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Surf Guide: Surfing in the United States – Overall

Surf Guide United States

Surf Guide: Surfing in the United States – Overall

N: 44°58′55″ W :  93°16′09″

The US has two long coastlines along both the Atlantic and the Pacific Ocean. The possibilities to surf here are endless. The Beachboys sang it best in the 1960s: surfin’ USA! In addition to the mainland, there is also an archipelago where surfing was once invented, indeed Hawaii! The US has a huge diversity of surf spots. Some spots are busy and bustling, other spots are quiet and laid-back. For everyone there is a good spot to be found in the US. At least they have one thing in common: very good, constant waves!

Check out the other articles in this series:

Surfing in the United States – In Short

Surfing in Venice Beach – Los Angeles
  • Surf culture: Hawaii and California have a huge impact on global surfing culture. The while Hawaiian archipelago breathes surfing, while the California coast has had a huge attraction for surfers from around the world for decades.
  • World cities: a huge advantage of surfing in the United States is that many of the surf spots are located in or near world cities like Los Angeles or New York. This allows you to perfectly combine your surf trip with a visit to a vibrant metropolis.
  • Surf spots: the huge coastlines on both the Atlantic Ocean in the east and the Pacific Ocean in the west provide an unprecedented number of surf spots along the entire coast of the United States. Surf spots aplenty!
  • Accessible: the United States has an excellent network of roads. This way you can move very easily throughout the country. How brilliant would it be to rent a car (or motorhome) and make a road trip through this fantastic country?
  • Nature: the United States is the third largest country in the world. This size creates a very large natural diversity. This way you will find high mountains, dry deserts, giant grasslands and tropical beaches spread across the US.
  • English studying: the US is very suitable for studying English and surfing for a while. For example, you can study English and combine surfing in California in Los Angeles and Santa Barbara. You can also enjoy your course in Hawaii, the birthplace of surfing.

About Surfing in the US

Good surfing possibilities can be found along the entire coastlines. It is therefore impossible to explain all surf spots in just one article. Instead, we focus on the most popular surfing destinations in the US. So we started looking for the surf spots around New York City, California, Florida and of course in Hawaii. In our search for the best surf spots in the United States, we have also encountered a few unexpected hidden pearls.

Surfing in New Jersey


Much like the population of Polynesian Islands, surfing across the Hawaiian archipelago has been popular for centuries. Around the year 1800, European missionaries banned surfing because they wanted to discourage any form of local beliefs and traditions. As a result, the number of surfers in Hawaii, as well as the number of craftsman, who knew how to create the surfboards dwindled.

Around the year 1900 there were still a small number of surfers in Hawaii. At this time, however, the resurrection of surfing began: with the main ambassador for the sport at the helm of its success, the legendary surfer Duke Kahanamoku. He saw it as his duty to continue the Hawaiian surfing tradition. The rest is history: from Hawaii surfing became an important mainstream sport on the mainland United States, where it reached a new climax in the 1960s and thus finally established a name for itself as a popular sport.

San Diego Pier

The surfing seasons

Because of her great size, it is very difficult to summarize the surfing seasons of the US. Waves come from the Atlantic, Pacific Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico. The water temperature between north and south varies enormously. In general, the more south, the warmer the temperature of the water is. Depending on the chosen location, you will want to surf there all year. In winter the waves are highest and the water is the coldest! This is the time when the real pros dive into the water. The best waves in the United States can be found between October and March. For the novice to semi- advanced surfer, however, there are good opportunities to surf all year. Please note that in summer, popular surf spots can be very busy.

Learn English and Surf in Hawaii

How would you like to study English on the birth island of surfing? SurfaWhile will book you a surf and language trip to Honolulu, the capital of Hawaii. You follow English lessons at a very high-quality language school, which has won many awards and is widely considered the best language school in Hawaii.

The language school has very good facilities and is an official exam center for the famous Cambridge exams (FCE, CAE and CPE), with which this school is an excellent location to prepare for such an exam. The school is very centrally located and is located near the famous Waikiki Beach and has fantastic views with both mountain and ocean views.

Interested in a Surf and Language Holiday to Hawii? Learn More!

Thomas Oosterhof

Via mijn studie Tourism Management ben ik terecht gekomen bij SurfaWhile. Waar ik elke dag meer leer over het surfen, en het verkopen van surfreizen. Door het schrijven van artikelen over surfvakanties, ervaringen en prachtige surfbestemmingen zorg ik er voor dat jij goed voorbereid op surfvakantie gaat!

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