Weekend Surfing: Swell Places To Surf On The Yorkshire Coast
Surfing in Scarborough
Sixty years since The Beach Boys’ first hit, Surfin’ (1961) and surfing is now one of the fastest growing sports in the UK, with the Yorkshire Coast a hotspot for surfers and water sports. With breaks rivalling Cornwall and the Southwest, and top-quality surf schools, including the UK’s oldest paddleboard school and surf school, popular surfing locations on this beautiful stretch of coastline include Scarborough, which has hosted the biggest event of the UK Pro Surf Tour more than once, Cayton Bay and Whitby:Surfing Scarborough SBC3-10-18-25
Scarborough’s South Bay is particularly good for beginners and improvers, while its North Bay is known for being one of the most reliable beaches for surf.
Cayton Bay is two miles south of Scarborough and has been a magnet for surfers of all levels for many years. This wide sweeping bay is different from the other local surfing beaches in that it can be surfed through all stages of the tide, meaning whatever the time of day it is always possible to get into the water. Its remote location makes it a great place to escape the crowds and it has a clean water rating of Excellent and the Keep Britain Tidy “Seaside Award”.
Twenty miles north of Scarborough, the stretch of beach between Whitby and Sandsend has several good places to pick a wave and tends to be quieter than the Scarborough surf beaches.
Suring on the Yorkshire Coast is an all-year-round activity. In fact, the climate means that there are often better surf conditions in autumn than over summer, and adventurous surfers would say that winter is by far the best time to catch Yorkshire’s best waves.
Top three surfing schools for anyone looking to learn or improve their surfing skills:
Dexters - Sands Complex, Scarborough’s scenic North Bay
Dexters is a family run business that provides lessons and hire for surfing, paddle-boarding, and kayaking, for all abilities and ages, from 5 to 85! It also sells a large range of paddleboards, surfboards, clothing and wetsuits. Accredited by Surfing England, the UK’s National Governing Body, all the instructors are highly qualified and focus on individual needs.
Fluid Concept Surf Shop & Surf School, South Bay, Scarborough
The UK’s oldest paddleboard school and surf school with one of the UK's most experienced coaches, and easy access to one of the region’s safest beaches. This surf shop and hire centre on Scarborough’s south bay offers one-on-one, group, family and small group lessons for surfing and paddleboarding. There is parking by the shop and it is only a short walk from the town centre.
Scarborough Surf School and hire centre, Cayton Bay
This Surfing England accredited surf school and AALA registered activity host specialises in surf coaching for beginner to advanced, as well as offering stand up paddle board lessons, coasteering experiences and equipment rentals. It also has a surf shop stocked with a great range of products from the best brands. All the coaches are experienced ISA qualified surf coaches and RNLI beach lifeguards. Stunning cliff top location has parking, changing facilities, toilets and hot showers available as well as a picnic and BBQ area. Situated on Killerby Cliff, with direct beach access and direct road access from the A64 via Cayton Village and from the south on the A165, good way to avoid the summer congestion and parking problems.
If the waves are flat, just swap surfboards for paddleboards, as SUP (Stand Up Paddleboarding) is one of the fastest growing watersports – and the Yorkshire Coast is one of the top destinations! A popular location is Filey, with its wide sweeping sandy bay, in the company of experts Bay Watersports. They not only teach the basics but offer guided SUP Adventure exploring the local smugglers coves and marine wildlife of the Yorkshire Coast.
For something a little more chilled, yoga has been making waves in Scarborough recently, and you can try it on a paddleboard or even during a Saltwater Soul Day (yoga & surfing) with new Happy Seal Yoga in Scarborough or Whitby. Around Whitby, SUP Adventures also offer new yoga day retreats – combining mindfulness walks, yoga and paddle-boarding.
Make a break of surfing: the recently opened beachfront Bike & Boot Inn in Scarborough, is a cosy retreat with uniquely designed bedrooms, a bar-restaurant-café, and everything you need to enjoy the great outdoors, whether you're bringing your surfboard or simply your sense of adventure.
You’ll find much more inspiration at www.discoveryorkshirecoast.com