The North Coast is famed for incredible surf spots and whether you are an experienced pro or a total beginner, there is a location ideal for all abilities.
Cornwall is no doubt one of the most popular locations to take to the waves. There are many popular surfing destinations throughout the region that are particularly great for people learning this exhilarating sport. For those that know their messy waves to swell directions, Cornwall also offers an ideal spot to perfect your technique.
The summer season brings everyone out in their masses to capture a piece of the action but autumn is actually one of the best times to surf. The less crowded beaches mixed with relatively mild air and warmer sea temperatures (thanks to our relative proximity of the gulf stream pushing up water from the southern Atlantic Ocean) give you a great chance to catch those regular swells. So, if you’re heading to Cornwall on a surfing holiday or you’re looking to learn the basics on a family break, here are 10 fantastic family surf escapes in Cornwall’s finest locations.
The Light House
Experience luxury alongside North Cornwall’s coastline at a stay in The Light House in Bude. Get family and friends together, and take to the waves at the beautiful choice of nearby sandy beaches and discover a stunning contemporary coastal home designed and built by owners who have featured on the TV show Grand Designs. Indulge in this relaxing surf stay and feel the sand between your toes with just a short walk to the glorious Atlantic shores.
Atlantic Bliss at Zenith
For a stylish stay, just a stone’s throw from Whipsiderry and Porth beach, this cool coastal apartment is the ideal surf retreat. Here you’ll enjoy spectacular sea views, contemporary accommodation, and easy access to plenty of attractions and the best surfing spots in the county. Atlantic Bliss at Zenith also bases you in an ideal location to enjoy the surf hub of Newquay, home to Fistral Beach. The whole family will love this incredibly exciting stay with top conditions to take to your board.
Overlooking the bay of Crackington Haven, you’ll find this little gem just a short walk from the stunning sandy Cornish shores. Here you can enjoy a tranquil setting with a charming patio area to enjoy outdoor dining overlooking sea views. This idyllic surf spot is great as it offers a mix of family-friendly surf conditions to waves for the more experienced. Valley Breeze bases you in a fantastic spot to explore further afield too with the nearby locations of Bude and Widemouth Bay just a short drive away.
No 5 The Beach
Kennack Sands, The Lizard
Renowned for its surf school and beautiful sandy beach, Kennack Sands is the idyllic surf haven. So why not treat the family to stay just 900 yards from this stunning coastal spot. No 5 The Beach is a fantastic apartment offering a contemporary setting on the captivating west coast offering you a fantastic base to explore the surrounding area whilst taking to the board and enjoying those Atlantic waves.
Just a short drive from the stunning sands of St Ives, you’ll find an idyllic bolthole offering spectacular uninterrupted views and boutique accommodation. Rosecott is a charming reverse level property providing the perfect spot to explore the west coast and the exhilarating surfing beaches that surround you. St Ives itself is a surfing mecca for families, with Porthmeor beach providing a large stretch to take to the waves. If you’re looking for some expert advice, head to the nearby surf school for equipment hire and lessons.
Although the south coast of Cornwall isn’t a premiere destination to head out on the waves, Falmouth is a brilliant place for beginners and families looking to enjoy a relaxed surfing break. Overlooking the harbour, Perfect View provides a beautiful stay enjoying contemporary accommodation with a spectacular decking area for perfect al fresco dining. This idyllic bolthole bases you in an ideal spot to enjoy the nearby surfing beaches of Swanpool, Gyllngvase and Maenporth which produce some half decent waves in the right conditions.
Explore the exquisite west coast on a surf stay at The Puffin in Mullion. This south-facing property situates you at a stunning cliff-top location overlooking the ocean and bases you just a short drive from the beautiful National Trust beach of Poldhu. After a long day catching those west coast waves, you can relax in the tranquility of this comfortable accommodation and get the family together for an evening meal on the outside decked area.
Well House Barn
This boutique-style retreat is ideal for soaking up the best of the North Cornwall coastline. Placing you within easy reach of top surf spots including Polzeath and Widemouth Bay, this tranquil cottage offers the ultimate rural and coastal mix. Nestled in the Valency Valley yet just a few miles from the Atlantic Coast, this contemporary barn creates a warming ambience and relaxing surf escape for the whole family.
