Learn to Surf: Finding the Best Beaches

If you’ve never surfed before, entry into the sport can be intimidating. Perhaps you’re struggling with the clumsy shape of the surfboard as you lope from your car to the shoreline, or perhaps you’re concerned with what the other surfers are thinking as you surface after a wipe out. The most important consideration for you as you prepare to catch your first waves, however, should concern the location. A crowded beach with aggressive waves can be a very different (and daunting) experience for a new surfer, while a less frequented beach with sandy bottoms and slow, easy surf might be just right.

The first – and easiest – step is simply to ask a friend who surfs. They were beginners at one point, too, and while they might not appreciate the difficulty gradient of waves, they will no doubt be aware of the local beaches that attract the largest crowds. Even better, ask your friend to take you to one of the beaches with less traffic and surf with you, offering advice and guidance that could very well amount to a private tutorial.

If you don’t have a friend who surfs, you can consult the Internet. If you live near several beaches, there will most likely be a regional guide for the area that addresses the wave difficulty and popularity of individual beaches. You could also look on a surfing website. Some of the more popular surfing ‘hubs’ include exhaustive lists of worldwide beaches and user reviews.

If you’re prepared to make an even bigger investment to pursuing surfing, you might consider a surf tour that caters to beginners. You won’t have to shoulder the stress of selecting the ideal location for a beginner, because this will be one of many trip details the travel company will have already addressed. In accessing expert instruction from your earliest days on the board, you’re also sure not to cultivate the wrong habits or technique when surfing. Finally, you’ll have the opportunity to make connections with others new to the sport and possibly continue to motivate one another as your surfing performance improves.

If you’re interested in surfing, you shouldn’t let the dilemma of finding the ‘perfect beach’ keep you from catching a wave. Instead, ask a friend, consult the Internet, or sign on to a beginners’ surf tour. At this point, you have little to lose but your balance – and this, of course, is only temporary.

Surf Travel to South Africa

Arriving in Cape Town is over whelming, the first thing you notice is the warmth and friendly attitude to you the surfer. This country has been through so much in the past 30 years and it has always been my dream to set foot on its soil to surf the glorious waves that caress its shores daily. South Africa is blessed with some of the best and most consistent surf the world has to offer. Couple this with the mild climate and you have a surfing paradise. During the South African winter the coastline is supplied with almost endless groundswell and offshore winds due to the constant flow of cold front activity in the southern Atlantic. So as a surfer arriving from a rainy Oregon to find warmth and amazing surf is a dream come true.

The tour I was on, involved sessions at numerous South African premier surf spots which include Jeffrey’s Bay, Seal Point, Victoria Bay, Bruce’s Beauties and as well as many other spots that “crank” in winter. Dylan collected me after arrival and we were all packed up to head off along the coast. South African surfers are always so stoked it is amazing and Dylan was no acceptation to that rule and assured me that he had a thorough knowledge of surfing in the area and that he was our tour guide. Furthermore he practically guaranteed me that I will get to the respective spots when they are at their best, he just fell short in advising me he had arranged the swell as well.

As we arrived at the lodge on the outskirts of town I was greeted by the other surfers on the tour who had arrived a day or two earlier. Dylan whispered in my ear and ensured me with an eager smile that the tour remains personal and that by limiting the number of people on each tour guarantees we all get a great time. Like all South African’s he is proud of the countries surf and then could not refrain from telling me yet again for the 5th time that he would ensure I surfed as many African barrels as possible. Umm…. I went to bed with that thought. My second day started with Dylan taking the tour to a place at Muzuimbrug, an ideal spot he assured me to get acquainted to African Waves. ‘Muzies’ as it is known, is renowned for its rolling and very consistent A-Frame waves and endless stretch of beach. Whilst Dylan provided surf lessons for some learners on the tour I paddled out the back to enjoy some glass morning surf.

After a hearty lunch we set off on an orientation tour of the stunning Cape Peninsula, Dylan believed this would help us get our bearing on the land and we also had a visit to the Cape Point Nature reserve as well as Cape Towns more famous tourist sights including a visit to boulders beach where wild penguins happily play.

The morning of day 3 was an important one for me personally as I could not wait to set out on our first port of call which was a 65-meter bungee at Gouritz. This is optional on the tour but it’s highly recommended to get you stoked and ready for the adventure that lies ahead and I was game for it. If you plan on doing the worlds highest one later in the trip, I suggest you do this one first to get a feel for it! I did not opt for the higher…

Along the way we stopped at Mossel Bay for a surf session, there was a selection of 3 breaks to choose from, Inner and Outer Pool as well as Ding Dangs. Depending on the conditions and your standard the surf guides will take you to the one with most zest, and they selected one just fine for me.

