Beaches Tourism

Porto Surfing Spots: Best Places for for Surfing In 2024

Reema Bharti

Reema Bharti

· 7 min read

Best surfing spots in Porto are Matosinhos Beach, Foz do Douro, Espinho, Praia de Miramar, and Aguçadoura. Porto's surfing spots are among the best places for surfing in 2024, offering an exhilarating experience for wave enthusiasts. Nestled along Portugal's northern coastline, this city has a rich array of beaches known for their consistent swell and vibrant surfing culture. Matosinhos Beach, with its gentle waves, serves as the perfect training ground for beginners, while the more challenging breaks at Espinho and Praia de Leça cater to experienced surfers seeking adrenaline-pumping rides.

Surf schools dot the silver coast, providing lessons and equipment rentals, making it easy for everyone to catch a wave. The optimal porto surf spots' season spans from spring to fall, when the Atlantic Ocean delivers ideal conditions.

Personally, I've had the pleasure of catching waves at Matosinhos Beach, where the gentle waves provided an excellent learning experience for beginners like myself. The thrill of riding the challenging breaks at Espinho and Praia da Leça also left me with unforgettable memories and a deep appreciation for Porto's stunning surfing scene.

What are the Best Surfing Spots in Porto?

Best surfing spots in Porto are Matosinhos beach, Foz do Douro, Espinho, Praia de Miramar, Aguçadoura. While perhaps not as widely known for its surfing as some other coastal destinations in mainland Portugal, Porto offers a variety of excellent spots for catching waves. Whether you're a seasoned surfer seeking challenging breaks or a novice looking to learn the ropes, Porto and its surrounding areas boast an array of beaches like Praia da costa nova with diverse surfing conditions. More information on these Porto surfing spots are listed below.

Matosinhos Beach

Matosinhos Beach stands out for its accessibility and consistent surf conditions. Ideal for beginners and intermediate surfers like me, it features gentle waves and a wide sandy beach where I remember I took a relaxing sun bath. What I noticed is that many surf schools dot the shoreline, offering lessons and equipment rentals for beginners like you an me.

Foz do Douro

Foz do Douro is the place where the river meets the sea. It presents a challenging spot for experienced northern Portuguese surfers as the waves here are more powerful and the scenery is stunning, with the lighthouse and fort adding to the dramatic coastline. I remember how beautiful this lighthouse is and how soothing it gets in the evening, it's like that's all the peace I need in life.


Espinho is a short drive south of Porto and is famous for its long, sandy beach and quality waves. It hosts international surfing competitions which were fun to watch for me, as it draws surfers from around the country and the world. The waves are suitable for all levels of surfers, with several peaks along the beach. It was a fun experience for me but that didn't last much as it's a bit crowded and I like less crowded places.

Praia de Miramar

Praia de Miramar is known for its lovely setting, including a charming chapel perched on the rocks and green coast, which is a perfect scene for a photo shoot. The surf here offers a mix of conditions, from easy-going waves for beginners to more challenging swells for the seasoned surfer, and due to it's mix condition I was able to enjoy the surf easily.


Aguçadoura is appreciated for its uncrowded waves and wind conditions favorable for surfing. It's a hidden gem north the central coast of Porto, ideal for surfers looking to escape the crowds and enjoy some of the best waves in the region.

Each of these spots provides a unique surfing experience, from the beginner-friendly waves of Matosinhos Beach to the competitive swells of Espinho. The surf culture in Porto is welcoming, making it a perfect destination for surfers of all levels.

Best Surfing Equipment and Gear for Porto

When it comes to surfing in Porto, choosing the right equipment and gear is essential for an optimal experience. The Atlantic swells cater to both beginners and seasoned surfers, making it crucial to select gear that aligns with the local wave conditions. Below, we outline the essential surfing equipment and gear for Porto, ensuring you're well-prepared to tackle the waves.


The surfboard you choose should match your skill level and the typical wave conditions. For beginners, soft-top surfboards are recommended due to their buoyancy and stability, which help in catching waves more easily. Intermediate and advanced surfers might opt for shortboards or fish surfboards, which offer better maneuverability and speed for Porto's varying wave sizes. Always consider the board's volume and shape to ensure it complements Porto's surf.


The water temperature in Porto varies throughout the whole year round, necessitating a range of wetsuits. During the warmer months, a 3/2mm wetsuit suffices, providing flexibility and warmth without overheating. For the colder seasons, a thicker 4/3mm wetsuit is essential to keep you warm in the chilly Atlantic waters. Look for wetsuits with sealed seams to prevent water entry and enhance thermal insulation.


