Middle East
LAST UPDATED 14/09/2008
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Dan Taylor: Oludeniz Bay, Turkey, 2005

The Mediterranean coast around Alanya and the southern stretches beneath it offer the most promise for the traveller. This area is collectively known as the Turkish Riviera. Many of the beches and cliffs are just too steep to offer real viable options and the coast is only now being thoroughly explored for it's full surfing potential.

The main timings for the sirocco and mistral swells and winds are in the Northern Hemisphere Autumn and Spring (March and November) This would probably be the best time to plan your Mediterranean surf trip, though sitting this far east in the sea will give you the best chance of catching any swell generated from favourable weather systems.

Another source of swell is the storm cells of the North Atlantic. Many of these cells descend along the Irish coastline and then outwards along the Atlantic Coast. Occasionally certain cells in Winter (Dec-Jan) can sweep across southern Spain and into the Med. This is a rare but notable event that can send swell hurtling in a 360 degree radius, lighting up  points and reefs that see rideable surfing options maybe once or twice per year.


With a total area of 436,400 square kilometres and depth of over 2000 metres in some places, there is easily enough space for persistant wind patterns to create rideable swell on this body of water. Naval battles have been fought here, empires born and lost on the shores. This area once maked the end of the civilised world as far as the Greeks were concerned. It marks the end of the popular definition of what surfing is all about as well. As surfers turn their eye towards places such as Turkey, real suprises are only now beginning to apear around coastal spa towns such as Sinop - a new frontier awaits discovery.

what to pack

Flashdance: A pair of very simple Moroccan flip flops called "Cabjuks"; 25 May 2007

A small backpack makes a good carryon bag and will be useful in daily life. Women: remember to take a good flat pair of shoe's.... And for everybody: pair of comfortable walking shoes will be great for sightseeing. Beach clothing & sandals will be useful if you are going in the warm season. Try to choose classics, and items that you can mix and match. Have at least one set of nicer clothing for more formal occasions.

Definitely take along some bug repellent spray, good sunscreen and sunglasses! Better take your medicines with you (esp. anti hastamine tablets), as the brands can be unfamiliar and cost more.

Bring your necessities - such as toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, body wash......


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