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swap and surf just joined1% For The Planet

The Industries of Tomorrow

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Thanks to our region, the way we were raised and our passions we are imbued with the same spirit which inspired Yvon Chouinard to create his organisation '1% for the Planet'.

Our paths had already crossed in the 80's when Yvon Chouinard was able to discover the Aquitaine coastline. On this occasion he stayed at my cousin's place, Philippe Garms, the co-founder of Swap and Surf. At that time Philippe was living at Guéthary, facing the well known'Parlementia wave.

Swap and Surf is nothing other than the digital version of the universal and secular principal of 'sharing' as espoused by Yvon Chouinard also a surfer.

Just like Patagonia, S&S was born of a close interaction and association with the environment. Our adhesion to the values of '1% for the Planet' was a natural step to take.


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Entrepreneurial Awareness

Outdoor entrepreneurial awareness is often born of a passion. Such practice releases the energy to enable us to develop. 'Entrepreneurs by Nature' as we like to say at S&S. 

This is an intimate relationship and our environmental awareness comes from this experience. 

Being in the mountains or on the ocean since my young age, my conscience has been struck by some very special moments.


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I could mention the ascension of the Nevado Ausangate a summit in the Cordillere of Vilcanota in the Peruvian Andes.

Climbing the ridge affords a plunging view of the glacier which descends the side of this lost summit, which is 5 days walk from the nearest footpath.

We were two friends to undertake this adventure in these totally isolated altitudes. We were anxious but fascinated by the movement of this glacier whose blue entrails we could glimpse. The cracking sounds of the glacier reminded us that this place wasn’t frozen in its natural beauty.

At the age of 25 this event marked and moulded my conscience.


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An other important moment was our surf trip to Baja California. 

Surfing the Pacific swell gave us the impression of the rough and forceful environment which, without the artifices invented by our human societies, we would be little or nothing

These experiences humble us and force us to swallow our pride and all-powerful arrogance brought on by the societies we have developed. We are privileged and have a close -up view when feeling these elemental forces. 

These privileges engender, however a certain 'duty of care' towards the environment.

It is not surprising that Eurosima speaks of the 'Industry of Tomorrow in its new website introduction


The industry of tomorrow will be 'engaged' 

In this electoral period are we to expect everything from our political leaders and put our collective destiny in their hands only? 

In the same way that all social bodies work, it is time for enterprises to play a role in engaging more openly with Man and his environment.

It's not just a strategic choice, it is the only choice possible in the long term. The voice of reason. This choice that Jean Malaurie speaks so wisely of (hyperlink here)

After years of carefree consumerism we have now become victims of our way of life and production methods. Unconsciously or not we know we no longer have the choice. 


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In a post-consumerist world we will have to integrate the notion of 'non-economic GIP functions'. These are theories developed by the economist Joseph Stiglitz. The notion of profit is no longer in itself a measure of economic performance


We are not a 'sustainable enterprise' but an enterprise with a conscience. 


By choosing a collaborative form of accommodation, this brings several advantages to the existing infrastructure. The visitor is no longer a tourist but a 'guest'. A guest becomes a 'local' and embraces, more readily the local lifestyle.

Here, we are far removed from 'mass tourism' where surfing is not just 'another activity' amongst others on offer. This is the foundation of surf culture.

However, in order to travel, one has to take a plane and we need servers to accommodate the digital version of the Surfers' community.

The impact of S&s's activity on the environment isn't negligible. How do we sell the concept of 'green' and ‘sustainability’?


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Aware that none of our actions are totally anodyne our attachment to 1% is primordial, If no human activity can be qualified as 'sustainable', we are very much attached to the notion of 'good sense' and act responsibly.  Therefore an attachment to 1% redresses the balance.


