In El Palmar are always great conditions for surfing in Andalusia

Tuesday, 3. July 2018

El Palmar waves - When is the best time to surf in El Palmar?


You want to surf the best El Palmar waves? If you want to surf in Andalusia, you are in the right place in El Palmar. Nestled in this southwest corner of Spain on the Costa de la Luz, is El Palmar - a dreamy beach town that is no longer such an insider tip among surfers. Nevertheless, it is never overcrowded here.

If you want to surf in Andalusia, El Palmar is the place to be. Here you will not only find empty line-ups, but you can surf here almost all year round, even in winter. The weather and water are really mild thanks to its proximity to Africa. Guests often ask us when is the best time to surf in El Palmar, so here is our answer...

The best El Palmar waves- when can you surf in Andalusia?

If you wonder when the best waves are in El Palmar, we can help you: Basically every month offers something different. The best time for you to travel to Andalusia is for you depends on what kind of waves and weather you like. So, below you will find a month-by-month mini-guide to surfing down here on the Coast of Light - with the average wave height, water temperature, air temperature and our personal surf level recommendation.

El Palmar Surf – When are the best waves in El Palmar

The best time to travel to Andalusia is basically any time! The weather in Andalusia is very stable and sunny, and you are practically guaranteed a good few days. While in England grey clouds and rain rule the skies in November, in Andalusia it's still like summer! The African coast is only a few kilometres away, so the air temperature rarely falls below 15 degrees, even in winter. A surf holiday in El Palmar is the perfect escape from the winter blues. The weather in Andalusia is almost always nice with an amazing 300 days of sunshine a year. The summer in El Palmar is warm and pleasant thanks to the two prevailing winds, Levante and Poniente. The Levante brings us surfers the beloved offshore and the Poniente a refreshing breeze on the hottest days.

As far as weather and climate are concerned, El Palmar is ideal all year round. However, in July and August, as elsewhere on the coasts of Europe, it is very crowded because most of Europe, including Spain, is on holiday. As the waves are a lot smaller in this season camp is closed for these two months.

The Andalusian Climate

To give you a better overview of waves, weather and surfing conditions in this part of Andalusia, we have compiled a climate table for you. Here you can see exactly which month offers which conditions and when is the best time for you to go surfing in southern Spain. Now you are spoilt for choice. As you can see, the weather in Andalusia is pretty good!

Typical winter swell in Andalusia

El Palmar waves - When can you surf in Andalusia?

When is the best time to surf in Andalusia? The answer is quite simple: Surfing here is always possible, or almost always. Every month has its own particular flavout. In one month the waves are a bit bigger, in another the air or the water is warmer. Sometimes the waves are small and smooth - ideal for beginners - then there are months with bigger and more powerful waves. At this time not only beginners but also advanced and intermediate surfers will get their money's worth.

The best time to surf in Andalusia

As a general rule, the best time to surf in Andalusia is from September to June. But basically you can surf the whole year in El Palmar. However, in summer (July, August) the waves become very small and sometimes there are no waves. On these days you can have a beach day or visit the sights of the area. Small waves are great for beginners, so our surf school is open all year round.

Summer is ideal for bathers and SUPs.

El Palmar waves - month by month

To better plan your next surf holiday to Spain, we will present each month individually. Here you can see exactly what wave size and air and water temperature you can expect. All figures are of course average values from previous years. We can't give you a guarantee, but this gives you a good idea from our 14+ years of experience here in Andalusia.

Waves and weather in Andalusia: January and February

Surfing all through winter is definitely possible in Europe, and we don't mean with hood, gloves and booties! In Andalusia it's even wonderfully mild and crystal clear in January and February. The sun shines here almost every day, so that winter depression doesn't creep in. Escape the endless grey with a visit to us in El Palmar!


January and February are the most consistent months for waves and offshore winds. At this time of year there are long-period swells practically every day and you can surf not only the beach break in El Palmar, but all the pointbreaks and reefs that light up around the surrounding coastline. In winter there are usually few people in the water, so you can have the beach and waves almost to yourself.

  • Wave height: 4-6ft+ (1,5 - 2m+)
  • Surf level (suitable for): Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced
  • Wetsuit thickness: 4/3
  • Water temperature: 15-16°C
  • Air temperature: 16-20°C

El Palmar waves & weather in March

In northern Europe the weather in March is often still cold and blustery while in Spain it feels summery. Spring has long since filled the sky with blue and the fields with green and the air and water are now getting noticeably warmer. In addition there are the still very regular good quality swells and offshores. Surfing in March means t-shirt weather and fun-to-challenging consistent waves.

  • Wave height: 4ft (1,5m)
  • Surf level (suitable for): Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced
  • Wetsuit thickness: 3/2 - 4/3
  • Water temperature: 16-18°C
  • Air temperature: 18-22°C

Waves and weather in Andalusia: April

Surfing in April is a surprise package. As in England, April does what it wants in Andalusia. There can be a bit of everything from a huge spring swell to playful 3ft waves. But the temperatures in April are always wonderfully warm - almost like an English summer.

