“Virginia is for lovers” … and surfers! Here at Virginia Beach, you will be met with a busy city and beach-goer lifestyle. This is where the East Coast Surfing Championships are held.
As a historic town, surfing plays a major role in the community and history of Virginia Beach.
Virginia Beach Surf Guide
When to Surf in Virginia Beach
The fall season is the best time to surf in Virginia Beach.
Hurricane season can spark some massive and epic swell to the point where Virginia Beach will look like it doesn’t belong in the United States.
The wave height averages around 3-5 feet, but surf spot conditions each depend on the season, tide, swell, and wind that are specific for each spot.
Surf Culture in Virginia Beach
Surf culture is heavy here. Everyone in Virginia Beach surfs.
Ok, I may have exaggerated a bit, but a ton of people surf here, it’s a hotspot due to the East Coast Surfing Championships and the amount of local surf shops that support the community.
People here are tight with one another and there are generational connections to each other. I have met many Virginia Beach surfers throughout my life, and they have all been incredibly nice people who are fun to surf with!
Gear Needed to Surf Virginia Beach
Virginia Beach is located on the central east coast of the U.S., and you will definitely need some cold-water gear for certain seasons.
During the summer, you’re ok with a bikini and board shorts, although when the fall season rolls around, you should wear a spring suit or a wetsuit top during the transition.
When fall actually arrives, you need a 3/2 or 4/3 full suit and during the transition to winter, you may need to start paring boots and gloves with that.
During the winter, you should invest in a nice 5/4 hooded suit with gloves and boots to be the most comfortable you can possibly be.
Spring then comes and you can wear your 3/2 during the transition from winter to spring and then once spring is there, you will be fine in a spring suit or top.
The 3 Best Surf Spots in Virginia Beach
1st Street Jetty
All skill levels of surfers are welcomed here as long as you are respectful to others and the locals.
I would consider this spot to be the best and most popular in Virginia Beach.
When all other spots are flat, the 1st Street Jetty will have a wave for you to surf.
This spot can get mushy, but there’s a fun right that rolls in with the right swell, tide, and wind. Everyone is at 1st Street and everything is happening there.
The best tide for this sand-bottom spot is low tide pushing to mid-tide, high tide usually causes the spot to get a little bit mushy.
The best wind is a SW or W wind, and the best swell direction is a SE or E swell.
Virginia Beach Pier
Most notorious surf towns have their famous pier.
The Virginia Beach Pier is welcoming to all levels of surfers, but I would say that it is even more welcoming than the 1st Street Jetty.
The crowd can get bad at times when it is good, but most people spread out.
This sand-bottom spot produces some fun rights with a SE or NE swell and SW to W winds. The best tide to surf here is low tide.
This spot is really fun when it’s good but also frustrating when it’s not working the way you think it might be.
You know when you are watching the waves deciding whether or not to go out and you see some fun ones but right when you get out there, the waves aren’t at all as they seem and they aren’t working?
That’s Croatan on its frustrating days.
Although there are days that will make you mad at yourself, there can also be some incredibly epic sessions here.
Come surf this spot surfing a NE or SE well with SW or W winds during low tide and you will be surprised!
What To Do in Virginia Beach When Waves Are Flat
In Virginia Beach, there is a lot of beautiful scenery including First Landing State Park, Cape Henry Lighthouse, Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge, False Cape State Park, Grommet Island Park, Norfolk Botanical Garden and Chesapeake Bay.
There are also other things to do like visiting museums, the aquarium, and beaches. Virginia Beach also has great night life and food!
Virginia Beach Surfing
Come visit Virginia Beach and you will fall in love with its community and town. A few days visit here paired with great waves will have you not wanting to leave!