The ultimate University surf trip - WHY YOU NEED TO GO ON STOKE TRAVEL’S VAN SURFARI
3 minute read
Stoke Travel, named for that dangerous activity among teens, not the town in Northern England (watch this video on the dangers of being stoked) are a company well-versed in the art of showing their guests how to party, especially on their Basque Country Van Surfari.
Your hosts for the week, colloquially known as ‘Stokies’ will wake you up with the sounds of cooking breakfast and the dulcet tones of 3OH!3’s My Dick, which, I think, is a strong contender for the song of the summer. After hopefully not pissing off your neighbouring campers with the less than PG music choices it’s off to the beach for a day of shredding, sunbathing, and sating your post-surf thirst with a few ice-cold tinnies of Aurum, Spain’s cheapest, and foamiest alcoholic refreshment.
I should have mentioned, Stoke Travel offer an unlimited supply of beer and sangria at only 70EUROS for the week, and the sangria isn’t the bottled shit that tastes like it was made by someone who’s going on a bad description of what sangria should taste like. Stoke’s sangria is homemade, tasty, and potent.
There are plenty of beaches on offer, whether they’re walking distance from your campsite or a short drive from Stoke’s surf house in the town of Aia near Zarautz, you’ll go looking for the best surf at popular and secret spots alike. Which brings me onto the next reason you should book your Stoke Van Surfari.
Sporting the logo of your favourite surf camp and so many boards strapped to the roof it’d put the Moroccans to shame, you’ll jump into one of Stoke’s vans and head off in search of your paradise for the day.
Most of the time the destinations will be those with the best surf Basque has on offer that particular day, but if you want to go somewhere else, like a secluded cove in Cantabria and have a bonfire on the beach, or head into Donostia (San Sebastian to the uninitiated) for a pintxo tour and maybe the Jesus Walk if you want to take in the view. The point is, wherever you want to go, that’s where you’ll go, Stoke are there to ensure you have the best trip that suits your vibe.
Stoke’s brand new Surf House, located in Aia, a town in the mountains above Zarautz is ideally located for you to take in the rich culture of Basque. Biarritz is less than an hour’s drive away and you can spend the day lounging on Petit-Plage, exploring the old town and the historical monuments, chatting to locals, or just having a drink at a bar you could probably imagine Hemingway might have drunk at.
San Sebastian, which has the most Michelin stars per capita, is only twenty minutes by coach, and a pintxo’s tour (Basque’s answer to tapas) is one of the tastiest ways to spend an afternoon. While in San Sebastian you’ll have time to take what is known as the Jesus Walk. The walk takes you up to a Napoleonic fort with a church at the top that overlooks all of San Sebastian. However, despite its name the Jesus Walk is more of a climb, and the statue at the top is not Jesus but, understandably, Saint Sebastian, for whom the city is named.
Rather than drone on about the specifics of each break, how they work, whether they’re better at high or low tide and all that, I’ll just let the names speak for themselves.
Hendaye, Hossegor (check out Stab’s article on why Hossegor is the third best beach break in the world), Capbreton, Moliets, Mimizan, Zarautz, Zumaia (not a surf break but they filmed Game of Thrones there!) Zurriola, Cantabria, Somo, El Brusco, La Grav, Liencres, and finally, Mundaka one of the best waves in the world.
The Surf House
This summer Stoke have changed up the way the run their van surfaris. Now you’ll be staying in their new surf house, converted from an old farm building it has a stunning view of Northern Spain’s rolling green hills and you can even see the break at Zarautz. The ground floor has been kitted out with a bar, ping pong table, and more rugs and comfy chairs than you can shake a stick at (surfboard pun) and is ideal for chilling or partying ‘til the cows come home (which hopefully they won’t, the top of the house used to be a cow shed).
With freshly built skate ramp, loads of hammocks, in house bar (have I mentioned the bar?), Stoke’s Surf House couldn’t be better suited to a no-holds-barred surf trip of a lifetime. So whether it’s chilled out vibes, an endless sesh, or just want to surf until the sun goes down, you need to book onto their Van Surfari now.
Fuck Calm. Get Stoked.
Toran (Brum Surf)
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