French Polynesia, one of our top picks for an April surf trip.

Best Surf Destinations in April

Could April be surfing’s most versatile, wave-rich month in the world? We think so — here’s why.

Croix Gagnon

The thing about the month of April…is that it’s kind of a stellar month for surfers anywhere in the world. It’s the Swiss Army knives of surfing months, if you will — a tool for every job; a wave for every coastline. Often, more favorable winds than peak season, less crowds, and combo-swells (for those 180-degree coastlines/islands).

Okay, so now you know April is good nearly everywhere…but where, then, to go out of “everywhere?” Well, do you prefer warm-water reefbreaks, perhaps, accessed by boat charter? Indo’s certainly got some options on that front. Or, are you Europe-based, want something close to home and have a penchant for barreling sandbars? Portugal’s never been closer…

Here are the top eight recommended surf trips for the month of April; now, just make sure that passport’s up to date!

1. Indonesia

Where to: Bali, Java, Sumatra, Mentawai Islands, Telos Islands, Banyak Islands, Asu Island, Sumba, Sumbawa

Wave types: Normally picture perfect, shallow reefbreaks. Some odd beachbreaks around Bali, Sumba, and Sumatra

Swell direction: South-Southwest

Difficulty level: The whole gambit. From soft learner waves around Kuta-Legian, Bali, to expert reefs like Padang Padang, G-Land, or HTs

Marquee wave: Uluwatu

April perks: A few less boats and less crowds in the Mentawais in April, but still very good surf and swell that month

Surf Indonesia
A hand-picked collection of the best surf trips in Indonesia — focused on authentic experiences found nowhere else.

2. Western Australia

Where to: Margaret River, Perth, Kalbarri

Wave types: Reefbreaks, Slab-reefs, Sandbars, Pointbreaks

Swell direction: Southwest-West

Difficulty level: With West Oz’s exposure to swell and dynamic coastline, waves aren’t the most forgiving for beginners, however there are some easier waves in Gas Bay and Perth

Marquee wave: Main Break Margaret River

April perks: The swell and conditions are typically great around April. Great weather, too, for bringing the family (Margaret River is a gorgeous surf town).

3. French Polynesia

Where to: Tahiti, Moorea, Huahine, Tuamotu Islands

Wave types: Normally shallow reefbreaks, with a few beachbreaks like Papenoo and Papara

Swell direction: South-Southwest

Difficulty level: Intermediate to advanced level for the bigger reefbreaks, but there’s a few easier reefs and beachbreaks that accommodate learners

Marquee wave: Teahupo'o

April perks: Less crowds in April as many of the Hawaiians aren’t jetting down for swells since there’s still waves on North Shore

4. Samoa

Where to: The southern coastlines of Upolu and Savaii islands

Wave types: Normally, shallow reef breaks, with a couple of odd beachbreaks

Swell direction: South-Southwest

Difficulty level: Intermediate to advanced level for the bigger reefbreaks, but there’s a few easier reefs and beachbreaks that accommodate learners

Marquee wave: Salani Right

April perks: Pretty uncrowded in April with the first southern hemi south swells starting to fill in with optimal winds (in comparison to July-Aug)

Coconuts Beach Club
We have the only overwater accommodations in Samoa. Our resort embodies all that is unique about Samoa’s culture. You’ll wake up at the break of dawn, walk down to the beach and hop in the surf...

5. Portugal

Where to: Lisbon, Cascais, Ericeira, Peniche, Porto…anywhere in the country, really.

Wave types: Mostly, great beachbreak peaks, mixed with slabs, reefbreaks and pointbreaks

Swell Direction: West-Northwest

Difficulty level: Beginners waves around Lisbon, to experts-only at Nazaré, and all levels between

Marquee wave: Supertubos

April perks: The water is warmer than dead winter, but the swell surely hasn’t thrown in the towel for summer

Surf Portugal
A hand-picked collection of the best surf trips in Portugal — focused on authentic experiences found nowhere else.

6. Chile

Where to: Viña del Mar, Pichilemu, Iquique, Arica

Wave types: Long lefthand pointbreaks, reef breaks and sand-bottomed beachbreaks

Swell direction: Southwest

Difficulty level: The slabby reefbreaks in Northern Chile are for more seasoned surfers, while waves around Reñaca and Pichilemu accommodate newbies. Central Chile has pointbreaks and beachbreaks for all levels, though

Marquee wave: Punta de Lobos

April perks: April is an extremely consistent month for Chile, so you’re nearly guaranteed not to get skunked on a surf trip. Also…the Chilean coastline is, like, literally three Californias long

Surf Chile
A hand-picked collection of the best surf trips in Chile — focused on authentic experiences found nowhere else.

7. Oahu, Hawaii

Where to: North Shore, Waikiki, Ala Moana and Makaha (hello, combo swell!)

Wave types: Normally reef-breaks, but not as shallow/sharp as Indonesia, with a few beachbreaks if you know where to find them (like, Ehukai on North Shore)

Swell direction: West, Northwest and North for North Shore, South-Southwest for South shore

Difficulty level: Waves on the North Shore certainly break harder than South Shore, but every shoreline has a great beginner wave, and any level up

Marquee wave: Banzai Pipeline

April perks: The North Shore is definitely less crowded this time of year, with more manageable swells that aren’t as big as peak winter season

Surf Oahu North Shore
A hand-picked collection of the best surf trips in Oahu North Shore — focused on authentic experiences found nowhere else.

8. Costa Rica

Where to: Pavones, Playa Hermosa, Santa Teresa, Tamarindo

Wave types: Mostly great breach breaks, some very long point breaks (Pavones and Ollie’s Pt.)

Swell direction: South-Southwest

Difficulty level: While Costa Rica does have a few heavier sandbars, it’s often a great trip that all levels can enjoy, with tons of beginner and intermediate level beachbreaks and pointbreaks

Marquee wave: Playa Hermosa (the one by Jaco)

April perks: Waves like Pavones in the south seem to get a more favorable angle of swell in April, equating with a longer ride — at one of the longest lefts on earth

Surf Costa Rica
A hand-picked collection of the best surf trips in Costa Rica — focused on authentic experiences found nowhere else.

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