Nicaragua Surf Beaches for Different Skill Levels

Nicaragua’s beaches offer surf breaks for all different skill levels of surfing.  From beginners to experts, they will all find a surf break that suits their skills.

Best Nicaragua Surfing

Beginners

Quisala
Pochomil
San Juan del Sur

Quisala is one of the best places to learn to surf for a variety of reasons.  First of all it is just an hour drive from Managua.  Its wave conditions are perfect for those that aren’t yet very comfortable in the waves.  Quisala’s waves are slow forming and for the most part not very intimidating making it an ideal place to learn to surf.  Because it is a long open beach break there will be no crowds in the water.  Beginners can start learning to stand up in the white water and once they are comfortable enough they can move further out where the waves are breaking.  Quisala is consistent enough to where the waves can have decent shape and beginners can learn to catch waves as they are breaking.

Pochomil is similar to Quisala but less consistent and the surf is usually more powerful.  Surfers should be careful to be swept further out in the water than they are comfortable with.  Pochomil does provide endless white water for beginners to learn to keep their balance on a board.  San Juan del Sur is a good option to learn to surf.  The waves are not great but there is enough white water waves to get the hang of it before venturing to nearby crowded surf breaks like Maderas.

Intermediate

Asuchillo
Popoyo
Maderas

Asuchillo is a great place to surf once you have passed that beginner level of surfing.  Asuchillo is about 5 to 7 miles north of Quisala and is very similar.  Asuchillo has a similar shape but is usually a few notches faster, bigger and more consistent.  Definitely a fun wave to surf and it is great because it is also just an hour from Managua.  During the week there are usually less crowds than on the weekend.

Popoyo and nearby surf breaks are great for intermediate surfers because the surf is so consistent.  There are usually crowds in the water which can be intimidating to surfers who are have just reached that intermediate level.  Just remember to be courteous in the water and follow surfing protocol.  Also if you beat everyone out to the water chances are you can get some great surf in before the crowds arrive.  Maderas is also a great intermediate surf level break but it can get very crowded but show up early and you can have the waves all to yourself for a while.

Expert

Popoyo Outer Reef
San Diego Point (Meat Grinders)
Puerto Sandino

Popoyo’s Outer Reef breaks when large swells are coming through.  If you are an expert level surfer chances are you have probably heard of this wave.  The wave can reach well over triple overhead and is Nicaragua’s version of Pipeline.  This wave is only for those expert surfers who are comfortable dropping in on a wave this size and pulling in a tube with just a few feet of water between their board and the reef.

San Diego’s Point is also a wave that works best on big swells.  It does not reach the size of the Outer Reef but it is a steep wave that can reach over double overhead.  What makes San Diego’s Point (or Meat Grinders as it is affectionately known) is the sharp rocks that are just a few feet below your board.  Even as you are riding the wave you can see the rocks just below the water.  This provides extra incentive to not to fall off the board.

Puerto Sandino is wave that breaks off a sandbar and is only accessible by boat.  The wave is not nearly as intimidating as the others on the experts list but it can be a little unnerving getting to wave that is only accessible by boat.  Depending on the swell size, intermediate surfers may enjoy surfing this wave as well.  The waves can provide rides that are as long as 300 yards.

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Comments

  1. Mike @ Farmstay El Porton Verde says:

    Hey Michael good article per the usual :)

    Quizala is even better now because there is a small inn/restaurant/bar there now called “El Paraiso del Bikini” !!! Tell Cedric the Frenchman that Michael the gringo from Managua sent you!

    • Michael says:

      I’ll have to check out that place next time I’m at Quisala. What calle is it at? Normally I go to Calle 13 and park my car and hit the waves there

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