Tamanique: La Libertad
The beach El Tunco, (a very Salvadoran word to refer to pigs), is the most emblematic surf destination in El Salvador.
It is name El tunco because of an immense boulder halfway submerged on its beach, which in some remote season, you can see the shape of this friendly animal.
Visited by hundreds of local and foreign tourists weekly, this beach wasn´t always a tourist attraction since back in the seventies and eighties, it was a small remote little town, next to a quiet estuary; It has become a must go to destination for the international surfer and for those who seek to immerse themselves in the bohemian and so much wished surf culture.
Located just 7 kilometers west of El Puerto de La Libertad, El Tunco is a microcosm where you can breathe a cosmopolitan atmosphere. It´s filled with lots of fun and “chiva”, what the locals say to express good vibes or something awesome.
The love, the hospitality and spirit of being serviceable from the local people, is like the icing on the cake.
This surfing community offers everything you can imagine for a spectacular trip.
If you are backpacking or are on a low budget, there are modest accommodation as well as for those who want something much more exclusive and private.
Food of all aromas and flavors is what you can expect at this beach. From the typical Salvadoran cooked and sold in the middle of the street food. Pupusas and pastries to homemade food, delicious seafood dishes, Asian, Mexican, Mediterranean cuisine, pizzas, hamburgers, and more.
At this beach, you can always find local beers as well as beer from remote parts of the world always nice and cold. Whereas the bars and clubs serve all kinds of cocktails.
If you want to taste the best coffee in El Salvador, you can always find it here.
There are convenience stores and small pharmacies.
Travel agencies that can make arrangements to help you with your return back home or your next destination.
You can also board small buses that make their run throughout Central America.
There are parking lots for you to leave your car while you here.
But above everything, the DNA of the surf vibe is at this place.
Local surfers, with long hair, tanned skin and a perennial smiles, blend in with all imaginable races, who arrive at this mecca with sense of smell of the ocean and board wax.
Small stores will provide you with surf equipment, gear and accessories.
There are handicraft stands, so you can take back home a souvenir and other types of street art from El Salvador.
Surfboard rentals are everywhere and the instructors at the beach are always pleased to give you the information you need to the warm waves.
At the beach El Tunco, you can rent a bicycle, a scooter or a car, but if you prefer, there is always many drivers who will take you wherever you want, and make sure you return safely to your hotel or your accommodation.
Being that it´s at the center of a connecting point, El Tunco can be your parting point for countless tour adventures, city tours, gastronomic places and more.
But above all, this is a small world that screams for surfing, it´s in its architecture, its designs, colors, murals, clothing, and where you breathe that vibe of a world that seems to move slowly, inviting you to be who you are.
If we talk about surfing, El Tunco is a world of its own.
The best quality waves is called La Bocana. A natural wave breaking left, rare on a beach shore with straight waves, it is formed when the rocky bottom exits from the mouth of the Rio Grande. It is a powerful point break, withstanding waves up to 10 feet high (3.5 meters), with thick and heavy strides. long and with sometimes wave tunnels. This wave is recommended and suitable for advanced and experience surfers. It has a virtue of breaking throughout most of the year.
On each side of the famous rock, where it is almost impossible not to take a picture, there is two sections that create and form much smaller and friendly waves. Suitable for baptizing yourself as a surfer. But never underestimating it, since on epic days it can show itself and show the world that surfing in El Salvador is of world class.
If you want to visit the beach El Tunco from San Salvador, take the highway to El Puerto de La Libertad, then the Camino a Surf City bypass, and continue west along the Litoral highway, until you get to the kilometer 43, you will have reached this famous beach when you see the wooden arch indicating your destination.