7 Famous Spanish Surfers: The Best!

It’s always up for debate, "who are the most famous Spanish surfers"?

We list the current most famous Spanish surfers, going into detail of their impact on Spain's surf culture and surfing as a whole.

The list of famous Spanish surfers is forever growing so here is our 7 best!

Most Famous Spanish Surfers

The most famous Spanish surfers are Aritz Aranburu, Natxo González, and Gonzalo Zubizarreta, recognised for their contributions to professional surfing and achievements in international competitions.

This list of the most famous Spanish surfers is forever growing! Let's get into each famous Spanish surfers story below in detail.

Want to find more surfers? View our list of the most famous surfers ever!

Aritz Aranburu

Born: 30 August 1985

Origin: Getaria, Gipuzkoa, Spain

Style: Mixed

famous Spanish surfers

About: Aritz Aranburu is a Spanish professional surfer who started riding a shortboard at the age of 7. By 12, he had already won the Basque Surfing Championship, a feat he repeated at 18. Aritz gained recognition by winning his first international title at Capbreton in 2000 and represented the Basque Surf Federation in the European Surf Championship in 2000 and 2002. In 2007, he secured the Zarauz Pro Surf title, earning him the European champion title. Despite injuries in 2008, Aritz managed to stay in the World Championship Tour (WCT) making him one of many famous Spanish surfers.

Achievements: He is known for winning the Zarautz Pro Surf in 2007 and earning the title of European champion in the same year.

Instagram: @aritz_aranburu

famous Spanish surfers - Aritz Aranburu

Garazi Sánchez

Born: February 17, 1992

Origin: Guecho, Spain 

Style: Sánchez has cultivated a distinct and captivating surfing style, a testament to her skill and passion. Her surfing journey commenced at the tender age of seven, mastering the waves with a Hang Ten board.

famous Spanish surfers

About: Garazi Sánchez is not only an accomplished athlete but also a gifted filmmaker. Boasting a remarkable surfing career, she holds the prestigious titles of a two-time Spanish Champion and the 2017 European circuit runner-up. However, her journey took an unexpected turn in 2019 when a training mishap on the shores of Hossegor, France, resulted in a spinal injury. Beyond the waves and the camera, Garazi Sánchez has become a prominent ambassador for esteemed brands, including Michelin, Subaru, Iberdrola, Rvca, and Isdin. Her influence extends beyond the realm of sports, positioning her as a symbol of strength and determination. In her own words, "No podemos ser perfectos, pero sí mejores" - "We cannot be perfect, but we can be better."

Achievements: Garazi Sánchez's sporting journey is adorned with achievements, marked by the titles of Spanish Champion achieved twice and the distinguished position of the 2017 European circuit runner-up.

Instagram: @garazisanchez

famous Spanish surfers - Garazi Sánchez

Gony Zubizarreta

Born: May 4, 1985

Origin: Born in Argentina, Gony Zubizarreta moved to Galicia, Spain, at age 1.

Style: Regular

famous Spanish surfers

About: Gony Zubizarreta, born on May 4, 1985, discovered his love for surfing at 7. Winning the Under 18 division at the ISA World Grommet Championships in 2002, he became Spain's only World Junior titleholder. His dream of being a pro surfer led him through the WQS Tour, winning the Zarautz WQS 5* in 2009. Although narrowly missing WCT Tour qualification, Gony remains determined.

Achievements: WQS 5* Zarautz winner (2009), WQS 5* Pantin Classic finalist. A prominent figure on the WQS Tour and part of the most famous Spanish surfers.

Instagram: @gonyzubizarreta

famous Spanish surfers - Gony Zubizarreta

Jonathan González

Born: August 22, 1980

Origin: Santa Cruz de Tenerife, in the Canary Islands, Spain.

Style: Regular

famous Spanish surfers

About: Jonathan González Rodríguez, born on August 22, 1980, in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, is a professional surfer representing the Canary Islands in competitions. Achieving his best season on the Qualifying Series in 2014 at the age of 35, he secured the 23rd position, just seven places behind the last qualifier for the elite circuit.

