Learn to Surf in Cornwall

With UK Pro Surfer Alan Stokes

With so many of the Cornish Beachspoke properties being in such close proximity to the beach it would be a shame not to at least try your hand at spot of surfing. A sport which can sometimes appear a daunting one to master, Beachspoke are on hand to help by partnering with three times British surf champion Alan Stokes to help your conquer the waves from the get-go.

As well as being a surf pro and founder of his own surf and yoga retreats with Wild & Free Adventures, Alan’s passionate drive and motivation has kept him at the very top of elite European surfing and is currently sponsored by Animal UK. He holds both ISA Surf Instructor and National Beach Lifeguard qualifications, so you really couldn’t be in safer hands. As the 3 x British Surfing Champion, Alan has over 20 years of experience travelling the world and sharing waves. They say the best surfer in the water is the one having the most fun and that’s definitely true of Alan. His calm and caring nature means you can relax and enjoy the experience of catching your first waves. Alan’s relaxed but passionate surf instruction and mentoring will get you into the right surf for your ability and see you improving with every wave.

Also having experienced the life changing practices of yoga and the effect it has had on his surfing, Alan works closely with Philly to create yoga classes beneficial to surfers to help them improve and strengthen. Alan also became passionate about sharing the positive practices that yoga has had and holds a Yin Yoga qualification.

Alexis Foreman of recently experienced private surf lessons’s with Alan while staying in Coxswain’s Cottage with her family and stated:

“Alan was such a great guy— hugely knowledgeable (of course) but also patient and fun. Even though our bodies ached the next day, James couldn’t resist hiring a board from the surf school and getting back in the water” – Alexis Foreman, Blogger & Influencer


Beachspoke Experiences with pro surfer Alan Stokes from Wild and Free Adventures for private surf lessons St Ives Cornwall

Tell us about your connection to Cornwall

My family moved here when I was 6 years old and I grew up on the beaches. My family would rent a beach hut for the summer, it was an amazing childhood, exploring the wild beaches and riding waves.

What are some of your favourite things about living in Cornwall?

Well the beaches are beautiful, some of the best in the world. I’ve have traveled to so many countries to surf but the Cornish coastline is very unique. The water can be a bit chilly but I don’t mind at all, its great for surfing and the cold keeps the crowds down a little. There is also a lot of history along our coast with the odd old tin mine still visible up on the headland when you are bobbing around in the surf. I always feel like there is a lot of energy here, it’s very grounding and makes me feel connected to Cornwall in a really nice way, especially some of the beaches, where I have spent so much time surfing.

We’re thrilled to be working with you to help provide our guests with unique experiences – tell us a bit more about what exactly this entails 

Well together with my partner Philly, who is a yoga teacher and loves surfing just as much as me, we set up Wild & Free Adventures, to be able to teach others and pass on some of our surf and yoga experience. Surfing and yoga work really well together with each practice really benefiting the other, so to combine our passions to help others, just seemed like a really natural thing to do.

How long have you been practising and teaching Surfing? 

I learnt to surf when I was six years old and it has been a lifelong passion of mine ever since. I turned professional when i was 16 years old, won three British titles and traveled the world competing on the world stage and visiting some amazing places. I love teaching people that have never tried surfing before. There excitement and positive boost in confidence when they experience riding a wave for the first time is awesome to see. I also love working with more experienced surfers that maybe want to work on a certain technique, turn or style. Being able to pass on my experience from all of the years practicing and competing is amazing fun, watching someone improve after giving them some pointers is really satisfying.

What makes Cornwall such a great place to learn to surf?

Cornwall is the perfect place to learn. We have so many sandy, safe beaches here. The waves are not massive and dangerous like some places I have been, but fun and playful. Plus learning to surf in such an a beautiful environment, really creates a special experience. When your sitting out there on your surfboard, looking back at the stunning coastline, its got to be one of the best views on earth.

Beachspoke Experiences with Alan Stokes from Wild and Free Adventures for private surf lessons on one of the many beaches in St Ives Cornwall

What advice would you give to someone just starting out?

My advice would be to have a few lessons with someone who is experienced and qualified, so that you are in safe hands and can really go for it and enjoy yourself. Having lessons really speeds up your learning curve, with the added benefits of being on the right equipment for you ability and the day.

You and your partner Philly run Wild & Free Adventures – tell us a bit more about this

Wild & Free Adventures was born through both of our passions for surf and yoga. We also love to travel and explore new places and cultures, so we just combined them all together. We run surf and yoga retreats all over the world and get to visit some of our favourite places at the same time, from Costa Rica to Portugal. We even run a really cool luxury yurt, surf & yoga retreat here in Cornwall that has been really popular, giving us the opportunity to show our guests why we like Cornwall so much.

What would be your tips for people visiting Cornwall for places to go and things to do?

Well surfing has to be at the top of your list, but after that I would say maybe just spend a day walking the coastal paths that wind their way around the whole of Cornwall. It’s the best way to see this special place and there are so many hidden coves and beaches to explore.

In your opinion, what makes Cornwall such a special place to spend a holiday? 

Well I wake up each morning and feel like I’m on a holiday here, so there is definitely something very special about Cornwall. Maybe its the laid back vibe the smell of the sea or fish and chips, but there really is no place like it. For a family its an amazing destination for a holiday, with lots of beautiful beaches and attractions of all kinds to visit, like the Eden Project or St Michael’s Mount, there’s so much here that you can do and explore.

Private Surf lessons with Alan begin at £75 for a 2 hour session

Group sessions start at £40 per person for a 2 hour session

For more information on how to book, please contact us on