Whats the Difference between a Surf Camp, a Surf Hostel, and a Surf House?

If you are searching online for your next surf holiday, you will uncover a variety of different results; surf camps, surf houses, and surf hostels. For someone that is new to the lingo, it can be confusing times all around. So here we are to try and make matters a bit simpler for you, to help you make the right decision. The following is based on surf accommodation around Europe.

Surf Camps

Surf camps are usually built for the masses, being able to accommodate large groups of people. For this reason, they are often made up of tents or cabins and are usually shared accommodation. Check/ check out dates are normally predefined for week long stays or longer and also involve a weekly schedule. Surf Lessons are more than likely held the same time each day in the morning, then the afternoon with Sunday being the most common day off.

The surf lessons will embody the essence of the surf camp. That being, groups surfing together, sharing and enjoying the experience. Other group activates will be part of the agenda, such as sightseeing, partying, shopping, yoga etc. Expect partying to go in hand with the surfing holiday.

Meals will usually be included in the price or B&B, and the average age of guests tends to be a bit lower than other surf related accommodations.


Surf Hostels

A surf hostel is essentially a Hostel , with a surfing theme. Expect to see plenty of surfing décor all around the place. Rooms are as you would expect in a hostel, mostly shared dorm rooms with bunk beds. Most surf hostels use a local surf school partner to outsource all the surfing lessons.

Generally surf hostels are more commonly found around city centres, allowing guests to experience the city life during the day and night as well as having a taste of surfing. They will generally provide a check in check out service on demand, and without special surf or yoga packages you might find at other surf accommodations. Put simply, it’s a bed and breakfast, with other activities that can be requested separately.

Most guests tend to stay for a shorter period of time, as check in/ check out dates are not fixed. It’s a great option if you don’t want to spend all your time at the beach and what to meet other people.


Surf Houses

Surf houses are often for smaller groups of people, such as single travellers, couples, and small groups of friends. This makes it possible to provide a more customised experience around your needs. Guests will usually have the option to do their own thing but will often join in on the group experience and end up making a bunch of new friends. Some surf houses don’t have fixed check in dates whilst other tend to encourage weekly stays. The surfing is usually offered through the surf house, with some choosing to outsource to local surf schools.

Surf houses attract first timer surfers, as well as seasoned surfers who just want to enjoy the surf house vibe and services, plus get the local tips on where’s firing. There’s also a good chance that the hosts who meet and greet you are the very people that created the surf house. This definitely adds to a more personal experience that cant be found at other surf accommodations.

A lot of surf houses will offer meals, some even having a live in chef that will cook family style meals of an evening. Ages tend to be 25+, with the surf to party ratio ever evolving to each groups desired needs, and of course the waves!


In Summary


All in all this is a rough guide to help you get a better idea of what is to be expected when searching for your next surf holiday. Each surf accommodation will usually specify their type of services and general ambiance. We recommend checking each surf accommodations website, social media, and reviews to get a real feel of what they offer. Yew!