Start-Up or Digital Enterprise


S&S is engaged in the long term in its growth and philosophy. By putting the environment and the 'Human' at the core of our vision and concerns, we are breaking with the vision of most Start-ups in aiming to achieve high growth and maximises profits. The very term Start-Up locks us into a framework which doesn't do us justice. We prefer to think of ourselves as a Digital Enterprise following its own rules and development logic

In his book entitled ‘The Responsible Company: What We've Learned from Patagonia's First 40 years’, Yvon Chouinard tell an anecdote that totally pictures my own experience of being an entrepreneur. 40 years from now, during this period Y. Chouinard was paying himself an 800$ monthly salary, he was chatting with Vincent Stanley, co-author of the book. He works has a sales director. At this time of his life Y. Chouinard hasn’t been hosted by Philippe in Ghéthary, he was then a rock climber and a mountaineer developing the brand “Chouinard Equipment”

They were discussing about what people were telling them to do to become a real company (hire reps, tradeshows,…). So Yvon turns to Vincent and said : “If I do everything the good way, If I do everything the way all the consultants advise me to do, I would go bankrupt!”.


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I live the exact same experience in the digital world. Everybody knows how to do things better than me. They talk to me about recipes read in some articles of some magazines without understanding that S&S is not exactly a classical star up, a company that has the vocation of making profit very quickly to disappear or move on to something else.

So we continue to make progress in our own way.


A natural gathering


For all these reason, our gathering to 1% was obvious. This movement, will of the Patagonia founder, Yvon Chouinard resembles us, we have the same step of mind, the same lead through an intimate relation with the nature.

For all these reasons, we are proud to be part of this organisation, and whatever our future looks like, we will stick to our values with our head up.


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Par notre territoire, nos passions et notre éducation, nous sommes habités par le même esprit qui a amené Yvon Chouinard à créer l’organisation 1% For The Planet.

Nos cheminements se sont croisés au début des années 80. Yvon Chouinard a pu découvrir le littoral aquitain et l’univers du surf en étant hébergé pendant un mois chez mon cousin Philippe Garms, co fondateur de Swap and surf. Philippe habitait alors à Guéthary, face à la vague de Parlementia.

Swap and surf n’est autre que la mise en forme numérique du principe universel et séculaire du partage qui a fait d’Yvon Chouinard un surfeur.

Tout comme Patagonia, Swap and surf provient de la pratique, du vécu, d’une relation intime avec l’environnement. Notre adhésion au réseau 1% For The Planet début mars coulait de source. 


Des entrepreneurs éveillés

 On entreprend souvent dans le domaine de l’outdoor par passion. C’est la pratique qui amène à créer, qui donne l’énergie pour développer. “Entrepreneurs par nature” aimons nous à dire à Swap and surf.

 Cette relation à l’environnement est intime et notre prise de conscience environnementale vient d’une expérience vécue.

En ce qui me concerne, en montagne ou dans l’océan, par le surf ou des ascensions, quelques moments très particuliers de communion ont marqué mes sens pour façonner ma conscience, l’éveiller.

 Je pourrais évoquer l’ascension du nevado Ausangate, un sommet dans la cordillère de Vilcanota dans les Andes, au Pérou. La remonté de  la moraine offrait une vue plongeante sur le glacier qui descend des flancs de ce sommet perdu à 5 jours de marche de la première piste.

Nous étions deux amis unis dans cette aventure qui nous a isolé sur ces hauteurs. Autant fascinés que inquiets, nous écoutions les mouvements du glacier qui laissait entrevoir ses entrailles bleutées. Ces sinistres craquements  nous rappelaient que ce lieu n’était pas figé dans sa beauté brute.

A 25 ans, ce moment de vie parmi d’autres m’a marqué pour toute une vie et a participé à façonner un état de conscience.

Au même titre, les escapades que nous faisions plus tard entre amis en Baja california pour surfer la houle pacifique nous renvoyaient aussi ce sentiment de force et de rudesse d’un milieu où sans tous les artifices que nos sociétés humaines ont inventés, nous serions peu de chose.

 Ces expériences nous remettent à notre place en nous faisant ravaler une forme d’arrogance que par un sentiment de toute puissance nos sociétés humaines ont développé.

 Nous avons donc le privilège d'être au premier rang pour ressentir la force des éléments. Ce privilège nous oblige à certains devoirs.

 Il n’est pas étonnant que l’Eurosima parle de “l’industrie de demain” en préambule de son nouveau site. L'entreprise de demain puise son inspiration dans l'économie du passé, celle du bon sens, et de l’innovation astucieuse et porteuse de sens.


L'industrie de demain sera engagée


 En cette période électorale, faut il tout attendre des politiques, mettre notre destin commun entre les mains des seuls élus ?

