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Thinking about surfing Lisbon in Portugal?
This is our complete surf travel guide. Read for everything you need to know about surfing Lisbon.
When it comes to surfing, there are some incredible destinations all around the world. However, when it comes to surfing in Europe, you will struggle to find better than Portugal. Portugal is home to some of the biggest waves in the world. With some of the cleanest beaches in the world and warmest weather in Europe, it is not difficult to see why this is a destination that appeals to you.
Below, we are going to reveal some of the best surfing spots in and around Lisbon, as well as providing you with some handy tips on how to make the most out of a surf trip here.
Table of Contents
The Best Time of Year for Surfing Lisbon
Lisbon is a year-round destination for surfers. However, the best time of year to visit will depend on your level of experience.
If you are a beginner surfer, then the best time of year to visit Lisbon is between May and October. This is when the waves are at their most consistent. The water temperature is also much warmer during this time of year, which makes it more pleasant to surf for extended periods of time.
If you are an experienced surfer, then you will be able to take advantage of the bigger waves that Lisbon has to offer between November and April. These months also see the least amount of tourists, so you will be able to enjoy the waves all to yourself.
How to get to Lisbon
Lisbon is the capital of Portugal, and it is located on the country’s western coast. The city is easily accessible by plane, with multiple airports serving Lisbon airport (LIS). If you’re traveling to Portugal from another European country, you can also take a train or bus to Lisbon.
Once you’re in the city, the best way to get around is by using the public transportation system. Lisbon has an extensive network of buses, trams, and metro trains that can take you anywhere you need to go. You can also rent a car if you plan on exploring some of the surf spots further up the coast.
See also: A Complete Guide to Surfing Portugal
Surf Camps in Lisbon
Lisbon is well-known for its beautiful beaches, and there are plenty of surf camps available to help visitors make the most of the city’s waves. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced surfer, you’ll be able to find a camp that’s tailored to your needs.
Many of the camps offer group lessons, so you can learn with other like-minded individuals. And if you’re traveling solo, don’t worry – the camps are a great way to meet new friends from all over the world.
Here’s our pick of the best surf camps in Lisbon:
This boutique Surf Camp is located in on the outskirts of Lisbon in the beach town of Caxias, just 20 minutes from Lisbon Airport.
The typical Portuguese summer house can accommodate up to 18 guests in 4 private rooms and 2 shared rooms. There are a number of common areas, including a shared lounge, dining room, a fully equipped kitchen, and a large garden with barbecue.
Guests can choose from a 4-day or 1-week all-inclusive package when staying with Surf Lisbon. Both packages include daily surf lessons, shared or private accommodation, surfboard and wetsuit hire, and a daily breakfast buffet.
The Salty Pelican Cascais
The newly renovated surf house in located the village of Estoril, in-between the beaches of Cascais and the mountains of Sintra, just 30 minutes from Lisbon Airport.
The modern Portuguese house is made up of a combination of private and shared rooms. There is a cozy lounge, a well-equipped kitchen, a peaceful garden with hammocks and bean bags as well as a terrace and barbecue area.
The Salty Pelican offers a 1-week all-inclusive package. This includes daily surf lessons, shared or private accommodation, surfboard and wetsuit hire, unlimited yoga, and a daily breakfast buffet.
For more experienced surfers looking for flexibility, The Salty Pelican also offers a room-only option.
This trendy surf camp is located in the beautiful old town of Cascais just 30 minutes from Lisbon Airport.
The villa is divided into six large bedrooms, offering both private and shared rooms. There is a fully equipped kitchen, a communal garden and swimming pool, a large lounge space, and a bar where good times and good drinks are always guaranteed.
Guests can choose from a 5-day or 1-week all-inclusive package when staying with Surf Cascais. Both packages include daily surf lessons, shared or private accommodation, surfboard and wetsuit hire, and a daily breakfast buffet.
Guests can also upgrade to include morning yoga sessions with the 1-week surf and yoga package.
Nice Way Cascais
Next on our list of the Best Surf Camps in Portugal is Nice Way Cascais.
Located in the historical center of Cascais, the camp is located within walking distance of the beaches, restaurants, and nightlife, and just a 30-minute drive from Lisbon Airport.
The accommodation is divided into 16 bedrooms. There are 11 shared rooms and 5 private rooms. There is a garden with a swimming pool, board storage, a fully equipped kitchen, a lively bar, barbecue facilities, and a cosy lounge with cable TV/Netflix.
