When is the best time to surf in Nicaragua?
For consistent waist to head high swell, the best time to surf in Nicaragua is between the end of March and September. Consistent southern swell typically shows up during the peak of the dry season, at the end of March. The surf swell will build over the next few months.
In April, we get to take advantage of good waves while crowds are minimal. The only exception is Semana Santa or Holy Week, the week proceeding Easter. If you are here at that time, be prepared for Nicaraguans descending on every beach in the country for the Thursday through Sunday before Easter. Our town of Gigante will transform from a sleepy fishing pueblo of 500 to a crazy beach party with thousands of people. It can be a great time and an unforgettable experience, but it is an important thing to be aware of when booking your surf vacation in Nicaragua.
With May come the rains. Temperatures cool off a bit and the swell continues to build better consistency. May through August is the best time to surf in Nicaragua. This is the prime-time! The swell is dependable and big days can generally be expected from June on.
The Lake Effect
What makes this best time to surf in Nicaragua is the wind created by the lake effect. Surf spots require specific weather conditions such as swell height, direction, tide and steady offshore winds to function at their best. Wind conditions tend to be predictable but can shift direction at different times of day. Down here in the Rivas province, Lake Nicaragua creates steady daylong offshore winds. That’s not to say that onshore never happens, but Gigante isn’t like some places where the wind always turns onshore after noon.
September and October are the peak of the rainy season. In October, the wet season tropical storms start to hit Gigante. It is rare for storms to arrive in September, but if they do, the swell is still good, particularly during the first two weeks of the month.
The best time to surf in Nicaragua:
What kind of waves are you looking for?
November is the dry season. During November and December waist to head high waves, comparable to high season can occur. You can definitely score great surf until mid-January, but good swell transitions from being the norm to the exception as time moves on. This means that from November on is the best time to surf in Nicaragua if you’re a beginner or low intermediate surfer. If you are looking to learn to surf or aren’t quite to the point where you are hunting for barrels yet, November through January and March through May are the time of year you want to come down. Come late January the winds kick up for a few weeks, and the water cools down again.
Are you a first-time surfer with zero experience? February is the best time to surf in Nicaragua for beginners. Although the waves may not be perfect, you’ll have the surf all to yourself. Personally, I will take fun little waves all to myself over perfect waves with crowds almost any day.
Everyone is different and we just want to make sure every guest has the best time that they possibly can. Your vacation time is precious, so we want to help you make the most of it. Check our variety of Surf Packages to see what is your best fit!
Reminder: Early Season Sessions Special in March. Email us or WhatsApp +505 8277 5111 to book a slot for our all-inclusive Boat Tour Package. One week at $1400 per surfer! The price can also be a big factor in deciding when is the best time to surf in Nicaragua!