Au même titre que tous les corps sociaux, il est grand temps que l'entreprise joue son rôle, s'engage plus ouvertement, en remettant au cœur de son projet les hommes et notre environnement. Ce n'est pas un choix de stratégie, c'est la seule voie possible sur le long terme, la voie de la raison. Celle dont Jean Malaurie  parle avec sagesse, lien ici

Après des années de consumérisme béat et insouciant, nous sommes à ce jour tous victimes des conséquences de nos modes de vie et de production. Inconsciemment ou non, nous savons que nous n'avons plus vraiment le choix.

Dans un monde post consumériste, nous devons élargir la notion de PIB à des facteurs non-économiques. Ce sont les thèses avancées par  un économiste tel que Joseph Stiglitz. La seule notion de profit ne suffit plus pour estimer la performance économique.


Nous ne sommes pas une « entreprise durable » mais consciente


Choisir l'hébergement collaboratif apporte beaucoup d'avantage sur le plan de l'environnement. On utilise l'existant, le voyage ne se fait plus en touriste, mais comme un invité. On devient un local, en utilisant son lieu de vie, on se glisse dans sa vie. Nous sommes loin du tourisme de masse ou le surf n'est plus qu'un produit touristique parmi d'autres. S&s est une solution de bon sens qui remet sur le devant de scène les valeurs de partage qui sont le socle de la culture surf.

 Toutefois, pour voyager, on peut être amené à prendre un avion, il faut des serveurs pour héberger la version numérique de notre communauté de surfeurs. Les serveurs sont le salon de notre club. L'impact de S&s sur l'environnement n'est pas négligeable. Comment pourrait on avancer que nous sommes verts, ou durable ?

 Conscient que rien de ce que nous faisons n'est inoffensif, notre engagement auprès de 1% était évident. Si aucune activité humaine ne peut encore être qualifiée de « durable », nous sommes attachés à ce fameux bon sens, et nous acceptons notre responsabilité. Cela implique notre engagement à équilibrer la balance via 1%.


Start up ou entreprise du numérique ?


 Swap and surf s'inscrit sur le long terme, dans sa croissance comme dans sa philosophie.

Mettre l'environnement et l'humain au centre de nos préoccupations, c'est se développer en rupture avec la plupart des start-up dont les moteurs sont la valorisation et le profit rapide.

Parce que le terme start-up est utilisé à tort et à travers et enferme dans des schémas qui ne nous correspondent pas, nous préférons dire que nous sommes une entreprise du numérique, avec notre logique de développement propre.

 Dans son livre, “un business responsable”, Yvon Chouinard parle d'une anecdote qui fait écho à mon expérience d'entrepreneur. Il y a 40 ans, à une époque où Yvon Chouinard se versait un salaire de 800 $ mensuel, il discutait avec Vincent Stanley, le co-auteur du livre. Il était alors directeur commercial ( avec une augmentation de 3 dollars de l'heure ). Yvon n’avait pas encore été accueilli par Philippe à Guéthary, il était alors un pratiquant d’escalade et de montagne qui développait la marque Chouinard equipement.

Ils ont échangé sur ce que les gens leur disaient de faire pour devenir une véritable entreprise (embaucher des représentants, faire des salons …). A un moment, Yvon s'est tourné vers Vincent pour lui dire « Si je faisais tout comme il faut, si je faisais tout ce que les spécialistes me disent de faire pour réussir, je ferais faillite ».

 Je vis là même expérience dans l'univers du numérique. Tout le monde sait mieux que moi comment faire, en déroulant les évidences et les recettes lues dans les magazines sans comprendre que S&s n'est pas exactement une start-up, c'est à dire une entreprise qui a vocation à faire du profit très vite pour disparaître ou passer à autre chose. Nous continuons donc de progresser à notre façon.


Un ralliement naturel


 Pour toutes ces raisons, notre ralliement à 1% coulait de source. Ce mouvement qui est une volonté du fondateur de Patagonia, Yvon Chouinard nous ressemble, nous avons eu le même cheminement qui passe d’abord par une relation intime à l’environnement.

