Brighton, UK: a classic surf spot less than 60 miles away from London | Photo: Les Chatfield/Creative Commons

London has one of the most active surfing communities in the world. It might sound odd, but there are tens of thousands of Londoners who take surfing very seriously. Let's unveil the most popular surf breaks located approximately less than two hours away from English capital.

They (still) don't have a river surfing wave, but they have the London Surf Film Festival. They don't have warm waters, but their London Surf Club is a classic institution running since 1981. Londoners surf; Londoners seek surf.

You can't always look at the dark side of life. Yes, London is rainy and foggy, but it has River Thames. And the City's iconic water channel flows into the North Sea. Which means that, technically, you could grab a stand-up paddle board and ride roughly 40 miles (96 kilometers) towards the ocean.

However, London surfers are used to catching a train, tube, or plane to score waves in any part of the world. They also drive to Cornwall, the heart and soul of British surfing, to get their fair share of rides. Living in London doesn't necessarily mean giving up on surfing.

We should not forget that the Empire Pool (later renamed Wembley Arena), a 200-foot-by-60-foot (61 meters by 18 meters) swimming facility built in 1934, was the world's first artificial wave piscina.

Joss Bay: surf and skate activities all year round | Photo: Funk Dooby/Creative Commons

So, whether you're an accomplished surfer or an absolute beginner, you'll always find ripples near London. To keep it simple, you have two options - go south, or go east. Just check the wave forecast for both shorelines, call a couple of friends and drive down to the beach.

The London Surf Guide | 15 Spots Within 60 Miles

Littlehampton, West Sussex: A peaky beach break that works best in high tide, with an E/SW swell and northerly winds;
Shoreham-by-Sea, West Sussex: A peaky beach break that works best in mid tide, with an E/SW swell and southeasterly winds;
Brighton West Pier, East Sussex: A jetty break that only works in low tide tide, with an E/SW swell and northerly winds winds;
Tide Mills, East Sussex: A jetty/groin break that works best in mid tide, with an E/SW swell and northerly winds;
Birling Gap, East Sussex: A beach break that works best in mid tide, with southwesterly wind swells;
Eastbourne, East Sussex: A peaky beach break that works best in mid tide, with an E/SW swell and northerly winds;
Hastings, East Sussex: A beach break that works best in mid tide, with a SW swell and northwesterly winds;
Camber Sands, East Sussex: A beach break that works best in mid-to-high tide, with a SW swell and northwesterly winds;
Folkestone, Kent: A beach break that works best in low-to-mid tide, with high SW swells and westerly winds;
Broadstairs/Viking Bay, Kent: A jetty break that works in all tides, with a NW/E swell and westerly winds;
Stone Bay, Kent: A beach break that works in all tides, a with a NW/E swell and westerly winds;
Joss Bay, Kent: A beach break that works in all tides, a with a N/SW swell and westerly winds;
Botany Bay, Kent: A beach break that works in all tides, a with a N swell and southerly winds;
Shoeburyness, Southeast Essex: A beach break that works in all tides, with a powerful E/SW and northeasterly winds;

Broadstairs: a surfy beach hut | Photo: Funk Dooby/Creative Commons