Here's a List of Surf Regions Around The World That Are Closed Due to Coronavirus

10 Apr 2020 0 Share

A police officer walks away with a stand up paddle board following the arrest of a SUPer taking to an empty Malibu last week.

A police officer walks away with a stand up paddle board following the arrest of a SUPer taking to an empty Malibu last week.

COASTALWATCH | NEWS

If you're looking for the state of play of Australian beaches at the moment, see Nick Carroll's latest story – The Weirdest Easter Ever. This here below is a basic oversight of what a large portion of the rest of the world's surfers are faced with in key surf zones during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

This breakdown was originally posted on Surfline.com

U.S. West Coast

In California, the city of San Diego and Los Angeles County, as well as parts of Orange County — and to the south, San Onofre/Trestles — have closed all access to beaches. Parts of Ventura County and all Santa Cruz city beaches have also shut down. Additionally, State Parks have banned parking in their lots. Other cities and counties have instituted their own closures, but no blanket bans like in the areas above.

Up in Oregon, all State Parks have closed their parking lots. And in the city of Seaside, all access to the beach has been closed.

U.S. East Coast

From state to state, county to county, the East Coast is a mixed bag when it comes to beach closures and surfing. For instance, some counties in Florida have their beaches open and some do not; North Carolina’s Dare County (including the Outer Banks) is only open to residents, but no visitors are allowed access; and New York hasn’t closed the beaches, despite “stay at home” orders. In the northeast, many Rhode Island, New Hampshire, and Maine beaches are closed and have outlawed surfing.

Europe

Like the United States, Europe’s policy on beach closures varies from region to region. But in countries like Spain and Portugal, where the coronavirus has hit heavily, authorities are cracking down. In Spain, surfing is totally prohibited and enforced with fines. The same goes for France. In Portugal the ban varies and, in some places, surfing still appears to be allowed but only in small groups. And Italy is on total lockdown. In the UK, the beaches have not been closed and outdoor exercise is allowed. However, non-essential travel is banned, so, getting to the beach might be considered a violation.

Hawaii

All over the state, Beach Parks and State Parks are closed, but access to the ocean is still open. And an important note: there are no lifeguards on duty at this time.

Caribbean

Puerto Rico has closed all beaches on the island with barricades on the sand in some places. Anyone disobeying the closures is subject to a fine and potential jailtime.

South Africa

Two weeks ago, South Africa instituted one of the most full-on lockdowns in the world. No non-essential movement. At all. You can go to the grocery store or the pharmacy, but that’s it. There’s a R5,0000 fine for surfing and six months in jail for a second offence. “We can all sense that our world is about to be turned upside down, and it is a world that doesn’t include surfing anymore,” South African surf writer Craig Jarvis said. “Beaches are closed, surfing has been banned. There are many weeks to come, of sitting and waiting.”

Indonesia

Popular surf spots on Bali – like Uluwatu, Padang Padang, and Keramas – have closed until further notice. Meanwhile, travel to more remote places like the Mentawai Islands has come to a halt as air travel has slowed and ports have closed.

Central America

In Panama and Costa Rica, the beaches have been closed. And in the latter, there was an altercation between police and a surfer at the end of March.

Israel

In popular beach areas, like Tel Aviv, officials warned weeks ago against congregating and entering the ocean. But people didn’t take the orders too seriously. Now, 100% of all Israel’s beaches are off-limits with police enforcing.

Brazil

Beaches in Rio de Janeiro, including the hugely popular Copacabana Beach, have been closed to surfers and beachgoers. And police have been on the scene patrolling the ban.

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