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Surf Breaks In Christchurch

Introduction To

Surf Breaks In Christchurch

Ōtautahi Christchurch is blessed with numerous surf breaks, many of which are located right in the suburbs.

Christchurch is also a great basecamp for exploring the high-quality breaks of Banks Peninsula and North Canterbury.

Light winds from the West are the best for the town beaches and it pays to wake early to avoid the prevailing Nor’Easter.


Sumner is a great spot to venture into the water, coupled with the amenities of Sumner Village.

Surfing lesson providers are located at the end of Stoke St, which has a gentle beach break.

Other options include Mussel Rock and Breakwater. Sumner with its generally mellow waves is a great spot for long boarding, home to the annual Single Fin Mingle longboarding festival.

Best for:

  • Beginners to intermediate.

Good to know:

  • Stoke St & Breakwater: Swells from SE to NE. Offshore in W to SW winds. All tides.
  • Mussel Point: Best in clean E to SE swells. All tides.

Taylors Mistake

Taylors is certainly a break for more experienced surfers. With a powerful beach break and a great wave for short boarders, it's best you know what you’re doing in this spot.

The beach is a great picnic location and a cool place to check out the skills of other surfers to get inspired. 

Best for:

  • Intermediate to advanced surfers.

Good to know:

  • Best in E to NE swell.
  • Offshore in W to SW winds.
  •  Low to mid tide.

New Brighton Pier

New Brighton is a great local surf beach with endless breaks along its huge swath of sand.

The long stretch has many peaks down the beach. Rides depend on the conditions, but are always fun. Plus, friends can grab great snaps of you from the famous New Brighton Pier.

Best for:

  • Beginners to advanced surfers.

Good to know:

  • Best swells from NE to SE.
  • Winds from NW to SW.
  • Best at mid to high tide. 

North Beach

North Beach has similar surf conditions to New Brighton with ride quality dependent on the combination of swell and wind.

It’s often better in the water than it looks from the shore, so get out there and give it a go!

Best for:

  • Beginners to advanced surfers.

Good to know:

  • Swells from NE to SE.
  • Winds from NW to SW.
  • Best at mid to high tide. 

Banks Peninsula & North Canterbury

For the more adventurous, look up breaks on the Banks Peninsula.

Magnet Bay, Tumbledown Bay, Hickory Bay – this unique landform boasts more than 40 bays, so do your research and get amongst it.

Gore Bay located on the coast from Cheviot, in North Canterbury. Swells from north, east and south provide a good chance of surf.

Further north, Kaikōura serves up a range of epic surfing spots.

Learn To Surf Schools

There are many surf schools in Christchurch offering lessons from beginner to advanced by qualified and passionate surf coaches. Lessons vary in duration with wetsuits and surfboards provided.

Surfing is a great sport for the whole family to enjoy, or get a group together for a work function or hens/stag party.

Surf schools include:

For surf reports and cameras check out Learn to Surf.