Treat family and friends to the ultimate indulgent surfing retreat with a stay at Miners in Carharrack. Basing you just a few miles from the golden sands of Portreath and Porthtowan, this breath-taking spot offers a relaxing stay with an idyllic mix of rural and coastal experiences. You’ll enjoy spacious accommodation with a contemporary vibe and take advantage of a relaxing hot tub, warming log burner and spacious balcony with seating overlooking amazing countryside views.
If you’re looking for a secluded spot nestled in the Cornish countryside yet want to take advantage of North Cornwall’s best surf beaches, a family break in this spacious and contemporary farmhouse is the idyllic choice. You’re only a few minutes’ drive to the sandy shores that adorn the coastline including the family-friendly surf beaches of Fistral, Crantock, Holywell Bay and Perranporth. With comfortable accommodation and large outside space for al fresco dining, Martins Place is a great place to get the whole family together on an adventurous surf escape.
Look outside of the usual Gold Coast haunts you will find less crowded line ups. You can choose between surfing with dolphins at Byron Bay or discovering uncrowded beach breaks as you travel along the coast. Go and explore. Here are some classic east coast destinations.The combination of geography, weather and surf culture has made Australia’s east coast one of the most popular places on Earth for surfers.
200 kilometres south of Sydney the south coast stretches from Wollongong through Shoalhaven down through Ulladulla. The Shoalhaven region has some of Australia’s best surfing spots to suit all styles and abilities. Aussie Pipe and Bawley Point are a couple of the heaviest waves on the east coast, but there are plenty of uncrowded beach breaks, reefs and points to explore. The local surf culture is fun and relaxed. There are plenty of waves to be caught all year round and often a surfer can have the water all to themselves.
Another surf town off the beaten path. Coffs Harbour is 527km north of Sydney, about six-hours drive or there are daily flights from Sydney (1 hour), Brisbane (45 minutes) and Melbourne (2 hours). Six different beaches offer sandy bottomed point breaks that can handle big swells along with beach breaks to suit everyone from groms to superstars. Coffs Harbour has a great surf community with miles of unspoilt beaches. Definitely one to visit.
Once a small hippy town Byron Bay has grown into one of Australia’s must visit surf towns. With stretches of beach and the Pass a long point nearby it has a bubbling community and very hip bars, cafes and places to stay. There are also festivals and plenty of art and music to keep you entertained apres surf.
The Sunshine Coast
If you are thinking about tropical points, long mellow rides, or great beach breaks and miles of crowded coastline then the Sunshine Coast is for you. From classic leg buckling points in Noosa, to hard to get to classics like Double Island point the Sunshine Coast has it all and with a much mellower vibe than the Goldie.
Why not drive it?
Great east coast road trips were once the stuff of legend. Flying into Sydney or Brisbane buy a van and then drive down or up the coast was the way to see the east coast of Australia. With more flights people are now more likely to fly into one of the major airports and just hang out in Sydney or the Gold Coast. But with over 800 miles of coastline to explore between the Sunshine Coast of Queensland and Ulladulla in NSW they are missing out on so many gems, beach side campsites, empty waves and experiences the road trip provides.
Surf tours, rentals and activities
Australian Surf Tours
Locations: Sydney, Thirroul and Bendalong in New South Wales
“More Than Just a Surf Camp”. AST will take you on a surfing adventure that will give you that little bit extra out of your holidays. Surrounded by amazing waves, idyllic scenery and staff with a passion for life, this should be your next destination! Learn to Surf and Surf Guiding also available.
www.australiansurftours.com.au firstname.lastname@example.org +61 (0) 428 162 640
Locations: Depots in Sydney, Brisbane, Perth and Cairns, seasonally in Broome and Bear Rentals offer collection and return to most other major Australian cities.
At Bear Rentals we run a fleet of fully kitted out Land Rovers – think of everything you need for that dream Australian road trip and that’s what we provide! We set our campers up so you can get off beaten track to find the perfect break away from the maddening crowds.
www.bearrentals.com.au email@example.com +61 2 9557 1001
Walking on Water
Locations: Throughout Shoalhaven, New South Wales
Walking On Water & Ulladulla Surf Schools are a multi award winning company offering Surfing, (beginner, intermediate and competition level), Surf Safaris, Water Skiing, Wake Boarding, Wake Surfing, SUP, Kayaking, plus the furiously fast, 60 MPH Boogie Slingshot! The awesome range of activities and surf courses have the highest quality coaching and Australia’s best instructor to pupil ratio’s.
