Surfing in Cornwall

Cornwall is a great place to learn to surf because most of the surf spots are at nice sandy stretches of beach as opposed to other types of surf spots where the waves break over reef or off a headland or rivermouth.  Most of the beaches are also lifeguarded  throughout the summer months which makes for a safer, more enjoyable experience if you are surfing outside of your lesson.

The peninsular shape of Cornwall offers surfers almost 360 degrees of coastline maximising the variety of shelter and exposure to the Atlantic swells.  When the waves are small we head to the more exposed beaches and on the bigger days we find more sheltered spots.Due to the headland at St.Agnes we have the advantage of being a little bit sheltered from the full power of the Atlantic when we want to be.  However when you are ready for a challenge or if the waves get too small then we just head round the corner of the coast line to Chapel Porth or Porthtowan beach.

Cornwall’s latitude and the gulf stream makes it a lot milder than surfing in other parts of the country hence the surfing industry has blossomed and Cornwall.

Cornwall has no shortage of surfing schools and surfing lessons in Cornwall have become a must for any visit to the south west!  In St.Agnes we are fortunate to have quite a mellow tourist industry relative to beaches further up the coast, where surf schools are forced to squeeze between each other putting a dampener on the surfing experience.

When it comes to local knowledge and experience in St.Agnes, Breakers surf school is unrivaled and invaluable to your surf lesson.  Set up in 2006 by long time local surfer Tom Roberson, such experience and expertise at your finger tips you can be sure to have a surf lesson at the most appropriate spot and on the equipment that best suits your individual needs for the surf lesson.

Cornwalls’ first encounter of surfing was from visiting Australian swimming Olympian Charles `Snow` Mac Allistair who in 1928 visited spots along the Cornish coast introducing surfing to Cornwall.  Until then surfing in Cornwall had only been done lying prone on wooden belly boards, which you can still see being used today at the world bellyboarding championships at Chapel Porth beach in St.Agnes (www.bellyboarding.co.uk ).

It wasn’t until after WWII that surfing became a familiar sight along the coast of Cornwall and in the decades that followed surfing in Cornwall has become common place.  For more information about the history of surfing in U.K go to www.museumofbritishsurfing.org.uk

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