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Ripar Surf School

Ripar Surf School is a surf school based in Praia da Areia Branca, close to Peniche and Baleal. It offers surf lessons and yoga classes with a different concept.

Instructors 5


Yoga is Carla’s philosophy of life, her discipline, and consciousness. In 2002, she began the journey as a yoga instructor. It's not been an easy road. It has been a constant challenge for her and for others, but always a very pleasurable journey.


Xico is one of the best local surfers while also being an incredible father of three small children. He is patient and careful with all his surfing students. He lives under the influence of permaculture and believes that relationships can be found in nature and can be applied to all aspects of human habitation.

Miguel Contreras

An openhearted human, that smiles through life. He is graduated in Medicine, since 2012, from de University of Salamanca and has been working as a General Practice trainee doctor in Nazaré until this year, when he realized he needed to explore new ways to approach health and life. He is a certified Yoga Sámkhya Instructor from the Portuguese Confederation of Yoga and a surfer with more than 10 years of experience which allows him to merge this two fulfilling activities into a practice than can enhance your surfing and promote your connection to yourself, in nature.


Pipas is a local surfer and has been a surf instructor since 2005. Teaching most of the times at the "improvers" surfing lessons, he will help you enjoying the ride of your life.


Rafael is a surf instructor. He's a local surfer with more than 20 years of experience with classic style and is always chasing some tubes. He's also known as the Big Rider of Areia Branca. He has an amazing knowledge of the ocean and is always in tune with nature.

Reviews 27

Helen Frost

from Denmark, August 2017

"Perfect introduction to surfing despite tough conditions"

Everyone at Ripar is extremely helpful and friendly, the equipment is great and the instructors know the waters and surfing like the backs of their hands

Siska Rappé

from United States, July 2017

"Very recommandable"

Super host João took us out to the best restaurants in the surroundings. We really enjoyed our stay in Native surf house!!

Karin Fleming

from Belgium, July 2017

"Great time!"

While the focus of my stay was more on surfing and less about the yoga, I really enjoyed myself. The instructors were all very knowledgeable, friendly and open to questions. Overall a great experience.

Jack Witts

from Great Britain, July 2017

"Perfect Trip "

The accommodation and surf school was amazing, I can not find a bad thing to say.

Vanessa Graf

from United States, July 2017

"Great Experience "

Community feel


from Poland, June 2017

"Was absolutely perfect!;)"

Was waaay better than i expected. People were super nice and friendly. Instructors were very good. Cake baked everyday:) movie nights, hospitality. Oh my goodness i absolutely love it:) the people

And energy of this place. And i really like that they have an offer just for 3 Nights. For sure i will come back there this year:) thanks for all people working there (e.g. Christina) for making this place wonderful;)

Lisa Jody Manser

from Turks and Caicos Islands, June 2017


Lemon Tree Hostel was fantastic,,, great energy, clean and so friendly,,

Ripar - just fabulous!! The instructors - amazing, surf spot was great,, everything was excellent!! I couldn't have asked for a better long weekend,,

Marianne Kjærsund

from Norway, September 2017

"An experience with nature "

Choosing riparf surf school was quite a lucky chance. I had no idea what was going to happen, and I went for the package with tensurf lessons and five yoga classes. And the week was a wonderful learning adventure. I had a strong experience of what it can mean to connect- or disconnect, with the power of the OCEAN itself. Ripar takes the surfing playfully but very professional and seriously. You really get in return what you invest and commit with yourself.

It is a wonderful team.

Jessica at the office gives you help and endless enthusiasm. She is brilliant to connect the dots during the camp, and I think she means a lot for the whole experience of Ripar. Rui Pedro invited us on a mindful guidance into the historic areas around Areia de Branca. I highly reccomend you to join the trip. Ineś gave a wonderful shiatsu treatment of my wave-smashed body! Carla gave a sensitive introduction to Hata yoga. Even though the schedule gets busy with all the surfing, I highly reccomend these classes. Gonzalo is a good teacher with patience, clarity and communicates well the challenge to commit to the art of surfing. He made me realize many aspects of what the sea demand of a surfer. And always with the smile at hand. He pushed me up on the strong water and seemed to know how to encourage me for one more try through the oh so frightening breaking zone. Pura Vida hostel was a good place to rest, Hugo was very attentive and helpful. Ps the beach is like a dream. go go go!

James Palmer

from Great Britain, September 2017

"5day relaxing break"

Quality of instructors

Quality of surf

Excursion was excellent


from Great Britain, September 2017

"Careful: this is all about surf and not yoga"

Fernando was very professional


from Great Britain, August 2017

Praia da Areia Branca is a wonderful little town with a beautiful beach and delicious seafood restuarants.

Ripar Surf School is great. The instructors explain and demonstrate everything from surf technique to safety rules very well and are super helpful and encouraging. I mostly surfed with Pipas ans Diogo, but I was my impression from other students that all instructors are like this.

The yoga classes were a good supplement to the surfing as it really helped stretching all sore muscles. Carla did an excellent job at adjusting the classes to our needs.

The staff at the quietly situated Lemon Tree Hostel was friendly and helpful. There are good kitchen facilities for making your own food and a cozy garden. The Jam Night in the garden was nice and with the big repetoire of the guitarist there was something for everyone to sing (hum) along to.

Overall, I would definetly recommend this retreat to anyone wanting to learn or get better at surfing.

Berenice Mertens

from Sweden, August 2017

"A perfect relaxing stay among friendly and positive people"

I had a wonderful time in Areia Branca. I stayed one week for yoga and surf.

