surf lanzarote

Surf Lanzarote

Ultimate Lanzarote surf guide

Surf Lanzarote is the most complete and extensive guide on surfing in Lanzarote for all those who want to come to Lanzarote to surf or learn surfing.

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Who is this guide for?

This guide on surfing in Lanzarote is aimed at all people who are thinking of the island of Lanzarote as their next surfing destination, whether they are beginners, they will start from scratch with this sport and are looking for information on surf and surf schools, camps as for the more experienced surfers that what they are looking for is a guide to the best surf spots in Lanzarote.

About Lanzarote

not only sun, beaches and volcanoes

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Lanzarote is an incredible island. Undoubtedly, it is a unique place with a beauty and richness of incomparable landscapes.

Landing in Lanzarote is like doing it on another planet. It is a lunar landscape, or rather Martian. It is not surprising that the island has been chosen by NASA as a training center for its crews to prepare them for an eventual trip to Mars.

But here you will find much more than Martian landscapes, volcanoes and waves. The island has much to offer visitors who want to know it.

Here we leave you our list of essentials:

  • Timanfaya National Park: Visiting Timanfaya is like taking a walk around Mars by bus.  We recommend going early morning or in the afternoon. Avoid going between 10:30 and 13:00 or you can have a “good time” waiting in the car to access the parking.
  • La Geria: Area of vineyards and wineries. It seems incredible that in a place as dry as this one can grow anything. However, the wisdom of the people of Lanzarote has managed to make La Geria a reference point for the cultivation of quality wines with denomination of their own origin within a unique landscape environment.
  • Papagayo: This group of beaches located to the south of the island are undoubtedly some of the most famous natural beaches of Lanzarote. Among them, the Papagayo beach and its chiringuito stand out from where you can enjoy incredible sunsets.
  • Jameos del Agua: Maximum exponent of the work of Cesar Manrique or how to make a work of art of what until then had been a landfill.
  • Cesar Manrique Foundation: Cultural touch for the most restless. Lanzarote is what it is thanks to the figure of Cesar Manrique and visiting his Foundation is essential to understand why.
  • Isla de La Graciosa: It is the great unknown but certainly for us one of the must-see visits for people who have some free days in Lanzarote. Just 20 minutes by ferry from Órzola, the funny one is a practically virgin island where you can disconnect from the world for 1 day. Rent a bike in Caleta de Sebo and go to the beach of las conchas to take a bath. You will not forget it

In addition, being a small island is very accessible and easy to travel. As if this were not enough, renting a car in Lanzarote is very, very cheap and recommended. To give you an idea, renting a car can cost you the same as renting a surfboard, about 18 euros/day.

If you come to the island to surf you have plenty of time to make one or several visits to the points of interest of the island after your surf sessions.

Here you can see a small travel guide for Lanzarote that we have created with our best recommendations to discover the north, center and south of the island.

Did you know…

  1. Lanzarote owes its name to the Genovese navigator Lanceloto Malocello.
  2. The island is 62 kms from north to south and 21 kms from east to west. It is also only 140 km from the African coast.
  3. Lanzarote has a census of 147,000 inhabitants.
  4. It has a subtropical climate. It is never too cold or too hot. The average temperature measured in January is 17º and in August 24º.
  5. Lanzarote was declared a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO in 1993

Lanzarote, surfing destination

The European Hawaii

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Lanzarote is one of the best-surfing destinations in Europe and is often compared to Hawaii for the quality and variety of its waves and its spectacular volcanic landscape.

But for our luck, it turns out that Lanzarote is much closer (fewer plane hours = more hours of surfing), it is much cheaper and although in the Canary Islands there are sharks as in any sea, the ones here are of the type that do not attack the surfers, which is a relief.

Good weather all year round, guaranteed waves, a variety of spots suitable for all levels, good Canarian gastronomy, flights from Penínusla from 15 euros, cheap rentals … you need more reasons!

In all the Canary Islands there are good waves but for our opinion, it is in Lanzarote where you will find a greater variety of surf spots and, above all, more accessible spots.

