olas grandes y peligrosas

Usually, when we learn to surf, we don’t distinguish between different types of waves, sizes, or sea conditions. One of the most common mistakes beginners make is ignoring the dangers of the sea and entering the water without considering the conditions

This article is dedicated to the dangers of the sea, without aiming to scare anyone, but to raise awareness. Discover which are the most dangerous waves in the world and in our own country, surfable only by experts.

The way the waves break is an important factor when surfing.

How do you know if a beach is dangerous for surfing?

Discover what are the best conditions to learn to surf. There are several factors that can indicate that a spot is dangerous to surf and that requires certain skills. Some of these factors are:

Wave size:

Large waves can be dangerous because they are harder to handle and can have more force and speed. Waves that are over 1.5-2 meters can already be considered dangerous for inexperienced surfers, although it’s also crucial to take into account the swell period and the strength with which the sea enters that beach.


Waves that break in a tube shape are fast, aggressive and often break close to the shore. They can be dangerous because the force of the water can push surfers towards the shore with great strength, increasing the risk of collisions with rocks, sand bottoms, or the sea floor itself. On the contrary, soft waves that take time to break are perfect to start surfing.


Strong currents can be dangerous because they can sweep surfers away from the beach or toward rocks or obstacles in the water. It is important to be aware of the direction of the currents and understand how they work.

Sea bottom:

Rocky or coral bottoms can increase the risk of injury in the event of a fall, so it is important to know the type of bottom and the conditions in which you are surfing. We recommend looking for beaches with small and soft waves, choose your beach among the best beaches to learn in our country.

Rock or reef bottoms are more dangerous

Weather conditions:

Weather conditions such as wind and rain can affect the quality of the waves and make them more dangerous. They can also increase the risk of hypothermia, so it’s important to be prepared with the right equipment.

It is important to remember that even waves that seem harmless can be dangerous in certain conditions. It is always important to be honest with yourself and evaluate your skill level and experience before entering the water. It is also advisable to observe the beach and sea for a few minutes before entering the water, to assess the conditions and make sure it is safe to surf. If you don’t know the beach, ask in the area, or book a surfcamp or surf lesson suitable for your level and age before taking unnecessary risks.

The most dangerous waves in the world

There are several dangerous waves around the world, some of which are known for their extreme conditions and few surfers dare to face them. Here are some dangerous waves around the world:

Mavericks, California

Mavericks is known for its massive and extremely dangerous waves. The waves can reach 20 meters and are known for their strength and speed. Several people have died while surfing Mavericks. Super recommended Tucker Wooding’s short film about Mavericks.

Teahupoo, Tahiti

Teahupoo is known for its extremely dangerous tubular waves as they break over a shallow coral bottom Surfers can face a host of risks, including depth and dangerous currents.

Tehaupo'o is every surfer's dream
Tehaupo’o is every surfer’s dream

Nazaré, Portugal

Nazaré is known for having some of the largest waves in the world, which can reach 30 meters. The WSL Big Wave Surf Challenge is held on this beach, it is undoubtedly a spectacle to see surfers breaking records in the biggest waves on the planet.

Jaws, Hawái

Jaws is known for its huge and dangerous waves that can reach 20 meters. The pioneers of surfing began to challenge this high-speed wave that does not forgive any mistake, due to its great speed and its rocky bottom.

big and dangerous waves
Jaws is one of the most feared waves in the world, located in Hawaii

The Box, Australia

The Box is a wave located on the southwestern coast of Australia. It is known for its challenging and extreme conditions, with a break very close to the rocks and a steep, fast drop. The wave is very powerful and sometimes reaches size making it difficult to maintain control and not end up against the rocks.

El Quemao, Lanzarote

The Quemao is a wave that forms on a volcanic rock bottom, which makes it extremely dangerous for surfers. It usually works with large size adding extra danger to the already challenging Canary spot. Every year “El Quemao Class” is held, a big wave competition that brings together the best international surfers on the island of Lanzarote.

big and dangerous waves
El Quemao, one of the most dangerous waves in our country

Mundaka, País Vasco

Mundaka is a wave known for its long and fast barrel, but also for its rocks and sandy bottoms. With big conditions it creates a tube near the rocks with a dangerous section only suitable for experts.

It is important to remember that surfing any dangerous wave carries great risk and should be done only by surfers with experience and advanced skills. Additionally, it is always important to be informed about sea conditions and tides before going surfing.

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