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The minimum recommended age is 14 years

Safi

Safi

Safi - Central Morocco, Morocco

Surf, Bodyboard

Safi is an epic right point break and if it's pumping it is surely the best righthand in Morocco. You’ll find it in the Doukkala Abda region, more or less in the middle of Morocco’s Atlantic coast. The nearest airports are Marrakech and Casablanca which are two hours away by car. It’s advisable to rent a car at the airport so that you have flexibility to move around the other nearby spots.

This wave works with the same winter swells that affect the whole of the European Atlantic façade but with the advantage that they are more defined when they arrive and the climate is a lot milder. This is when it becomes the Atlantic Mentawai and it’s the perfect excuse to get away from the hard European winter as it’s not too far away. In fact, this place is an obligatory annual date for the best European surfers who know the potential of this incredible wave that can reach 500 metres and is composed of long fast barrel sections that break along the steep cliffs.

It is said that Luc Soutif, who was working Safi’s port at the beginning of the eighties, was the first to realise Safi’s potential. Hakim Karam, Henri 'El Grichi', Tarik Ghrairi and Gérard Dabbadie were then the first to surf big waves in Safi in 1985. They rented a house on a cliff and called the spot ‘The Garden’ because as they were so close to the wave, it seemed like it was actually the garden of the house. In the nineties, the first generation of surfers in Safi appeared. Today, if there are good waves, it’s likely that you’ll come across the Moroccan champion Yassine Ramdani and other locals like Karim Chébate, Sebastien and Jérome Sahyone. The pro Abdel el Harim, who is a regular at this wave, recognises that it only works epically in the winter but if it does, you can be in a barrel from the take off until your legs can’t take any more. If this happens you’ll never forget the ride, but you obviously need to be in good shape, both mentally and physically, have the right boards and be prepared to go fast and hold well.

safi-surf

Safi is next to the city’s port but this is a disadvantage as you sometimes notice the contamination. There is some localism like at most spots with waves with these characteristics, but it’s not a problem if you behave in the water. It’s quite a well known destination and the Moroccans are hospitable people and grateful for any little gift as the resources are very limited there. If you meet a local that likes to surf, they will never forget you and you’re bound to have a friend in Safi forever.
 

Conditions

The best season is in autumn, winter and the beginning of spring, but it’s during December, January and February when the deeper low pressures form in the north of the Atlantic and so there are more possibilities of getting a swell with sufficient power to make this machine of rights work. The calm winds which dominate during these months are also favourable along with offshore E winds.

The perfect conditions are low tide, a well formed swell with periods of more than 16 seconds, waves between 8 and 10 feet with light ESE wind. With any conditions, it only breaks at low tide, the lower the better. In this case, there are two main sections. The first has a very fast and technical take off and if you fall there, you could find yourself in an unpleasant situation. It’s a very long section where the barrels are only for experts. The second section, in front of the parking area, is easier but still requires a medium to high level.

Although the bottoms are sandy, you need to be extremely careful with the rocks that are in front of the take off zones. Go in and out of the water by the parking area. There is very little current in Safi and if there is any, it will take you towards the shore. This is a spot with powerful waves and if it works it’s advisable to take a 6,6 minimum, even if you have a good level and even though it lies on subtropical latitudes, the water is cold and at least a 3 mm wetsuit is recommended.
Optimal Conditions
  • Wave
    Right pointbreak
  • Wind
    E
  • Tide
    Low
  • Swell
    WNW - NW - NNW
  • Bottom
    Sand
  • Size
    4 to 15 ft
  • Time of year
    From Decemeber to March
Suggested Spots
  • 202 km from Safi Taghazout - South Morocco, Morocco
  • 322 km from Safi Kenitra - Northern Morocco, Morocco
  • 524 km from Safi Cádiz - Vejer de la Frontera - South Spain, Spain
  • 527 km from Safi Raposeira - Algarve, Portugal