Locations: Arrawarra and Byron Bay (travelling from Sydney)
Experience the Aussie surf lifestyle on a Mojosurf 5-14 Day Surf Adventure travelling from Sydney to Byron Bay stopping at the awesome Spot X Surf Camp right on the beach. Mojosurf will take care of all transport, surf lessons, accommodation, food and surf equipment – you just have to come experience it!
www.mojosurf.com firstname.lastname@example.org +61 2 6639 5100
Coffs Coast Surf Tours
Locations: New South Wales. The entire Coffs Coast, including Arrawarra, Crescent Head and as far north as Angourie.
Grab a friend and book a full personalised Luxury Surf, Sights & Stay Guided Tour Package which fits all levels of surfer and non-surfers with sight-seeing, eco-tours and many additional activities also included. With a beautiful beachside apartment and a delicious breakfast provided, this is a value-packed, stress-free Aussie holiday you’ll remember!.
email@example.com +61409 485 007
Let’s Go Surfing
Locations: Bondi Beach, Byron Bay and Maroubra Beach
Join the friendly LETS GO SURFING team on world famous Bondi Beach or beautiful Byron Bay for an unforgettable Aussie Surf Experience! We provide expert local surf knowledge and advice plus board and wetsuit hire at all our locations. With over 21 years of experience, the LGS team caters for all level of surfer, from beginner to advanced.
www.letsgosurfing.com.au firstname.lastname@example.org 02 93651800
Costa Rica is one of the few Central American nations that hasn’t got a blood soaked history of civil wars, guerrilla fighting, CIA-inspired coups and crazed despot dictators. There are no commie insurgencies or private armies here. Which in layman’s terms means it’s safe. The flip side of this is the number of tourists who head here to do the Centro thing without putting their necks on the line, and consequently (as tourism is the biggest industry) the cost. Dirt cheap Costa ain’t. If you’re stopping off here as part of longer Centro trip then you’ll definitely feel the financial pain when compared to neighbouring countries. That said, prices aren’t crazy and if you do your research you can stay somewhere for a couple of weeks without completely blowing your travel fund.
CR has been on surfers’ maps since the ‘60s and it’s a chilled and easy trip. The waves are consistent and fun, suitable for pretty much everyone, from those just starting out to the numerous pro’s who spend a few months here on winter escapes knowing that they’ll score good surf, day in, day out.
Guanacaste is Costa Rica’s northernmost province and it’s home to loads of good spots which break pretty much all year round. Size wise, well, you can leave the rhinochaser at home. The surf is rarely bigger than head high, but equally it’s rarely less than shoulder high. Now that’s consistency. With a Pacific-facing coastline which is all exposed to the same swell and has the same thermal conditions, it’s also not the kind of place where you spend hours each day checking spot after spot: if it’s on then it’s on. Hiring a car is worth it if there are a few of you, otherwise just get a transfer from the airport to one of the main towns and spend what you save on Imperial, the local beer of choice.
Tamarindo is one of the most popular options for an ‘everything you need within a 10-minute walk’ trip. It’s a beautiful spot with the town itself lying between two national parks. The main road through the town is lined with places to stay and places to eat, and you’ll meet plenty of people on their twentieth trip here; if it ain’t broke and all that. Within walking distance of the town you’ve got Rivermouth (a hollow right), Pico Pequeño (a reef which can barrel with the right swell direction), and Playa Langosta (a selection of hollow beach break peaks—some better than others, and some more crowded than others, so take your pick). Aside from all this good shizzle right on your doorstep, the other big pull to Tamarindo is access to the classic spots of Witches Rock and Ollie’s Point (of Endless Summer 2 fame). As both these spots are situated in a national park, there’s no accommodation close by and access is only really by boat (or a sketchy and not-really-worth-it 4x4 mission). This fact keeps crowds to a minimum, and you can expect to score some classic surf with only a handful of other guys in a properly stunning locale. Boats leave Tamarindo at first light and return at dusk. It’s not cheap though – you’re looking at around $100 for a day trip.
Ten kilometres (six miles) south of Tamarindo is Playa Avellanes and its neighbour Playa Negra. If you’re after the quiet life then this is a good place to stay…and you can be in the water before the Tamarindo dwellers have even finished their breakfast. Playa Avellanes has a rivermouth and a beach with plenty of quality peaks, while Playa Negra has a perfect righthand reef break.
