Yearly Surf Competitions in Hawaii
For many other states, winter is the quietest, sleepiest time of the year. Not in Hawaii! Here, winter lasts from November through March, and all throughout the season, large swells roll in from the North and West, measuring anywhere from 6 to a whopping 30 feet. There’s no better time to catch a pro surfing event! Take a look below to learn more about some of the most exciting surf competitions near Oahu.
Vans Triple Crown of Surfing
When: October – December
Where: Oahu, Hawaii
The Vans Triple Crown of Surfing is one of the most well-known surfing competitions in the world. For a professional surfer, there’s no title more desirable. Comprised of four events — one qualifying and three main — the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing draws in huge crowds and takes nearly two weeks to complete. Points are tallied up after the third and main event (the Billabong Pipe Masters), and a winner is chosen.
HIC Pro Sunset Beach
When: October – November
Where: Sunset Beach, North Shore Oahu
Professional surfers desiring a spot in the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing competition must first show off their wave riding skills in HIC Pro Sunset Beach. Because the HIC Pro Sunset Beach is a qualifying event, you won’t find a massive crowd of onlookers, which could be a pro or con depending on how you look at it. You will, however, find food trucks like the Sunrise Shack serving tea, coffee, and papaya bowls.
Hawaiian Pro Hale’iwa
Where: Hale’iwa Ali’i Beach Park, North Shore Oahu
Like many Hawaii surf competitions, surfers use the Hawaiian Pro Hale’iwa as an intensive training exercise to help them sharpen their skills. The Hawaiian Pro Hale’iwa is the first surfing event in the Vans Triple Crown and is the place to catch a glimpse of masterful barrels and aeriel maneuvers. If you’re driving to the event, be sure to park in designated parking spaces and don’t block the walkways.
Vans World Cup of Surfing
When: November – December
Where: Sunset Beach, North Shore Oahu
The Vans World Cup of Surfing is the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing’s second competition. This surf competition in Oahu truly highlights the skill of the competitors because they’re warmed up from participating in the HIC Pro Sunset Beach and Hawaiian Pro Hale’iwa competitions. Big crowds tend to gather to watch the surfers tackle large and powerful waves and grab a bite to eat at the Sunrise Shack.
Billabong Pipe Masters
Where: Banzai Pipeline, Ehukai Beach Park, North Shore Oahu
Billabong Pipe Masters is the third and final event in the Vans Triple Crown. Also known as the Banzai Pipeline, this swell is especially challenging, which is why it’s one of the country’s top surfing events. Winter swells rolling in from the Aleutian Islands join to form tubed surfing breaks, forcing surfers to use all of their balance and agility to avoid being dragged under. Competitors’ points are tallied after this event, which determines their placement in the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing.
Quiksilver Eddie Aikau Memorial
When: December – February
Where: Waimea Bay in Oahu, Hawaii
Held in memory of one of the world’s greatest surfers and lifeguards, Edward Ryon Makuahanai Aikau, “The Eddie” gives pros the chance to show off their big wave surfing skills. Eddie Aikau was Waimea Bay’s first official lifeguard and placed in several prestigious surfing competitions in Hawaii. In 1978, he and a few others set sail from Magic Island on the Hokule’a, a Polynesian voyaging canoe. Shortly after, the Hokule’a was overturned by rough swells. Eddie paddled out on his board to find help but never returned.
Learn More About Oahu with Mercedes-Benz of Honolulu!
Oahu and Honolulu surf competitions are just one aspect of the excitement in Hawaii. Interested in more of Hawaii’s rich history, events, holiday happenings, and hotspots? Be sure to check out more blogs from Mercedes-Benz of Honolulu—one of Oahu’s favorite luxury car dealerships!