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The 9 Beaches with the Biggest Waves in America

If you’re a surfer looking for the thrill of catching massive waves, America offers some of the most exhilarating spots on the planet. These beaches are renowned for their towering waves, drawing surf enthusiasts from all over the world. Here are nine beaches in America where you can find the biggest waves, perfect for your next surfing adventure.

Mavericks Beach, Half Moon Bay, California

Mavericks Beach in Half Moon Bay, Northern California, is legendary among big wave surfers. The waves here can reach up to 26 feet tall, especially during the winter months when the surf is at its peak. This spot is not for the faint-hearted; only the most skilled surfers dare to tackle Mavericks’ monstrous waves. The combination of deep water and the unique underwater geography creates these colossal waves that attract surfers from all over the globe.

Teahupoo, Tahiti

Teahupoo, located in Tahiti, is known worldwide for its breathtaking beauty and equally stunning waves. The waves here can tower up to 23 feet, providing an adrenaline rush for those brave enough to ride them. Teahupoo’s waves are powerful and hollow, making for some of the most spectacular and challenging surf conditions in the world. This spot is often featured in surf competitions and movies, thanks to its awe-inspiring waves.

Playa Tamarindo, Costa Rica

Playa Tamarindo in Costa Rica is a prime destination for surfers seeking thrilling waves amidst stunning natural surroundings. Known for its consistent waves and vibrant surf culture, Playa Tamarindo offers waves that are both challenging and enjoyable. While the waves here may not reach the towering heights of other spots on this list, they provide a fantastic experience for surfers of all levels, making it a must-visit beach for wave enthusiasts.

Punta De Lobos, Chile

Punta De Lobos in Chile is famous for its impressive waves and stunning vistas. This remote beach offers waves that can reach up to 19 feet, making it a haven for experienced surfers. The waves at Punta De Lobos consistently break to the left and stretch over long distances, providing an exhilarating ride. The breathtaking scenery and powerful waves make this spot a standout in the world of big wave surfing.

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Waimea Bay, North Shore, Oahu, Hawaii

Waimea Bay on Oahu’s North Shore in Hawaii is a legendary surf spot, known for its massive waves that can reach up to 29 feet. The winter months bring the largest swells, drawing surfers from all over to challenge these formidable waves. Waimea Bay’s waves are powerful and require great skill and courage to ride. It’s a spot that has played a significant role in the history of big wave surfing and continues to be a top destination for those seeking giant waves.

Cortes Bank, California

Located near San Diego, California, Cortes Bank is an underwater mountain range that produces some of the biggest waves in the world. The waves here can be as tall as a six-story building, and in 1990, waves as high as a nine-story building were recorded. The remote location and the sheer size of the waves make Cortes Bank a challenging and thrilling spot for surfers looking to test their limits.

Jaws, Maui

Jaws, also known as Pe’ahi, is a renowned big wave surf spot on the north shore of Maui, Hawaii. The waves at Jaws can exceed the height of a five-story building, making it one of the most extreme surf destinations in the world. The powerful waves are created by the unique underwater topography, and the spot is famous for its big wave surfing competitions. Jaws attracts the best surfers from around the world, all eager to conquer its giant waves.

Praia Do Norte, Nazaré, Portugal

Praia Do Norte, located in Nazaré, Portugal, is famous for having some of the biggest waves ever surfed. This beach holds the Guinness World Record for the largest wave ever ridden, making it a top destination for big wave surfers. The underwater canyon off the coast creates waves that can reach incredible heights, attracting surfers looking to set new records and push the boundaries of the sport.

Chicama, Peru

Chicama, a quiet town in Northern Peru, is home to the longest wave in the world. While the waves here are not as tall as those at other big wave spots, they stretch for extraordinary distances, providing a unique surfing experience. Surfers can ride these waves for minutes at a time, enjoying the unparalleled thrill of an endlessly peeling wave. Chicama’s waves are perfect for surfers looking to experience long, smooth rides.