Best time to visit Scotland

Surfing in Scotland 2024

It is not true that the treacherous Scottish waves leave no opportunities for inexperienced surfers—there are options for everyone

Best time: mid-October–mid-November


Surfing is generally considered a year-round activity in Scotland, and most surfing spots are suitable only for skilled and well-experienced surfers. Famous surfing spots are usually overcrowded during a good swell during the high season that falls during summer months. However, many experienced surfers claim that even though summer is warmer, chilly autumn and winter days bring the coolest swells.

Moreover, there are nice opportunities for pro's and beginners in autumn, and the ocean is less crowded. Inexperienced surfers may learn the thrilling sport in the southeastern beaches in Pease Bay, whereas true adrenaline-seakers and keen surfers should opt for challenging rocky Thurso East renowned for the best waves in Europe. The best time for surfing in Scotland is from mid-October to mid-November. Though some surf spots have different seasons, like popular Lunan Bay offers its best surfing during winter and spring.

Practical info

When is Scotland's best season for surfing?

Surfing is an all-year-round activity in Scotland that requires skill and experience. While the best time to surf in Scotland is from mid-October through to mid-November, the peak season for some surfing spots varies. Lunan Bay, for instance, is relatively active during winter or spring. Experienced surfers often recommend the chilly autumn and winter periods, citing the cool swells they provide as a challenge for surfers who want to test their skills. Show more

Which surfing spots in Scotland are ideal for beginners?

Scotland has surfing spots suitable for learners of all levels. Pease Bay in the Scottish Borders is ideal for beginners because it has gentle waves compared to the rugged north coast. Pease Bay has surf schools to teach people about the basics of surfing. Another beginner-friendly spot is Coldingham Bay, which is next to Pease Bay. Here one can rent equipment and get a surfing instructor's services to learn the skills needed at their own pace. Show more

What are some of the most challenging surfing waves in Scotland?

Thurso East, located in Scotland's northern region, boasts of some of Europe's best waves. These waves are not suitable for many surfers due to strong currents and winds, making it a perfect spot for experienced surfers with superior skills. Other challenging spots are near the Isle of Lewis, the Orkney Islands, and the North Sea. These surfs provide a significant challenge for seasoned surfers. Show more

Is surfing in Scotland a good experience for beginners?

Scotland provides excellent learning experiences for novice surfers who want to learn. Pease Bay, located in South-east Scotland, is the best option for beginners because it has gentle waves and lesser congestion. Coldingham Bay, which is situated next to Pease Bay, also has surf schools, equipment rentals, and private lessons for anyone looking to learn surfing skills. Nevertheless, entry-level surfers need to avoid famous surfs meant for experienced surfers to ensure safety and avoid accidents. Show more

Does Scotland have annual surfing events?

Scotland has numerous surfing festivals and events scheduled throughout the year. These events enable surfers to showcase their skills or participate in the fun. Some of these events include the Tiree Wave Classic, held on the Isle of Tiree, the world's longest-running professional windsurfing event. The Scottish Surfing Championships is another event wherein surfers from different areas of Scotland contest against one another; this festival takes place on Fraserburgh beach. Belhaven Bay hosts other popular contests, such as the Scottish Longboard Classic. Show more

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