beach resorts. While there are enough beaches for beginners and experts alike, it’s good to ask around to find which beach suits you best. Experienced surfers tend to visit during low season when the waves are bigger.

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