Surfing is something that exhilarates almost everybody on a beach vacation. Dubai is said to be one of the most favourite spots for surfers across the globe, due to the best swells that come through the Arabian Gulf. It is also a great place to start for beginners.
But, before deciding to surf, you should have an idea about what to expect from surfing in Dubai and other essentials, so let’s dive in right away!
Best Time To Surf in Dubai
Best Months December to March have the best swells. So it’s best you go surfing during these months, to get the most of the Arabian Gulf. Moderate Months However, April and November also have occasional waves. Months to Avoid Try and prevent June till around the end of September. The waters are mostly flat, and the weather is scorching.
Located in the heart of Jumeirah, Sunset Beach is Dubai’s busiest beach. With the beautiful view of Burj-Al-Khalifa at the backdrop, this beach is one of the best spots for catching a swell, in Dubai. Even though this beach attracts a large group of tourists throughout the year, but a part of the beach, which receives the strongest swells is designated only for surfing. So, despite the crowd, you can expect to have a lot of fun surfing on the beach.
Location: Sunset Beach, Jumeirah, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
2. North Beach
North Beach is a surfer’s paradise, located just north of Dubai. This beach is quite small compared to others and hardly has any tourists, which makes it an ideal spot for surfing in Dubai. The swells in this region are high throughout the year, making it a perfect place for advanced as well as intermediate surfers in Dubai.
Location: Pearl Jumeirah, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
3. Black Palace Beach
Black Palace Beach is one of Dubai’s hidden gems, which sits between Palm Jumeirah and Burj Al Arab. It is not very easily accessible, but for those who know the way, this is a favourite. The swells on this beach are not as high, but surfers prefer this region because it is not very popular among the tourists, so they have the entire beach to themselves for surfing. It also goes by the name of ‘Secret beach’ because only a few people know of this beach and the way to get here.
Location: located between Burj al Arab and Palm Jumeirah Island.
Learn Surfing in Dubai
1. Surf House Dubai
Surf House Dubai was established in 2005. Today, with over 3000 members and a team of highly experienced surfers and instructors, it is undoubtedly one of the best places to learn Surfing in Dubai.
Location: Sunset Beach, Dubai, United Arab Emirates Cost: AED 350 for a private lesson (group discounts and packages available) Contact: www.surfingdubai.com
2. Wild Wadi
Wild Wadi is a waterpark located in Jumeirah. It is the first water park to have an ISO certificate and has won several accolades. With good access to the sea, you can learn surfing here under the guidance of experienced instructors.
Location: Jumeirah Street, Next to Burj Al Arab, Dubai, United Arab Emirates Cost: AED 195 per person,AED 175 for kids under 1.1m (only for UAE Residents) Contact: www.jumeirah.com
3. Wadi Adventure
Located a few kilometres away from Dubai, Wadi Adventure has the world’s most extended human-made whitewater channel. It is also the only water park in the Middle East which has all water-based activities under one roof like surfing, kayaking, rafting and wakeboarding.
Location: Al-Ain, 2hr drive from Dubai Cost: AED 100 per hour (group) AED 300 per hour (private) Contact: www.wadiadventure.ae
4. Kite N’ Surf Dubai
With a team of certified trainers, Kite N’ Surf is an excellent place for beginners. They hold several camps, especially for young kids who wish to learn surfing. Kite N’Surf offers a wide range of water-based activities. These include kitesurfing, windsurfing, kayaking etc.
Location:Kite Beach, Dubai, United Arab Emirates Cost: AED 250 per hour (Private Stand up Paddle Course) Contact: www.kitensurf.ae
5. Fahrenheit Beach Sports
Fahrenheit Beach Sports has a wide range of motorised and non-motorized activities to offer, starting from flyboarding to surfing and much more. They have different divisions for different activities so that it becomes easier for customers to choose a specific sport. Surfing comes under Surf School Arabia.
