First Surf Trip Destinations?

Discussion in 'Surf Travel' started by kingofkooks, Nov 20, 2011.

  1. kingofkooks

    kingofkooks Member

    Nov 20, 2011
    Want a good first trip internationally when I graduate highschool. Any recomendations for an intermediate surfer traveling solo on a budget? Thanks.
  2. east~coast

    east~coast Member

    Nov 16, 2011

  3. Stayabovetheweather

    Stayabovetheweather Well-Known Member

    Jul 20, 2011
    Costa Rica was my first surf trip and it rocked. I stayed a few nights in Playa Hermosa and then trekked up to Santa Teresa/Mal Pais. I think the waves are a bit better there for beginners, a little less power and not quite as steep. My friend runs a surf hostel in Santa Teresa. Wifi, good food, and mad cheap. Check it out and Stay Above the Weather!
  4. havanasand

    havanasand Well-Known Member

    Aug 9, 2011
    Can't think of a better place for a first time trip than CR. I know it's become heavily traveled and a cliche but its got a variety of waves to choose from and awesome food for the $$$. Hit Ollie's Point if you do decide to go (if theres a decent sized swell). You and the 500 other people in the lineup will be stoked.
    Ollie's Point circa 1995 - Me, two friends, and 3 guys who pulled in on a motorized catamaran. 8ft faces and clean. One of the best sessions I've ever had.
    Ollies Point circa 2002 - Me, two friends and 20 others. Make sure your boat driver represents. This can be especially helpful as our's decided to paddle out and block for us when boards started bumping. He earned his $$$ that day. I can only imagine what it would look like now. Have fun.
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2011
  5. ron4pres

    ron4pres Member

    Apr 18, 2011
    [email protected] Talk to Glenn at Morro Negrito. Panama City was 450 round trip direct to DC. Same waves as CR, less people in the water. This place rocked if you are cool with incredible food and surf/fish focused trips. 9 breaks all around the island, rooms right on the ocean, the longest boat trip to a break is 10 minutes. The shortest is walking right out of your room to surf low tide.
  6. dmonster

    dmonster Well-Known Member

    Aug 26, 2011
    Do you really want to be traveling solo to a less developed or third world country? Then running the chance of surfing solo?
  7. Mitchell

    Mitchell Well-Known Member

    Jan 5, 2009
    Panama and Costa are hardly less developed/third world countries, and surfing solo isnt likely to happen in either place, unless you want to. Spots that fire are going to have surfers. Hell, the bus service is so good it might be easier/cheaper to travel around surfing solo there than in the US.
  8. bauer

    bauer Well-Known Member

    Aug 22, 2010
    +1 on CR and Morro Negrito and no worries about being alone! haha if we could be so lucky this day and age to find good solo spots! LOL
  9. havanasand

    havanasand Well-Known Member

    Aug 9, 2011
    The only place anyone is surfing solo now that the surf industry has marketed to the world is Antarctica. Well, maybe a few places in Africa where the point breaks get hit with mortar fire.
  10. LBCrew

    LBCrew Well-Known Member

    Aug 12, 2009
  11. Swellinfo

    Swellinfo Administrator

    May 19, 2006
    If you don't know Spanish, I honestly wouldn't recommend you go to Central America by yourself as a 18/19 year old. I do also agree Costa Rica is a great first surf trip, but find someone else to go with. If you know spanish, you are a little better off, but lots of stuff can go wrong when you travel and there are plenty of idiots looking to take advantage of people. Just a bit of caution.
  12. PiratePete

    PiratePete Member

    Feb 27, 2011
    If you head to Jaco and Hermosa, almost everyone speaks English. Yeah, there's a lot of closeout barrels when it gets big, but for a first time trip, it's warm water, waves, and lots of American help.
  13. leethestud

    leethestud Well-Known Member

    Aug 12, 2010
    I took a boat out of tamarindo to ollie's once and it was a total sh*t show. 2009. I could count 7 boats, 3 jet skis, and at least 40 surfers. Two guys on our boat started to get all stoked and get their stuff together but the captain said "No, I have better spot" and he took us to a nearby cove where we got barreled out of our brains all day. Our captain earned his $ that day too... I forget his name but he runs a 25' blue center console right out of the tamarindo rivermouth where they also launch the tour boats into the river. Just ask for the surf tours. That guy knows his sh*t. He says the cove we surfed only breaks about once a month.
  14. havanasand

    havanasand Well-Known Member

    Aug 9, 2011
    Pretty confident I know the wave you speak of (L's?) We surfed it about HH maybe bigger on the sets right in front of a cliff. Super sketchy if you ask me because I was on it backside. Half the people who surfed Ollies stayed on the boat to watch. I think I caught 3 waves and ended up closer to one of the rocks inside than I wanted to be. If you were getting barreled at that wave it must have been all time and a trip to remember.
  15. 252surfer

    252surfer Well-Known Member

    Dec 1, 2010
    Puerto Rico is always a good pick for price and waves this time of year, CR is definitely great, Nicaragua, El Salvador, and whoever said boat trip is right on the money
  16. LBCrew

    LBCrew Well-Known Member

    Aug 12, 2009
    Boat trip...

    No haggling, no worries... you don't even have to think. You're just along for the ride. And you'll surf your brains out.
  17. ragdolling

    ragdolling Well-Known Member

    Jul 30, 2010
    Yo, had the exact same experience fairly recently (and a tad smaller so no barrels). I literally surfed until I couldn't walk up a set of stairs when we got home, either from dehydration, exhaustion or from losing blood through the gash in my toe (or all of the above).

    Anyway, back to the OP's question. I definitely say Costa Rica, but I second the warning that you want to learn some Spanish. Here's what I would do: find a Spanish school near a good break. I remember seeing a tiny little place that gives lessons in Dominical. Spend a month or so taking a lesson or two a day and surfing. Gives you a good home base to work with, a chance to meet locals and feel comfortable.

    I think this is the place. They even offer homestays, which is THE way to learn a language.

    I did a similar trip to this when I was younger, taking 2 months of one-on-one lessons in Ecuador ($15 a day - amazing) and then taking to the road when I felt more comfortable. The plan worked well. Good luck.
  18. cresto4

    cresto4 Well-Known Member

    Aug 19, 2010
    I agree with the learning Spanish angle but if you want to avoid the CR crowds, try Guatemala. I found a cool language school in Quetzaltenango (aka Xela) and decent surf in Champerico, among other spots...
  19. dbiz135

    dbiz135 Well-Known Member

    Oct 3, 2007
    I kindly disagree with the mates above. I would say go to Mexico, Puerto Vallarta. Everybody speaks english out there. Its very safe, for $1100.00 you can get a flight and all inclusive hotel. Rent a car for about $60 bucks a day. There are point breaks up and down the coast. I got it wired down there. You can PM me and I will hook you up with my Homiez down there. You wont have to worry about a thing. Just be ready to pay $150. for your board bag.
  20. FCostaRica

    FCostaRica Member

    Nov 5, 2010
    I`ll say Costa Rica, buses are cheap and you can get anywhere in the country... There are some great hostels in many different beaches and you´ll make friend in NO TIME!!! Santa Teresa is a great option, fantastic beach break, nice girls, good party, lots of restaurants, the Pura Vida way of life... A hostel will charge between 10 to 20 US dollars a day and you will find girls and friends quick... We maybe a third world country, but we have everything you have in the states, one of the best medical services in Latin Amarica, aaaa and it´s free for all who need it. Warm water all year round, solid waves all year round, cold beer all year round... What more can you ask for??? Enjoy Santa Teresa :)