Who needs the ocean when you have science?
Now open in Dolgarro, Wales: Surf Snowdonia a surf spot that's, well, nowhere near the ocean.The lagoon is carved from the site of a former aluminum factory in Conwy Valley in North Wales. The plot was reclaimed, decontaminated, and filled with water from mountain reservoirs before getting outfitted with advanced WaveGarden technology. Designed by a Spanish engineering team—and carefully tested, according to the park’s website—the waves are created by an enormous “wave foil” (sort of like a snowplow) that runs back and forth along the lagoon floor. The result is an inland lagoon with endless waves perfect for riding a swell, practicing your goofy foot stance, and finding some floaters.
Snowdonia isn’t just for advanced surfers, either. The lagoon is divided into three wave sections, with the swell starting at an expert area and then cascading down into smaller whitewater waves perfect for beginners. Snowdonia also offers surfing lessons, which means the whole family can head out to catch some waves even if the closest they’ve ever been to a surfboard is humming a Beach Boys tune. For those who adamantly refuse to get in on the action, there’s a glass-front viewing gallery, restaurants, and onshore activities where you can watch the waves while remaining dry.
No word on whether dirt bikes are allowed.