In summer it is true that the offer of surfing destinations is wide and varied. The beaches of the North, Portugal and the south of France are very attractive and consolidated destinations for many years. But with the emergence of Low Cost companies and the possibility of flights to the islands at a very low price (in some cases even cheaper than driving from Madrid to Santander or from Barcelona to Zarautz), fly to Lanzarote to continue surfing even when the cold is installed in the peninsula is a very affordable and appetizing option.

Temperatura del agua en Lanzarote

Fuente: Magicseaweed

In Lanzarote you will find wide sandy beaches like Famara which is the ideal place to learn or improve your surfing in the best conditions and without dangers like spots of world fame like “El Quemao”  that they call the European pipeline and that is only suitable for most experienced surfers. Here there are waves for all levels and types of surfers and being an island you will always find (if you know how to look for it) the perfect wave whatever the conditions.

These are the 10 reasons why Lanzarote should be your next surfing destination:

icono surf school
  1. Good weather all year round.
  2. Guaranteed waves.
  3. Variety of surf spots for all levels.
  4. Cheap flights to the island.
  5. Car rental very cheap.
  6. Low prices for rentals, lessons, and accommodation
  7. There are no mosquitoes
  8. No sharks attacks!
  9. World class spots: el quemao
  10. Great after-surfing. Incredible island to visit.

Famara Beach

Lanzate surfing epicenter

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If you have decided to come and surf to Lanzarote, for sure you will end up at Famara beach, which is the epicenter of surfing in Lanzarote.

Famara is a sandy beach of more than 4 kms of longitude located within the Natural Park of the Chinijo Archipelago and at the foot of an imposing cliff that bears the same name being this one of the most striking and remarkable landscapes of the island.

Here is the largest concentration of schools, surf shops and surf camps of Lanzarote since it is a perfect spot for learning surfing thanks to the width of its beach that accommodates all schools, funds sand that allow surfing in a safe environment and the good orientation of the beach that guarantees waves practically every day of the year.

Due to all these good conditions, Famara has become the place where most of the surf schools have been established. In the town of Famara you can breathe a surfer atmosphere and wherever you get the view you will see some surfer with his board under his arm walking towards the beach or returning from his surf session with his unmistakable smile on his face.

Despite the radical change that Famara has suffered in recent years due to the irruption of surfing, the town has managed to preserve its original charm as a small fishing village. Some of its streets are still unpaved and thanks to being within a protected environment has not allowed the construction of hotels or shopping centers or anything like that.

So if you want to find accommodation in Famara, the only two options is to stay at a surfhouse with which you have Surf San Juan Lanzarote or look for accommodation in private apartments that you can easily find on pages like Niumba or Airbnb.

Famara surf spots

  • The beach: This is the place chosen by most surf schools to give their classes since it is the safest area.
  • El Codito: Located right at the entrance to the town. It is a very interesting option on days when there is huge swell and is not possible to surf the center of the beach. You must surf it at high tide. Beware of rocks near the shore!
  • El bunker: Located just below the area known as the Famara Bungalows on the other side of the beach. This area is less crowded than the center of the beach so we recommend it on the days when the beach is very saturated.
  • El muelle: Accessible wave walking through the center of town. Generally, the left is surfed that breaks on rock bottom. It is a wave of high quality, not suitable for beginners.
  • La  derecha sabia: To the right of the dock of Famara comes a wave that needs a big swell known as the wise right. It is the preferred wave for lovers of stand up paddle in Lanzarote.
  • San Juan: Located about 800 meters at the end of the town of Famara, San Juan is undoubtedly one of the best waves in Lanzarote. Left wave, fast tube sections is a wave frequented by locals so respect them if you do not want to get into trouble.

La Santa

Waves for the most experts

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Less than 10 minutes by car from Famara we find the town of La Santa. Here you will not find so many surf schools or surf shops like in Famara but you will find what are probably the 3 best waves of Lanzarote: el quemao, the left and the right of la Santa.