When you’re travelling around a new country, it’s often the towns that you hear about first; your knowledge of the surrounding breaks then complete the picture once you’ve spent some time there. Nosara is a prime example of this – it’s the next well-known town down the coast from Tamarindo, and the destination of choice for many CR veterans. More chilled out than Tamarindo, there are just as many decent breaks around but fewer surfers vying for a piece of the action. Junquillal, Playa Marbella and Playa Pelada will keep you plenty busy for starters.
Continuing south along the Nicoya Peninsula, Playa Coyote is a long beach with fairly average waves but a fun righthand point at its southern end.
The next gathering point for surfers is the area around Santa Teresa and Mal Pais, a beachside community which sprawls along the coast for several kilometres. (Technically, it’s situated in neighbouring Puntarenas province, but it completes the stretch of coastline already described so it makes sense to include it here.)
There are loads of groovy little haunts here, from backpackers through to swish rental houses with pools. The Funky Monkey and The Green Rooms are both popular with surfers. Surfwise, there are dozens of fun beach break spots straight out the front which keep the multitude of visitors happy. And if you happen to be here when a bigger pulse of swell rolls in, then you’re in luck – there are several reefs close by which can get pretty fruity.
Hopping over to the next province, Puntarenas, those looking for consistent surf breaks should head to Playa Hermosa, located 10 minutes south of Jaco. Not be confused with Playa Hermosa in the Guanacaste province, this serious surfing haven is home to both national and international wave lovers. With world class waves aplenty, this spot is hosts a local grassroots surf contest called ‘Backyard Surf Series’ featuring the best surf talent in Costa Rica plus Playa Hermosa holds the International Quiksilver Surf Championship every year. The area has plenty of bars and restaurants for those looking to hang out, surf, eat and grab a beer.
– Roger Sharp
WHERE TO STAY
BOOK SURF CAMPS
At BookSurfCamps.com you can search, compare and book all 119 Costa Rican surf camps from one easily digestible page. Whether you are planning to improve your surfing skills or to simply start learning, surfing in Costa Rica will give you the challenge you are looking for! Select one of the best surf vacations on BookSurfCamps.com and let the surfing fun begin. No booking fees and friendly customer support!
www.booksurfcamps.com service@BookSurfCamps.com +44 20 3856 4015
SURF INN HERMOSA
Surf Inn Hermosa invites you to enjoy a slice of Pura Vida paradise where the pressures and priorities of life are left behind.
Nestled in the heart of Playa Hermosa and with beautiful coastline and some of the best surf in Costa Rica on the doorstep, Surf Inn Hermosa has become a highly sought-after destination for those looking for the ultimate surf experience.
Enjoy this boutique style hotel as a solo traveler, with friends or as a family, with four one bedroom studios a few hundred feet from the beach and two oceanfront apartments available. These vacation rentals were custom built and designed to help you enjoy the beach all day long!
Surf Inn Hermosa offers a surfing program for everyone, from beginners who want to learn to avid surfers looking to improve and everything in between, their local surf instructors help you to achieve your surfing goals.
www.surfinnhermosa.com email@example.com 1-866-304-3265
Hailed as the Costa Rican surf travel experts, for over 18 years CR Surf have planned trips for surfers of all ages and abilities. Working with local boutique hotels to fit all budgets and partnering with surf camps with quality boards and certified instructors. Plus the company promotes sustainable tourism and are 1% for the Planet members.
Continually keeping surfers informed of news and upcoming events, CR Surf have published well over 850 surf reports and forecasts and have helped thousands of surfers and their families with their vacations, successfully linking them up with the best places to surf, stay and play in Costa Rica.
With a mission to help surfers unite their communities by promoting sustainable tourist and protecting costal ecosystems, use their expert services to maximize your time catching waves and find ‘pura vida’!
www.crsurf.com firstname.lastname@example.org 877-787-3007 Video link
Frijoles Locos Surf Shop
“Costa Rica and surfing go together like scones and jam!”
For a brilliant family-adventure-holiday, Frijoles Locos Surf Shop in Playa Grande on the Gold Coast of Guanacaste, ticks all the boxes.
