Surfing Munich, Germany

Surfing the Eisbach River Wave in downtown Munich, Germany (Surfen an der Eisbach Welle München Deutschland)

The Eisbach River Wave (Eisbachwelle), Munich, Germany, is one of the best and most consistent city-center river surfing spots in the world.

Surfing the Eisbach River Wave in downtown Munich, Germany

A meter-tall standing wave is created by a man-made stone step in the Eisbach Channel, just before it flows into the Isar River in the English Garden Park (Englischer Garten) in downtown Munich.

Location of the Eisbach River Wave in Downtown Munich | Click to enlarge

Surfers began to ride the Eisbachwelle in the 1970s, and used submerged wooden planks to improve the height and shape of the wave.

German surfer riding the Eisbach River Wave

Following several minor accidents, the local authorities came up with a plan to destroy the Eisbachwelle, but local and international surfers responded with a public campaign and online petition to "save the wave".

As a result, the Eisbachwelle is now legally protected as a cultural resource, and surfing is officially permitted at the site.

June 29, 2019 | A good day at the Eisbach River Wave

A sign helpfully reminds visitors that "Due to the forceful current, the wave is suitable for skilled and experienced surfers only."

Steven A. Martin, Ph.D. Environmental Management