Why is Cornwall a Good Place to Surf?

Cornwall's diverse beaches, vibrant surf culture, and stunning landscapes make it a surfer's paradise.

Apart from its vast never-ending stretch of coastline, there are a multitude of reasons why Cornwall is the perfect destination for all surf enthusiasts. From the diverse range of beach breaks that cater to all skill levels to its energetic surfing community, picturesque coastline waiting to be explored in the water and on land, an abundance of off-surf activities, as well as the fantastic local cuisine to taste. Wavehunters has been a big part of the north coast of Cornwall for over 20 years, with a highly experienced team running surf lessons and hire from Polzeath and Watergate Bay Beach. Cornwall has fastly earned the rightful title of a surfing paradise and here’s why. 

Choice of Big Waves or Beginner Waves

Surfing is for all and in Cornwall, there is an abundance of different types of waves to match the surfer. Whether you are a beginner wanting a gentle roller or a seasoned surfer looking for something more challenging, there is a wave here for you. Find yourself a 2ft wave at Polzeath on a high tide for an introduction to unbroken waves or delve into a clean 6ft day at Watergate Bay, a tough paddle out but a fun wave for those experienced surfers. If you are not sure what wave is best for you, chat with one of our highly experienced coaches who can advise you where to surf, what time and even which surfboard to take. Our friendly team are located on the beach every day, you may even catch them in the surf after work. Running a surf school, our goal is to show everyone the welcoming atmosphere that is Cornwall’s surfing community. Open to everyone whether you are new to surfing or new to the area, you will always find a friend in the surf for a party wave or two. 

Cornwall’s Coastline

Over 400 miles, stretches Cornwall’s breathtaking coastline, characterised by ever-changing rugged cliffs, long golden beaches, and hidden coves. The rich fishing and smuggling history hidden within the cliffs, tells the story of how Cornwall came to be long before surfing became a part of the Cornish lifestyle. Every beach has been naturally shaped by the sea, creating diverse surf spots, from calm sand with soft breaking waves to rocky paths and a long paddle out to catch the rare but not unheard of reef breaks in Cornwall! Watergate Bay with its open structure allows all elements to affect its incredible but often powerful surf, Polzeath, a slightly more sheltered beach at high tide offers a softer swell and kinder waves for beginners and intermediates, then Fistral a large beach that offers a range of beginners to advanced waves, with its vastly differing shape, one side offers a small wave break while the other, an exhilarating steep wave. 

Other Things to Do

Surfing isn’t the only way to enjoy Cornwall’s Coastline, explore the abundance of other activities including coastal hikes through small fishing villages such as Port Isaac or better yet, take a boat to see the coast from the ocean instead of land. Wavehunters Sea Safaris will take you from Padstow or Rock, along the camel estuary to the infamous ‘Doom Bar’ that currently holds over 200 shipwrecks due to its ever-changing tides. From there, the rare opportunity to explore in and out of coves, watch the incredible sea life that lives in Cornwall from Whales to Dolphins to Puffins located on ‘Puffin Island’. If you enjoy the thrill of being in the water, why not try Water Skiing, paddle boarding and kayaking too. The ocean is our playground for all to enjoy, we cannot recommend it enough to just ‘Get Out There’

Cornish Culinary Delights

Being so close to the ocean, it’s only right to taste the locally sourced cuisine, from Lobster to Crab to now even Tuna brought in daily by the local fishermen at the exquisite Cornish restaurants. Staying in Rock you can hop on the evening water taxi to Padstow to try the famous Fish and Chips from Rick Stein’s with locally sourced fish freshly caught the same day. Your dinner has never been fresher or tastier! Or staying in Polzeath? After a day of surf and sun, walk up to the Oystercatcher and enjoy the atmosphere of a modern dog-friendly pub serving an array of fresh foods including oysters (if you haven’t guessed already!). Then travelling further down the coast to Watergate Bay? How about Zacry’s On The Sea Wall. Opened in late 2023, let your senses experience the sea with delicious dishes, Sea Wall Negronis and a “butcher’s block” cheese buffet while watching the waves roll into the bay. By eating at a local cornish restaurant not only are you supporting the business but the fishermen, and cutting down your carbon footprint by eating sustainably sourced food.

It’s no surprise to us that everyone now sees Cornwall as a surf/tropical (without the heat) getaway. Being a prime spot for all types of surfers, with an open vibrant community, stunning coastline asking to be explored and an abundance of food to try, you would be silly to not visit. So head on over to our team on Watergate Bay or Polzeath to learn about all things Wavehunters, jump on some surf lessons and hire out top-quality equipment with assistance from our friendly experts. See you out there.