Surf Localism – 4 Aggressive Surfing Locations

by Oliver Boyers

Some call it surf localism, some call it bad manners and some people don’t say anything at all, they just beat the crap out of other surfers.

Yep, its the age-old situation of “Who the hell are you bru?” and “You better sit on the shoulder”.

We have all experienced surf localism at some stage of our surfing journey so we thought we would sum up 4 locations that house the most surfers that are likely to kick your teeth in for catching a wave on their home turf.

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1. Mauritius – Surf Localism by Non-Locals. LOL

Unfortunately, I can speak about this one first hand. I had the misfortune of running into some nasty locals at Tamarin Bay on our recent trip to Mauritius. This place was the once epic wave that was immortalised in the film The Lost Island Of Santosha.

Sadly, the reality these days is that the once epic and regular left-hand point break has changed drastically since it’s heyday. The wave now breaks very infrequently which probably further fuels the anger of the locals that go by the name of the ‘White Shorts’.

The funny thing is that a lot of these angry locals are French nationals or expats. So, like, not your home town either. So seriously, get a life gents. There is one d-bag in particular by the name of Bruno who you need to watch out for (check out the video below).

It doesn’t matter if you’re young or old either, these guys are slapping 13-year-olds and parents alike. This poor father and son combo received a beat down when they didn’t follow the rules. Check out the full story here.

You will be told to remove yourself from the point completely or face physical consequences. Even after waiting for about 45 minutes for a single wave. My only opportunity was cut short by some prawn dropping in on me.

This is one of the guys you need to look out for apparently:

2. Hawaii – Say Aloha to This Knuckle-Sandwich

I once heard a story of a Brazilian surfing team who went to Hawaii for some surf contest and made the fatal error of chasing a Hawaiian local out of the water. This Hawaiian man gathered a few of his mates that ambushed the Brazilians after their surf on the way home and beat the living hell out of them – breaking one of the Brazilians legs to boot. Ouch. Not sure how much of that is true but I hear Hawaiian locals are tough as nails.

Check this next video which shows what happens when you paddle out at a surf contest in Hawaii that you are not taking part in. This guy refused to paddle in when told to and suffered the wrath of a few locals.

3. California, USA – I’m Gonna Hang Ten… of Your Family Members Bruh!

I think it would be unfair to label the entire US of A as a hostile surf nation and so I narrowed it down to Cali.

There are countless stories about the Luanda Bay locals who terrorize anyone steps foot onto their turf. There are stories of people being threatened, assaulted, used as target practice with rocks and even having their tires slashed.

It would seem though, however crude and barbaric their methods, these locals are achieving their goal by making any surf session in Luanda Bay downright rubbish.

The long-haired surfer is a common stereotype but may not be the best idea if you’re an angry, brawl-prone kinda guy. Check how this guy’s long hair becomes his downfall:

4. New Zealand – “F*$&en skits mate!”

Now I always thought that the New Zealanders were much like the Canadians in the manners department. Oh, boy was I wrong. These locals took things to the next level by firing gunshots at surfers that paddled out to their local spot. The incident occurred in the Waikato’s Taharoa area.

The surfers initially thought that the shots were from hunters somewhere else, but when a bullet hit the water a few meters from where they were floating they dedicated that it was best to paddle in. Check out the full story here.

Final Thoughts on Surfer Localism

While most surfers fit the stereotype of mellow, relaxed sun-kissed folk out of the water, it’s often a whole new ball game in the sea. As a general rule, it is always smart to enter foreign surf territory with respect. Wait your turn for a wave, respect the locals and if you ever see me in the waves just remember, if you drop in on me, I’ll drop you, China!

Let us know in the comments below any surf locations that are particularly hostile. We hear that Brazilians have a bad reputation but I surfed there for 2 months with no issues. Check out my Brazillian surf guide.

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Emre 17 September 2020 - 10:29 am

The ACTUAL locals of Mauritius were very kind when I went. They let me surf and on my way in they asked me if I had a good session and what I thought of their spot. This is a stark contrast to what you get if any foreign expats are in the water. They are overprotective of a spot that THEY are invading themselves.

Oliver Boyers
Oliver Boyers 14 October 2020 - 7:16 am

I’ve also heard that it is mainly the French expats and I’ve experienced it first hand. Bunch of muppets if you ask me.


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