Dominican Republic surfing locations and best beaches
Besides being the birthplace of that infectious genre of music known as Merengue, the Dominican Republic is home to some great surfing and water sports activities such as diving and jet-skiing. The island sticks out into the Atlantic and picks up surf from the north, east and south (and occasionally the west). The island is blessed with a deep ocean trench off shore so the surf has more power here than elsewhere. The coral reefs and craggy coastline make up a series of quality surf spots.
Dominican Republic surf conditions and best seasons
Surf conditions are consistent throughout the year with summer months relying on trade wind swell and tropical disturbances. Trade winds blow hard by the afternoon, so slack-wind days or early morning go-outs are preferred along the north and east coastlines. The same forecasts that make neighbouring island Puerto Rico turn on, work wonders on the Dominican as well. Winter surf reports light up thanks to these same big North Atlantic systems.
The Dominican is a warm tropical environment with ocean temperatures averaging in the low 80s Fahrenheit. It’s board shorts and bikini weather year round as the air varies only slightly in temperature keeping in the mid-70s to mid-80s consistently. It can get quite rainy in September, October and November as tropical storms move through the area.
The main surf breaks in the Dominican Republic are clustered along the northeast shore. La Puntiallia is a reliable righthand reef break that turns on in north to northeast swells. Encuentro is east of Puerto Plato and surrounded by several consistent and quality breaks. Another spot, El Broke is also very exposed, picking up heaps of swell and working best in Winter and Spring.
Dominicanа surfing schools
The island has several surf schools. Bobo’s Surf School has courses ranging from total beginner to intermediate and also offers “tune up” courses. They have private lessons daily starting at $45 for two hours of friendly, helpful instruction. You can book into three and seven lesson intensive packages that too that run $125 and $270 respectively.
Located at Playa Bonita, Carolina’s Surf School is run by former pro surfer and six-time national champion Carolina Gutirrez. Private lessons start at $50 for two hours and group lessons run $35. Carolina will also guide you to the best surf on the island if you opt in for a private tour.
No worries if your Spanish is rusty, they teach surfing in English, Spanish, Russian and Italian. Private lessons start at $115 for two hours. The crew recommend taking multi-day classes to really improve. Five day rouses are $450 for a total of 10-hours of instruction.
Dominican Republic hotels for surfers
Located on Cabarete Beach (Dominican Republic), El Magnifico Resort has clean, modern, heavy-on-the-native-wood rooms starting at $59 per night. Their penthouses are a step up in luxury and overlook the lush jungle on this unique point of land. The central pool is tucked away beneath palm trees and the grounds have a clean plantation vibe.
El Encuentro is a surf stay that lets you choose what type of building you’ll be sleeping in. So many options here from villas to studios to bungalows to standard hotel rooms. Their open-air palapa style restaurant is popular with guests and locals alike and their saltwater pool is just the trick to unwind after all that surfing. Since it’s a surf-focused stay, they offer surf classes, yoga and a few other healthy, active lifestyle options. Rooms start at $45
Billed as a social and stylish surf retreat, Swell Surf Camps is easily identifiable by their amazing tropical garden area and tranquil pool. The hotel is rich with social activity at their several communal areas. Their learn to surf packages include a one week stay, transportaion, surf lessons, breakfast, four dinners and access to all facilities starting at $999. But they pride themselves on being flexible, so check in if you have special requests.
Dominican Republic is a great vacation place for water sports activities.
Dominican Republic surfing guide and tips prepared by Bryan Dickerson (wavepoolmag.com) for Dailystoke.com’s surf guides.
Photo by Eugen Dubrovin