The Islas de Todos Santos are located on the west side of the Baja Peninsula and offer some of the gnarliest waves in the entire area. And they better since they get their nickname – El Martillo (in English: The Hammer) – from their unnerving ability to batter the unsuspecting surfer into the water. However, if you have a few years of surfing experience under your belt and stay attentive, then there is hardly a better place to spend a day with your surfboard.
El Martillo is located just off of the coast of Ensenada, the Mexican mecca of surf culture. There are plenty of shops and stores in town that offer boat rides out to the island. In addition, there are always other surfers hanging out around town so you’re sure to meet a few new friends before heading out to find the big waves.
And the waves are just that – they’re huge. They are some of the biggest and best in North America. In fact, many professional surfers say that El Martillo is the best Pacific surfing spot sans Hawaii. If
you’re looking for some big-wave action, then the Islas de Todos Santos and El Martillo have you covered.
On a normal day the waves at El Martillo are over head high (five feet). They only come in from the right-hand side but are very hard, fast, and hollow. If you head to the beach at the peak of theseason (mid-winter), then you can expect waves that are double overhead high (ten feet).
Like most other popular surfing beaches, it is best to arrive at El Martillo as early as possible. The beaches fill up fast with surfers and beachgoers alike once the sun is up high. The waters can also get crowded and you’ll have to vie for a wave at the peak of the afternoon. It’s no matter though – once you catch your first big wave at El Martillo, all the waiting will be well worth it.
The Islas de Todos Santos or El Martillo is one of the premiere surfing spots in Baja Mexico. The waves are well-known as some of the biggest on the Pacific, the local vibe is very friendly, and there are dozens of other great surfing areas within an hour’s drive. It’s as close to a Baja surfing paradise as you can get.