A leash is a crucial safety feature, keeping the surfboard attached to you at all times. For Porto's surf conditions, choose a leash that is approximately the same length as your surfboard. This ensures it's long enough to allow for movement but short enough to prevent the board from hitting you after a wipeout. A durable, high-quality leash can prevent accidents and ensure a safer surfing experience.

Surf Wax

Surf wax provides the necessary grip on your surfboard, preventing slips and falls. For Porto's climate, it's advisable to use a cold to cool water wax, which ensures the best grip in the varying water temperatures. Apply the wax thoroughly on the areas where your feet will be positioned, and consider using a base coat for longer-lasting traction.


The Portuguese sun can be intense, especially during the summer months. A water-resistant, broad-spectrum sunscreen with a high SPF is essential to protect your skin from harmful UV rays. Reapply every two hours and after each session in the water to ensure continuous protection.

Rash Guards

Rash guards protect your skin from sunburn and abrasions caused by the surfboard. They are available in short and long sleeves, offering varying levels of protection. Choose a rash guard with UV protection for additional sun safety measures. The tight fit also helps in reducing drag in the water, improving your surfing performance.

By equipping yourself with the right surfboard, wetsuit, leash, surf wax, sunscreen, and rash guard, you're set to enjoy the best surfing experience in Porto. Whether you're paddling out for the first time or looking to carve up the waves like a pro, having the right gear is the first step towards an unforgettable surf trip and adventure.

Tips for Beginner Surfers in Porto

Tips for beginner surfers in Porto include several key recommendations to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience. Firstly, selecting the right surf spot is crucial. Matosinhos Beach, with its consistent waves and surf schools, stands out as the ideal starting point for novices. This location not only offers gentle waves suitable for learning but also boasts a sandy bottom, reducing the risk of injuries.

Investing in a good beginner surfboard is another essential step. Foam boards are recommended for beginners due to their buoyancy and stability, making it easier to catch waves and stand up. Additionally, wearing a wetsuit is necessary, as it provides warmth and protection in the cooler Atlantic waters.

Taking surfing lessons from a reputable school can dramatically improve your skills and safety knowledge. Experienced instructors will teach and surf lesson to you the basics of paddling, standing up on the board, and wave etiquette. This guidance is invaluable, as it ensures you learn proper techniques and surf etiquette, crucial for your safety and that of others in the water.

Understanding the tides and weather conditions is also vital. Surfing during low to mid-tide can offer the best conditions for beginners, with smaller, more manageable waves. Always check the surf forecast before heading out, to ensure the conditions are suitable for your skill level.

Lastly, practice patience and respect the ocean. Learning to surf requires time, and the sea conditions can be unpredictable. Respecting other surfers, adhering to surf etiquette, and being mindful of the environment will enhance your surfing experience in Porto.

By following these tips, beginner surfers in Porto will find themselves well-equipped to embark on their surfing journey, enjoying the waves safely and responsibly.

Advanced Surfing Techniques for Porto Waves

Advanced surfing techniques for Porto waves involve Duck Diving, cutback, snap, tube riding. These techniques not only enhance performance but also ensure safety and enjoyment while surfing in Porto's challenging waves.

Duck Diving

Duck diving is essential for navigating through the powerful breakers. Press the board down deep into the water, allowing the wave to pass over you. Timing and depth are crucial to re-emerge behind the wave, ready to catch the next one.

Bottom Turn

The bottom turn is your foundational maneuver for directing your board on the wave. Execute a sharp, low turn at the base of the wave to set up for future maneuvers. This move dictates your speed, direction, and flow on the wave.


To maintain proximity to the wave's power zone, a cutback is vital. This maneuver involves turning back towards the wave's breaking part when you find yourself moving away from it. It's about timing and precision, ensuring you re-enter the critical section to continue your ride.


The snap allows surfers to change direction rapidly, generating spray and showcasing control. Performed at the wave's lip, it requires a quick, sharp turn. This maneuver is both functional and expressive, allowing surfers to navigate tight sections and demonstrate their style.

Tube Riding

Tube riding in Porto demands respect for the ocean's power. Finding the barrel and maintaining position inside the wave's curve requires balance, vision, and a deep understanding of the wave's behavior. It's the ultimate test of a surfer's skill and nerve.


Aerials bring an element of acrobatics to Porto surfing. Launching off the wave's lip and landing back on the wave requires precise timing, speed, and wave selection. It's a high-risk, high-reward maneuver that pushes the boundaries of surfing.

Mastering these advanced techniques in Porto's diverse waves can elevate your surfing experience. Each technique requires practice, patience, and a deep connection with the ocean. As you hone these skills, you'll find yourself not just riding waves, but truly expressing yourself on the water.