This is without a doubt a must-surf for the most experienced surfers. The quality but also the dangerousness of its waves are known by all. No more sand breaks and school classes. If you go to surf to la Santa you must have the right skills and be in good conditions or you will have a hard time.

Spots de surf en La Santa

  • El complejo: This is the least known spot of the Santa. It is located behind the Santa sports complex. It is a left that needs strong swells to function. A good option for the days of the rest of spots are too big or very crowded.
  • El centrito: Left wave located right in the center of the bay of La Santa. It is the only spot in la Santa suitable for surfers of intermediate level.
  • La derecha: Long and joyful right wave located on the far right of the Santa’s Bay. One of the best rights in Europe. We love it. When it’s good, it fills up. Respect the locals and you will not have any problem.
  • La izquierda: Another wave of the highest quality shared by surfers and bodyboarders. Located on the far left of the bay is a fast wave, short and tube wave that will delight the most expert.
  • El quemao: This is the mother of all the waves of Lanzarote. Also known as the Canarian pipeline is a powerful hollow wave that breaks on very little depth and is only suitable for the most experienced surfers. This wave holds every year el quemao class contest.

Other Surf Spots

searching the best way

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The good thing about living on an island is that we are surrounded by sea on all 4 sides. This may seem obvious,  but it is very important because who knows the island well, knows how to interpret forecast maps and how it will affect each spot you will always find a good wave to surf in Lanzarote. Because when one side has too much swell and is not possible to surf the other side is functioning. Or the wind that badly hits one spot to another leaves it perfect.

To squeeze the best surf that Lanzarote can offer, you need to know how the winds and the swell strength and direction affects each spot. Besides you need to understand tides and which tide is the best to surf each spot. Surfing a spot at the correct time (tide) can make the difference between an epic session or another session. In case of doubt, always ask at a local school that you will be glad to give the necessary instructions to know where, how and when to surf each wave in Lanzarote.

Although we have already reviewed the two most important surf centers on the island such as Famara and Santa, we still have a few spots that you should know and visit during your stay in Lanzarote if the appropriate conditions occur.

  • Caleta de Caballo: Spot located between Famara and Santa in the town of the same name. It is a left wave,  not very busy that breaks on a rocky bottom and of medium difficulty.
  • Arrieta: Left and right wave that breaks very close to the shore, fast and short that is on the beach of La Garita located in the small town of Arrieta north of Lanzarote. We like it as an option when Famara is very big. It is also one of the few beaches with Chiringuito on the beach for a drink or eat something with great sea views after surfing.
  • Jameos del Agua:  One of the best waves in Lanzarote. Located just below this popular tourist center. It is a long left that breaks on a crystalline background that reminds a lot of the waves of Indo.
  • Órzola: Last town north of Lanzarote. From here comes the Ferry to La Graciosa. On the left hand side, at the entrance to the village, there is a dirt road but it is suitable for any type of car that takes you to the beach of La Canteria, where there are a couple of surf spots that are usually empty. Eye with the rips on the right.
  • Barcarola: This wave is a rarity of Lanzarote. It is located in the tourist town of Puerto del Carmen and only works a few days a year when a northern swell arrives. When it works, everyone on the island likes to surf it 🙂
  • La Bermeja: This is one of the waves that will surprise you and allow you to surf that day when you thought everything was lost. Located to the south of the island between El Golfo and the Salinas. You will recognize it by the mountain of red color that emerges right in front of the spot. Go when la Santa is too big.

Learn surfing in Lanzarote

lessons and surfcamps for beginners

escuela de surf en lanzarote / surf school in lanzarote

Lanzarote is a great choice to learn to surf. To start the weather is good all year round, so you can come to surf whenever you want and not only in summer. We like it especially in winter when you leave the main land with a coat and scarf and you have to put on your short pants and sandals as soon as you land here.

It is also a cheap destination. Flying to Lanzarote is very cheap, as is the car rental, and thanks to the large number of surf schools on the island and the great competition between them, the prices of classes and surf camps are also very cheap if you compare with the prices in north of Spain, France and Portugal.

