Surfing in Peru

Surfing guide to Peru,

Peru has 2 main surf areas. There are 74 surf spots and 2 surf holidays. Go explore!

Overview of surfing in Peru

Peru lies between Ecuador and Chile on the Western coast of South America. This makes it right on the border between lush and tropical coasts and arid desert landscapes. Here you will find some of the best waves in South America, specifically left breaking points. Many have called the Morocco of lefts. Peru is very well known for its history and landmarks, such as Machu Picchu, but is slowly becoming a top surf destination for international travellers. The surf here is consistent year-round, and even if it is flat you will not be disappointed by the other offerings that abound.

The Surf

Peru has 1,600 miles of coastline and most of it also boasts prevailing offshore winds. The coastline twists and turns often, making for plenty of set ups to morph swell from any direction into clean, consolidated lines. There are plenty of breaks for all levels almost everywhere in the country, so go ahead and bring your kook buddies, they will be as stoked as you. Peru is best known for left hand point breaks, including the most famous: Chicama. These lefts are among the longest and most groomed in the world, offering goofies rides of a lifetime. The other thing about the surf in Peru is the fact that it is highly consistent year round, although the best time to find swell would be the Southern Hemisphere winters.

Top Surf Spots

Chicama

Chicama is one of the best and longest left hand points in  the world. There are a few sections to it, but it can link up and offer rides of up to a kilometer long! Make sure to bring your paddling chops or take the long walk back to the lineup. Learn more here!

Lobitos

Lobitos is another left point that offers up heavier sections and barrels when the right swell is on. The paddle out is tricky through the rocks but the rewards are well worth it. Stays uncrowded. Learn more here!

Punta Roca

In Southern Peru Punta Roca is an excellent right point that throws out performance sections and is highly consistent. It draws a crowd from Lima and has been used as a WSL competition site. If it’s flat here it is flat everywhere. Learn more here!

Accommodation Information

Depending on where you go you can get mostly anything. There are some built-up towns and surf resorts around some of the popular areas, like Mancora, in which you can stay in the highest luxury all the way down to a lowly surf hostel. There are much more remote areas where camping is the only option. Do your research on what art you would like to go to and then choose accordingly.

The Good
Consistent and Quality surf
Land of the Lefts
Cheap
The Bad
Not many Rights
Access can be tricky in the South
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2 Best Surf Resorts and Camps in Peru

Getting there

Surf Regions

Peru can be divided into two parts, North and South, with the border between the two being the capital: Lima. The North will generally be more popular. This is due to a few reasons, but chief among them are: slightly warmer water, the vacation town of Mancora, Chicama, easier access, and more explored coastline. To the South the water does get a little colder, and the coastline becomes more rugged and harder to access. There are also a couple of smaller surf towns along the coastline, but generally if you want to have a exploration type of trip this is the region for you.

Access to Surf and Location

Coming into Peru is simple enough, international flights will all come into Lima. From there you can catch local planes to the north if you wish or drive the better maintained roads that direction. If you are headed to the South you will be looking to rent a car with 4WD. Make sure to get good insurance and be prepared to encounter some fun desert offroading conditions to get to that break that looked so good from the main road.

Visa and Entry/Exit Information

Most international travelers can acquire a 90 day tourist visa when the arrive into the country. Make sure that your passport is valid for six months beyond your departure date and ensure to check the government website for any information specific to your country of origin.

The 74 best Surf spots in Peru

Overview of surfing spots in Peru

Centinela

9
Left | Exp Surfers
500m long

Pacasmayo

9
Left | Exp Surfers
1500+m long

Chicama

9
Left | Exp Surfers
600m long

El Faro Surf Spot

8
Left | Exp Surfers
50m long

La Herradura (Lima)

8
Left | Exp Surfers
500m long

Punta Prieta

8
Left | Exp Surfers
600m long

Puemape

8
Left | Exp Surfers
600m long

Punta Panico

8
Left | Exp Surfers
200m long

Surf seasons and when to go

The best time of the year to surf in Peru

Peru gets good surf year round due to its exposure to both North and South swells. Northern Peru definitely gets a little more of the northern hemi power in the summer months than southern Peru, but the roles switch during the summer when the south will get more grunt from the southern hemisphere storms. The winds are almost always offshore year round, and the water temperatures remain stable.

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Peru surf travel guide

Find trips that fit a flexible lifestyle

Activities Other Than Surf

Peru offers a wealth of activities beyond surfing, ensuring a well-rounded travel experience. Visitors can explore ancient Incan ruins, such as the iconic Machu Picchu, a UNESCO World Heritage site that offers breathtaking views and a glimpse into the country’s rich history. Lima, the capital city, is renowned for its vibrant culinary scene and bustling nightlife, where you can savor delicious Peruvian cuisine and experience the local culture. For those who enjoy the outdoors, hiking and trekking in the Andes provide stunning vistas and a chance to connect with nature. Additionally, the Amazon rainforest offers unique wildlife spotting opportunities, making Peru a perfect destination for adventure and exploration.

Language

Spanish is the official language of Peru, and it is widely spoken throughout the country. While English is commonly used in tourist areas, particularly in hotels, restaurants, and surf camps, learning a few basic Spanish phrases can greatly enhance your travel experience. Being able to communicate in Spanish will allow you to interact more meaningfully with locals, navigate less touristy areas, and show respect for the local culture.

Currency/Budget

The currency in Peru is the Peruvian Sol (PEN). Peru is generally a budget-friendly destination, offering a wide range of options for all budgets. From affordable street food and local markets to high-end dining and accommodation, travellers can find something that fits their financial plans. Budget travelers can enjoy inexpensive meals and stay in hostels or budget hotels, while those seeking luxury can find upscale accommodations and gourmet dining experiences. It’s advisable to carry some cash, especially in smaller towns and markets, but credit cards are widely accepted in major cities and tourist areas.

Cell Coverage/WiFi

Peru has good cell coverage in most urban areas and popular tourist destinations. Major cities and surf towns offer reliable mobile networks, and purchasing a local SIM card can be a cost-effective way to stay connected. WiFi is readily available in most hotels, cafes, and restaurants, allowing travelers to stay connected and share their adventures. However, in more remote areas, connectivity might be limited, so it’s best to plan accordingly and download necessary information before heading off the beaten path.

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Peru offers a unique combination of world-class surf, rich cultural experiences, and stunning natural landscapes, making it a top destination for surfers and travelers alike. With consistent waves and diverse surf spots, it caters to all skill levels and provides endless opportunities for adventure. Beyond surfing, Peru’s fascinating history, vibrant cities, and breathtaking scenery ensure that every visitor finds something to love. Whether you’re riding the longest left-hand wave at Chicama or exploring the ancient ruins of Machu Picchu, Peru promises an unforgettable journey filled with excitement and discovery.

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