Forging Sisterhood on the Shores of Morocco: an Amiga’s Story

In the excerpt below, Amiga Sarah Petrarca paints a beautiful picture of sisterhood, surf, and adventure that spans across her time spent at a Surf With Amigas retreat in Morocco.

In the heart of Imsouane, where the Atlantic meets the Atlas Mountains, I began a surf trip that transcended the ordinary. Joined by a crew of adventurous souls, I found myself immersed in the reciprocity of the sea, guided by the expert hands of Surf With Amigas. The waves, the camaraderie, and the magic that unfolded became a living canvas for the sisterhood we forged on the shores of Morocco.

Surf With Amigas, an organization that combines the thrill of surfing with the celebration of female solidarity, proved to be the perfect catalyst for an unforgettable experience. The first lesson on the board was more than a crash course in surfing; it was a metaphorical dive into the depths of connection. The shared laughter, the occasional wipeouts, and the triumphant rides—each moment crafted the unique mosaic of our shared time by the shore.

The Amigas, and our honorary Amigo, provided a safe haven in the lineup to bring everyone confidence. As someone who gets intimidated to surf new places, I can’t thank the SWA coaches enough for their hard work and patience. If I had to provide some tips for newcomers, I would say an open mind and trust in the coaches will go a long way. Waves I felt nervous for or mornings I lacked motivation, they brought the energy through dance parties, cheers, and loads of high fives. I would also say that bringing two wetsuits so that you always have a dry one, helps too!

surf with amigas Morocco
Photos by Sarah Petrarca

Remember that you’ll take a few digs, everyone does. It’s an inevitable part of the surfing journey, a series of little challenges that test your resilience and commitment. Embrace those falls with a smile, knowing that each stumble is an opportunity to learn, improve, and ultimately become a more skilled and confident surfer. It’s these small challenges that make the triumphs taste even sweeter, and they become stories you fondly reminisce about.

In the lulls between sets, I couldn’t help but admire the raw beauty that surrounded me. The cliffside, weathered by time and the elements, stood as silent  witnesses to the timeless dance between woman and nature. The contrast between the arid mountains and the endless expanse of the ocean created a surreal backdrop for my surfing odyssey.  Stretching gracefully along the coastline, these waves welcomed both beginners and seasoned surfers with open arms. Their gentle rolls offered a forgiving embrace, allowing us to learn, laugh, and ride the tides of camaraderie.  As I reflect on my surf trip to Imsouane, I am reminded that the true beauty of such journeys lies not just in the waves conquered but in the moments of stillness between them.

surf with amigas Morocco
Photos by Sarah Petrarca

In Imsouane, I found a tale as old as time—that of connection, exploration, and sisterhood that will forever echo in the recesses of my soul. For me, this retreat lit a divine spark and truly inculcated my obsession with surfing. However, this trip was not just about conquering waves; it was about forging connections, building confidence, and celebrating the strength that comes from embracing the sea together.  While I am still daydreaming about the waves I had, it is the people I met and grew with that were my favorite part. Hand to heart, I can truly say I walked away with more than a few surf lessons, but women I am proud to call friends.

surf with amigas Morocco
Photos by Sarah Petrarca

To join Surf With Amigas for the surf adventure of a lifetime in southern Morocco, CLICK HERE.

Beany’s Animal Shelter Story: Falling in Love with Stray Cats and Dogs in Morocco

In this story you’ll take a trip to a village in Morocco alongside SWA coach Emma and join her as she falls in love with Moroccan strays and connects with a local animal shelter in an effort to help.

Here’s Emma’s story:

I landed in Morocco mid-September, bright eyed and bushy tailed, ready for the start of another season with Surf With Amigas. I was greeted by couscous, a cornucopia of color and an astonishing amount of furry, four-legged friends. Reesie, Chloe and I spent 3 days in Marrakech where we learned cats were king, residents of every street corner and territorial savages when tajine scraps were on the line. 

From Marrakech we moved south to Imsouane, a village north of Agadir where we hold the SWA retreats. Waters once dominated by fishermen have transformed into Moroccan Malibu, with European tourists and soft tops flying about in the fog. 

Marrakech is to cats as Imsouane is to dogs (and some cats). That first morning in the few days before the start of the retreat we stayed at a cute hotel further down the cliff from the SWA retreat villa. Feeling underdressed and too awkward to make conversation with the European hipsters that make boho look elegant, I went to play with one of the stray pups rolling around in the dirt out front.

Continue reading “Beany’s Animal Shelter Story: Falling in Love with Stray Cats and Dogs in Morocco”

Under The Sun in MOROCCO: The Amiga Experience

Take a behind the scenes look at our Amiga Jaclyn’s first time retreat experience in Morocco!

Hello readers, thank you for being here and partaking in what I am about to share about my magical experience as an Amiga. This past September 2022 I had the great privilege of joining a retreat on my maiden voyage with SWA for their first-week session in Morocco. My name is Jaclyn Burke, and I am a San Diego native born and raised the daughter of a lifeguard and two goofballs that met on the beach during the 70s in a once sleepy surf town.

As a person that has been on many different surf trips, I have normally spent my time planning adventures to many wonderful tropical locations. Surf With Amigas came very highly recommended to me and I was intrigued and curious about the idea of an all-inclusive surf adventure where I just showed up and did not have to plan anything.

I knew wanted to do a surf trip, but I wanted something different.
The moment I saw the trip posted on the SWA website I knew wanted to go to northern AFRICA.

Continue reading “Under The Sun in MOROCCO: The Amiga Experience”

Surfing with Shelly in Morocco

With a gorgeous cliffside backdrop, super stylish surfer, and phenomenal videographer, this windy afternoon in Morocco was a recipe for greatness. Well, now that I think of it, the entire retreat season was destined to be great!

The retreat setup looked like this: We surfed long, peeling rights every single day, then relaxed at the luxury villa in between sessions. We explored old cities and shopped for Moroccan treasures, then slid down sand dunes at sunset. We laughed, cried, danced, and ate a TON of amazing food. For each and every one of us, it was the surf adventure of a lifetime.

Enjoy this video of SWA surf coach Shelly Massie taking an afternoon slide at our retreat location in southern Morocco
To learn more about our 2022 Retreats in Morocco, click here.

*videos captured by @itchyfeetmood & @amine_nader_photography