Achievements: Jonathan González has secured an impressive four victories throughout his surfing career. Notable wins include his triumph at the Canarian Arena Publicidad Series in Lanzarote (2001), the Rip Curl Series San Sebastian in Saint-Sébastien (2002), and the La Caja de Canarias Ocean & Earth Pro in Las Palmas (2008). Additionally, he claimed victory at the Ocean & Earth Pro in Las Palmas for two consecutive years (2009, 2010), showcasing his dominance on the Canary Islands. His remarkable success extends to international competitions, with wins at the Lusiaves Figueira Pro in Figueira da Foz, Portugal (2010), and the Islas Canarias Ocean & Earth Pro in Las Palmas (2010, 2011). No wonder he os one of the most famous Spanish surfers.

Instagram: @jonathang_onzalez

famous Spanish surfers - Jonathan González Surfing Canary Islands

Natxo González

Born: September 20, 1995

Origin: Big wave surfer

Style: Natxo González, at the age of 28, showcases his exceptional skills in big wave surfing, emphasising that conquering 6m waves is 80 percent mental and only 20 percent physical. His ability to tame these colossal waves is a testament to his profound talent.

famous Spanish surfers

About: Born on September 20, 1995, Natxo González is a Spanish surfer who has dedicated himself to the art of big wave surfing. His remarkable journey includes seven years of saving to purchase his first elite surfboard. This investment paid off as he not only mastered the mental aspect of big wave riding but also began winning regional competitions. In 2012, he achieved a significant hometown victory at the Punta Galea Challenge.

Achievements: Natxo González's enormous talent and professionalism have garnered him recognition in the surfing community. His notable victory at the Punta Galea Challenge in 2012 stands as a testament to his skills in the realm of big wave surfing.

Instagram: @natxogonzalez1

famous Spanish surfers - Natxo González Big Wave Surfer

Pablo Gutiérrez

Born: 1981 in Santander, Spain

Origin: Santander, Spain

Style: "El Matador," Pablo Gutiérrez, developed a distinctive and assertive surfing style, shaped by his transition from football and skateboarding to mastering the waves.

famous Spanish surfers

About: Pablo Gutiérrez, born in 1981, found his love for surfing due to asthmatic challenges that redirected him from football. Starting with a beach board alongside his brother Pedro, Pablo became a former European champion, recognized with a star on the "Paseo de las Estrellas del Surf" in Spain.

Achievements: Pablo Gutiérrez boasts the title of Former European Champion and secured a hometown victory at the Punta Galea Challenge in 2012.

Instagram: @pablogutisurf

famous Spanish surfers - Pablo Gutiérrez Surfing in Europe

Vicente Romero

Born: July 1, 1992

Origin: Barcelona, Spain

Style: Regular

famous Spanish surfers

About: With a career spanning multiple seasons, Vicente Romero has consistently showcased his prowess in competitive surfing. Achieving significant milestones, such as claiming the top spot in the 2019 Cabreiroá Pro Zarautz, Romero's journey reflects a commitment to excellence in the sport.

Achievements: Vicente Romero, the dynamic and powerful regular stance surfer from Barcelona, Spain, has etched an impressive legacy in the professional surfing realm. Notably, Romero clinched the top spot in the 2019 Cabreiroá Pro Zarautz, showcasing his competitive prowess. Throughout his career on the Men's Qualifying Series, he has consistently achieved multiple top 5 finishes, reaching a career-high ranking of 24th in 2021. His journey exemplifies a steadfast commitment to excellence and a continuous drive to make waves in the world of professional surfing.

Instagram: @vicente_romero

famous Spanish surfers - Vicente Romero Surfing in 2020

Spanish Surf Comps

Spain hosts various surfing competitions showcasing its vibrant surf scene.

Notable events include the Pantin Classic Galicia Pro, where top surfers gather for a challenging competition, and the Cabreiroá Pro Zarautz, offering a mix of high-performance surfing and cultural experiences.

