Puerto Rico is known among surfing enthusiasts as the surf capital of the Caribbean and for a good reason: it’s practically a surfer’s paradise, having warm waters and good waves - ranging from small ones perfect for kids and beginners to larger competition-level crests - practically all year round. Given the sheer number of beaches in the area, newbies may not be familiar which of these are the prime spots for riding the waves. Not to worry though, because we’ve got you covered: use this list of the best surf spots in Puerto Rico as your guide in identifying where to head to in this US territory.
1. Sandy Beach
Sandy Beach is considered as one of the best beaches in Puerto Rico in terms of surfing. There are areas for beginners who want to take surfing lessons and there are also spots for more experienced surfers who want a bit more challenge. Once you’ve had your fill of the waves, you can explore the long stretch of sandy beach. If you get hungry, drop by Tamboo Tavern for lunch or dinner, which is ranked as one of the best beach bars in the world. Pro tip: drop by here just as the sun is setting to enjoy gorgeous views of the sunset.
Address: Km4 Hm 7 Carretera 413 Ramal, Rincon 00677, Puerto Rico
2. Wishing Well
Playa Pena Blanca, otherwise known as the Wishing Well Beach, is a crescent-shaped beach that’s right under overhanging cliffs, with rocks jutting out of the waters. While the beach is a little more secluded compared to the more popular destinations in Puerto Rico, but the trip will be worth it if you want to enjoy fantastic views along with great waves. Make sure to pack your snorkeling gear: during low tide, you can go snorkeling in the area and spot colorful fish and other aquatic life by the rocks. If you’re lucky, you may also catch sight of sea turtles swimming in the clear waters.
Address: Avenida Borinquen, Carr #107, Aguadilla, Puerto Rico 00605
3. Gas Chambers
If you’re an experienced surfer looking for a challenge, this might just be the best surfing destination for you. Gas Chambers, which is ranked as one of the top surfing spots in the world, has surfable waves at all stages of the tide. Waves, however, tend to be fickle, but when they come, they are usually huge and pose a challenge even for experienced surfers. The waves tend to be flat during summer. Be sure to keep an eye out for urchins and jutting rocks.
Address: Aguadilla Pueblo, 00603, Puerto Rico
4. Tres Palmas
Tres Palmas is another surfing destination that offers plenty of challenges to experienced surfers. Much like Gas Chambers, its waves can be inconsistent, but when they break, they can get as high as 20 to 30 feet (5 to 9 meters), especially during winter. Be sure to bring an extra board or two, as the waves can become so strong that they are known to break surfboards. During summer, the waters get calmer, which will allow you to have the opportunity to go snorkeling and catch sight of the colorful aquatic life and corals.
Address: Rincon, Puerto Rico
5. Punta Borinquen
Punta Borinquen is one of the newest surfing reserves of Puerto Rico but it’s already making waves (pun intended) among surfing enthusiasts. The surrounding area is largely underdeveloped, which makes this a great place for those who want to enjoy visiting areas closer to nature. Once you’ve had your fill of the waves, you can enjoy walking along the stretch of golden sand. If you have enough energy, you can make your way to the Lighthouse Ruins and explore its hidden secrets.
Address: Aquadilla, Puerto Rico
6. Survival Beach
If you want to enjoy a bit of a workout before you hit the waves, Survival Beach is the place to be. Survival Beach can be accessed after a 20-minute hike so make sure to wear good sturdy shoes if you plan on taking this route (there’s also access to the beach by driving if you don’t want to risk trekking). Either way, you will be rewarded with will not only be fantastic waves that you can ride but also caves that you can explore once you’re done surfing. There aren’t that many people who come here so this is a good spot for those who want to steer away from crowded areas.
Address: 6 Cliff Rd, Aguadilla 00603-1216, Puerto Rico
7. Los Tubos
Los Tubos has a lot to offer for surfers and non-surfers alike. For those who want to ride the waves, the beauty of this beach is that it has consistent surf practically all year round. There are no surf shops here, so do bring your own board there. While it’s not a swimming beach because of its strong currents, there are other activities you can enjoy doing here, such as boating. This place also transforms into a haven for divers during summer. If you like exploring or are a fan of history, you may also want to check out the ancient petroglyphs that were recently discovered.
Address: Manati, Puerto Rico
8. Jobos Beach
If you prefer to go where the crowds are, head over to Jobos Beach, which is frequented by locals and travelers alike. While not fully commercialized, it does have its own share of bars and restaurants where you can grab food and drinks after spending a day enjoying the surf, sand, and sun. This is one of the beaches which has surf practically all year round. There’s also an area where you can snorkel in a natural cove.
Address: Isabela 00662, Puerto Rico
9. Crash Boat
Once upon a time, Crash Boat Beach, also spelled as Crashboat Beach, was where fishing boats docked. However, nature has since transformed the place, such that it is no longer safe for boats but is perfect for surfing and bodyboarding, regardless of the level of surfing skill and experience. It features fairly consistent surf almost all year round. Beachgoers can also go swimming and snorkeling here on days when the waters are calm.
Address: Pr-458, Aguadilla 00603, Puerto Rico
10. Domes Beach
Domes Beach, also known as Maria’s Beach and Lighthouse Beach, is a popular destination of surfers during winter, as it sees huge waves during the season - in fact, this area is frequently used as a venue for surfing competitions. However, surfing lessons are also offered for those with no prior experience but want to pick up the sport while in Puerto Rico. Be careful of the rocks in the water.
Address: Rincon Beach, Puerto Rico
Hang ten in Puerto Rico
You’re sure to find a beach in Puerto Rico where you can ride the waves, regardless of your level of surfing experience or skill. For best results, do schedule your travel there between October and February to make the most out of your surfing holiday.
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