1. Praia do Norte // Nazaré, Portugal
This spot is the home to several Guinness World Records, including the largest wave ever ridden, and the biggest wave ever surfed by a woman. Some even call the powerful waves, "the surfboard breaking machine". These can reach up to 100 ft and are a result of swell refraction, rapid depth reduction, converging waves produced by an underwater canyon, and a local water channel.
2. Jaws/Peahi // Maui, Hawaii
Jaws is considered to have the fastest, heaviest, and largest waves in the Pacific Ocean. At Jaws, also known as Peahi, waves can easily reach between 30 and 80 feet. The submerged reef break produces unpredictable patterns, occasionally very dangerous to surfers.
3. Teahupoo // Tahiti, French Polynesia
500 yards off the southern coast of Tahiti, is their infamous heavy wave which has claimed the lives of several accomplished surfers. The surf break produces a thick, hollow, and fast-moving barreling wave that breaks over a shallow and sharp reef. Lastly, wave height ranges between 30-80 ft.
4. Shipstern Bluff // Tasmania, Australia
In the Tasman Sea, the name of this surf break speaks for itself. The notorious Shipstern Bluff creates a wave within a wave due to the shape of the reef bottom and ends up around 30 ft high.
5. Mavericks // Half Moon Bay, California
Northern California's Mavericks consists of cold and shark-infested waters. “Mavericks” was named after the dog of three local Half Moon Bay Surfers, that discovered the location in 1967. Little did they know that this big wave surfing spot would be rediscovered by Jeff Clark in 1975, and introduced to the world in 1990 as the location for California’s biggest waves (
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