Top 10 Surf Spots In Chile

surf spots in chile
| 4 min read

South America is an interesting continent to visit with all the Latin vibes, the beaches, and the exotic forests and lush landscape. If you are planning to travel to South America, Chile must be on the top of the list of countries to visit. Santiago, the capital of Chile, is a city to stop and see. Santa Lucia Hill is the right place in which you can marvel at the idyllic views of the whole city from high above. Pucon is also an attractive place if you want to admire the beauty of snowy Villarrica Volcano and Lake Villarrica. What is more, Chile is also known for its world-class surfing spots. Keep reading to check out the top surf spots in Chile.

1. Playa Las Machas

Playa Las Machas, Arica
Source: Photo by user Yoyijorquera used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Playa Las Machas is one of the most popular surf spots that you can find in Chile and that is why there is no way you will miss surfing here, especially if you are a pro surfer. The first Arica surf championship, which took place in 1983, was held at this very beach. Situated in Atacama, Playa Las Machas features consistent waves throughout the year, so you can visit Chile at any time and can still enjoy a nice surf. One thing to note when surfing here is that you need to keep an eye out for sea urchins. Do not forget to also pause every now and then to appreciate the beauty of nature that is all around you.

Playa Las Machas

Address: Caldera, Atacama, Chile

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2. El Claron

One surf spot in Chile is definitely not enough. Another surf spot that you must try is called El Claron, which can be found when you drive to Central Santiago. Direction for the best wind is from the eastern side and the beach itself provides consistent waves all year round. Many of the surfers prefer to surf here during winters and it can get a little bit crowded when all the surfers come visiting. If you wish to surf here, you need to watch out for large rocks.

El Claron

Address: Central Santiago, Chile

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3. El Colegio

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Situated in Iquique in northern Chile, El Colegio can be easily found as it is located right opposite the main high school of the same name Colegio. Surfers, especially professionals and those at the advanced level, are going to love surfing here because of the waves that are considered to be the best and the hardest in the area. When you are coming during a good day, you can expect to enjoy swells of 5 to 6 meters (16 to 20 feet). Furthermore, El Colegio forms the right waves and because of the condition, it does not get as crowded as the other surf spots. Still, you need to be vigilant of sea urchins and big rocks.

El Colegio

Address: Iquique, North Chile

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4. La Cupula

La Cupula is another top surf spot in Chile. Located in northern Chile, La Cupula regularly hosts national surf contests, thanks to the best waves that it has in the surrounding area. Surfers can expect to see long left waves along with tubular sections. You can also ride the shorter right waves that come occasionally. What is more, La Cupula is famous for its pristine sands, clear water and a stunning beach that makes a perfect backdrop, especially during sunset.

La Cupula

Address: Santiago, North Chile

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5. El Gringo

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

If you consider your surfing skills to be at an advanced level, you would not want to miss surfing at El Gringo, which is situated in Arica. Both right and left breaks can be enjoyed here and the place is loaded with sharp and big rocks, thus it should only be tried by professional and expert surfers. The waves are incredibly powerful and tubular, and hence the local people claim El Gringo to be the Pipeline of South America.

El Gringo

Address: Recoleta, Santiago, North Chile

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6. Ritoque

Sand dunes at Playa Ritoque, Chile - panoramio
Source: Photo by user Colin W used under CC BY-SA 3.0

If you are headed to Pichilemu in South Chile, you will come across one of the prettiest surf spots named Ritoque. The beach boasts not only incredible vista but also super strong and highly consistent beach breaks throughout the year. The best wind direction comes from the eastern part and the majority of surfers love to come to Ritoque during winters. Furthermore, you can enjoy both left and right waves here. Beware of the submerged rocks that are known to be danger at this surf spot.


Address: Pichilemu, South Chile

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7. La Bestia

Directional kiteboard
Source: Photo by user vinka bravo used under CC BY 2.0

La Bestia, which can be found in Tarapaca, is sometimes referred to as El Toro or El Bajo by local people. This surf spot is considered to be among the surf spots that produce the largest, the strongest and the most dangerous waves in the country, which is why La Bestia suits professional surfers only. You will not be able to see the wave breaks very often, but when it does break, be ready to experience one of the best waves on the planet.

La Bestia

Address: Tarapaca, Chile

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8. Curanipe

Mirador De Curanipe
Source: Photo by user SebsCiste used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Find your way to Biobio in the southern part of Chile and you can enjoy surfing all day long at Curanipe. The spot is known for its classic left-handed point break and oftentimes it is used to hold surf regional surf competitions. You will see a lot of black rocks here. The name Curanipe itself means black rocks in English.


Address: Biobio, South Chile

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9. Renaca

Reñaca, Chile
Source: Photo by user Ignacioelul1 used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Welcome to Renaca in Santiago, a top surf spot that is highly popular throughout the year, but its most crowded time is during the summer months. If you are a surfer who prefers sandy barrels and loves to show off your aerial maneuvers, this is your spot. Expect to ride consistent and powerful waves. It is best not to come during the weekend because Renaca is a popular beach holiday destination in Chile, and it will be packed with families.


Address: Santiago, Chile

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10. El Buey

Last but not least is El Buey that appeals to both domestic and international surfers for its world-class big waves. Situated in Santiago, El Buey produces the greatest waves in the months between April and October. If you come during October and November, the waves are also good, but just not as superb.

El Buey

Address: Santiago, Chile

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Experience the best of both worlds in Chile

As you can see that Chile is a top spot for a relaxed vacation and at the same time for surfing. You can enjoy the top-notch attractions and surfing in Chile. Have fun!

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Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
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Tenissa is a content writer, translator and editor. She enjoys being a globetrotter and has traveled to many countries around the world. So far, her favourite destination is Switzerland. She looks...Read more

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