After much deliberation about where to go and when to go, we finally pushed go on a trip to a new place for us, El Salvador and in particular Playa Sunzal/El Tunco
We were definitely a little unsure of how it might be down in El Salvador, having not heard much about it before, apart from a few things on the internet which didn’t really fill me in any more. Anyways, we left Portland at 8pm, and took a red eye through LAX and arrived at 6.30am to be greeted by waves like this as above….
It was definitely one of those waves that when you turn up you just smile, and think how hyped your going to be surfing this break for a week.
This was the place we stayed, the Kayu, which is the indonesian word for Wood. We had a suite facing the ocean so it was literally drag yourself out of bed, run over the road and get in amongst it in the water.
This is the view from the pool at sunrise. The Kayu is one of the nicest places I have ever stayed in around 8 years of surfing, but it really is nice to have the chance to get a really good nights sleep, followed by a great surf then followed by an amazing breakfast. It makes a huge difference to your surfing the amount of sleep, relaxation you get in amongst all the surf.
The Kayu has a really nice restaurant but then also a couple of levels on the beach, where you can get your breakfast too. Amazing to watch the surf from there
The hotel has internet, amazing food, and probably better than anything a great set of staff who are there to make your stay as enjoyable as possible, led by the one and only Marvin who in between working finds time to paddle out on his stand up.
This is the zone around where we stayed, right by the break. There is also a few other spots to stay here which also looked nice too.
This is El Tunco itself. There is a load of hostels here too incase you ever want a budget holiday, and to make your money stretch that little bit further. Amazing restaurants up here and small road side places making Papposos.
Everyone was friendly and as a small town it provided enough for a week in terms of places to eat and drink, although as it was getting dark at 5pm, i was knackered enough to be in bed by 9pm most nights!
Of course there was some local music to savour.
As you do fellas, just taking the old nags down the beach.
In El Tunco there was loads of people fishing too, including these guys throwing nets down from the rocks, these must be the most well sought after fishing spots in town…
There was also an ambulance of places to do yoga, eat, drink, get massages, and anything else you may need on a holiday.
So then, by now your probably thinking….. “just tell me about the surf”
Well this was the first couple of days, super fun, a peeling right, which was so good. The first two days were best then it dropped a bit but somehow despite it being flat everywhere, it found a way of breaking even though there was hardly any swell.
The great thing about where we stayed was that you could just look down for when it was working and then just head down and paddle out to get it when its at its best.
This was around 6am, Mareike was getting up for sunrise also and taking a few pictures of us too…. Lucky me i know right?…. but this was the waves even when it was small, so pretty good for getting more confident.
One of the things I did was write down after each session how many waves I got. I know sounds super lame, but I saw someone at the coast in Oregon do it and its actually pretty good way of remembering little things you may do wrong, or simply whether it was a good session or not. Definitely worth doing though.
Damn it was nice to surf rights again after being in Bali.
This guy was effectively my mobile christmas tree.
Mareike getting artsy mid breakfast.
Slow shutter speed for breakfast.
One day we got this bus into La Libertad. Now that was an experience. Crazy infact. The bus doesn’t stop for you they just slow down and hope you jump on without breaking yourself.. I will upload a video from that day and the whole trip later today too.
Yes there was a lot of these drunk, Daiquiris and Margaritas for lunch.
You remember the Bintang in Bali…..? This is the local version. Goes down easy and costs $1.50.
This was Miriam who we met in our hotel who was up at 5.30am already paddling out each morning whilst i was simply trying to get coffee and come to terms with the world!
We ended up booking using a company locally based in El Salvador who helped with all transfers and booked our rooms for us. Its a great idea as you just work with one reliable person for a great overall vacation experience. definitely recommend you going that route. If you want to check them out take a look at http://sunzal.com/Sunzal/ and hit up Adrian via the website who will take care of your needs. When you head somewhere new on a surf trip it definitely makes life easier when you have someone helping you out on the other end with airport picks up and accommodation booking. Definitely recommend working with these guys.
It really is a great place for quick get away…
So whilst we were there Mareike also surfed, and took to it pretty easy, considering she has been out the water for a while but she was straight out and standing up… even with better style than me..
She was cruising whilst i was just getting that english sunburn going on.
Nothing like a bit of chaos when surfing…
That sunset again though…
Sunset on our last night. Insane how beautiful it was.
Madam sunshine herself.
See you next year hopefully!