  • Wave height: 3-4ft (1-1,5m)
  • Surf level (suitable for): Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced
  • Wetsuit thickness: 3/2
  • Water temperature: 16-19°C
  • Air temperature: 20-24°C

El Palmar: Waves and weather in July and August

It's summertime! Surfing in May and June means surfing in full-on summer temperatures. The Levante wind is also warm and the waves are softer and more relaxed, a great time for cruising on a bigger board. Despite the warm atmosphere and fun waves it is still relatively empty in El Palmar, with crowds only hitting the peak on the weekends.

  • Wave height: 3ft (1m)
  • Surf level (suitable for): beginners, intermediates, possibly advanced surfers
  • Wetsuit thickness: 3/2
  • Water temperature: 19-21°C
  • Air temperature: 24-26°C

Waves and weather in Andalusia in July and August

July and August are summer holidays, also in Spain. Therefore tourists are now in high season. The whole of Europe has holidays, the air is hot and on the beach you will find numerous bathers. The waves are now mostly very small and only ideal for beginners. Our surf camp is closed during this time, but you can book surf courses in our A-Frame surf school. The big plus in summer: the water is now mostly warm and you can surf in bikini or boardshorts.

  • Wave height: 0,5
  • Surf level (suitable for): beginners
  • Wetsuit thickness: Shorty or boardshorts
  • Water temperature: 20-23
  • Air temperature: 25-30 °C
  • Lufttemperatur: 25-30 °C

Waves and weather in Andalusia: September

Remember, remember, the swell of September... This is a great month as we welcome the return of 'real' waves. The first clean autumn swells roll in and the wave season starts for real. The beaches are suddenly emptier as the Spanish tourists head home but the high summer temperatures hang around. The water is really warm (you can still be in boardshorts in the water). The waves are usually about 4ft but some bigger swells can also hit and light up hidden coves and points.

  • Wave height: 4ft (1m)
  • Surf level (suitable for): beginners, intermediates, advanced surfers
  • Wetsuit thickness: Shorty
  • Water temperature: 20-23°C
  • Air temperature: 24-28°C

El Palmar: Waves and weather in October

In October you have everything, it really is the perfect month: A wonderful combination of warm water, summer air temperature and the best swell. While in England the leaves are changing colour and falling, it still feels like summer over in Andalusia. Sometimes it is still so warm that you can surf in boardshorts or a shorty. Good groundswells and consistent peaks are here to stay for the next few months, with fun-to-challenging waves at various spots along the coast.

  • Wave height: 5ft (1,5m)
  • Surf level (suitable for): Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced
  • Wetsuit thickness: 3/2
  • Water temperature: 20°C
  • Air temperature: 22-26°C
You can still find such waves in January and February.

Waves and weather Andalusia November and December

Surfing in Andalusia in winter? Why not?! Give yourself an early Christmas present and get out there because the waves in November and December are pumping! Almost as consistent as January and February, even advanced surfers will find waves that match their level, and other surfers can find more sheltered spots to improve their skills. The waves are often up to 6ft and in winter there's usually plenty of space in the line-up fro everyone. From November to March the beaches in and around El Palmar are pretty empty. You only meet a few locals and dog-walkers, otherwise you have the sea and beach for yourself. 

This time of year can still be really warm, in Novemeber 2017 it was up to 27 degrees. This is the the perfect time for a little winter escape - from England to Andalusia where the sun is out and doesn't set till 6.30pm.  So you can enjoy long sunny days in t-shirts and flip flops and say ”Adios!” to the winter blues!

  • Wave height: 4-6ft (1,5 - 2m)
  • Surf level (suitable for): Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced
  • Wetsuit thickness: 3/2 - 4/3
  • Water temperature: 17-19°C
  • Air temperature: 18-22°C

El Palmar waves in November

Do you recognize our surf instructors?

If the waves in El Palmar are too big, Barbate is the place to be!

Surfing El Palmar - Surfspots for every level and all conditions

When Surfing in Andalusia you can always find a good wave. The great thing about the El Palmar area is that the coastline bends around and faces two different directions

  • Our home spot in El Palmar is oriented to the west, directly facing the Atlantic swells.
  • The surf spots Caños de Meca and Barbate are south oriented and therefore more sheltered (in Caños you have offshores with a north wind).

These are perfect conditions, because if you know where to go you can surf in almost any combination of swell, wind and tide. If the waves in El Palmar are too big, you can head to a spot with smaller waves in 10 minutes. There are always options here...

Find your perfect El Palmar waves - Ideal Surf Holiday for Beginners

For beginner surfers we can always find good conditions, because on big days we can move to other sheltered surf spots with more manageable waves. Beginners start off in the whitewater which we always have at El Palmar regardless of wave size. So, any time is a good time for beginners to come to our Surf Camp to learn to surf – but watch out it's highly addictive!

Webcam El Palmar - Check the El Palmar waves

On the terrace of our surf camp there is a webcam which shows the beach in El Palmar so you can check the surf from your desk or sofa. No matter where you are, with the webcam you can see the sea and imagine yourself in there on your next visit!

Editor: Jana Mironowitz