Surfing in Oceanside

Nothing says Southern California like surfing! At any point during the day, no matter the time of year, there’s a good chance surfers will be out enjoying the water while waiting to catch their next wave, and Oceanside is no different. Boasting over 3.5 miles of beaches, there is no shortage of great spots to paddle out from including the Oceanside Harbor, the Oceanside Pier, the surrounding beach breaks and more. 

In the Encyclopedia of Surfing, Oceanside is referred to as “one of Southern California’s most consistent surf spots.” It’s no surprise then that countless professional and leisure surfers come specifically to Oceanside to surf. The consistent waves coupled with our local surf culture and old-school beach vibe truly make Oceanside a special place to be.

Surfing has also expanded into many other facets of the community, manifesting itself through local surf shops, surf camps/lessons and even custom surfboard shaping. In fact, dozens of surfboard manufacturers have set up shop in “Shaper’s Alley” located in a business district just about three miles from the coast in Oceanside!  


Surfer at the Pier Beach

Oceanside Pier

The Oceanside Pier is a surfing hot spot in Oceanside, featuring great waves on both the north and south side of the Pier on any given day, year-round. This location is particularly popular for locals, and can get crowded when the waves are great!

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Oceanside Harbor

The Oceanside Harbor features an expansive sandy beach with two large jetties on either end making for a great location to not only take in the sun, but also catch large waves! Due to the overall size of the beach, this spot offers room for more surfers than the Pier.


Young Phil Edwards & Local Surfers

Interested in learning more about the history of surfing or more about the surf culture?  Look no further than the California Surf Museum located in downtown Oceanside. This family-friendly museum has a stunning collection of surfboards showcasing the progression of materials used by surfers from around the world.  Additionally, the California Surf Museum has a permanent exhibit featuring the infamous Bethany Hamilton shark-bitten surfboard.

The museum actively collects, documents and preserves surfing-related artifacts and memorabilia. In fact, you can take “A Ride Through O’side Surf History” by perusing the incredible archives of local surf history that archives the best of Oceanside’s athletes, memories and surf culture through the years. Through a series of rotating exhibits, the California Surf Museum presents the many facets of this dynamic local culture.



Ready to dip your toes into the water yourself? Learn how to surf from local surf pros in Oceanside. Find the perfect instructor to take you out on the water so you can enjoy the stoke like a local when you visit. Privates, semi-privates and group lessons are offered along with surfboard and wetsuit rentals at many of the local surf schools. Whether you’re a first-timer or elite athlete, surf lessons in Oceanside are catered to you experience, age and unique goals to ensure you have the best time out on the water. 

Surf Schools in Oceanside

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With killer weather and consistent surf conditions, Oceanside is home to year-round surf contests. The contests range from youth to professional and can be a hot spot for famous and up-and-coming stars in the surf community. The city is also known for its signature events including the USA Championships and Team Trials, Super Girl Surf Pro, Oceanside Longboard Surfing Club Contest, World Bodysurfing Championships and the US Open Adaptive Surfing Championships.

Did you know Oceanside Harbor serves as the training ground for the USA Olympic Surfing Team too? The breaks in O’side parallel those of an elite competitive environment, making Oceanside inherently one of the most authentic and thrilling surf cities along CA’s coastline. Hear from USA Surfing CEO Greg Cruse and USA Surfing Coach Brett Simpson to learn more about why O’side is the perfect location to prep athletes for the future Olympic Games in Tokyo.