Inner Pool’s wave breaks very close to famed outer Pool off a section of rocks, walls up when at its best and is usually surfed when Outers is flat. Outer Pool Gets large and challenging in solid winter swell but is usually surfed when clean and orderly in light westerly winds. Outer offers a cooking right hand reef break with a solid wall and a long ride. Ding Dang’s a fun hotdog wave that works when winter swell wraps around cape St Blaise.

After the surf, we set off on the road again, the most beautiful scenery as we enter the ‘Garden Route’ is breath taking and most of us all sighed with disbelief at the views and the panorama that was unrolling ahead of us. Depending on the time of year, apparently the guides can surprise the group and dive for some crayfish (Cape Rock lobster) along the way for the evening dinner, this was not the case for my tour but I gather it can be the norm.

It’s up early to get the best swell the next morning and we all opted to head for a spot called Buffalo Bay Point – a very similar wave to Bruce’s Beauties that too me was going to be the highlight of the tour and was to come so I took this as a trial event. The point can get superlative in the right conditions by all accounts and before leaving the US I had heard great reports of the conditions that can be found here so was please to see a perfect 3ft day.

That evening we checked into another local surf lodge, and zipped out for and evening surf! We headed off to a place I had dreamed of since first seeing the movie Endless Summer – Bruce’s Beauties – it breaks a lot more often than is thought of and is by know means a gentle long boarders paradise. When cooking, Bruce’s is a screaming right hand point that freight trains along a jagged line of rocks. “Get ready for mean gaping barrels” Dylan shouted as he disappeared into the water, leaving the rest of us half changed, running and falling every other step! It was just like a clip from the movie here I was about to hit the surf of Endless Summer.

The next day I found it very difficult to get up to be honest, three great days of epic surf and with another few more to comes I just could not cope… my body was feeling the flight and the perfect surf of the night before. So rather than surf I just joined the tour to watch the rest of the group under a go some lessons on the beach and sat back enjoying the wild environment that seemed as if Portland and US Airports was just a forgotten memory. I could not believe that only 90+ hours ago I was crammed into a bus in Portland with a huge longboard knocking everyone that moved. Now I lay head back on the sand listening to the sounds of sea birds and knowing that I am totally at peace and having the best surf trip in my life. Sure I have surfed some amazing spots but to surf a spot I have seen over a thousand time son video and then to actually enjoy it going off better than in the film was beyond even my wildest thoughts of surfing in South Africa.

After a few more days of touring and surfing spots such as Boneyards, Supertubes, Salad bowls, J-Bay, Tubes, Point and Albatross it was time to start to head back in the direction of the Cape. Everyone on the tour had become exhausted and tired but we were now a travelling surf family too tired to talk but desperate for one more last surf before the Cape and we were not disappointed as slowly we drove towards Buffalo Bay again and it was just as we left it, perfect…

As we drove in to Cape Town the next day Dylan turned to us all and said “How about Sky diving, or Paragliding? – We can even arrange a shark dive if you wish!” – in a great chorus we all said “shut up man… we are exhausted!” The one thing you can say about South African’s they are a great friendly bunch and the stoke of surfing runs deep in there veins.

The beauty of the tour I think was summed up by the people on it, from 6 surfers who were learning to surf for the first time and having lessons daily to the rest of us who ranged from beginner to advanced. We all surfed well and all experienced the conditions first hand. We all had our own experiences and that is something all of us will take away and is our surf memory – an amazing surf trip.

Enjoying an Australian Tour

Going on an Australian tour can include anything from wandering the tropical rainforests of northern Australia, to taking in the night life in the capital city of Sydney. Whether your penchant is for lush and untouched scenery or fine wine and entertainment, Australia is sure to have something to offer you.

If you’re interested in treasures of the urban nature, Sydney is home to eclectic architecture, major art galleries, and more than one performing arts theater, as well as several fine dining establishment choices. During your Australian tour of the settled delights be sure to stop by Melbourne, a city known as a trend-setter and home to grand musical extravaganzas, non-stop food and film festivals, and some of the best shopping and nightlife to be found. There are more than 75 different ethnic cuisines just waiting to tickle your taste buds in several hundred restaurants and cafés. If you’re a sports fan, Melbourne hosts international tournaments as well as grand prix events in various locations around the city.

