El Salvador Surf Camps inhabit a largely untouched landscape. Not only is there world-class surfing on serene, volcanic beaches, but also incredibly diverse and rich biodiversity. Volcanoes, coffee plantations and expansive National Parks give value to Central America’s most underrated country. In this Surf Camp Guide we explore the best El Salvador Surf Camps
Similar to it’s Central American neighbours Costa Rica and Nicaragua, El Salvador’s prime time for surfing coincides with the rainy season. Yet El Salvador Surf Camps continue to run all year round, since the West Coast consistently provides world class swells.
The country’s top surfing destinations are covered in this guide, which are El Tunco and El Zonte. Although the greatest concentration of surf spots lie in these areas, nearly any stretch of coastline is sure to hold a brilliant wave.
The Best Places To Surf
Surfers choose El Salvador for the wave quality of Costa Rica,without the crowds. The coast faces onto a breathtaking terrain which is often overlooked. In fact it is known as the ‘Land Of The Volcanoes‘, since there are more than 20 of them within the country!
In this Surf Camp Guide we focus on the best El Salvador Surf Camps. These inhabit areas which hold clusters of surf spots suitable for all levels of ability.
Surfing at El Parmacito is best suited to beginners, Punta Roca to intermediates, and Playa El Tunco by experts. There are a plethora of surf spots beyond this, guaranteed to challenge and excite any level of surfer. The links below will take you to pages exploring each area, giving details on the best surf camps and spots.
When people think of surfing, they rarely think of El Salvador – meaning many surf spots are an unspoiled haven. Uncrowded conditions are the best conditions for beginners just starting to learn the basics.
Below we cover details of El Salvador’s best surf spots. There is a wave for any ability, whether that be around El Tunco or El Zonte.
Playa El Tunco
El Tunco is an advanced left-hand beach break onto a black sand bay. This wave may be short but it is one of the most visited spots by El Salvador Surf Camps, so can get crowded. In fact it has recently become the most visited town in El Salvador.
Playa La Paz
La Paz is a consistent, world-class wave suitable for all surfers. Waves are both left and right hand, very long, and break over the beach. It can be surfed at all tides, rarely gets busy. This hollow, fast and powerful wave should not be missed!
Playa El Sunzal
A right handed beach break over deep water that is best suited to Intermediates. Waves here carry for a decent length, between 50 and 100m, and are incredibly consistent. It is a versatile spot, that takes on all swells. Take off is rapid and it’s barrelling walls are extremely powerful.
This fast, powerful wave is suitable for all surfers. It is a left-handed point break that can be anything from 50 to 300m in length! Waves in this spot are best surfed at high tide, and can get crowded on weekends.
Playa de Conchalio
Another beach break, but right handed and mostly suited to expert surfers. Although there are no surf hazards you will rarely find many people at this spot. The wave is short, but extremely hollow and fast. It is frequently a good bet on smaller days!
Surfers with an ability of intermediate and above can surf this wave. It is a right-hand point break over sharp rocks. Crowds are attracted to Punta Roca for the sheer length of the wave, meaning the spot can get especially crowded on weekends.
El Muelle Pier
El Muelle is a left-hand reef break, that sees very consistent waves. It is very exposed so picks up even distant ground swells. It’s central location just off the pier means it can get crowded here.
This wave point breaks over a sometimes dangerously rocky terrain, so is best suited to advanced surfers. It is a right-hander of standard length which is best surfed at low tide. The spot is very exposed, and more likely to pick up ground than wind swells
K61 is a fickle right-hand that’s the best in the area on a good day. It may be a long paddle to reach the spot, but this is often a favourable option over surfing over-crowded waves. Waves here break slowly but give surfers plenty of space to practice.
Playa El Parmacito
Beginners enjoy this right hand beach break, and it is well suited to learning due to the lack of crowds. This short wave moves across the bay between rocks and a cliff. The small beach has instructors and gear available to hire. Waves are bets in low tide.
Playa El Zonte
El Zonte is a very consistent point break. The wave is a long, fast right-hand that is best surfed between mid and high tide. The beach is rarely crowded, but surfers must still watch out for under currents and sharp rocks beneath the surface.
El Salvador’s climate is tropical, though often more temperate than surrounding countries. It has both a rainy and a dry season, which characterises countries in close proximity to the equator. This weather is seen at extremes along the coastline.
The dry season stretches from November to April, bringing occasional light showers, whilst the wet seasons spans the months of May to October. The huge quantities of rain over the coast over this time creates huge swells and unbelievable waves!
Downpours in the wet season typically occur just once a day, this is fortunate since it provides a large window of time for surfing. They are intense, short and can cause flash flooding. The road system isn’t the best, so make sure you plan ahead should the rain compromise accessibility.
It can get very cold at night, but throughout the day temperatures can reach up to 32°C (90°F) in March and April. Typically though, temperatures are between 23 and 26°C (73-79°F).
Water temperatures in El Salvador are even warmer, consistently remaining between 28 and 29°C (82 to 84°F) all year round. Wetsuits are rarely needed in these conditions, and you can surf all day without getting cold!