Jalisco, Mexico, located along the country’s beautiful Pacific coastline, is a surfing paradise with its warm waters, stunning beaches, and consistent waves. But where are the best places to surf?
Whether you’re a beginner looking to catch your first wave or an experienced surfer seeking new challenges, Jalisco has something to offer everyone. In this guide, we’ll explore the best beaches, surfing seasons, and more to help you plan an unforgettable trip to this vibrant region.
If you’re already familiar with Jalisco and can’t wait to get going, our Tranquil Vibes Jalisco Vacation is ready and waiting for you! Looking for a private surf trip with an itinerary curated just for your group- check our Travel If You’s private Mexico tours. We pride ourselves on creating once-in-a-lifetime vacations for small groups. For an all-inclusive experience that is anything but ordinary, look no further than Travel If You.
To learn more about this beautiful Mexican state, take a look at our Jalisco Travel Guide. Here we cover everything from time zones and cell phones to must-see spots and local bites. But, for now, join us on a virtual board to surf the shores of Jalisco. Surf’s up!
Surfing Beaches in Jalisco
Jalisco is studded with beautiful beaches that are ideal for surfing. We’ve rounded up some of the best surf spots for you to choose from.
Surfing in Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco
Puerto Vallarta in Jalisco is a popular surf spot with diverse breaks suitable for all levels. There are plenty of surf schools along the beach, so if you’re a beginner or looking to rent a board, you’ll have no problem!
Along with its stunning beaches and warm waters, Puerto Vallarta offers a wide range of accommodations, restaurants, and nightlife options. You can also walk along the Malecón Boardwalk, which runs for 12 blocks along Puerto Vallarta’s Centro and Zona Romántica.
Surfing in Puerto Vallarta allows visitors to enjoy a perfect blend of water sports and cultural exploration, making it an ideal destination for those seeking adventure and relaxation. There are opportunities to surf right in town or adventure to a nearby beach town!
Surfing in Barra de Navidad, Jalisco
Barra de Navidad is an idyllic beach destination that offers consistent waves and a friendly surf community, making it a popular spot for surfers of all levels. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner, Barra de Navidad has the perfect wave for you. Barre de Navidad is in the southern portion of Jalisco and is far less developed than the north. It offers surfers a remote Mexico getaway.
Surrounded by picturesque landscapes and warm waters, the beach town provides an ideal setting for a laid-back surf vacation. After a day of riding the waves, visitors can relax in the charming town, savor local cuisine, and witness stunning sunsets over the ocean.
Surfing in Quimixto, Jalisco
Surrounded by lush jungle and pristine beaches, Quimixto is a surfing paradise away from the crowds. The area boasts consistent waves that cater to surfers of varying levels, from beginners to experts. It’s a very small area, so we recommend bringing your own equipment if you’re headed here.
With its secluded and unspoiled beauty, Quimixto provides a serene and authentic escape for surf enthusiasts. After catching the waves, visitors can explore the charming village, hike to the nearby waterfall, and relish the tranquility of this coastal oasis. Quimixto is boat access only, so you will need to arrange a boat taxi or private transportation to the town. We recommend staying overnight to fully relax in this tranquil paradise.
Wave Strength and Surfing Conditions in Jalisco
Jalisco’s Pacific coastline experiences a mix of wave strengths throughout the year, making it a year-round surfing destination. Of course, there are seasonal variations that may impact your trip so keep reading for advice on when to time your surfing trip.
Surfing in Jalisco in Summer (June to September)
During the summer months, Jalisco experiences smaller swells, typically ranging from 2 to 4 feet. These gentler waves are perfect for beginners and less experienced surfers.
The water temperature is warmer, and the weather is generally pleasant, attracting tourists from around the world. However, be prepared for more crowds at popular surf spots. This time is the rainy season, so expect afternoon and overnight thunderstorms.
Surfing in Jalisco in Fall (October to November)
The fall season marks the transition from smaller summer waves to larger swells. Surf heights can vary between 3 to 6 feet, providing an excellent opportunity for intermediate surfers to progress their skills.
The weather remains pleasant, and the crowds start to thin out after the summer rush. You will find this is the most affordable time to travel to Jalisco!
Surfing in Jalisco in Winter (December to February)
Winter is when Jalisco experiences its most significant surf swells, with waves ranging from 4 to 10 feet. Advanced surfers will find challenging and powerful waves during this time, particularly in spots like Boca de Pascuales. The region still offers some beaches with waves for beginners!
The water temperature remains comfortable, so a light wetsuit should be fine. This is a busy time of the year for Jalisco, so plan ahead!
Surfing in Jalisco in Spring (March to May)
Spring offers a mix of wave heights, typically ranging from 2 to 5 feet. It’s a great time for all levels of surfers to enjoy the waves without the large crowds seen during the peak winter months.
The water temperature is pleasant, making it an ideal time to visit Jalisco for surfing.
Surfing Essentials and Safety in Jalisco
Before hitting the waves, ensure you have the necessary equipment and knowledge to surf safely. If you’re a first-time surfer or aren’t super confident in the water, there are plenty of opportunities to take surf lessons at surf schools in Jalisco.
Bring your surfboard if you have one (and you can fit it in your luggage!) or consider renting one from local surf shops. For beginners, soft-top or foam boards are excellent choices as they provide more stability and are less likely to cause injuries. If you join a lesson, they will provide you with a surfboard.
While Jalisco’s waters are generally warm, a thin wetsuit might be necessary, especially during the winter months when the water temperature can drop slightly. These can also be rented in Jalisco.
This is a beach basic, but bears repeating: wear your sunscreen! Don’t forget to choose a sunscreen with high SPF and top it up every few hours, especially if you’re going in and out of the water.
While on the beach, consider accessorizing! We’re talking about wide-brimmed hats and sunglasses to protect yourself from the strong sun.
Brush Up on Your Local Surf Knowledge
Always check in for the weather and wave conditions online ahead of your day of surfing. You can always talk with local surf shops or experienced surfers about current conditions, safety tips, and any potential hazards.
Accommodation and Dining in Jalisco
Jalisco offers a variety of accommodation options to suit all budgets. Sayulita and Punta Mita have numerous surf camps, hotels, and vacation rentals close to the beach and are only a short drive from Puerto Vallarta, even though in the state of Nayarit. Barra de Navidad has more limited options but offers a more secluded and rustic experience.
Regarding dining, Jalisco is famous for its delicious cuisine. Don’t miss trying traditional dishes like ceviche, tacos, and seafood platters. The surf towns and beach areas have plenty of eateries where you can savor these mouthwatering delights.
Explore Jalisco Beyond Surfing
While surfing is the highlight of your trip, Jalisco has so much more to offer! Take time to explore the local culture, visit nearby towns, and indulge in various activities such as whale watching, snorkeling, or hiking in the surrounding mountains. Discover more activities in our blog: the Top Ten Things to Do in Jalisco.
While that rounds up our virtual beach tour, we hope you feel inspired to visit Jalisco to surf. Even if boarding isn’t your thing, there are so many authentic experiences to enjoy in this untapped tourist spot.
Perhaps we’ll see you on our Tranquil Vibes Jalisco Vacation? Don’t forget, we also offer custom Mexico holiday experiences so you can explore Jalisco your way. Whether you’re a go-getter or prefer sitting back, relaxing, and enjoying the local culture, we can make it happen.
If you’re interested in an all-inclusive vacation that offers it all , just get in touch with a TIY travel expert for a no-obligation consultation! Until next time, adios amigos!