1/ The hostel was great: delicious breakfast with a wide variety of choice (I am gluten intolerant and Cristina, the owner, knidly bought gluten free products for me. We also had a freshly baked cake every day! =)). Friendly staff. Very clean, the hostel is entirely cleaned every single day. Quiet and peaceful, with a beautiful garden,...I felt at home.

2/The Ripar surf school was very good. The instructors were nice, easy going and professional at the same time. They are passionate about what they are doing. They helped us a lot, sometimes individually, trying their best to make us progress, no matter what level we were at.

3/ I am more a yogi than a surfer and Carla's classes were amazing. I learnt a lot with her. She has the ability to teach yoga poses, meditation, mantras, yoga philosophy,... We had yoga at different places, in front of the ocean...just like paradise.

4/ The location: Areia Branca is easily reachable from Lisbon. It is a small town, a bit touristic, but not too much. Just perfect to have some activities for tourists, restaurants, clubs, shops,...there are also nice places to visit around. A relaxing spot for holidays.

Tom Knox

from Denmark, July 2017

"Surfing is brutal"

If you're a beginner surfer combining it with yoga is perhaps not optimal. Until you've mastered popping up the body takes a lot of physical punishment. Yoga is complicated if your body is extremely sore and bruised.

But otherwise great. The yoga teacher is great. Very attentive and adapts the classes as needed.

I stayed at the Native hostel. The owner JP is a bit of a character. But his heart is in the right place. It seemed to attract the most fun surfing young people. I had a great time there. If you're on a budget it's perfect.

The beach bar Solmar has the best sea food IMHO. Go there for the sunset

Testimonials 5

Greig Thomson

Ripar Surf School Facebook page

My children and I had an absolutely fantastic time! Great staff and instructors meant there were always friendly, helpful people around and they were always there to give you feedback and tips during the session. Additionally, they were always there to make sure everything was both fun and safe. Outstanding!

Jonas O.

TripAdvisor website

Ripar Surf School is simply amazing! Well organized, welcoming, friendly, helpful, and just a great atmosphere. We learned a lot and had fun doing it. All the best recommendations from us!

Sabine Becht Germany

Ripar Surf School Facebook page

Probably the best surf school with a passionate and professional team. I am so lucky to get recommended to this surf school. It was definitely the best idea! Were a small group with three great teachers and had lots of fun and found our new passion. I can't wait to get back into the water to catch the next waves. It was definitely not the last time with Ripar!! Thank you very much guys!

Christine M. Germany

TripAdvisor website

In my opinion, Ripar is the best surf school for both beginners and advanced surfers for several reasons. The course is very intensive; you will be in the water four hours a day for at least five days per week. Price is around 200 Euros, so 10 Euros per hour for teaching and rental. The teachers are very patient with beginners. They explain everything very thoroughly and pay special attention to you once you hit the water the first time by being with you in the water and pushing you when needed. At the end of the week, it should be possible to have surfed a few green waves already. When I came there for the first time I had already surfed a few times but I don't really count those times as the other surf schools taught me wrong and I spent three days to unlearn my take-off with a knee. The classes are also good for advanced surfers. The teachers are locals and know the spots very well. I had some very good guiding sessions where we went out in a small group, surfed, relaxed and got very good hints and tips in between from the teachers. The teachers themselves complement each other very well. Xico is the best teacher I know - he has been surfing his whole life and it is a joy to watch him surf. He can spot very well where you can improve. His younger brother Pipas can give very good pointers on how to watch the waves and be in the right spot and so on. Both can relate very well what to watch out for when coming to a new place as a surfer and also what it means to experience the spirit of surfing. Raffa knows everything about the ocean and will share with you an abundance of knowledge. The other teachers I have not met yet. Also, I feel completely safe when I am in the water with them. I know that if something happens and I drown they will fish me out quickly as they are so fast and always have an eye on everyone. The spot Areia Branca has perfect waves, both left and rights. Numerous times I came out of the water completely stoked only to quickly paddle back in. It is so much fun. Everyone has a great sense of humor, both the teachers and the other guests who are very cool and international. I remember so many days where we cheered for each other to catch the waves and laughed until my belly hurt. The groups are not so big: When you see the other surf camps in Peniche, you see 20 to 30 people in one group and wonder how everyone can get the attention they need. To be fair, I have never been with Ripar during the main season (the largest group was around 15 people I think). This time it was the first time that I saw them teaching a larger group and it really doesn't matter how big the group is, I was astonished to see Xico paddle quickly from the far left to the far right, pushing someone into the green waves on the way and giving advice to many others and all during one set! I have been to many other surf schools in and on Fuerteventura, Dominican Republic, France, the Philippines, Peru, Sri Lanka, India, USA and Indonesia, but nowhere I have found such dedicated teachers and such an amazing atmosphere. Needless to say, I can really recommend surfing with Ripar! :).

Ola Marysia Russia

Ripar Surf School Facebook page

I've chosen the Ripar School after very long hours searching where to surf in Portugal. This school stands out among all others cause, the teachers are not only true masters of surfing but also great instructors. They are the ones who inspire us, tell us our mistakes and how to improve them, motivate us to try again and again till the time when we can stand on the board and finally surf. Surfing is a really tough sport. Thanks to our teachers we had fun! The group is also small. For five students we had two teachers. Personal approach to everyone. You will get more hours of surfing for the same price than other schools. The School has a great location. Two minutes walk to the beach where we had lessons. If the wind was not good on the beach, our teachers drove us to another beach (10 to 15 minutes by car). Everyday we had lessons without excuses. I've stayed at the hostel which is one minute walk from the school. It was very comfortable, cause after lessons I just wanted to eat and sleep. Ripar School is the BEST school ever! Five stars.

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