Location: Marina Beach, Dubai, United Arab Emirates Contact: www.farenheitbeachsport.com, www.surfschoolarabia.com
For experts, who want to surf in and around Dubai can choose from among the many beaches; however, some of the best picks are:
Surfing is just about your surfboard and you. However, another essential is sunscreen. Once in the water, you are likely to stay there for hours under the hot Dubai sun. So make sure you’ve applied the right amount of sunscreen for that. That’s all you need if you’re an advanced surfer. However, for beginners, you need to make sure that you have a few more things in your checklist. Here’s a list-
The right surfboard- Buy a larger surfboard, which will help you pick up the waves quickly. Always let the salesman in the surfing store choose the right one for you the first time.
Surf Fins- This helps provide stability and improves your performance in the water. The most commonly used fin setups are single-fin, twin-fin, Thruster quad and five-fin.
Surf Leash- This must-have piece of equipment keeps you connected to your board even when you fall off your surfboard.
Surf wax/Traction pad- It provides grip and keeps you from slipping off the surfboard, when in water. While surf wax requires regular maintenance, traction pads last for years, if applied correctly.
Wetsuit- A right neoprene wetsuit helps you stay cool in the water for a long time. Dubai, being a Muslim country has strict rules so make sure you buy an appropriate wetsuit
Essential Surfing Tips
1. Don’t learn by yourself: No matter how easy it looks, always hire a coach, or learn from an experienced friend. This way, you’ll avoid putting your life at risk. 2. Use a big surfboard: The bigger the surfboard, the more the surface area, which will help you learn quickly and also make it easier to float. 3. Warm-up before going into water: A little stretching before starting will reduce the chances of muscle cramps. 4. Always start small: Begin by learning how to tackle the small waves. Then go for the big ones. Do not rush, or else you’ll end up hurting yourself 5. Study the waves: Spend some time by observing the ripples. See how the waves break and learn from the other surfers around. Never go into water unprepared.
For Intermediate surfers
1. Choose the right surfboard: Choosing the correct surfboard can enhance your learning speed. 2. Remember the turning order: Head, upper body, hips and legs. 3. One expert tip: Always catch the wave when it is at the peak, or else you might miss on a few exciting moves on your board. 4. Find room for improvement: Ask your friends to make a video of yours while surfing. Watch it and find out what you can change, to do better. 5. Compress your body: Bending your knees, and keeping your upper body straight helps maintain a low centre of gravity. It will help you improve your speed and stability on the surfboard.
For Advanced surfers
1. Keep competing with surfers better than you: You’re an advanced surfer, yes. But you need to make yourself even better. So, compete with those who are better than you and learn some of their tricks to improve yourself. 2. Ask someone to shoot a video: Even for an advanced surfer, there is always a room for improvement. So ask someone to shoot a video of your surfing. Watch if repeatedly to see where you can improve. This tip is essential for surfers of every level. 3. Don’t ‘snake’: When you are already paddling for a wave just ahead of you, and another surfer comes to get it, is known as ‘snaking’. Some surfers use this as a way to sneak waves off from other surfers; however, you should avoid doing this since it’s a violation of the rules 4. Claim your wave: When you’re going towards a rush, use a whistle to let others know that you’re on it. That way, you can avoid a nasty collision.
Things to Know Before You Go
1. Surfing is all about patience- What you are about to learn is one of the most complex water sports in the world, so patience is the key to success. 2. Ignorance can be life-threatening- Surfing is one of the most dangerous games in the world. Even a bit of ignorance might harm you. 3. Fitness and balance are crucial- Physical fitness is of the utmost importance when you’re fighting against the force of water. 4. Reliable knowledge base- About wave formations and breakers, key terms to understand the science behind surfing. 5. Dress right- Make sure you choose a swimsuit, which is appropriate for the sport and makes you comfortable as well.
Surfing in Dubai is one of the must-try activities for all the water lovers visiting this beautiful country. If you’ve tried it before and failed, do not lose hope. Heard the saying ‘practice makes a man perfect’? Well, surfing is one of the best examples of this famous phrase. Undoubtedly it is one of the most sophisticated sports in the world, but by following a few tips listed above, you can master your skills in no time.