What to Pack for an Epic Surf Trip

If you’re reading this post, congratulations are in order. You’re currently planning the surf trip of a lifetime where you will undoubtedly score epic waves with your friends. We hope you’re planning to visit our Popoyo surf resort, but if that’s not the case, we’d still love to help you prepare for your upcoming surf adventure. Few things are worse than turning up to some remote corner of the world to surf to find that you are woefully unprepared. Surf trips may not be the expeditions into the unknown that they once were, but there’s still plenty of adventure left to be had, and we should prepare for it. So, whether you’re boat tripping in Indo, road tripping to Baja, or coming to visit our Popoyo surf resort, continue below to learn What to Pack for an Epic Surf Trip.

The perfect quiver of travel boards

There are a lot of theories about what goes into the perfect quiver of boards for a surf trip. There are, of course, a lot of variables at play, like wave type, expected swell, cost of flying with boards, and many more. While many surfers choose to travel with board coffins filled to the brim with all different types of boards, a good rule of thumb to cover all your bases is to travel with three boards; a high-performance shortboard, a fish/ groveler, and a step-up.

The high-performance shortboard, ideally, will be your daily driver that puts you in the barrel, send you above the lip, and allows you to carve out massive turns on vertical sections.

The hope is that the only reason you have to abandon your trusty high-performance daily driver is for when things turn XL. That’s when your step-up comes into play. A step up is not a big wave gun, but rather a board that’s a few inches longer then you’re normal shortboard. The extra length will give you the paddle power required to get into larger waves.

Unfortunately, waves don’t always turn XL, and the likely reason you leave your shortboard on the beach is that conditions are a bit too small and mushy. Just because the waves are lacking in size doesn’t mean your session has to lack in fun. Riding a fish is a great way to make the most of a less than stellar swell.

Unfortunately, traveling with three boards can be quite expensive and burdensome. Fortunately, our Popoyo surf resort is partnered with AwayCo. Our premier selection of rental boards boasts top of the line shortboards, step-ups, longboards, and plenty of grovelers/fishes to choose from.

The right protection for your boards

If you do plan on bringing your own boards to our Popoyo surf resort, ensure that you take the necessary steps to make sure they arrive in one piece. Airline baggage handlers don’t care about your surfboards the way you do. They won’t handle them like the treasured objects they truly are. So, pack them as if you expect the bag to be dropped—several times. Take all the necessary precautions, pool noodles taped around the rails, bubble wrap each board individually, and pad the sides of the bag with spare beach towels and clothing.

Extra wax, leashes, fins, etc.

Nothing is worse than being unprepared. At our Popoyo surf resort, we’ll take care of all your surf gear needs, but not all destinations are created equal. If you’re going off the beaten path, where surf shops are distant memories, be sure to pack extra wax, leashes, and fins. Wax can melt, leashes snap, and fins get popped out on the reef. Don’t forget your ding repair kit for when things really hit the fan.

Sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen!

A sunburn can ruin a trip and skin cancer can ruin your life. Nicaragua’s sun is strong and if you’re not careful, you’ll learn just how strong the hard way. Our Popoyo surf resort has sunscreen for guests, but many surf destinations around the world do not. If you burn easily, consider surfing in a rash guard and use Zinc Oxide on your face.

A trusty first aid kit.

Nothing brings a trip to a screeching halt faster than a bad injury or gnarly infection. The truth is that accidents happen. Fins are sharp, sea urchins are pointy, and the reef is hard as hell. Sometimes things just go wrong. A first aid kit will worsen the blow of an injury to your trip. Being able to effectively clean reef rash can be the difference between continuing your trip and ending up in the ER with an IV full of antibiotics being pumped into you.

Spare boardies/bikinis 

Nothing is worse than realizing that the weird smell that’s been following you around is actually you. Laundry isn’t impossible, but it’s not always convenient. When you’re in the water for several hours a day, your surf wear may not have ample time to dry before the next session. Before you know it, you’ve got an awful mildew smell coming from your boardies that’s too stubborn to get out with a quick hand wash in the sink. So, make sure you have room in your luggage for a few extra bikinis and pairs of boardies.

The appropriate neoprene for your destination

At our Popoyo surf resort, Malibu Popoyo, you don’t have to worry about neoprene. Nicaragua has warm water all year long. The slight drop in water temperature that arrivers with the Dry Season feel refreshing in the hot sun and minimal layers are required to keep you toasty in our local line ups. While that’s true here, it is not true everywhere. Water temperatures obviously vary vastly depending on location and time of year, and not all wetsuits are created equal. So, be sure to do your research before you stuff your 3/2 mm wetsuit in your checked bag on your flight to Portugal, chances are you’ll need at least a 4/3mm. The alternative to squeezing into copious amounts of rubber and enduring numbingly cold water is to visit our Popoyo surf resort in the sunny and warm Nicaragua.

We’ll see you in the water!




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