Surf Camps

The original Santa Barbara Surf Camp on Santa Claus Lane – aka Disneyland in the sand! Those in the know know that Surf Happens summer day camps are the perfect spot to learn the fundamentals of surfing – and a springboard to enjoying the ocean for a lifetime. Give your child the gift of surfing at “the world’s safest beach,” which features even sandbars, consistent break with a magical right swell and a lack of hazards – this is a world-class, learn-to-surf break.

  • Chevron down Join The Tribe
  • Day camp ages range from 4-17, and our older students and Junior Instructors have a habit of “adopting” the newbies to form bonds that encourage self-esteem and promote a high level of learning and wellness.

  • Chevron down Our Method
  • At Surf Happens, we’ve developed our signature teaching methodology for all ages with the goal of promoting growth and positivity. Where the students fail, we push them gently to focus on getting better. All of our instructors are CPR & FIRST AID CERTIFIED and have passed the Surf Happens surf-specific lifesaving course. (Additionally, all of our personnel have passed stringent background checks to ensure the highest standards of safety for all students.)

    We believe that what the mind understands, the body will follow. We apply this philosophy via our signature “Turtle” learning method. Safety, history, oceanography, and etiquette are all key facets of the Turtle teaching and signify our core values: respect for oneself, others, and the environment. And, most importantly, applying the mind, body, and spirit towards your dreams with discipline, determination, and positivity.

  • Chevron down Unparalleled Expertise
  • Over 15,000 students taught! Our methods have been tested and verified by thousands of successful students who now have the skills and confidence to call themselves surfers and friends of the ocean!

    Spearheaded by Surf Happens owner and founder Chris “Uncle Keet” Keet, our awesome staff have been teaching locals and visiting surfers on the Lane for over fifteen years – that’s a generation of surfers! We’ve heard that no area surf camp comes close to our natural ability to make learning fun while building bonds (and a love for the ocean) that will last a lifetime.

  • Chevron down Our Focus
  • Fun, fitness, and ocean safety! We strive to introduce our students to the unique blend of lifestyle, sport, and soul that makes surfing such an amazing pastime.  Introducing technical, knowledge-based phases of learning (much like a laidback martial arts program) helps the students absorb the movements and knowledge that are vital to becoming a successful surfer. And our team is well-trained to gauge progress, monitor, and create self-supportive groups based on age, swimming ability, and skill.

  • Chevron down In The Water
  • Sand Crabs. Turtles. Chim Chim. They may sound like something out of Finding Nemo, but in reality, those are names for some of the groups we break our surfers into! Surfers have the chance to move up the chain of expertise from white (beginners) all the way up to red (instructors). While in the water, all surfers wear specially colored jerseys that signify their ability, allowing us to provide a group learning experience that is supportive, nurturing, and motivating.

  • Chevron down Where You At?
  • We’re located on the Southern end of the beach (right before you reach SALT, the first building on the Lane.) Look for the SURF LESSONS sign and our funky trailer, as well as tents and flags on the beach. There you’ll find our HQ, where we are located each year from June till September.  Surf’s Up!

  • Chevron down Our Camps Include:
    • Surfing – mental and technical training
    • Yoga, cross training, and indo-boarding
    • Dodgeball, slip-n-slide, and beach athletics
    • Paddle races and team relays
    • Custom spray-painted hats
    • Drumming, freestyling, and rhythm
    • Beach cleanups
    • Special appearances by gues pros and artists!
    • Friday fundays featuring a beach barbeque, talent show, surf contest, and graduation ceremony with custom trophy and photo!