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Liberia to host first African Surf Tour 2024

Liberia prepares to host its first international surf competition.

By: Kruah Thompson

Grand Cape Mount, Liberia, April 23, 2024 –With Liberia recently recognized as one of the top 10 surfing destinations globally, the West African nation is gearing up to host its first inaugural surfing competition under the global theme Surf to Rise.

With preparations in full swing and anticipation mounting, the Africa Surf Tour 2024 competition is slated to occur on the pristine shores of Robertsport, Grand Cape Mount County, from May 24th to 28th, 2024, under the auspices of the Liberian Surfing Association and the Liberia National Olympic Committee.

The county in western Liberia is renowned for its abundant natural beauty and shorelines, regarded as some of Africa’s most breathtaking surfing spots.

During the Ministry of Information, Culture Affairs, and Tourism’s weekly press briefing recently in Monrovia, Robena Vincent, a member of the organizing committee of the Africa Tour 2024, disclosed that they have invited 60 world-class athletes to Liberia to enhance further the country’s reputation as a bona fide surf destination.

She clarified that the competition is hosted by the Liberian Surfing Association, the governing body of the National Surfing Association, and is recognized by the International Surfing Association.

“Liberia is the inaugural host country for the Africa Surf Tour, marking it the first-ever international tour of this kind in Africa. This spotlight on Liberia solidifies its status as a premier surf destination, capturing the attention of the global surfing community”, Madam Robena noted. 

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The competition, held under the international theme “Surf to Rise,” aims to attract both amateur and professional surfers from around the world. It comprises various categories, including men’s and women’s shortboard and longboard competitions.

According to her, local surfers, who have long been passionate about the sport but lack formal avenues for competition, see the event as a golden opportunity to showcase their skills on an international stage.

However, she notes that the global surf tourism market is projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 6%, from $9.5 billion in 2022 to $17.1 billion in 2032.

“What this implies for Liberia is that we are now officially recognized as a significant player in the surf industry. Pivotal actions like this tour are crucial to capitalize on this multi-billion-dollar opportunity fully. Such events play a vital role in elevating a destination’s tourism profile,” she stated.

She further emphasized the necessity for increased support, infrastructure, and development, highlighting President Boakai’s full endorsement of this event as a significant catalyst for surf tourism, which has now been integrated into the national agenda.

“We urge the Liberian people to actively participate by attending in large numbers, contributing donations and sponsorships, and ensuring the success of this dynamic event. The festival and surf competition will feature not only the surf competition but also cultural performances, music artists, authentic Liberian cuisine, and tours of Robertsport,” she stated.

She indicated that cultural performers, tour guides, and caterers were chosen from Robertsport and nearby areas to ensure local engagement.

“We are collaborating with the Superintendent of Cape Mount, local government officials, senators, and the Grand Cape Mount Surf Association. Our aim is to promote Community-Based Tourism, emphasizing the importance of working closely with the Robertsport community. This partnership will enhance their capacity for planning large-scale events and ensure their active involvement,” she emphasized.

The competition is anticipated to significantly boost tourism in Robertsport and surrounding areas, creating economic opportunities for local businesses and communities. According to Madam Robena, hotels and guesthouses have already witnessed a surge in bookings, and vendors are gearing up to cater to the expected influx of visitors during the event. Editing by Jonathan Browne

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