Encuentro Surf Classic
The Dominican Republic’s Biggest Surf Event
Every November Cabarete lights up with excitement for the Encuentro Surf Classic – Dominican Republic’s Biggest Surf Event. Competitors come from all over the world for a chance to win big cash prizes. We have all the details about the categories, parties, and community action.
Best Waves in Dominican Republic
Playa Encuentro, the local surf beach in Cabarete, has arguably the best waves in Dominican Republic. The swells favorably affect the beach year round while in the fall and winter waves are world-class. Due to consistently good conditions in November the Encuentro Surf Classic expects to see great waves for the competition.
The Biggest Surf Competition in Dominican Republic
Photo by: Joey Ciolko Arts
One feature that makes the Classics special is its large purse, or prize that attracts surfers from all over the world. There are a few other surf competitions in Dominican Republic that are successful but none offer as big a cash prize to winners as the Encuentro Surf Classic. In 2016 the first place winner of the Open Men’s category came from Puerto Rico and won $2000USD. The second place winner, from Chile, won $1000 USD. Third place, from Venezuela, won $500 USD. Recently organizers have decided cash prizes will be awarded to the top 4 competitors.
Dominican Republic Surf
We spoke to the organizers of the Classics and part of their vision is to support the development of surf as a sport in the country. When surfers from other countries come to compete in local events the level of surfing of the Dominicans improves. By offering a hefty purse, local Dominicans are inspired to advance their skills while surfing alongside the best from other beaches.
In a country where Baseball rules, other sports like surf are often ignored when it comes to government backing. With the 2020 Olympics introducing surf and other sports, the organizers hope to see more encouragement for athletes from our beaches. The Encuentro Surf Classics is one way the best surfers of the Dominican Republic can stand out to be chosen for the national team.
Details about the Encuentro Surf Classic
Photos by: Chameleon Creative Arts
The surf event falls every year during the long weekend of Constitution Day, a Dominican Holiday that is usually observed on a Monday. Also on the same weekend is the Jazz Festival that usually closes on Cabarete beach that Sunday. This means Cabarete gets all kinds of visitors in one weekend. Some for the surf event, some for the Jazz Fest, and some just to party and relax since there’s no work on Monday.
The Inscription Party for the Encuentro Surf Classic is always on a Thursday at Lax/Ojo Club and Restaurant.Competitors receive a welcome dinner and surf kit after signing up for the category of their choosing. The categories are:
- Open Men and Open Women (shortboard)
- Open Men Longboard and Open Women Longboard
- Master Men and Master Women (35 years old +)
- Junior Boys and Junior Girls (18 and under)
November 2-5, 2017
The competition officially starts Friday and goes on until Sunday. The judges and scoring system during the competition is ISA certified.
During the day you’ll see an Artisan Market, Food Market, and Community action all on the beach. JiuJitsu expositions, beach clean ups, free surf lessons, and african dance classes are just some of the ways the Classics give back to the community during the event.
A sponsored Party in town happens each night during the competition.
- Fridays are at Yalla where free tapas are served.
- Saturdays at Millennium where a bikini fashion show is enjoyed.
- Sunday Award Party is at Onno’s nightclub.