The 6 most beautiful surf spots in Italy
01 March 2023
The 'offshore' wind: surfing in Levanto
Waves up to three metres high and as many as three different winds to be exploited, to whizz around on a surfboard with the magnificent scenery of the Cinque Terre as your background. Among the top surfing destinations in Liguria is the ancient fishing village of Levanto, the scene of major sporting competitions such as the Quiksilver Big Wave Invitational.
If you're a novice, you can head to the surf school in Levanto to learn the basic techniques and become familiar with the sport, while if you already have experience, you can test yourself on the Levanto waves in several popular spots such as Casinò and Pietra, between the centre of the bay and its southernmost area, or at Gritta further north.
Surfing in Recco: Cowabunga
Still in Liguria, you can surf in the evocative Gulf of Paradise, just a stone's throw from Genoa and Rapallo, at the excellent surf spot in Recco, which organises courses based on approaches suitable for everyone, with no limits of gender, age or sporting ability.
The Recco spot is very popular at weekends owing to its popularity, which is also linked to the Recco Surfestival, but during the week you can expect quieter time for testing your skills on the waves and practising. The left side of the bay is recommended for more experienced surfers because of the faster and more aggressive waves, but a lot also depends on the time of year in which you choose to experience this adventure.
Big Waves: surfing in Varazze
Within a 30-minute drive from Genoa you can head to one of Europe's best surfing destinations, in the town of Varazze. This natural paradise boasts major swells that can produce powerful waves of up to 5 metres in height.
The best time to surf in Varazze is at the end of the summer season, from the beginning of the autumn and during the winter, when the beaches are not crowded with tourists and the strong winds provide long, adrenaline-filled days. At the Varazze surf spot you can also ride the waves at night, thanks to a state-of-the-art lighting system, but if you want to try this experience you must have a membership card from UISP, Europe's largest sports and social promotion association.
Aloha: surfing in Forte dei Marmi
Forte dei Marmi is one of the iconic locations in Versilia, a paradise for beach tourism. This Tuscan resort bathed by the Ligurian Sea also boasts one of the most attractive surfing spots in Italy and across Europe.
The reference point for surfing in Forte dei Marmi is the spot around the pier: there you can count on a sandy seabed and substantial waves that, depending on the wind and the season, can challenge even the most experienced surfers. If you're a beginner, check out some of the most important surfing schools in Tuscany, even if only to get advice and enjoy a carefree holiday braving the waves on a surfboard in one of the most magical spots on the Tuscan coast.
Clean Up Set: surfing in Ostia
The Roman coastline is full of surf spots, both for beginners and experienced surfers looking for a challenge, thanks to courses organised for all levels and ages.
If you want to experience the waves at Ostia and try your hand at surfing near Rome, the best time is from September to March, when the winds are stronger and the waves are higher.
Surfing at Capo Mannu: the perfect wave
What about surfing in Sardinia? The large Italian island offers an abundance of choice, but among the most attractive and popular spots for surfers from all over the world is the Capo Mannu spot, off the Sinis peninsula, a small natural paradise exposed to all winds from the western quadrants.
So why choose to surf at Capo Mannu? Because it is an area with the highest frequency of waves per year in the entire Mediterranean, with up to 200 days of surfing between the spot known as Lo Scivolo and the section of the Baia del Mini Capo, which is very crowded during the summer.