Onshore vs. Offshore?

The direction of the wind can have an impact on the formation of breaking waves.

Offshore winds are winds blowing from land to water. These are the winds that surfers look for when picking a time and location to surf. The wind blows against the top of the wave, causing cleaner conditions and allows the wave to have a better chance to form a barrel.

Onshore winds are winds blowing from the water to land. Onshore winds have the opposite effect, shortening the time it takes for waves to break and introduces formation of new waves. Onshore winds also contribute to spilling breakers.