Surfing in San Francisco - Best Places to Go to Surf in the Bay Area

Despite the fog that surrounds the major area of San Francisco, there are some locations that serve as the dream come true for our surfers! Irrespective of whichever level of surfer you might be, there is definitely something for you in the bag. So, let's dive straight into it.

A few precautions before we dive into the best places for surfing in San Francisco: 
  • Waters at times can be extremely cold and make the experience uncomfortable. Therefore, it is advisable to carry a wetsuit all along.
  • There are special enclosures meant for advanced surfers that are demarcated, so beginners should not enter those.

Best Time to Go Surfing in San Francisco

September and October are the most favorable months for surfing in San Francisco.

For advance level surfers who can surf professionally over high waves, January to March is the best time to hit the waves. However, one must keep a close check towards any seals or white sharks that can be spotted to add to the thrill.

Monsoon and Winters are the worst times to visit San Francisco for surfing as the water can be exceptionally cold and the waves can rise high to a dangerous point.

Best Places for Surfing in San Francisco 

1. Bolina's Beach, Marin County

Bolinas Beach, Main County

Located between the Bolinas Lagoon and the Gulf of the Farallones in Bolinas Bay, this beach is an ideal location for intermediary as well as advanced level surfers. “The Patch” is a section best known for slow, low and merry tides that are ideal for beginners. “The Channel” is another section where the lagoon merges with the ocean. This section has slightly higher waves and is suitable for advanced level surfers.

2. Linda Mar, Pacifica State Beach, Pacifica

Linda Mar Beach, San Francisco

When it comes to surfing in San Francisco, Linda Mar beach is suited for both intermediate level surfers, it is shallow and shallow towards the south and becomes more and more challenging as one head towards the north. Utmost convenience has been ensured via parking slots right adjacent to the beach. It also offers spacious and luxurious showers and restrooms that can be used from 6am to 10pm.

3. Mavericks, Half Moon Bay

Surfers at Mavericks Beach, San Francisco

Mavericks is one of the biggest and well-renowned surf spots in the country. It is also the home to the largest international big surf contest, The Titans of Mavericks. Advanced level surfers from around the globe come here to test their skills as surfers. This beach is not suitable for beginners as the waves can go upto 50 feet high and should be surfed by experienced professional surfers.

4. Streamer Lane, SantaCruz

Santa Cruz Surfing

Stream Lane is a world-famous point for both intermediate and advanced level surfers. The reason for its popularity is its location beneath the Santa Cruz Lighthouse, which is home to the Santa Cruz Surfing Museum. One can find some crowd here because of its popularity.

5. Fort Point National Historic Site, San Francisco

A beautiful night image of Fort Point, San Francisco

Fort Point National Historic Site is one of the most unique, unusual and picturesque sites for surfing in San Francisco. It is located beside the beautiful Golden Gate Bridge. One can surf at around 90 degrees right beneath this monument on waves that range from 6 to 8 feet in height.

6. Stinson Beach, Marin County

Stinson Beach, Marine County

Stinson Beach offers some of the highest tides for surfing. It is a cove in the shape of a crescent which is a part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. It offers a 2 meter stretch of shining white sand that attracts tourists and locals. A comfortable beach for learners, the deep ends are convenient for professionals. 

7. Ocean Beach, San Francisco 

Ocean Beach Night Image

Ocean Beach is one of the longest beaches in San Francisco that runs from Cliff House restaurant in the North to the intersection of Sloat Boulevard and the Great Highway in the South. Its waves allow only experienced surfers and it is not safe for swimmers due to the high tide and the strong current. It is famous amongst locals. 

San Francisco is evidently dotted with some of the best beaches for all kinds of surfers. So pick your destination to go surfing in San Francisco!

This post was published by Urushi Maggon

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