Their years of experience with showing families a fab time really shines through with the Frijoles Locos Family Packages which includes accommodation, airport transfers, not-to-miss activities, private family surf lessons, all the beach equipment rentals you need and so much more. Prices start at $2400USD for a family of 4. For more details have a look at
ADVENTURE PACKAGES www.playagrandesurfshop.com email@example.com +506 2652 9235
Olas Verdes hotel
Olas Verdes is a sustainable beach hotel, with direct access to Playa Guiones through a short walk across the Wildlife Refuge; and 15 minutes from Nosara Airport. Offering casual luxury, Olas Verdes Hotel has the best location to explore the towns of Guiones and Nosara. Wake up with the waves and stay in comfort, while enjoying in-house surf and yoga lessons. El Manglar restaurant features delicious meals and smoothies with fresh organic ingredients. Free breakfast, Wi-Fi, beach cruisers, laundry and parking. Ask for the room specials and discounted Liberia Airport shuttles.
firstname.lastname@example.org www.olasverdeshotel.com+ (506) 2682-0608
REAL SURF TRIPS
Real Surf Trips is home to the most swell exposed and wave-rich surf zone throughout Costa Rica’s Guanacaste coast. From beginner surf packages to the most perfect waves for experienced surfers looking to progress to that next level; this is exactly what an all inclusive surf trip is supposed to be. Whether you’re looking to book a vacation rental for the entire family, or you just want to add in a few yoga classes to your Costa Rica surf trip, Real Surf Trips features every amenity and experience Costa Rica has to offer! All you have to do is show up at the airport and they take care of the rest: first class accommodations, one-of-a-kind service and over 20 years of local surf knowledge, guaranteed to give you the Costa Rica Surf Trip you’ve been dreaming of!
www.realsurftrips.com email@example.com (831) 440-7676
WHEN TO GO
The prime months are May to September.
San Jose (SJO). If you’re flying from Europe, make sure that your stopover in the US is at least two hours so you have time to clear customs and make your connection.
There’s plenty of options from swanky five-star hotels to backpacker hostels.
WATCH OUT FOR
Sunburn and the odd jellyfish.
It’s all about hotdoggin’ so pack accordingly…
You’ll only need boardies.
Think ‘a few quiet beers’ after a long day’s surfing. There aren’t too many places to party, but some towns have livelier bars and clubs.
Visit one of the National Parks; go zip-wiring; or just grab a beer and watch all the hotties on the beach.
Luxury Surf EscapesFancy ramping-up the luxury on your next surf trip? Check out i-escape’s luxury surf hideaways. View i-escape’s full Surf Collection at: www.i-escape.com/surf
If you haven’t heard of i-escape, you’ve been missing out on its handpicked collection of unforgettable places to stay across more than 50 destinations.
With a team of passionate travellers at the helm, i-escape will help you find and book boutique hotels, stylish guesthouses, eco-retreats, safari lodges, stunning beach huts and chic villa rentals – all in some of the world’s most stunning and fascinating locations. Every property has been personally visited by one of the team, and their reviews tell it like it is – the highs, the lows, and everything in between. You’ll pay the same, or sometimes less, as going direct to the accommodation owners, and you might even be treated to extra perks when you arrive.
The Harmony Hotel
Nosara Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica
This tropical paradise eco-hotel is a stone’s throw from Playa Guicones – one of the most stunning surf beaches on the Nicoya Peninsula. The wood and wicker furniture, palm trees, freshwater pool and open-plan layout give the hotel the feel of a 1950’s Hawaiian resort. You won’t find plasma TVs or high-tech gadgets, instead luxury comes in the form of a healing centre, organic food and sunrise yoga on the beach. The rooms’ private patios, hammocks and outdoor showers make the most of the tropical garden setting; look out for howler monkeys, hummingbirds and iguanas, and keep the windows open to let the sound of the waves lull you to sleep.
Camps Bay Cape Town, South Africa
With the majestic backdrop of the Twelve Apostles, Camps Bay is one of Cape Town’s highlights. The palm-fringed beach is known for dramatic sunsets – and for some of the city’s hippest bars and restaurants. A short walk from all the action, these apartments are sleek and modern with private terraces and plunge pools – but the real stars of the show are the breath-taking ocean views. Stay here and you can take advantage of South Africa’s world-class surfing then return to your apartment for a soak in a sea-view tub and a well-deserved beer. Each sleeps 2-6; self catering.
Bali Luxury Private Villa
Seseh Canggu, Indonesia
This blissful villa-for-12 has it all – chic, tropical décor, garden bathrooms, an infinity pool and an unbeatable location. Set in exotic gardens, it is hidden away at the edge of an unspoilt fishing village, with views of swaying rice and palm-fringed surf. Happily, it is just 40 minutes from Denpasar airport. The atmosphere is exclusive, private, laid-back and utterly luxurious. A team of delightful staff intuitively second guess your every need; the only decision you need concern yourself with is whether you can fit in a massage before sunset cocktails and canapés.