The Link between Spain and Surfing

Spain's rich coastline, spanning the Atlantic Ocean to the Mediterranean Sea, fosters a strong connection with surfing.

Surfing pioneers like Aritz Aranburu have put Spain on the global surfing map, highlighting the country's role in the evolution of the sport.

Surfing Culture in Spain

Spain embraces a diverse surfing culture, with locals and tourists alike enjoying the waves. From the Basque Country to Andalusia, surf schools, vibrant surf communities, and a laid-back beach lifestyle contribute to Spain's thriving surfing culture.

Festivals and Events 

Spain celebrates its love for surfing through festivals and events.

The San Sebastian Surf Film Festival attracts surf enthusiasts and filmmakers, while the Surf Music Festival in Asturias combines live music with the coastal atmosphere, creating a unique fusion of music and surfing vibes.

Famous Spanish Surf Spots

  1. Zarautz, Basque Country: Known for its long sandy beach and consistent waves, Zarautz is a favorite among famous Spanish surfers and hosts various competitions.
  2. Mundaka, Basque Country: Renowned for its world-class left-hand wave, Mundaka is considered one of the best river mouth waves in the world.
  3. Somo, Cantabria: With consistent beach breaks and a lively surf scene, Somo attracts surfers seeking a mix of quality waves and a vibrant atmosphere.
  4. San Sebastian, Basque Country: Zurriola Beach in San Sebastian offers a city surf experience with a reliable beach break, attracting surfers and beachgoers alike.
  5. El Palmar, Andalusia: This long beach in southern Spain provides excellent waves, making it a popular destination for surfers looking for a more relaxed atmosphere.
  6. Playa de Famara, Canary Islands: Located on Lanzarote, Famara Beach offers a stunning backdrop and consistent waves, attracting famous Spanish surfers and travellers from around the world.
  7. Playa de las Catedrales, Galicia: While known more for its breathtaking cliffs, this beach occasionally offers great surf conditions, creating a unique surfing experience.
  8. Rodiles, Asturias: With a river mouth setup, Rodiles is celebrated for its powerful and long waves, providing a challenging ride for experienced surfers.
  9. Los Locos, Cantabria: A reef break that works best with larger swells, Los Locos is favoured by experienced surfers seeking powerful and hollow waves.
  10. La Zurriola, San Sebastian: This urban beach is known for its consistent surf and is popular among locals and tourists alike.

Summing It Up: What To Do Now

Now you have a vast list of the most famous Spanish surfers, be sure to check out famous surfers from countries around the world such as Japan and Portugal!

If your interested in learning more about surfing discover our many guides that will inform you on your surfing journey. Don't forget to follow us on Facebook & Instagram to stay informed on our amazing surf shots and stories shared from surf creators around the world!

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is the best Spanish surfer?

The title of the best Spanish surfer is often attributed to Aritz Aranburu, a highly accomplished and influential figure in the Spanish surfing scene.

Who are the most famous surfers in San Diego?

San Diego, a hub for surfing, has produced renowned surfers. Some of the most famous include Rob Machado, Taylor Knox, and Skip Frye, who have left a lasting impact on the local and global surfing community.

Who is the king of surfing?

The title "king of surfing" is often associated with Duke Kahanamoku, an Olympic swimmer and surfing pioneer who significantly contributed to popularising the sport in the early 20th century.

Who is the best male surfer?

Determining the best male surfer is subjective and may vary based on personal preferences. However, notable names like Kelly Slater, John John Florence, and Gabriel Medina are often celebrated for their exceptional skills and achievements.

Who were the famous male surfers in the 80s?

The 1980s witnessed the rise of iconic male surfers, including Tom Curren, Mark Occhilupo, and Tom Carroll, who dominated the professional surfing scene with their innovative styles and competitive successes.

Who is the biggest surfer in the world?

Determining the "biggest" surfer can refer to different aspects. If referring to physical size, surfers like Laird Hamilton, known for conquering massive waves, are often regarded as some of the biggest in the world.

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