If you are already decided to choose Lanzarote as a place to learn to surf, we can think of 2 ways to do it:

  • Come on your own, stay in a hotel or apartment and take spare lessons or take a full surf course.
  • Sign up for a surf camp and live a 100% surfing experience.

Let’s see the advantages and options of each of them:

Surf lessons and courses

If you decide to stay in a hotel or apartment somewhere on the island and then sign up for a surf lesson or a complete course you should consider the following:

  • Most schools offer a free pick-up service in hotels/apartments but only in those located in the main tourist areas such as Puerto del Carmen or Costa Teguise. Some schools like SSJ (Surf San Juan) also offers pickups in Playa Blanca (min 2 pax). Therefore, if you do not plan to rent a car, choose one of these areas to stay and they can come and pick you up.
  • Usually surf lessons in Lanzarote have a duration of 5 hours with a half-day break to make a picnic on the beach and regain strength. But there are also 1/2 day classes (you do not include the hotel pick up) recommended for those who do not have a lot of time or just want to take try-lesson  to see if they will like it before deciding to take the whole course.
  • The schedule of classes is usually in the mornings, from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Although if you go for a private class, you can probably choose the schedule that most suits you.

Below we offer some of the courses and classes you can do in Lanzarote:

Surf Camps

If what you have decided is to have a 100% surfing experience then we recommend you sign up for a surf camp.

The surf camps are usually 1 week long and offer you the possibility of staying in a surf house on the beach with other surfers that like you have chosen this way to spend their holidays so in case you come alone for sure you will make friends.

The advantage of surfcamps is that you do not need a car or pick-up service since the surf houses are right next to Famara beach where surf courses are held. In this way, you will be able to maximize your surfing hours since the schools usually let you make free use of the material even after the classes.

Then in the evening you can make good friends with the rest of classmates and remember the anecdotes of the morning classes.

In surfer residences in addition to good atmosphere you will find everything you need for self catering  (if you do not want to eat out) and free wifi for those who need to be always connected.

In addition, as a closed package the prices of the camps in Lanzarote are super competitive. Below we give you some options:

How do surf lessons work?

Okay, okay … that’s all very well but if you have not surfed before you will still be asking many questions like … Am I too old to start surfing? Do I need to be in shape? What awaits me in surf lessons … 5 hours of class seem a lot?

Well, do not worry. It is never too late to learn and although it is true that surfing in a physically demanding sport during the classes we make sure that everyone goes at their own pace. It’s about having fun. It’s not a competition … nor are we 5 hours surfing like crazy. The routine of the surf lessons is as follows:

1.- Warm up and stretching according to the principles of Yoga.
2.- Explanation of the exercises on the sand (Theory of surfing).
3.- Implementation in the water.
4.- Corrections on the sand, explanation of more exercises and again to the water (to make the classes more dynamic and less exhausting).
5.- Rest of 30 minutes to recover your strength and free picnic.
6.- Back to the water to continue with exercises and corrections.
7.- Surfing on your own with the survival of the teachers so that you try to put into practice everything learned during the morning.
8.- Back to school from the beach (free transport).

Waves for expert surfers

Surf trips around Lanzarote

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Lanzarote is not only a good place to learn to surf, but also a paradise for the most expert surfers thanks to the great quality and quantity of waves that the island has.

In fact, with the exception of Famara beach with its sandy bottoms, the rest of the surf spots in Lanzarote are point breaks with a rock bottom, reef or even lava that generate waves of great quality but not exempt of difficulty and therefore only suitable for the most experienced surfers.

If it is your case, I am sure that Lanzarote will fulfill your expectations. It is true that we depend on Mother Nature and we always have to have a bit of luck to have the right conditions of swell and wind. But the knowledge of the island and how all its spots work is essential to surf in the best conditions and get the best out of the island.

Therefore, the best option is always to go to a local school and ask them where, when and with what type of board to surf every day.

The other highly recommended option is to sign up for a Surfari (surftrip) in Lanzarote in search of the perfect wave. Surf San Juan organizes surfaris around the island in a 1 to 1 format (1 local guide and 1 surfer). The price is 100 euros and includes transportation, material and picnic.

