Florida, as a state is located in the south-eastern region of the United States of America. It is home to a population of over 21 million people which makes it the third most populous state in the USA.
It is internationally known for golf, tennis, auto racing, and water sports such as surfing. Several beaches in Florida have turquoise and emerald-colored coastal waters and are perfect for surfing. Another feature that makes Florida have the best surf spots is that it has the longest coastline in the United States.
The coastline is approximately 1,350 miles (2,170 km) and not only that. Additionally, there are a total of 4,510 islands of about ten acres or larger in an area that can be found in Florida.
The climate varies from subtropical in the north to tropical in the south. Along with Hawaii, Florida is one of only two states that have a tropical climate.
Also, it is the only continental state that has both a tropical climate and a coral reef. The Florida Reef is the only living coral barrier reef in the continental United States and the third-largest coral barrier reef system in the world (after the Great Barrier Reef and Belize Barrier Reef).
Florida is not known as a surfer’s destination when compared to Hawaii and California, but underestimate the Sunshine state at your own loss. After all, it’s the home of Surf World Champion Kelly Slater, brothers C. J. and Damien Hobgood, and Lisa Andersen.
So if you ever find yourself in Florida and are inching for a good break, check out these beaches we’ve listed for you and go have a ‘swell’ time.
Home to Kelly Slater and the most renowned surf shop, Ron Jon Surf Shop, it is an amazing location for surfing. Known for its calm and consistent waves, add to it the shallow waters and what you have is an ideal environment to learn how to surf. These features make it the best surf spot in Florida for beginners to learn and for not so experienced surfers looking for a challenge.
Daytona Beach has 23 miles of sprawling beaches, with rolling waves hissing at the shallow sandbar. With its subtropical climate, you can never go wrong with Daytona Beach, and its family-friendly water adventures. Gear up to ride the ocean waves with Daytona’s surfing lessons, outfitters, and equipment rental available. However, surfing is regulated here due to the crowd.
This nearly secluded beach is located between Daytona and St. Augustine, making it out of the way of crowds of tourists. Flagler beach is also the birthplace of one of the greatest female surfers, Frieda Zamba. Flagler beach boasts six miles of uncrowded beach sand and surf with the best waves coming in at low tides.
In St. Augustine, you have two places to visit for the best surfing experience. The Blowhole generates some of the biggest waves you’ll ever find.
This makes it one of the best surf spots in Florida. Another spot, The Middles pulls in crowds consistently. Anastasia State Park also offers different other places for surfing.
Dubbed “The Wave Magnet” by locals, you are guaranteed the most consistent waves in the whole state of Florida. You definitely have the room to search for the perfect swell as New Smyrna Beach boasts of 13 miles of pure surfing heaven.
When there, remember to visit the New Smyrna Museum of History, where they have an exhibit dedicated just to surfing. You get the best waves at high tide when the swell is heading southeast. However, be wary of jellyfishes, sharks, and the rip!
The Ponce inlet, which is close by, is also a great place to go. Located between New Smyrna and Daytona, a jetty comes north from New Smyrna which creates a few sandbars at the south end.
This surf spot in Florida guarantees good waves in any swell condition. The higher the tides, the higher the waves. It’s worthy to note that one of these sandbars is called Shark Swallows for a good reason.
There’s a high concentration of surfers here and for a good reason too. Jacksonville offers some of the best beaches with consistent waves made just for surfing.
Hanna Park offers excellent surf, camping, and showers. Officer’s Club, Lighthouse, Mayport Poles, and Beach Pier all offer consistent waves at high tides.
Sebastian Inlet is the birthplace and best surf spot in Florida for “aerial surfing.” With that, it is located in Melbourne Beach on the east coast of Florida. It is also the birthplace of Damien and C. J. Hobgood, twin brothers who are top surfers. For the biggest breaks, get to Monster Hole and ride a 10-foot wave, thanks for a manmade sandbar.
Located on the Gulf coast, it offers good surf breaks but not much in terms of big waves. Except for Reef Road. At Palm Beach’s Reef Road, the waves can get up to 15 feet high. It’s known to many as the state’s “Big Wave Spot”. Other spots of note in Palm beach are St. Petersburg and Venice Inlet.
Places of note in this region are Treasure Island’s Sunset Beach and St. Pete’s Upham Beach. Bradenton has Beach Street and the Twin Piers. Sarasota County Lido Beach and Siesta Key are worthy of note, but the best of them all is Venice Beach.
Perdido Key is situated on a tiny land strip in the northwest corner of the state of Florida, and along with its Perdido Key State Park, offers rolling, white-sand dunes and stunning views of the calm Gulf waters. Here you get to ride the ‘Bungalows’ of Perdido Key.
Pensacola Beach offers one of the best consistent surfing conditions not just in the North-western part of the state, but in Florida as a whole. When in Pensacola, make sure you go to The Pier and The Wall for the best breaks.
Popularly known as “The Breakers”, it offers calm emerald waters, white sand beaches, and a great vacation spot.
If you’re ever around North-West Florida, then you must visit Panama City Beach. Concrete Pier and St. Andrews Jetty offers the very best beaches and water for great surfing.
Miami is known for its celebrities, rich residents, and glorious beaches. And the heat also. But between the months of July and November, you can enjoy good surfing there in South Beach. At low and mid-tides, head to the jetty at First Street for the north to northeast swells. The surfing conditions here are also great for beginners.
Affectionately referred to as “America’s Gateway to the Gulfstream,” Boynton Beach is a great strip for finding some surf. If you paddle about a quarter-mile offshore, there’s a sandbar that gives some long, hollow breaks when a low incoming tide combines with a northeast swell. You can also head to the north side of the inlet during a southeast wind chop to find some uncrowded breaks.
Summer is usually the flattest time of the month for surfing beginning from May through July. However, with a longboard and the ability to paddle, you can enjoy the early morning tides.
When fall comes around, it’s followed closely by the hurricane season which is a blessing most surfers wait for to arrive. This spot reaches its peak in August and September and with the water in the mid 80’s temperature, this is the best time of the year to surf.
North Florida takes the brunt of the winter months. November and December are not so cold and offer plenty of activities, with cold fronts barreling down in succession. January, February, and March still produce surf at the height of winter, but it is much too cold by then.
But the best part of it all is that at that time, it is much less crowded, and these north swells can be superb. Spring comes with clean, clear, and crisp days. Things begin to warm up again by March and April when cold fronts or southeast swells of lows begin to move across the Gulf of Mexico being the main swell provider.
In spring, the weather is windy, so anything can happen, and with the exception of a late cold front, those dreaded summer flat spells make their comeback.
A combination of consistent waves, comfortable water temperatures, tropical to sub-tropical weather, and easy beach access all ensure to make Florida a great place for surfing.
It does not matter whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned veteran, there are a whole lot of places where you can find waves to ride in the Sunshine State, you just need to know where to go look for one. Well, we believe we have helped you with that so, go grab your board and check out our picks for the best places to rip in Florida.
For more information on places to surf, equipment, and surfing reviews that are top-notch, visit https://www.surfingfeed.com.