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New Zealand Travel Tips & Questions

Can I learn to surf in New Zealand?

Most definitely yes and it's a great place to learn too. There are a large number of different surf schools throughout the whole country who offer everything from lessons of a couple of hours duration to week long packages which include surf tuition, accommodation and meals.

Surfing NZ lists all the surf schools in New Zealand which have official accreditation and provides links to websites which give full details and prices. Lesson prices will include wetsuit and surfboard use.

One surf school which offers a unique experience is that of Catlins Surf at the very south of the South Island, run by Nick Smart, himself something of a local legend and big wave, tow-in surfer. Surf lessons are held in beautiful Porpoise Bay where resident pods of the tiny and rare Hector's dolphins live and quite frequently join Nick and his pupils. There is a backpacker hostel here which is also run by Nick and his partner. Details and photographs can be seen here.  

There are also at least 2 all-girl surf schools currently run in New Zealand one of which is located in Raglan - one of which is called the Surf Dames.  

It's always a good idea to book just one lesson initially before laying out too much cash as your instructor may not be what you are looking for and even surfing itself may not be what you expected.