Nice Way Cascais offers a 1-week all-inclusive package. This includes daily surf lessons, shared or private accommodation, surfboard and wetsuit hire, yoga, and a daily breakfast buffet.
For more experienced surfers looking for flexibility, Nice Way Cascais also offers a room-only option.
See also: 5 of the Best Surf Camps in Lisbon
Lisbon Surf Spots
There are lots of great areas near Lisbon and in the surrounding areas that are ideal for surfing.
There is only one place to begin, and this is with Carcavelos, which is one of the best known surf spots in Portugal. This area is only ten minutes away from the city center in Lisbon as well. Plus, it is home to some of the most consistent waves throughout the year. One of the best things about Carcavelos is that it is suitable for all levels, as there are a lot of peaks. Plus, you will find that there are plenty of surf schools here, offering surf lessons and equipment too.
The second surf spot that we recommend is Sao Pedro. This point break is an excellent wave to surf, especially when the conditions are spot on. This is a great area if you are looking for somewhere relaxed to surf.
What about Guincho? This is a stunning beach of 1 km, which is considered one of the best beach breaks in the area. It is nice and mellow here during the summer months. However, it can get a little bit punchy outside of these months, so it is important to keep this in mind. A lot of kitesurfers come here because it can get windy from the mid-afternoon onwards.
Another place in Lisbon that is ideal for surfing is Bafureira. In fact, this area offers one of the best waves on the Estoril coast. It is an excellent reef break that is effective most of the year. It can work on both wind swells and ground swells and with some North in the winds. When surfing here, it is best at mid-tide, as it can produce both lefts and rights in the correct conditions. However, it is known more as a right breaking wave. You won’t be disappointed here if you get the conditions right.
Lagoa de Albufeira
Next, we have Lagoa de Albufeira, which is around 20 km directly south of Lisbon. You can expect great waves all year round here, as the area is very exposed to swells. There are a lot of wave options here, plus the beach itself is truly beautiful. It is a big open space, making it one of the most beautiful places to relax as well. You will certainly enjoy taking a break from surfing and kicking back here.
Praia da Poca
Another surf spot that we recommend is Praia da Poca. This is situated around 20 km to the west of the city center in Lisbon by train. This is a reef break that can take some very big swells. The wave works best at mid-tide. Nicknamed the Portuguese Teahupoo, when Poca starts to work, it is only for surfers that are intermediate to advanced, so we definitely do not recommend making the trip here if you are going to be surfing for the first time.
Costa da Caparica
Last but not least, we have Costa da Caparica, which is a long, exposed beach, which has jetties along it to the South of Lisbon. It is on the opposite side of the city, taking around 20 minutes to get here. As it is so exposed, it works perfectly when winds come from the east, creating the ideal offshore wind.
Surf Lessons in Lisbon
If you’re thinking of trying your hand at surfing, Lisbon is a great place to start. There are plenty of surf schools that offer lessons for beginners, and the city’s large beaches provide plenty of space for practicing.
We recommend checking out The Surf Instructor. Run by a small team of local surfers, they have over 10 years of experience teaching surfing in Lisbon and will make sure you have a great time while catching some waves. They offer both group and private lessons starting from €45 per person and they are the highest rated Surf School in Lisbon.
Surfboard hire in Lisbon
Often it makes sense to hire a surfboard rather than bring one with you, especially if you are going to be traveling to Lisbon by plane.
The good news is that there are a number of different places where you can rent a surfboard in Lisbon. These include Surf Lisbon, Lisbon Crooks and Surfers, FLY & SURF. The Magic Quiver Surf Shop also offers a selection of Awayco boards that can be pre-booked online.
You will typically find that all the surf spots we mentioned above will have a surfboard hire place nearby so that you can get your board and anything else you may require.
Travel Insurance for Surfing Lisbon
Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner just catching your first waves, travel insurance should be at the top of your packing list.
Surfing can be an unpredictable sport, and accidents can happen even to the most experienced surfers. Travel insurance will protect you in case of any accidents or injuries, as well as lost or stolen equipment. It can also provide valuable assistance if your flight is delayed or cancelled.
So before you start surfing Lisbon, make sure you’re covered by a good travel insurance policy (we recommend checking out Nomad Travel Insurance for Surfing).
Need help planning your surf trip to Lisbon? Use our FREE Surf Trip Planner to get a list of top-rated surf camps, hostels, resorts and just for you.