Boutique surf school chuffed at prospect of fly-in clients

Green Wave surf school looks set to have some high-flying clients before the summer’s through.

Now into its second season and rated New Zealand’s top surf school on TripAdvisor, the Raglan school has teamed up with Heletranz to provide lessons for high-end clients choppered in down the coast from Auckland.

The surf and heli package deal – highlighted in the New Zealand Herald’s travel section early this month and costing a cool $1495 per person – includes a 2.5 hour private lesson with one of Green Wave’s three instructors before the 30-minute flight back to Albany, taking in the Big Smoke’s dormant volcanic cones and Sky Tower.

The four-hour morning tour is billed as suitable for either beginner surfers or for “experts” wanting to experience Raglan, “the surf capital of New Zealand”.

Local instructor, Ryan Bellerby, says, when asked why Heletranz (which offers a series of premier helicopter experiences), might have partnered with Green Wave in its latest initiative, “I think it’s because of the [online] reviews.”

He told the Chronicle he and fellow instructors, Bing Lyons and one-time local pro surfer Zennor Wernham, have more than 30 years of coaching experience between them, and the feedback they’ve had since setting up on their own has been “amazing”.

They’ve had no bad reviews. “All perfect,” Ryan reckons.

One beginner surfer raved over her recent surf and stay package, describing the teachers as “passionate” and inspiring confidence. Another traveller rated Green Wave, both at the beach and “chilling” back at its Raglan West home-stay,  as his favourite experience on his extensive journey.   

The Green Wave trio pride themselves on their points of difference. “First-up we wanted to keep things smaller and focus on the quality of the lesson,” Ryan says.

And they do only one lesson a day – just after high tide when the conditions are usually better. So, “every day is different” and there’s the flexibility, for instance, to include sunset lessons.

Free photos of the experience are included for every Green Wave client, and there’s a ‘stand up or your money back’ guarantee.

Green Wave is one of the more recent of a plethora of surf schools now operating in Raglan. They include the original Raglan Surfing School (now into its 18th year), Solscape’s in-house surf school, Surf Safe Coaching, Up Surf Coaching, Indies Surfschool led by local pro, Miles Ratima, and DK Surf School run by local surfing legend Daniel Kereopa.

Edith Symes