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Retro Road Trips with Vintage Surfari Wagons

It started with a dream. It was a few days before Bill and Diane left their home in California for a tropical Hawaiian vacation when Bill awoke with an idea. He and his wife loved cruising around California in their old VW van and Bill had dreamed they were driving their van in Hawaii, having a blast. After he awoke, a quick online search turned up a van for rent in Maui, they quickly made arrangements with the owner to use the van during their vacation.

Fall asleep to the sound of waves and wake up at a different surf spot each morning!


When they returned to California Diane and Bill thought about all the people coming to California for vacation that would love to rent a VW. Bill had owned a VW van pretty much all of his life, they were his favorite mode of transportation to and from the surf spots along the California Coast. Diane’s brother had owned a VW van when she was younger so she was fond of them as well. To test their hypothesis they started with just one VW camper van, and a website. Sure enough, before too long, the prospective customers started calling.  7 years, and 10 VW camper vans later, Bill and Diane are wanting to expand even more. They love sharing the VW experience with others and seeing the smile on their face when they return after a week surfari in one of their Volkswagen vans.

Renters can choose from ten totally unique vans ranging from a classic 1977 van named Taos, to a 1986 Vanagon named Kukui. Cute names aside, these vans mean business. The vans are equipped with pretty much everything you'll need for a self-sustained surf trip including; cooking items, flatware, coffee pot, paper towels, potable water, full size bed, stove, sink, ice box, dining table and more.

You may be wondering where you go once you’re in the van? Wherever you want. There are endless possibilities, but don't worry Bill loves to share his ideas with you about the best places to stay and the best ways to find good (and cheap) camping spots. When asked about some of the all time favorite stop-overs, Bill says the most popular surf spots for the vans are the campgrounds and beaches at:

  1. El Capitan State Beach - North of Santa Barbara & one of the most beautiful West Coast campgrounds
  2. San Onofre- One of California's most legendary longboard breaks and a primo spot to hang out all day
  3. San Elijo State Beach - Surf the famous Cardiff Reef

While the most popular non surf areas are:

  1. Big Sur Coastline - Dramatic ocean views and scenic forest
  2. Joshua Tree - Great camping, hiking and rock climbing
  3. Yosemite Park - America’s most impressive, hiking, waterfalls, and big wall climbing

When asked about the most unique experience with the business Bill tells of shipping the Vans to Austin, TX for the South by South West (SXSW) festival. Several bands from England wanted to follow up their SXSW performances with a tour through the US on Vintage VWs. After considering the options they concluded Bill's Vintage Surfari Wagons were the coolest to be found anywhere so they arranged for him and the vans to come to Austin to pick them up.

So if you're ready for a vacation that's unique, a surf trip that's a little funky, and a chance to slow down, step back in time, and enjoy the coastline. Go ahead and check out the VW Surfari Wagons in California. And when you do, be sure to give Bill a big thanks for turning his dream into a reality.


If you're into unique surf adventures you might also enjoyTanker Surfing

Looking for a cheap surf trip? Try a surf camp in Guatemala for $4 per night!


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