Top Tips for Surfing Activity Holidays in Portugal
Searching for a different kind of activity holidays? Why not try surfing in the 'Best European Country for 2014', Portugal?
As the 'Best European Country in 2014' as decreed by USA Today, Portugal has a lot to live up to. A task this delightful country does with ease. With an idyllic setting facing on to the Atlantic Ocean, Portugal is a popular tourist destination attracting over 13 million visitors annually from all over the world.
From UNESCO World Heritage Sites to sprawling panoramic beaches, Portugal is definitely a destination worth visiting. But apart from its majestic landscapes and stunning views, the country is also famous for its magnificent surfing spots. The gigantic waves make a perfect foil for the superb climate, the combination of which provides ideal surfing conditions. In terms of dedicated activity holidays, Portugal and surfing go hand in hand. For first-time visitors and those who return year upon year, the following places deserve pride of place on the itinerary of the ultimate surfer's activity holidays.
Praia do Norte – Nazaré
Surfing focused activity holidays wouldn't be be authentic without spending time in Nazaré, a world-renowned surfing spot. In fact, Hawaiian surfer Garrett McNamara surfed the world's largest wave in Nazaré, which was recorded in 2013. After that, enthusiasts came in their droves to experience the notorious waves themselves. For those who want to experience the same thrill, Praia do Norte, which is known for its huge surf, is more than enough to test even the most experienced surfer. It’s one of the most popular surfing spots in Portugal, but also one of the most challenging, so it's not for the faint hearted.
Paúl do Mar – Madeira
A wonderful contrast to Praia do Norte - but equally as breathtaking – is Paúl do Mar, located in Madeira. Providing a more secluded and laidback experience, its low-key location means fewer crowds in summer – which is a plus for many serious surfers. But its lack of crowds certainly doesn't mean Paúl do Mar is any less special. As a matter of fact, the beach was where the 2001 World Surfing Championship was held, and since then it has been a household name as one of the must-visit spots for surfers in the country. It's suitable for both beginners and more experienced surfers.
Praia de Carcavelos – Carcavelos
Praia de Carcavelos in Carcavelos is a mellower option for those keen for some respite from high-energy surfing on their activity holidays. With a relaxed vibe and dotted with excellent restaurants and bars, the Praia de Carcavelos is a wonderful place to wind down. It's a great place to finish an action-packed holiday with a smile on your face!
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Richard Edwards is the Managing Director of Summit & Blue, an adventure holiday company offering independently crafted activity holidays to exciting destinations around the world, including France, Italy, Portugal, the USA and Canada. With unique itineraries and exciting activities like biking, hiking, white water rafting and canoeing, we create holidays for those looking for an experience a little more off the beaten track.