Three times British surfing champion, multiple UK Pro Tour champ, film star and environmentalist: Alan is a man of many talents and many interests. No wonder he takes CLIFF on many tours.
Alan, what does travelling mean to you? Are you all absorbed chasing the perfect wave or are you enjoying the trip itself, too?
It’s much more than a chase to us. There’s something quite fulfilling about driving as such. When you are travelling in your camper van, you leave your worries behind. Everything is moving forward. I like being in motion, constantly wondering what’s around the next corner.
Does Cliff make a good surfer home?
Absolutely! Being free and flexible is the one thing, but there are so many clever details that keep on popping up. Cliff is loaded with everything we need on the road, but is still super compact and drives really well. The manoeuvrability totally surprised me. We are driving a lot on country roads and park on narrow, busy beach car parks and that’s just perfect with Cliff.
But will you take Cliff inlands or will you stick to the coastline only?
Yes, it’s true as a surfer you never venture very far from the coast. But we plan to drive from Germany to Portugal for one of our Surf & Yoga camps and we are very much looking forward to that. But once we hit the South of France I fear we will keep an eye on the sea.
Are you and Philly (Alan’s wife) minimalist travellers or do you load Cliff to the limit?
No, neither of us tends to overpack. A yoga mat, wet suits and a couple of clothes. Okay, I might be a bit excessive when it comes to boards and fins. I think of different scenarios and I like to keep myself entertained. I put them in and Philly takes them out. I also need my dry bag for my wetsuit. And I like to play the guitar, but they don’t travel well. An ukulele maybe a great thing to take – literally downsizing.
What music runs on your radio?
Chilled stuff. Lots of folk music.
Do you have a favourite spot?
Not the one, no. But the coastline in the North of Spain is very special. It’s beautifully remote and there are many hidden gems.