It’s a surfer’s dream come true: tall, long waves moving across the mouth of the Amazon River and adjacent rivers for several kilometers. The phenomenon is called “pororoca”, and happens twice a year, between February and March, as a consequence of a tidal event named “tidal bore”.
The tidal bores happen in a few places in the world, like the Qiantang River, in China, which is regarded as the world’s largest tidal bore, or the Severn born, in England, another popular surfing spot. The tide sends the waves against the river’s current, sometimes at a high speed and with a height that can reach 9 meters (29.5 feet). In the case of the Pororoca, it is reported that the waves can travel up to 13 km (8 miles) inland and be 4 meters tall (13 feet).
According to National Geographic, surfers started coming in 1997, and since then they have been able to constantly ride a wave for more than 40 minutes. The action, however, is not without risk: along with crocodiles, snakes, piranhas and debris, there is a parasitic fish in the water, the Candiru (Vandellia Cirrhosa), that can get inside the body through the urethra.
Since 1999, there is an annual surfing championship in the town of São Domingos do Capim; only for the bravest!
Wanna know more about it? Check the amazing video below.
Photo: Denis Darmanho via Aviso Esporte