Surfing in California is known for it perfect right point waves. California is a great surf travel destination with a variety of waves and tons of things to do, even you are not surfing. The premier surf spots in California are usually crowded, but you can still find uncrowded waves if you know where to look.
California has over 800 miles of coastline with two very distinct surfing zones. Northern California is cold, rugged and unforgiving. Santa Cruz being its epicenter and the birthplace to the neoprene wetsuit. It is home to Steamer’s Lane and the big waves at Mavericks. Southern California is a classic surfing destination with lots of history and culture. It’s the home of Malibu, San-Onofre, Trestles, Rincon, Blacks Beach and other classic surf breaks. The water temperature is warmer in Southern California, but you’ll probably need a wetsuit year round, though a spring suit will suffice during summer months.
Surfing in California started back in 1908, when George Freeth, “The Man Who Walks on Water”, was brought over from Hawaii to promote the opening of the LA – Redondo Beach rail line with a display of his incredible surfing skills. Since then, surfing has taken hold and the California Lifestyle has become synonymous with surfing. It’s the home of The Beach Boys and most of the things that are considered to be “classic surf culture”. Californians didn’t invent surfing, but they sure did promote it through Hollywood movies like, “Gidget”, which helped start the surfing craze. It was California surfers, in search of bigger and better waves, that pioneered surfing on Oahu’s North Shore and the rest is history.
Although surfing in California has changed over the years, Malibu has stood the test of time as the mecca for surfing in Southern California. Malibu’s Surfrider Beach, the first beach in the world dedicated strictly for surfing (no bodyboards allowed), being the quintessential surf spot and the hotbed of performance surfing throughout the years.