Surf Lessons

Surf lessons with Ty Gurney Surf School are fun and fully customized to your skill level and individual goals. We emphasize private and semi-private instruction so you get the most out of your time in the water. No matter your age, fitness level, or ability, we guarantee you’ll be up and riding during your very first lesson!

Online bookings must be made at least 3 days in advance. To book a lesson within the next 3 days, please call us at (808) 271-9557.


Book Private 1 student per 1 instructor. You’ll catch the most waves and learn the fastest with private instruction!

Private Surf Lesson Rates:

  • 1 Hour: $120
  • 2 Hour: $175
Ty Gurney Surf School Surf Lessons Private


Book Semi-Private 2 students per 1 instructor – learn to surf with a family member, friend, or colleague.

Semi-Private Surf Lesson Rates:

  • 1 Hour: $190 ($95 per student)
  • 2 Hour: $290 ($145 per student)
Ty Gurney Surf School Surf Lessons Semi Private

All Surf Lessons Include:

  • All equipment (surfboard and rashguard)
  • Introductory land lesson to review basic skills and water safety
  • Lots of waves and tons of fun with the best surf instructors in Hawaii!


What to Expect: Surf Lesson Overview
We encourage you to arrive at our shop 15 minutes ahead of your lesson time so we can get you checked in. (You may store your belongings in the shop while you’re taking your lesson.) We’ll take the 30 second walk to the beach, where your instructor will start with an introductory land lesson to review basic skills (surfboard handling, paddling, getting to your feet) and water safety. We’ll then paddle you out to the lineup and get straight to work finding you that first wave! The rest of your lesson will be spent catching more waves, fine-tuning your technique, and learning all about surfing etiquette and ocean knowledge. All lessons will be tailored to your skill level. Once your lesson is done, we’ll paddle back to the beach and walk back to the shop, where you may pick up your belongings (and schedule your next lesson!).
What to Bring
All surf lessons include surfboards and rashguards; you’re welcome to bring your own rashguard if you wish. (For sun protection, we strongly encourage all students to wear a long sleeve rashguard.) We recommend bringing at least a towel and sunscreen – and to apply sunscreen everywhere, especially to the back of your legs. Personal belongings that you won’t need with you in the water (bags, flip flops, change of clothes, etc.) may be stored at the shop while you’re in the water.
Where Will I Be Surfing?
Nearly all of our surf lessons are done at Pops, one of the best spots in Waikiki with consistent waves year round. Pops is the ideal location for learning to surf, with long rolling waves for all abilities and less crowds than most of Waikiki’s other surf spots.
Who Will My Instructor Be?
Your instructor will be one of the amazing members of our Ty Gurney Surf School team. All of our instructors maintain current CPR, Ocean Lifeguard, and First Aid Certifications, and are highly qualified to deliver first-class surf instruction for all abilities.
Will I Stand During My First Lesson?
Yes! Thanks to our incredible team of instructors, we guarantee that you’ll be standing up and riding waves in no time, even if this is your very first surf lesson. Our expert water knowledge will ensure that you’re in the right position to be catching waves, and once we help you catch your first wave, we’ll coach you on any improvements to make riding the next waves even better!
Video (raw footage) is 100% optional and is NOT included with the price of your surf lesson. Your 83 East videographer MUST be booked in advance! When booking online, please select “Yes” when asked if you’re interested in video. Please also mention any interest in video when booking over the phone.
More Booking Guidelines
  • Individuals may book private lessons only. Exactly 2 students are required to book a semi-private lesson; individuals may not book a semi-private lesson.
  • Parties of 2 that wish to surf together may book 2 private lessons or 1 semi-private lesson. For example, if you and a friend would like to surf together at 9am, you may book 2 private lessons at 9am, or you may book 1 semi-private lesson at 9am.
  • Because Ty Gurney Surf School emphasizes personalized, individual surf instruction, we do not book more than 2 students per 1 instructor. To get your group surfing together at the same time, you may book multiple private or semi-private lessons. For example: Your party of 4 may book 4 private lessons at 9am, or your party of 4 may book 2 semi-private lessons at 9am. If you have a large group, please contact us to discuss the best options for you.
  • For safety and insurance purposes, children age 14 and under must take a private surf lesson (1 student per 1 instructor). Depending on your child’s comfort level, we may take him or her tandem surfing, where your child will be riding waves on the same surfboard as his or her instructor.
  • Lessons longer than 2 hours may be requested by contacting us.
For even more helpful surf lesson tips, please visit our FAQ.

Why Surf With Us?

  • REAL WAVES – AND MORE OF THEM! We’ll take you to the real lineup where the best and longest waves happen. (Some surf schools keep students on the inside, which typically means shorter waves and shallow, more hazardous conditions.) And with our low student-to-teacher ratios, we guarantee you’ll catch more waves! Plus, we tow every lesson out to the lineup, and will tow you back into position after every wave! For you, this means less time paddling, less fatigue, and more time riding real waves. (Experienced or want to try paddling yourself? Of course!)
  • REAL SURF INSTRUCTION. Ty Gurney Surf School has the lowest student-to-teacher ratios anywhere in Waikiki. We book no more than 2 students per instructor to ensure that every minute of your time with us is spent riding waves and learning to surf. You’ll have an unforgettably fun time while gaining new surf skills and greater ocean awareness. We put safety first without sacrificing fun! All instructors maintain current CPR, Ocean Lifeguard, and First Aid Certifications. Our team’s experience and expertise as both individual surfers and professional surf instructors ensures that you’ll be surfing and learning with the best.
  • REAL SURF SHOP. We’re proud of our shop! Having a physical location allows us to make a Ty Gurney Surf School lesson into a more convenient and fun experience for you. We’re a 30 second walk to the beach where you’ll be surfing. You’ll meet here for your lesson, store your belongings while you’re in the water, and you’ll be able to grab a drink, dry off, and change afterwards.