SURF SCHOOLS IN CROYDE BAY

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Croyde Bay is a paradise for surfers who are drawn to the North Devon resort for its fantastic surf, stunning scenery, and laid-back atmosphere. This bay has some of the best conditions for surfing in the UK, with world-class waves comfortably rivalling those of the Cornish coast. People have been surfing at Croyde Bay for over 100 years, originally on solid wooden boards, known because of their shape as “coffin-lids” and over time progressing on to more surfer-friendly alternatives.

Today, small businesses at the beach and in the vibrant village cater to the surfer’s every need, and you won’t be surprised to find a plethora of surf schools here. When it comes to Croyde surf schools, surf lessons and surf hire, there are lots of options. Let’s take a look at four of the most popular schools.

Surfing Croyde Bay

Based in the heart of the village, Surfing Croyde Bay is just a few minutes walk from the beach via a path through the dunes. The director, Damon Beveridge, has some serious coaching credentials. Before setting up Surfing Croyde Bay, Damon was Head Junior Coach for Team England and Team GB. All the surfing instructors and coasteering guides are experienced and fully qualified life guards. Surfing Croyde Bay also has the lowest ratio of students to instructors of any Surfing England accredited school, with a maximum group size of 6 for each instructor. Smaller group sizes are safer and give plenty of opportunity for individual attention from the instructor.

Inland surfing is also available, which is ideal for anyone new to paddle boarding and younger children. This gives you a chance to learn your new skills in a safer environment, without having to contend with a current, and with far less wind than at the coast.

A surfboard and wetsuit are provided, if you need them, for your surf lesson. You don’t need to have booked lessons with Surfing Croyde Bay to hire surfing gear from them. Equipment available for hire includes Softech boards. These top quality boards are designed to give enhanced buoyance and stability, so they’re ideal for beginners to learn on. Tiki wetsuits are available to hire for adults and children.

Surfing Croyde Bay offers:

• Group lessons
• Private lessons
• Family paddle boarding lessons
• Paddle boarding weekends
• Inland lake paddle boarding
• Extreme coasteering
• Adventure training coasteering
• Team building sessions
• Equipment hire

Surf South West

The Surf South West school has been teaching people to surf for over 20 years, and has Surfing England Centre of Excellence accreditation. The experienced instructors teach beginners in groups or one-to-one sessions. Choose a five-lesson package and you can opt to pack the sessions into two and a half days, or spread them over a week.

If you fancy a change from surfing, try out some of the other activities which are available such as coasteering and paddle boarding, sometimes called SUP or Stand Up Paddle boarding.

A specialist area for Surf South West is its adaptive surfing. Customised boards are designed to make surfing accessible to people with restricted mobility.

Surf South West offers :

• Private lessons
• Group lessons
• Family lessons
• Weekend courses
• Multi Lesson packages
• Adaptive surfing
• Paddle boarding
• Surf & yoga courses
• Instructor courses (learn to become a surf instructor)

Croyde Surf Academy

You can find Croyde Surf Academy located at Down End car park, which is on the outskirts of the village as you head into Croyde from Braunton.

This surf school is so confident in its ability to get beginners going quickly that it gives a stand-up guarantee. You’ll get your second surf lesson free if you haven’t managed to stand up and ride on the board during your first lesson. The head coach has over 20 years of surfing experience, and other instructors have been surfing for at least 10 years, so they have a huge amount of expertise to pass on to students.

Croyde Bay Surf Academy offers:

• Beginners lessons
• Advanced lessons
• Private lessons
• Family lessons
• Paddle boarding
• Coasteering
• Equipment hire
• Bike hire

Group lessons are offered from March to November. Private surf lessons are available all year round.

Surf Saunton

As you’d imagine, Surf Saunton is based at the beautiful Saunton Sands – a three-mile stretch of sandy beach. This offers plenty of space for new surfers to practise away from the more experienced surfers. Saunton is less prone to the rips which are common at Croyde, so it can be an ideal environment for younger children and novices. Surf Saunton is a relative newcomer to the surf school scene, but the instructors have plenty of experience of surfing, having surfed all over the world.

Being a tiny hamlet, Saunton itself doesn’t offer a wide range of accommodation, with the main option being the luxury beach-front hotel. So bear in mind that if you want to learn to surf here you may need to travel in every day. You don’t necessarily need a car or van to get to Saunton – the surf bus stops here as it travels between Braunton and Croyde.

Equipment (board and wetsuit) is provided for your lesson. There is also an indoor area available for dry changing in wet weather.

Surf Saunton offers:

• Group lessons
• Private lessons (one to one or group)
• 3 session package for beginners

Plan ahead and book in advance

Croyde gets very busy in peak season, so if you’re going to be visiting in the summer holidays, it’s worth thinking about planning ahead and booking some lessons in advance, particularly if you want to get started on your first day. You can book online with all of these surf schools – or call them if you want some advice on the type of lesson to book.

Although there are plenty of surf schools to choose from in the area, our personal favourite is Surfing Croyde Bay. It has been featured by the BBC, Vogue and The Independent – showing just how widely respected this surf school is. Surfing Croyde Bay has also been given “Centre of Excellence” status by Surfing England.

The quality and experience of the instructors is hard to beat, and smaller group sizes are a real bonus. So if you’re looking for surfing lessons, or just need to hire boards in North Devon, head straight to Surfing Croyde Bay for the very best in surfing lessons and surf equipment hire.