Surfing in Peniche

I booked a plane ticket to Portugal. I was going to take photos for one surfing school. A few weeks in Peniche, Portugal. Never been there and didn’t exactly know what was waiting for me. All I knew is that I was going to live a surfer’s life for a while.

The plane ride had just the most amazing views. Here’s one above Portugal.





























My job was to take photos of people learning to surf. Sounds good, I will be at the beach surrounded by the ocean and the sky. The best office ever. And I’ll get to surf as well.

Everything took place in Peniche, a small town an hour away from Lisbon.


We got there in a small village of Consolação, and this first thing I got to see was a beautiful view of the beach from the top. Little did I know that this was going to become such a routine for me. Staring at the beach.

Days pretty much looked the same. We get up in the morning, I help with some chores around the house, then take a short walk to the bakery and get some bread for hungry surfers. Then we have  breakfast and around 10 am one of the instructors is coming to pick us up in a van. And we’re on our way to the school, to Escola de surf Peniche. There, we pick ourselves a wet suit for surfing, because Atlantic is really cold.

It was so much fun riding in that van, we would listen to music, sing along. After the session everything was full of sand and the sea and boards and our clothes. And switching from our clothes and wet suits in front of the van? Eventhough it was the worst part, combined with the whole atmosphere, I loved the feeling about it. So many people around the van trying to get the suit on. It felt so 70ies.

Baleal beach
Photo by Hanna Florczak

After getting the suits and the boards, we’re in a van towards one of the many beaches in Peniche, depending on the weather conditions and the waves. We had a few locations we changed sometimes on a daily bases.

I would usually take photos in the morning sessions which lasted for about 1.5-2 hours. And then surf after a lunch break in the afternoon session.

We usually had lunch somewhere in Gamboa, close to the school and had our espressos and drinks at the Gamboa beach bar.

Gamboa bar

Eventhough it wasn’t that easy and the waves were sometimes merciless and it was physically really exausting, dragging the board while the waves are crushing on you, it was such a great fun. I already had some experience surfing in Australia and it’s like riding a bike. It sticks to you and you don’t forget it.

Here are some of the beaches we went to.

My favorite one was in Baleal.


Shooters field

Shooters field

Gamboa beach


Banana beach (next to Supertubos, the famous beach for surfing competitions)

Banana beach



Sometimes we would go grab an ’85 cents 2 beers’ happy hour in a bar in Baleal and we absolutely loved it. There were so many people sitting outside in the sun and drinking their tasty glasses of bear which was the best ending to a long surfing day.

More stories about Portugal on the way.


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