Visiting the secluded islands in the Great Barrier Reef can provide a new and fresh look at nature’s beauty. While on your tour of Australia, be sure to take a peek at the Daintree Rainforest in tropical North Queensland. There you can see the rare sight of two World Heritage wonders nestled right against one another as the forest slopes dip into the Great Barrier Reef, with some sections of the reef growing almost to the shore itself. Following the same natural beauty guide you can opt to head into the expansive Outback and explore the treasures of the Kimberley, sometimes called Australia’s last frontier.

Taking Time to Relax

Beginning or ending your Australian tour at one of a multitude of resorts the country has to offer can ensure a relaxing evening or two is had with some of the most beautiful scenery. The resorts located well inside the Great Barrier Reef can cater to just about anyone – from newlyweds, to families or singles, or even sophisticates who demand the utmost in dining and beauty spas available.

Of course, Australia is surrounded by sea, so good swimming and surfing beaches are more rule than exception. Generally these beaches will be full of tourists, especially during the week. Still, it is easy to find your “spot” for the R&R that you demand and rightfully deserve.

If relaxing on your Australian tour calls for a cruise, that can be arranged too. Several options are available depending on your level of sailing skill and budget. For the couple that doesn’t want an entire boat to themselves, a catered cruise through the Whitesundays might be just the answer. These cruises usually run from five to seven days and can be had on modern racing yachts or older square-riggers with a multitude of sails billowing overhead. Passengers can usually opt to sleep in cabins on-board or set up camp on the beach at night. Either way you’re sure to be lulled to sleep by the gentle wash of the waves against the hull or shore.

A Tour for Learning

If the goal of your tour of Australia is knowledge, you should look into an Aboriginal-lead tour. Aboriginal guides are available at many places you can visit during your Australian tour, and during the course of your tour you will likely hear creation stories that have been handed down thousands of years. Guides are often accompanied by experienced translators, allowing them to speak their traditional language. The Aboriginal people vary depending on their location; the people of the islands and coasts having differing traditions then those of the expansive Outback.

While on an Aboriginal-guided tour of Australia you should be sure to try bush tucker by either taking one of the widely available tours focusing the food itself and its preparation, or stopping by an Aboriginal cultural festival. Bush tucker, as it’s now called, is the food that sustained Australia’s original people for thousands of years and has now gone mainstream as Australian chefs experiment with the unique recipes. All in all, there is so much to take in on an Australia tour that you could easily spend months there letting yourself get lost in the rich history and culture of this beautiful and historical land.

Goa Wildlife – The Enchanting Feature of Your Goa Tour

Goa, the land of surprises, is visited for the perfect blend of sun, sea, sand, surf and sea food. But there are some other factors also, which add some more harm to the divine beauty of this small state. Goa is, undoubtedly, gifted with incredible natural beauty. And in order to protect the same from the forces of modernization, the state has set aside four wild-life sanctuaries (including one bird sanctuary) nestled in the wooded areas. The entire area is covered by the lofty Western Ghats mountains, which are endowed with a lush green canopy and serve as a haven for exotic species of flora and fauna.

Geographically, almost one-third of Goa is covered with forests. Goa wildlife sanctuaries together cover an area of 755 square km, or around 60 percent of forest area and 20 percent of the geographical area of the state. The four wildlife sanctuaries in Goa are:

* Bhagvan Mahavir Wildlife Sanctuary
* Bondla Forest
* Catigao Wildlife Sanctuary
* Dr. Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary

As per the studies, Goa wildlife is blessed with over 1512 documented species of plants, over 275 species of birds, about 48 species of animals and over 60 species of reptiles. While enjoying the wildlife tours in Goa or the Jungle Safaris in Goa, you can spot a number of mammals like deer, ox, wild boar, bear, hyena, panther, wild cat, sloth, monkey, Indian elephant, squirrel, bat and dolphin.

Dr. Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary is famous all over the world. It is simply a paradise for bird lovers and ornithologists. You can spot a number of local/migratory birds here, including cormorant, coot, openbill stork, kingfisher, drongo, bulbul and weaver bird, besides dove, parrot, vulture, kite, quail and hoopoe. Out of the 60 species of reptiles in Goa, there are 23 species of snakes.

Goa wildlife sanctuaries offer various tours for tourists to wander the forest areas for a nominal charge. In short, Goa is not about the beaches and the churches only. There is a lot more to explore. The state flourishes in a rich collection of flora and fauna and has an assortment of rare and varied species of animals and plants thriving in the Western Ghats.

Goa Wildlife Sanctuaries are truly an amazing feature of Goa Tourism. Wish to have a break from the monotonous hectic and busy life? Plan a Goa Tour with family or friends, and explore the enchanting Goa Wildlife.