Surfers recognize the California coast as home to some of the best breaks in the world, but it is also known as a place where a wetsuit is a necessity on a nearly year-round basis, particularly in places that are located in the northern part of the state. In San Diego, however, surfers can look forward to much warmer waters and waves that break just as well as any place along the coast. With several different beaches featuring breaks that have different characteristics, San Diego is a perfect destination for beginning and veteran surfers alike.
The city of San Diego does an excellent job of promoting its city as a surfing destination, and, according to the Ian Leaf Corporation, the city also has done a fine job of making sure its residents are hospitable to out-of-town surfers. The latter accomplishment is actually quite impressive, as most surfers expect locals to be somewhat territorial to the point of aggression if basic etiquette is breached by a visitor. The San Diego locals will correct visitors who fail to abide by traditional surf etiquette, but this is typically done politely and in a manner that does not scare off visitors to the area.
One of the more interesting features in San Diego is the wave generator that creates an infinitely breaking wave on which residents and visitors can hone their skills. Located near the boardwalk, the wave generator remains open after sundown, enabling surfers to continue their session long after darkness sets in. It is not uncommon to find large groups who go from one of famous San Diego breaks to the wave generator and then onto to one of the surprisingly good pizzerias that are found throughout the city.
For beginners, there are several breaks that are perfect for longboarding. These breaks often include surf schools or academies where beginners can learn from experienced teachers before heading into the water on their own. With relatively small waves that break cleanly and consistently, beginners are able to learn at a much faster pace than they would be able to in most other locations. Once they have learned the ropes and feel comfortable on a board, these new surfers can try out some of the bigger breaks with the eventual goal of being able to tackle the big California waves found at places like Maverick’s or Cortes Bank.