Matt Archbold surfing the world – Ep. 220

Matt Archbold surfing around the world surf surfer san clemente t street

Matt Archbold started surfing back in 1979 at age 11 and he has traveled the world ever since surfing waves and enjoying the local lifestyles. With a career spanning nearly four decades now, Matt is considered to be the most successful free surfer of all time and one of the originators of high performance surfing. I had a great conversation with him about his favorite places to visit and where he would still like to go.

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Matt has some great memories of his time in Japan, surfing and befriending the host family. We also talked about the differences in planning surf trips now, with technology, and back in the day.

Make sure to follow Matt on his social media pages to see what’s going on his world.

Connect with Matt on his social media pages:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/mattarchbold

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mattarchbold/



In the summer of 1970, the Archbold family moved to San Clemente–Mom, Dad, Brian (age 4) and Matt (age 2). After a day at the beach, when we returned to our apartment on Avenida Victoria next to Fred’s Liquor, I filled the bathtub with bubbles. Wet, sandy, and sunburn, Matt said, “I want to go home.” I responded with, “You are home.” Hence, a San Clemente local had arrived.
They call him a legend, a cult hero, punk rock on a surfboard, and one of the most influential rebels in surf lore. But what do they call the woman who gave birth to a legend? I guess that would be Mom. After the boys’ dad and I divorced, I took my maiden name back and got my college degree in Arizona. Matt supported my educational efforts but didn’t know why I moved to Arizona. “We’re ‘beach people,’ Mom.”
Matt was a high-achiever and knew what he wanted to do at a young age. Before surfing, he was into football, but when his older brother was surfing every day and entered surf contests, Matt got the bug. The prodigy surfer was doing a 360 within two weeks amazing his older brother and his friends. He got good grades in school when there was a purpose. The purpose was so he could surf on the National Scholastic Surf Team. He excelled in all the contests but he didn’t fit the competitive mold. He jumped on the fast track, with my wary blessing, when he quit school and turned pro at age 16. Travel was his education. 

He went from surfing every day, eating Cap’n Crunch, and playing Atari to competing in Japan, Brazil and Australia. He started winning contests but eventually, the judges didn’t know how to deal with his brand of modern surfing. He liked to have fun. He was rock and roll on a surfboard. Raised on the road with battle-hardy pros, he grew up fast. 



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About The Travel Wins

The Travel Wins podcast is hosted by Pete Kotzbach, a 30+ year veteran of sales and sales management, talking to people that also travel for their work. A business traveler speaking with other business travelers sharing ideas, hacks and tips for surviving life on the road and in the air.