Where: Portugal is at the western edge of Spain and pretty much takes up the whole west shore of the Spanish peninsula. Lisbon is right in the middle.
What: Lisbon is Portugal’s capital and a perfect starting point for a surf adventure. With loads of epic breaks right outside town, you can be surfing within an hour of landing.
When: Summer is generally inconsistent, so plan on a fall trip. The water will be a tad chilly, so plan on a short-sleeve-full and a 3/2 fullsuit. Summer is warm and beautiful, and there’s a chance at good waves, but watch out for crowds.
Why: Portugal is as diverse in its culture as it is in its waves. Point breaks, reefs, and especially sick beachbreaks and jetties. Expect everything from fun wedges to stand-up barrels.
How: Any major airline can land you in Lisbon. Buses, trains, and even Hertz car rentals are all available. This is a modern European country, so infrastructure is on par with the U.S.A. U.S. citizens can visit Portugal without a visa for up to 90 days.
Places To Stay: In the city of Lisbon, you can stay in hotels that range from cheap dumps to classy boutique hotels and five-star resorts. As you travel around the country, campsites are plenty and each little town has a hassle-free hotel-except in summer; when you’ll be hustled and hotels won’t be as easy to come by because of an influx of tourists.
Places To Eat: Fresh fish, great meat, fast food, fancy fare-whatever you want. Want caviar? You can find it in Lisbon. Food is reasonable, plentiful, and won’t make you sick.
Babes: Like most Euro destinations, summer will bring in tourist babes. Year-round, Lisbon will offer up Spanish-looking hotties, male and female.
Crowd Factor: The locals can be fierce, especially the bodyboarders. Don’t be an asshole and you’ll fit in fine. Portuguese surfers as a whole surf well, so they know what’s up.
Stuff To Bring: A few wetsuits, warm clothes, a camera, booties for a few reefs, and a good attitude.
If The Surf Is Flat: If the surf is flat, you’re in luck-Lisbon is one of the most amazing cities you’ll ever see. Massive sculptures, amazing art, a Golden Gate Bridge look-alike, castles, forts, clubs, restaurants-you’ll have no problem finding something to do. Just walk down the street-something is always going on. One must-see is the Pal† cio da Pena-breathtaking!
Helpful Web Sites And Phone Numbers: Department Of Tourism 01-849-36-89, lonelyplanet.com, and lowpressure.co.uk.