The Best Surfing Spots in West Cornwall

Surfing is one of the top sports in Cornwall with thousands of people giving it a try for the first time each year. When on holiday most of your favourite beaches will be home to surf schools keen to get you in the water, and standing up for the first time.
In my mind, there are three types of surfers, ‘the novice’, ‘the pro’, and the people like me. I fall into a category with many others. We are the people who have given it a go many a time, have their own board potentially, and can stand up, but by no means can actually surf! It’s all about the image and dream… if you’ve got the skills… I like to think if you’re able to paddle for a wave, catch it, and stand up at some point on said wave, then it’s classed as ‘surfing’. My husband is likely to disagree, but for my own self-esteem, I can surf.

I would also like to point out that I’m only a fair weather surfer… My husband will be out in any weather or temperature if the waves are good, but I’m all about the sunshine. The beginning of my surfing year begins about April if the weathers nice (although you will still need gloves and boots to keep warm), and runs through until September, October at a push. If you can resonate with me here, then you fit into the group I’m calling ‘the sunny surfers’.

If you’re a seasoned surfer and have tried body boarding or surfing before then you may be on the lookout for some of the best places in West Cornwall to ride the waves. We’ve compiled a list of our favourite places to jump in and enjoy the white water, or larger swells that often roll across the Atlantic to Cornwall’s shores.

If you’ve never been surfing before then sign up for some lessons before you try it for yourself. Just remember always swim at a lifeguarded beach if you aren’t ‘a pro’! The lifeguards set up a red and yellow flagged area for bathers and boogie boards, and usually a black and white area right next door for anyone on surf craft. If you don’t know the local conditions, swells, tides and rip currents then always speak to the lifeguards for some advice before entering the water.
The conditions at each beach will vary depending on the swell size, direction, wind, which way the beach faces and the local weather. So you may visit one day and it’s flat, but the next could bring the perfect waves.
If the surf’s up, here’s our list of the best places in the West of Cornwall.

St Agnes

Starting at this quaint North Coast cove of St Agnes, also known as Aggie to the locals. This surfing spot can give big hollow waves when the swell is right and the tides not too high. We would say that this beach, when the waves are hitting, is only really suitable for ‘the pro’. On your average day here you don’t usually get much of a wave so is suitable for bathers and people looking to play around in a small wave. When the winter swells hit Cornwall then the waves wrap up the North Coast. St Agnes provides a sheltered spot from the wind, and the perfect headland for the waves to deflect into.

St Agnes