Safety Tips for Surfing in Porto

Safety is paramount when engaging in surfing activities in Porto. The city's coastline offers a variety of surfing spots suitable for all levels, from beginners to advanced surfers. However, the dynamic Atlantic waters demand respect and preparation. Here are essential safety tips to ensure a positive and safe surfing experience in Porto.

Check the Weather and Surf Conditions

Before heading out, always check the local weather and surf forecasts. Porto's weather can change quickly, affecting wave conditions. Opt for surfing when conditions are favorable.

Know Your Limits

Surf within your ability level. Beginners should start at gentler spots, avoiding areas with strong currents and big waves that are more suitable for experienced surfers.

Use the Proper Equipment

Wear a well-fitted wetsuit to protect against the cold Atlantic waters. Always use a leash to keep your surfboard attached to you, preventing it from becoming a hazard to others.

Surf With a Buddy

Never surf alone. Having a partner ensures that assistance is available in case of an emergency. It also enhances the overall surfing experience.

Respect Local Surfing Etiquette

Understand and follow the local surfing rules and etiquette. This includes not dropping in on someone else's wave and taking turns.

Be Aware of Rip Currents

Learn to identify and avoid rip currents, which can quickly pull surfers out to deeper waters. If caught in one, stay calm and paddle parallel to the shore to escape.

Protect Your Head

When falling off your board, protect your head with your arms. This can prevent injuries from your board or underwater rocks.

Stay Hydrated and Energized

Surfing is physically demanding. Drink plenty of water and have light snacks available to maintain energy levels.

Following these safety tips will help ensure a memorable and safe surfing experience in Porto. Enjoy the waves responsibly and respect the ocean's power.

Are there any Surfing Competitions in Porto?

Yes, Porto hosts several surfing competitions. These events draw surfers from around the globe, showcasing Porto's prime waves and vibrant surf culture. Key competitions include the Porto Surf Open and the Matosinhos Surf Pro. These tournaments feature both professional and amateur surfers, highlighting the diversity and skill within the surfing community. Venues like Matosinhos Beach become focal points, offering consistent waves suitable for high-level competition. Additionally, local surf clubs often organize smaller contests, further enriching Porto’s surf scene.

Are there any Surfing Accommodations Available in Porto?

Yes, there are surfing accommodations available in Porto. These range from surf camps to beachfront hotels, specifically tailored for surfers. Facilities often include surfboard rentals, surfing lessons, and direct access to the best surf beaches. Surf hostels in the area cater to the social aspect of the surfing community, offering communal living spaces. Luxury options also exist, providing upscale amenities alongside surf-focused services. Every accommodation type is designed to enhance the Porto surfing experience, making it convenient for surfers to hit the waves at a moment's notice.

Frequently Asked Questions On Porto Surfing

Q1. What beach breaks are the best times of year to surf in Porto?

A. The best times of year to surf in Porto are from late spring through early fall. Optimal conditions occur between May and October, when the Atlantic swell delivers consistent waves suitable for all surfing levels.

Q2. How do surf conditions vary between spots in Porto?

A. Surf conditions in Porto vary significantly between spots. Urban beaches like Matosinhos offer beginner-friendly waves and sand, while more exposed beaches such as Espinho and Praia de Miramar provide challenging conditions for experienced surfers. Always check the local surf forecast before heading out.

Q3. Are there any surf school for beginners in Porto?

A. Yes, there are numerous surf schools available for beginners in Porto. These schools offer a range of courses, from introductory lessons to advanced coaching, all conducted by certified instructors. Equipment rental is typically included.

Q4. What equipment do I need to surf in Porto?

A. To surf in Porto, you will need a surfboard suitable for your skill level and a wetsuit. The water temperature can be cool, so a wetsuit is essential for warmth and protection. Most surf schools and shops offer rentals.

Q5. Is it safe to surf in Porto?

A. Surfing in Porto is generally safe, but it is crucial to be aware of the local conditions and respect the ocean. Beginners should stick to beaches with lifeguard presence and avoid surfing alone. Always inform someone of your surfing location and expected return time.

Q6. Can I find surf shops in Porto?

A. Yes, Porto has several surf shops where you can purchase or rent surfing equipment. These shops also provide local wave information, surf lessons, and sometimes repairs. They are great resources for both novice and experienced surfers.

Reema Bharti

Reema Bharti

I am a globe-trotter with a passion for exploration. From the sun-kissed coasts of Portugal to the snow-capped peaks of Switzerland, my travels are as diverse as they are inspiring. My journeys through Spain, Finland, Austria, and Germany have fueled my soul and shaped my writing.