Surfers travel for miles to surf this super consistent area. A short jetty juts out at the north end of New Smyrna Beach, protecting the southern side of Ponce de Leon Inlet. As a result, the long stretch of beach south of the jetty has good sandbars, which spreads the usually heavy crowds around. An outside bar called Shark Shallows provides quality waves in most swell conditions, which always seem a couple of feet bigger than nearby areas. These outside bars take the sting out of the swell at low tide so higher tides are usually better. Very occasionally, rights peel down the north side of the jetty into the estuary looking like long, fast, point-style waves.
The usual hazards—sharks, man-o-war, and possibly polluted estuary runout. There is motorized traffic in the water and on the beach, which is the best place to park if you don’t want to make the long trek along the boardwalks and through the pristine dune environment from the pay lot. Hectic crowds in the water—from dialed-in locals to clueless tourists.