Surf’s up with Stoke

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Surf’s up with Stoke

You may not know this, but the Beach Boys never surfed. One of the Beach Boys dabbled, the drummer Dennis Wilson, but he was also a friend of Charles Manson’s for a while, so you could say that his surf pedigree is equal to his being­pals­with­the­worst­person­ever pedigree.



Despite not regularly surfing, the Beach Boys filled their catalogue with ditties about California, the beach, babes, summer, and shred dogging itself. One of the classic Beach Boys songs is Surfin’ Safari, and you know it. It’s the one that goes,

Let’s go surfing now,

Everybody’s learning how,

Come on a safari with me…

(Come on a safari with me).

What a classic hit! But it seems like the Beach Boys missed out on a great opportunity to lay claim to the term “Surfari” and go down in the annals of history as the guys who not only put down phat beats overlaid with catchy jingles, but also as masters of the pun.

Perhaps it was their lack of surfing pedigree that saw them miss that chance, the saltwater­free veins didn’t propel them towards the obvious pairing of “surf” and “safari”, but here at Stoke Travel we’re waxheads through and through, and as such the pun was second nature.

Yes, we claim responsibility for inventing the term Surfari, and for at least a decade now we’ve been using it to describe our surfing trips through Southwest France and Northern Spain.

Van Surfari (2)

The Stoke Travel Surfari takes all the elements of the traditional safari, like the adventure and the wild animals and the sleeping under the stars, combines it with surfing some of the best waves in Europe, and voila you’ve got a surfari. The idea being that you want a surfing holiday where we teach you how to surf, and set up your camp for you, and cook for you, and take you partying of a night, but not remaining in the one spot, in the one campsite, because even the Beach Boys knew that it’d be a shame to be staying here when the best waves were over there.

We take the surf camp experience mobile on the road. Europe, y’see, is a bit of a quiet achiever on the international surf scene. It doesn’t have the fearsome reputation of Hawaii’s surf, or sunburnt Australia’s shredding ubiquitousness, or Indonesia’s exotic perfection, but it has plenty of waves – some of them world class, and the waves are fronted by dazzling beaches that are laden with Europe’s naked and half­naked beautiful people, and behind the beaches lie the castles and ancient architecture, and the world’s best food and wine and parties and bars and that southern­ European summer lifestyle you’ve heard and read so much about.


Surfing in Europe is truly combining the best of both worlds.We’ll go to places like Biarritz, where Napoleon III would pass his summers, and San Sebastian, where Queen Maria Cristina bathed and Ernest Hemingway gambled, and further north from Biarritz to Hossegor, where they have a world championships of surfing every year, and west from San Sebastian to Zarautz with all its great waves, and towards Santander past Mundaka, known as one of the world’s best lefthanders.

If the Beach Boys had have come on a Surfari with The Stoke Travel Co. perhaps they would have injected a dose of authenticity into their surfing shanties.

Perhaps they would have coined the term “surfari”. Without a doubt, they would have had a really, really splendid time surfing Europe’s coastline and experiencing the culture and getting a tan and wiping out.

Your loss, Beach Boys.