Now that summer is winding down, it’s probably time to hang up your wetsuit, put your boards up and get back to the office, right? Wrong! With its lingering warm weather and lack of tourists, fall is one of the best seasons for you to pack up your quiver of Slyde handboards (or whatever you like to get barreled with), and travel abroad for awesome surf or bodysurf adventures. Here are ten great places where you can shred this fall.
1) Portugal: This country is situated at a geographical gold mine for solid autumn swells. Low-pressure systems blowing in with the fall winds push waves as high as eight feet on the Portuguese coast.
2) Southwestern France: Weather patterns in this region of France start their transition in September, bringing those notorious North Atlantic low-pressure systems and consequently, continuous barrels. Surfers and bodysurfers can enjoy the beach to themselves as well, since most tourists will be on their way home by this time of year.
3) California: Surfing, bodysurfing and handplaning is still very popular up and down the coast this time of year because both the water and air temperatures are still favorable. What’s even better is that there are less beachgoers out getting in the way of the waves. Swells come in from just about every direction, thanks to the prevailing fall breezes. Beaches in North Los Angeles County, such as Zuma Beach and Topanga, provide a source of constant waves all season.
4) Northern Spain: This side of the Spanish coast is home to quite the legendary wave at Mundaka Beach in the country’s Basque region. Known as one of the best waves in the world, the swell builds in from the Bay of Biscay. Mundaka beach’s sandbar generates perfectly hollow waves, making for an awesome ride.
5) Scotland: This is one of the lesser known, yet more picturesque places to surf, bodysurf and handplane. The bestmonths to visit are September through November, when the weather and water are mellow.
6) Canada: Despite the colder weather, watermen and waterwomen flock to Canada’s lakes and rivers for awesome swells. Who says all the waves are in the ocean? Favorite spots for surfers and bodysurfers include Toronto, Kincardine, Lake Superior and Lawrencetown Beach.
7) Baja California: Just down the coast from California, this part of Mexico shares in the lingering warm fall weather and sweet north and south swells. If you’re interested in a more tropical surf session, check out the beaches of Baja Malibu, Isla Natividad or San Miguel.
8) Ireland: Much like the rest of the European surf spots, low-pressure systems are kind to the Irish coast in the fall, resulting in double overhead swells that will give you your fair share of barrels whether you surf, bodysurf or handplane.
9) Taiwan: Monsoon weather this time of year brings solid, constant southeast and northeast swells to most of the country, especially on the northern coast. If you’re there, check out Honeymoon Bay, Daxi or South Bay, just to name a few.
10) Japan: Wind and swell options are incredibly abundant thanks to Japan’s island geography. River mouths offer great world-class conditions. Typhoon season is from August to October, which typically produces enormous swells.