 Nous sommes donc fiers d’appartenir à cette organisation, et quelque soit notre avenir, nous resterons fidèle à nos valeurs, la tête haute.


the ultimate network

The ultimate surfer network from the promise land

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The promise land

Swap and surf was born in the heart of a region which is total paradise for people who are in love with the outdoors. You can ski and surf that same day.

The origins of this project, closely tied to its founders, Philippe and Sylvain Garms, can be better understood through the film “because…”
- link to film here.

The South West of France is not only a promise land for the outdoors lover, but also a privileged land to develop all kinds of projects related to outdoor activities.


The Ocean Living Lab

In 2016, S&s became part of the Ocean Living Lab (OLL), link here

The Ocean Living Lab was born in Saint Jean de Luz. This cluster, dedicated to the ocean, the environment and innovation, welcomes Swap and surf in a one-of-a-kind structure.

The OLL hosts big groups such as Quicksilver and innovative startups like Swap and surf.


A whole region backing us up

Because our area is so special and the collaborative solution brought by Swap and surf is a common sense solution, the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region is giving us its support. It will allow Swap and surf to continue to develop, staying close the most genuine values of the surf culture: fun and sharing.

Therefore, on top of the technical advices expertise given by the OLL, Swap and surf has received a grant from the Nouvelle Aquitaine region.

Swap and surf is now be able to grow without compromising its values.


The ultimate network with the mobile APP

Thanks to its success and a good context, we're now ready for the next stage. To make S&S the ultimate network for the traveling surfeurs, and always in a collaborative way.

At this point, thanks to our website and with the help of the S&s team, all surf trips projects are achievable for less expenses and a better experience.

We want to go further and add a service, not upstream, but while traveling, via a mobile app and relying on the experience and knowledge of local surfers.

Our ambition is to offer a geolocalized service of all what a traveling surfer may need, and this global mapping will come from surfers, those who practice, without other intermediaries.


A collaborative development

As our wish is that the concept remains at the service of the surfers, and from its collaborative nature we solicit logically all the surfers to participate. Swap and surf will remain a network that only cares about the practice, whatever the level, from the daily practitioner to the one who surf twice a year.

To do this, Swap and surf invites all surfers to participate, give their opinion, talk about their surfing practice, their needs, in order to be able to improve our tool. So, Swap and surf will continue to be the catalyst of what our community is, able to encompass its diversity and meet all expectations.

To continue to establish this dialogue between Swap and surf and its community, we launched this survey, link

The Positive Action Festival

look for our caravan under the pine tree

End of summer and fall are a good time to visit and surf South West of France.

On august 27/28 2016, Swap and surf will participate in the Positive Action Festival in Anglet. The PAF is an event dedicated to showcase lifestyle and initiatives promoting a responsible future. Read this article in Source Boardsport mag.

Come and visit us at the Positive Action Festival, you’ll find our caravan under the pine forest !

This week-end end is the best time to enjoy the area. In the same time, you have the Anglet pro WSL event in the iconic Chambre d’amour ( last year event was epic ). And you have much more ( this is the S&s concept, you’ll have the best surf trip experience with tips from the locals )


You can enjoy too :

  • La littorale : The sixth Anglet-Basque Coast contemporary art international biennial, link here
  • the balea pop : a great music and art festival, facebook here
  • the chambre d’amour night : free concert, animation for kids with fireworks. Link here

The Bothnia Savages project

This Summer 2016 Pauliina and Aino, two young  finnish surfing women, aim to drive along the coastline of Europe with an electric car and travel in a fair and ecological way, trying to minimize the use of natural ressouces and prefer local accommodation and eating options.

 Simultaneously, they create a grass roots overview on the well-being and health of the environment in the coastals areas and bring up the means to improve and develop these areas.

 Along the way, they want to discover and get to know alternative and environmental friendly accommodation options, beach and seaside waste disposal methods and use of renewable energy in both private households and local companies.

 The final destination of their journey is the international Surf Film Festival in Anglet, France, were is located swap and surf

The main medium of their creative journalism project continues to be Instagram where the username is @bothniasavages

It’s not the first project for Pauliina and Aino. The first part of the project took place in Meri-Pori 2015, where they seeked for surfable waves in Finland and lived in a cottage without electricity, learned to fish and used an exercise bike to generate electricity to their phones and cameras. A link here

Swap and surf will help these  girls the best, they deserve it !


eco friendly surfboard skate made in France

Notox, a French brand developing the new generation of surfboards just has released a new range of skateboard. Made out of rough wood from basque country ( South West of France ), each skate is unique.

