Pembrokeshire has become a paradise for surfers. The county is blessed with so many Blue and Green Flag beaches that surfers, windsurfers, body boarders and kite surfers are spoiled for choice.
The top surfing beaches are Freshwater West on the south coast, Newgale in mid-county on St Brides Bay and Whitesands, near St Davids on the north coast, so exponents of these popular water sports can pick their spot according to the differing wind and surf conditions.
And it is not only the surfing regulars who are catered for. There are many outlets around the coast where equipment, including wet suits, surf boards and all the other paraphernalia is readily available, and most of the popular surfing beaches themselves have the gear to hand.
Tenby, Saundersfoot, Haverfordwest, Pembroke, Narberth, Milford Haven, Broad Haven and Fishguard all have surf equipment shops and in several places instruction for beginners is also on hand.
Leaflets and flyers advertising the many companies offering gear and instruction proliferate in tourist information centres, supermarkets, shops and libraries and in most of the tourist-orientated theme parks and activity centres.
TYF in St Davids say that surfing’s combination of exhilarating rides, paddling effort and the patience needed to catch the next wave or swell make it one of the most addictive sports that we’ve ever known.
TYF have been teaching surfing in St Davids for three decades and love the smiles and achievement of thousands of people catching their first rides on the waves of Whitesands or Newgale.
With recent advances in wetsuit and surfboard technology that keep you warmer and learning easier, there’s never been a better time to learn to surf.
TYF’s guides have surfed round the world, ride waves in Pembrokeshire year-round and are ready to get you standing up and on your way. TYF’s Classic half day session is a fantastic way to gain insight into the surf world, from the roots of surfing to surfboard and wetsuit design, surf prediction and surf safety.
In our Classic Surf session we’ll teach you how to paddle, how to negotiate the surf when making your way out back, how to ‘prone ride’ in control of your board and finally the art of standing up and catching your first wave.
TYF is open 7 days a week, year round and can be found on www.TYF.com. Activities start from TYF’s Activity HQ and ethical retail shop on 1 High Street, St Davids SA62 6SA. The team can be reached on firstname.lastname@example.org or 01437 721611. Please quote you are staying at Bluestone when booking.
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The following also offer watersports activities:
- Cardigan Bay Active, based at Teifi Wharf, Cardigan
- Tenby Water Sports, based at Tenby Harbour
- Dragon Activity Guides, based at Letterston
- Newgale Activity Centre
- Sealyham Activity Centre
- The Big Blue Experience at Newgale
- TYF Adventure at St Davids
- Masterclass Surfing Pembrokeshire, based at Nolton Haven
- Outer Reef Surf School
The above are among the many enterprises offering watersports tuition, hiring of boards and wetsuits and other facilities for young and old alike. Surf board and wet suit hire costs work out at around £8 a half day, £15 a full day or £45 to £60 a week, while bodyboard hire is £5, £8 and £30.
The Pembrokeshire coastline from Poppit in the north to Saundersfoot in the south, all served by the 170-mile long National Park coastal footpath, has a variety of beach and reef breaks which pick up swells from all directions.
There are the big wave winter venues like Broad Haven South and Freshwater West for year round serious surfing, or places like Newgale, which is more suited to beginners, but in windy weather can also test the experts.
Dale is the perfect beach for all levels of wind-surfing, also having a sheltered area ideal for learners, while Newport and Newgale offer more challenging conditions for windsurfers.