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Surfing in Wales - a great original beach story by Jaklien on a beach holiday.

Surfing in Wales
When my friends invited me to come for a surf weekend in Wales, I was a bit hesitant. "You mean there are waves in the UK?" I asked. "And what about the temperature of the water? It will be flipping freezing." However my surf loving friends managed to convince me, so off we all went. We opted for the eye pleasing beach of Rhosilli on the Gower Peninsula. It is only a three hour drive from London bit since there were 15 of us, so we opted for the train which seemed like a more comfy mode of transportation which wouldn't leave us stranded on a motorway in a 10 mile queue. The whole trip to our accommodation only took about 3 hours and a half. Three hours on the train from London Paddington to Swansea and then a 20 minute taxi ride to Rhosilli. There are a few accommodation options in Rhosilli with a wide choice of B&B's, holiday parks and camping. There is a campsite in Llangennith with excellent facilities located only a 5 minute walk from the beach. We decided to crash in the Rhosilli Village Hall and Bunk House. It houses 7 rooms and has clean newly renovated rooms and a self catering kitchen.

The following morning we had our first surf lesson. After we managed to get ourselves into the wet suits and having taken in some instructions on dry land, we carried our boards onto the beach which was a bit of a work out in itself. I was very confident I would be able to impress my fellow surf class mates with some moves I had learned in a previous class in Hawaii, but I soon realised that these Welsh waves were a lot meaner than the ones in Maui. I was put through the washing machine multiple times, got hit in the head by my board, almost choked myself on the cord and on top of it all, the water was so cold that after three hours in the water, my lips had turned blue which made me look like some Goth teenager. I was glad to get out of the water and into the cafe on the beach. I was so not pleased to hear that we were going to spend the afternoon trying to master the swells for another three hours. It was surfing hell. I had developed blood blisters on each and every finger, my ribs hurt and my eyes were stinging from the salt water. Disappointed with the whole thing I crawled into bed and decided to call the class for the next morning off.

The next morning the sun was shining and I felt I should give it another go. And lo and behold, after one hour I managed to catch an actual wave. And another one, and another. I felt like I was the star of Blue Crush. Nothing hurt anymore and the water felt warm like the Med. What an amazing feeling to ride the waves. It might not sound as exotic like surfing in Australia or Hawaii, but Rhosilli is an excellent place to surf and the great thing is that it's only a train ride away.

Author : Jaklien
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