Like Notox, Swap and surf is born in the South West of France. An outdoor enthusiast paradise, a place with strong creativity and values.

Check also Notox surfboards, a range of truly performing and fair boards, made of recycled EPS, flax fbrics and cork.



Nat Young with Philippe

home exchange website for surfers by surfers

In South West of France, where S&s founders live. Nat Young and philippe before having an enthousiastic exchange about swap and surf.
The pleasure to meet, host, exchange... all the real surf trip spirit

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Take part in a collection

A Surfrider Foundation Europe program to tackle the marine litter issue through education, citizen science and lobby. You are part of the solution, play your part !

More info here

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Waves disappearance, beaches closure, health risks, limited access to surf spots, extreme weather patterns, all of these factors are as many threats hanging over surfing or any ocean-related activity. Through its latest pledge, Surfrider Foundation Europe points the different causes and aims at raising awareness among watersports enthusiasts. 

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Spots and users in danger! How bad is it?

Disturbing climate changes - The Ocean is contributing to climate regulation, absorbing most of the greenhouse gases and storing thermal energy. However overconsumption of this gas gradually reduces its regulation capacity. Such climate imbalance generates changes in currents, winds, swells and waves. All this can have a great impact on our beloved water and outdoor sports.  


Irrational coastal development - Large-scale projects, like solid structures development (port extensions or wind farms) and coastline modifications (dredging, sand or aggregate extraction), are launched without thorough studies on the social consequences or the impact on local heritage and practitioners. The risk with that is that some of our spots risk to disappear, as it has already happened in the past.


Constant deterioration of water quality - The current legislation is still not taking watersports enthusiasts into consideration. In fact, it imposes water quality to be monitored only during the summer season and in swimming areas. On the other hand, Surfrider’s studies which are conducted all year long, confirm that the presence of contaminants constitute a real threat for our health when we get into the water. These microorganisms are likely to provoke illness such as gastroenteritis, conjunctivitis, ear and skin infections, but also to make access to spots restricted.


Climate change, coastline development, ocean contamination they are all linked to the decline of available surf spots, whereas the number of practitioners is on the rise.

Watersports under threat! Which solutions?

Today, Surfrider asks for your help to raise our voice and to maximize our leverage while negotiating with national and European institutions.
Here are our goals: to ensure that EU States sign a global ambitious climate agreement, to make sure that the coastal environment and its communities are taken into account when making shoreline development decisions, and finally to improve water quality in recreational areas.

To make sure that your interests are taken into account, Surfrider is fully committed to become an ambassador for the watersports lovers’ community and will be representing you in its lobbying activities.

Protect you spot: Sign Surfrider’s pledge!


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the purest surf trip spirit

no money transaction between members

From now on, swap and surf is a 100% collaborative community (the opportunity to rent had been withdrawn)


You can exchange with members, host each other, but without any money transaction. We want to stick to the purest surf trip spirit

The Sayulita festival

Film, spirits, food music and surf, the good mix

A good place to go for traveling surfers. Get more infos here

A unique gathering for all lovers of Mexico, Film, Spirits, Food, Music and Surf to be held January 14th – 18th, 2015. The idyllic coastal town of Sayulita provides a scenic, bohemian background perfect for this international festival

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the heart of S&s

Biarritz area is the heart of S&s. The S&s founders were born in this region, south west of France. Considered as the European Mecca for surfing and one of the best spots in the world, the Biarritz area attracts amateurs & professionals alike from 4 corners of the world who appreciate the exceptional quality of the waves there. S&s members living in this area will be glad to host you or to swap with you, a list here  

biarritz surf trip

Biarritz's has six beaches along a six-kilometre coastline separated by jagged out crops and cliffs. The beaches are renowned as some of the best in Europe and have been rewarded several times for their top class standards. There are several big sandy beaches, each with a distinct flavour and history, but all equally popular with swimmers, surfers, children, families, elderly couples – in short, everyone.