This is the best way to get to know the best surf spots in Lanzarote safely and in the company of a local guide. This will give you confidence and safety in the water so you can enjoy your surf session to the fullest.

Accommodation for surfers in Lanzarote

Surfhouse in Famara Beach

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If you come to surf to Lanzarote for us there is no doubt that where you should stay is in Famara.

First, because as we have said before it is the epicenter of surfing in Lanzarote and where you will find the largest number of spots and services associated with surfing: schools, surf shops, equipment rental

Second, because Famara is a spectacular site. Its wide practically virgin beach at the foot of the imposing Famara cliff is one of the most characteristic postcards of Lanzarote. Famara is a place that leaves its mark.

Also in Famara you will find several surf houses on the beach where you can stay with all the comforts and in a 100% surfer environment. The houses are located just 100 meters from the beach so you practically fall out of bed and you are already catching waves and that for us is priceless because you can stretch your days of surfing from sun to sun.

Surf San Juan offers accommodation in a shared or private room from 20 euros/night.

Surf House Price List

1 Day
Shared room
20 €
(1 person)
1Day
Private room
40 €
(1 persons)
1Day
Private room
60 €
(2persons)

Move around Lanzarote

Car Rental

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As we have talked before, Lanzarote is a very accessible island. Nothing is too far away (60 kms from north to south) and besides being a relatively sparsely populated island (175,000 residents) there is not much traffic. Get out of traffic jams !!!

In addition, car rental in Lanzarote as in the Canary Islands is much cheaper compared to the peninsula. Rent a car in Lanzarote is around 120 euros a week with all taxes and insurance included. To give you an idea that comes to about 17 euros/day that is practically the same price that costs you to rent a surfboard!

Remember that surf schools and camps are not allowed to pick up their clients at the airport. So if you wanted to get from the airport to Famara (for example) you would only have 3 alternatives:

Rent a car, which as we already told you is very cheap and you will always be able to use it to get to know the island after your surfing sessions. Besides, you have to think that gasoline is also cheaper in the Canary Islands than in the peninsula.

Take a Taxi, which will cost about 38 euros.

– Go to Famara by bus. This option is only recommended if you arrive in the morning and have all day available since coming to Famara by bus will take some time. First you have to take a bus from the airport to the Guaguas station (that’s how we call the buses) in Arrecife and then another bus from Arrecife to Famara. You can check all schedules at arrecifebus.

So do your numbers but if you plan to visit Lanzarote in addition to surfing then without hesitation the best option is car rental because with public transport you will not be able to see everything.

There are multiple car rental companies in Lanzarote. We personally have always had good experiences with Plus car and Payless that offer an excellent quality-price ratio.

Surf Rentals

longboards, softboards, performance boards, wetsuits, bodyboards …

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OK, we have it all … flight, car rental, accommodation … we would only have one thing left. What do I do with the material? Do I bring my own boards or should I rent them?

Well, we think that due to the cost and the risk of putting your boards in an airplane, not to mention how uncomfortable it can be to travel with them to the airport, it is better to rent them at destination and more if this destination is Lanzarote where the price for the surfboard rental is one of the cheapest in Europe.

If we take into account that the cost of checkin  your boards in the plane can go from 50 to 150 euros  more or less (depending on the company) that is roughly the price that it can cost you to rent them in Lanzarote.

In addition, the main advantage of renting your surfboard in Lanzarote is the possibility of changing surfboards every day depending on your tastes, needs, wave conditions or simply because you want to try new models and measures to find your “magic board”. If you bring your board with you you only have 1 or 2 boards but if you rent them you have all you want!

Do you need to rent surf equipment in Lanzarote?

That’s all until now with our essential guide to surfing in Lanzarote . We hope it has been helpful for you. But if you have doubts or even want to contribute with value content to improve this guide we are happy to hear from you so do not hesitate to contact us.

Finally, we invite you to visit our surf tips section and our gallery of instagram photos that perfectly represent the spirit of Lanzarote and the soul of surfing of this wonderful island that we love so much. We will wait for you !!!

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