Taru Villas – 906
Hikkaduwa Sri Lanka
This mellow bungalow, hugging Hikkaduwa’s golden shores, is blissfully unpretentious. Check the surf every morning from the veranda and enjoy a pre-breakfast swim in your pool. Hikkaduwa’s buzzy surf scene is a short walk away, with some of the best surf breaks in southwest Sri Lanka – though the incredible home-cooked food and the nothing-is-too-much-attitude of the staff make it hard to leave the tranquillity of the villa. Hikkaduwa is also a popular diving location; highlights include the Hikkaduwa Gala caves, rocky-bottomed Kiragala and some fascinating wrecks. Sleeps 2-6.
Villas de Trancoso
Trancoso Bahia, Brazil
Just a couple of hundred yards from the beach in the surf-haven of Bahia, you’ll find this stylish collection of villas and suites. After you’ve sampled the plethora of beach and reef breaks, unwind in your private villa, laze around the pool, or head to the main cabana for a refreshing cocktail. The elegant villas are made from Brazilian wood and palm thatch, and are decked with fine white linen, romantically-draped mosquito nets and colourful rugs – conjuring up a proper luxury beach vibe. Salvador da Bahia has a sandy coastline that covers hundreds of kilometres – perfect for finding surf spots for all levels.
Pacific Coast Mexico
This romantic jungle retreat with a private beach and laid-back vibe is just 10 minutes’ from the surfy town of Sayulita; yet the hidden jungle setting and the sound of waves and birdsong will make you feel miles away from civilisation. Days pass blissfully; there are 29 colourful rooms and casitas but you’d never know it thanks to the acres of space, and the giant fern and palm tree camouflage of the beautiful shoreline. If you have your fill of surfing, go humpback whale watching or simply swing in a hammock, sipping margaritas and watching pelicans out at sea.
South Sands Boutique Hotel
Salcombe Devon, United Kingdom
There aren’t many stylish UK hotels that are literally right on the beach. Here, there’s nothing between you and golden sands – and once here, there’s no need for a car. This is a watersports paradise, with surfing, sailing, windsurfing, kayaking, boating and waterskiing on your doorstep. And once you’ve worked up an appetite, the light and airy restaurant, serving delicious, fresh seafood, has wonderful views across the Salcombe estuary.
The hotel’s beautifully styled, peaceful rooms flaunt New England décor, seascape colours and plantation shutters. Families will love the self-catering Beach Suite apartments and the sailing school next door.
Yallingup Margaret River, Australia
Windmills Break hotel is named after the stunning local surf beach. The Margaret River estuary is one of Australia’s best surfing regions and its annual Classic Surfing Championships are held in November. The hotel has 10 acres of gorgeous gardens, and an infinity pool with loungers and a hot tub. The rooms are dressed in warm chocolates, creams and beiges, with striking landscape photographs on the walls. Yallingup, Eagle Bay and Bunker Bay beaches are all close by, as are the vineyards and wineries of the Margaret River region.
Hossegor Gascony, France
The Landes region of southwest France boasts some of Europe’s largest pine and cork forests, highest sand dunes and world-class surf breaks. This boutique B&B is a real hidden-gem with just four gorgeous bedrooms and cool designer touches, from vintage surfboards to Le Corbusier chaise longues. Decor is beachside-industrial chic: sun-bleached kilims on polished cement floors, brilliant Plümacher prints on white walls. Come in early October when the town of Hossegor hosts the Quiksilver Pro France competition. Respite from the Atlantic breakers comes in the form of strolls through the pine forests or loungers by the hotel’s heated pool.
This quirky, cosy riad is hidden deep within Essaouira’s medina – right at the hub of things, yet only two minutes’ from the beach. Its three apartment suites are arranged around a central colonnaded courtyard, and are amazing value. All have kitchens, sitting areas and exquisitely comfortable king-size beds – but if you’re feeling lazy, there are plenty of restaurants in the vicinity. Essaouira is a surfers’ paradise in winter and perfect for kite surfing in summer. When you’re not in the ocean, you can go camel riding, quad biking or pony trekking along the coast to the sand dunes at Sidi Kaouki. Or follow the coastal highway south towards Agadir to see goats climbing trees in the Argan forest.