Eco Challenge Gold Coast event

Brought to you by Climate Wave Enterprises

At S&s, we are proud to have members like Greg. He founded Climate Wave, check here, he assists event organisers with eco-logical solutions

Like S&s, he did all the hard work, check the last event he was able to organised here (fundraising for Surfrider Foundation Australia, displays of wooden boards, concert, etc). An event to follow, and a surfer to meet

share with a cool surfing grand pa

surf in Seal Beach

Rick lives in a surf cottage in Seal Beach, California, visit here.

He’s a retired water man. In love with the ocean for over 50 years ( he’s been a Surfrider Foundation member since the beginning of the group).

He’s traveled every year for over 30 years. Indonesia, Tahiti, Fiji, Hawaii, Mexico, Chile, Peru, Nicaragua, etc. He knows what a local is able to offer you on a surf trip….local knowledge. He’s the perfect S&S member, open minded, easy going, surf stoked,  and with a strong surf tripping experience!

Rick would still like to travel to many places he hasn’t visited yet, like Ecuador, Brazil, Colombia, Maldives. Also on the bucket list and hopefully in the loop are Europe, NZ, Auz, and Africa too! Rick is also interested in finding congenial surf traveling partners leaving the US on shorter trips. Being retired he only needs a week or two lead time to get up and go! 

Since having knee problems / replacements, he rides a bodyboard almost daily to keep playing in the waves and stay in sync with our Mother Ocean.

Because of on going knee problems, Rick doesn’t plan to realize any extended surf trip soon, but he knows that hosting other surfers is in a way surf traveling, especially when surfers get together to talk story. He would be delighted to host surf travelers from all around the world.His words :

"I am willing to host visiting surfers for short periods, and maybe longer if they clean up after themselves and share food costs. Just had a group of young traveling Auzzies who stayed a week and they were great"

Swap and surf is proud to put together surfers like Rick, an open minded  water man,  in love with surfing and curious to meet people from different places from around our beautiful world.


Rick : "Down my street. Riding my 11’0 gun. Winter 2004"

Surf trip au brésil avec un local

Une offre pour les surfeurs qui vivent en France

Caio, profil ici, un membre S&s brésilien propose une hospitalité réciproque à saisir

Ciao a créé et dirige le mag Solto, il invite un français à venir chez lui pendant la coupe du monde de foot. Sa famille vit là où auront lieu 5 matchs de coupe du monde à Porto Alegre (France / Honduras le 15 juin). Il propose d'accompagner un invité dans sa ville, voir un match ou pas. Ensuite, car il s'agit quand même de surfer, il propose un surf trip à Florianopolis, paradis du surf au Brésil où il a aussi une maison ! What else ?

 -en échange, Caio, souhaiterait être reçu en France à l'automne

Après, pour ceux qui ont envie d'aller au Brésil à l'occasion de la coupe du monde pour voir un match de foot et surfer, plutôt que le faire avec un local, ils peuvent décider de passer par un tour opérateur, chacun son truc.

Si l'expérience vous intéresse, vous pouvez profiter d'une inscription premium offerte et contacter Caio. L'offre "the spring offer", ici vous permet de vous inscrire gratuitement en premium et ainsi de pouvoir contacter tous les membres de S&s, et notamment Caio. Et en plus, il parle français !




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  • Swap and surf founders are from South West of France and the project settle down their. Naturally, the largest choice of profiles in this area

  • We offer places like Alaska to live with locals experiences difficult to organized like cold water surfing in remoted places

  • Caio is registred as a journalist, but he could have been photographer or artist too. An open mind brasilian surfer willing to welcome you in Florianopolis. 

  • The best way to discover new horizons is to connect with locals. In every places you can find swell, you'll have a Swap and surf member to exchange with you, or to host you or just give you some tips

  • "I plan to always do what I love to do, and make the most of the opportunities in front of me, and believe this can be seen in my work." a talented photographer to meet

  • The authentic hawaiian water man. For an outrigger ride, share surf session or whatever on water, he's the man

  • Of course, Swap and surf offers solutions through our members in all majors surf trip destination

  • Of course Swap and surf is well implanted in all main surf culture heart, like California is

  • The cool californian surfer. The guy to meet for a reciprocal hospitality. With Talal, it'll be easy going

  • With Tushar, Ishita is a leading figure of the surfing culture in India. A pionner, the first female to have been sponsored by brand like roxy