Take a wettie to Spain or not?

Ash's picture
Ash started the topic in Sunday, 18 Aug 2019 at 1:03pm

The better half and I are off to Spain/Portugal beginning September for 6 weeks, 1st time for us. A backpack each is all we're taking so I'm asking is it worth taking a 3/2 or springy to save money on hiring one for each surf, surf destinations are Lisbon, Nazare, Porto, Mundaka and San Sebastian and a possible run into southern France for a day. There'll be a lot of time in non surfing places and I'm not taking boards,( thank f... for that ) so is it worth carrying extra weight and as it's early autumn, how is the Atlantic water temp?

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Monday, 19 Aug 2019 at 6:12am

Ordinarily I'd say yes, but from my own experience backpacking (and given you're not taking boards), the general rule is pack what you think you need, then halve it. And sometimes halve it again.

Space in your backpack (and weight, or lack thereof) is a premium when you're on foot.

You can always pick up a cheap one second hand wettie when you get there. 

Ash's picture
Ash's picture
Ash commented Monday, 19 Aug 2019 at 10:45am

Thanks Ben
The trips getting closer and I'm having to think about what not to take, that and the AUD is really low to the Euro making it way more expensive than the usual Indo jaunt. I think we'll come back much slimmer.

Craig's picture
Craig's picture
Craig commented Monday, 19 Aug 2019 at 11:01am

Last year around South West France, summer was boardies and I'd expect it to be the same for the start of Sept, but Spain was very cold owing to localised upwelling in some spots, so you'd need some sort of wetsuit there... thinking the same for Portugal?

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Monday, 19 Aug 2019 at 11:02am

I know how you feel - when I travelled through USA/Central America in '98, the Aussie dollar was buying US 58c - which made a big difference to my decision making. 

Also met up with a bunch of Kiwis, and they were doing it even harder, I think they were down to about US 50c at one stage. 

Ash's picture
Ash's picture
Ash commented Monday, 19 Aug 2019 at 11:39am

Yep thanks Donald and your trade war, but if we don't go we won't know, any rate, eating is way over rated ( sort of joking ) and 2 meals a day is fine. I'm used to using the board bag as a 2nd bag, but I'm really happy to not have to lug it around, it's such a pain in the arse to heave through airports, ferries and taxi's, nice to just grab the back pack and go.

Terminal's picture
Terminal's picture
Terminal commented Monday, 19 Aug 2019 at 6:13pm

Just FYI, I found surf gear pretty pricey in Spain (new and segunda mano). Took me ages to find a good deal on a board when I was there earlier this year. Try Milanuncios, surfmarket.org and vibbo.com for cheap kit...

carpetman's picture
carpetman's picture
carpetman commented Monday, 19 Aug 2019 at 6:48pm

Hey Ash,

I'm heading to Portugal at the end of this month for a week or two before flying across the Atlantic for further travels. This probably won't work out but thought I'd see if it helps...

I'm not on a surf trip and due to the travel after Portugal, like you, I don't wanna carry a board/wetsuit around but if the forecast in portugal is good I've got an old beat up board and wetsuit destined for the second hand store/bin I was going to take for portugal and leave to someone once I fly out.

I'm spending a few days in Ericeira but then will mostly be further south so it's probably pretty unlikely I'll even bother taking them but if I do and you can get to where I am, they'll be free for the taking. I'll be flying out of Faro on the 10th.

Bnkref's picture
Bnkref's picture
Bnkref commented Monday, 19 Aug 2019 at 9:26pm

Post of the day there Carpetman.

This time of year in SW France boardies and a thin top (for the early) would be fine.

Hiring a board ain’t cheap. I paid 50 Euro a day in Peniche a couple of years ago.

You’ll score. Great part of the world.

Ash's picture
Ash's picture
Ash commented Tuesday, 20 Aug 2019 at 11:00am

Many thanks Carpetman. We'll get into Lisbon about the 16th and will head north 4 days later, so I don't think I'd be able to pick the gear up, but the offer is much appreciated.
Reckon I'll pack the 2/3 and less clothes and save some money on the hire costs. Murphy's law says if I don't there'll be waves and it'll cost more, if I do I save money but will have to carry it around.

Bnkref's picture
Bnkref's picture
Bnkref commented Tuesday, 20 Aug 2019 at 12:53pm

Sounds good Ash. I packed a wettie (no board) for my honeymoon around Portugal and Spain and that worked well. If you're looking to surf in Lisbon and don't have wheels, it's easy to get to Carcavelos by train. You can get a board here: https://www.portugalsurfrentals.com/surf-rentals-carcavelos/

Ash's picture
Ash's picture
Ash commented Tuesday, 20 Aug 2019 at 1:45pm

Thanks Bnkref, Carcavelos is probably where I'll head 1st up.

surfstarved's picture
surfstarved's picture
surfstarved commented Tuesday, 20 Aug 2019 at 3:35pm

I spent nearly the whole of 2017 in Spain & Portugal and went from Biarritz to Cadiz (SW Spain) along the coast over the course of about 6 weeks (late Sept - early Nov.).

I had a 3:2 steamer and was glad of it. I didn't need anything thicker at that time of year, but I was definitely happy to have the length, especially when we got to Portugal.

There are plenty of places to hire boards and wetties, but keep your expectations low as to the quality of the merchandise.

Here's a good tip for getting around. If you're keen, try catching the Feve - a narrow gauge rail line that runs from Ferrol in Galicia (NW Spain) all the way along the coast to Bilbao (NE).

http://www.renfe.com/GA/viajeros/feve/mapas/index.html

From there you can link up with the Basque local train network (about a two-block walk from the Feve terminus) and go all the way to Mundaka or further.

Don't let the bastards grind you down

Ash's picture
Ash's picture
Ash commented Tuesday, 20 Aug 2019 at 4:03pm

That's it ST, from Lisbon we have to get ourselves from town to town, the accommodation's booked but it's either bus or train to the next one. I didn't want any other flights bar our trip there and back home so we can see the place properly and I'm not a big fan of flying, so the Feve sounds perfect to get a feel for north Spain, cheers.

hacomed's picture
hacomed's picture
hacomed commented Thursday, 22 Aug 2019 at 6:36am

Ah yea as of now, it will be a good idea but now season is so unpredictable. Then carry and be on the safer side.

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