You need to come for a week and you definitely need to stay over the weekend. Ericeira is famous for its surf breaks, beaches, seafood, natural beauty, and weekend parties – or as I say – surfing in Ericeira makes me fat and happy 🍤💞 You haven’t seen a fat surfer?! 🏄♀️ I’m working on it 🙂
Ericeira is a beautiful surfing / fishing village overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. It is world known for its wild beaches, excellent seafood, constant swells, and wild parties. It is also designated as one of 4 World Surfing Reserve sites and the ONLY one in Europe. 😲 There are over 20 world-class surfing spots for all skill levels within a short drive.
Rapture Surf Camp in Ericeira is only a few steps from Foz do Lizandro beach and a 15-min walk to the town center. Wake up for the early morning surf and peer out the window with your head still on the pillow to check the waves. Being one of the best camps in Ericeira, you would want to book early. Even I can’t get a space room at Rapture in the middle of the summer (and I’ve got connections 🙂
Upon arrival, I suggest you head into town in the late afternoon to check the picturesque old fishing village. Pick up an acai shake or a really good coffee from Fluctus Surf Cafe and visit Ericeira World Surfing Reserve Interpretative Center right next door. 🌊 You’ll be surfing these magical breaks over the next week or so, you should know more about them and get the theory, don’t you think?
Ericeira World Surfing Reserve Intepretative Center is completely free and one of the coolest hands-on 🙌 (literally) installations I’ve EVER witnessed!
Since your schedule for the next week will be “Surf, Eat, Sleep, Repeat” let’s start with the most important part of the trip. You came here for surfing after all, or so I hope…
What are the 2 best compliments a surf instructor can pay a true surfer girl?
1) “You need a smaller size wetsuit” – that’s like telling a girl she can fit in one size down jeans 🤗
2) “It’s time for you to ride a smaller board” – how could that person not become your favorite instructor after that?! 😍
For the passionate surfers here is a brief summary of the surf breaks I researched:
Beginner surf breaks –
- Matadouro – it is a very mellow reef break where I had the coolest surfing experience of my life. Not only I was surfing over the continental shelf…but then it started raining and we were riding waves in torrential downpour and under a rainbow. Mother Nature in full force 🌫⛈🌊
- Foz de Lixando – the local beach break for lessons at Rapture so you can’t miss it!
- Sao Juliao – similar to Foz, just more beautiful and less crowded (since you need to drive to it 🚗)
Very advanced surf breaks – Coxos, Cave – 8-10 out of 10 difficulty – if you don’t know, don’t go 😱 (As they say when exiting Jackson Hole, Wyoming to ski/ride backcountry)
Everyone “in between”’s favorites – and not crowded – Ribeira das Ilhas, Pedra Branca
Wondering what else to do in Ericeira? I personally can’t get enough of their seafood. 🐟🐙🐚🦀🦐 As an old fishing village, everything on your plate has come from the ocean that same day. Though you can’t go wrong with most of the restaurants in town here are my favorites:
- Surf cafes – Fluctus, Sunset Bamboo
- Healthy Vegetarian – Green Is Good
- Specialty coffee – Casa das Tres – delicious even for super high coffee standards ☕
- Dinner with a view – Tasquinha do Joy, Marisqueira Brisa 🌅
- Upscale seafood dinner – Tasca Da Boa Viagem 🍽
- Super awesome local food – Casa Portuguese, Tik Tapas (touristy but informal and can try small plates of typical Portuguese petiscos/tapas)
Once you’ve been properly fed, I suggest you get some entertainment. Nothing in Portugal starts before 10am next morning, so you’ll have plenty of time to rest before surfing (unless your coach is loco like mine and schedules a 7am surf sesh to catch the “damn” tide 🌅🌊)
- Sunset bars – the beach bar at Praia dos Pescadores, Ouricos (means sea urchins), Mar das Latas. Since you have a minimum of 3 sunset viewing spots, you HAVE to stay 3 nights #nevermissasunset
- Local bars after 10pm – Adega to start the night with the tourist gang. Taverna do Lebre to grab drinks with the locals. Tubos for dance moves, Tiki next door for even more cocktails. Luckily, all 3 of latter are on the same corner within 10m radius.
Having covered surfing, food, and drinks (I’ve got my priorities right 😉) now onto hikes, bike rides at sunset, skate sessions, and yoga (perhaps even on water)!
Being perched on the cliffs by Foz do Lizandro, Rapture Surfcamp offers plenty of hiking opportunities right out its front door. In the late afternoon, grab a bike and head into town for a long ride all the way to Matadouro or Ribeira das Islas and back. While at Matadouro, stop by the Quicksilver shop and check out their incredible skate park with ocean views. Have a beer (or caipirinha🍹) and lounge for a bit on their deck!
Rapture makes yoga very convenient by holding a class in the afternoon outside on the deck. No, life doesn’t get better than this 🙏 Actually, you can rent a paddle board and take your stretching sesh outside on the river. See, life can always get better 💋 For massage I suggest you ask the camp to schedule you a session. There are plenty of skilled therapists around to ease your surfing aches…and you will ache trust me 👏 (If you ain’t aching, you ain’t surfing enough 🏄♀️)
And now that you’ve spent at least a long weekend in Ericeira, enjoyed the coast, surfed their famous breaks, learned more about the ocean, ate and danced your heart out, now you understand why I couldn’t leave this little slice of heaven and I made it my home! ❤