In Asturias, the mountains run close to the coast, which means a much more rugged coastline than both Cantabria and the Basque Country. It has steep cliffs and very difficult access. There are many rocky coves with small offshore islets either blocking the swell or causing interference to the waves. These areas are, therefore, not particularly good for surfing. However, there are also some excellent beachbreaks, many of which face west and are unaffected by the NE sea breezes that blow during summer. There are a few spots that only come into their own during the larger swells of winter, including the regional classic Rodiles. These work up to a reasonable size but tend not to handle the largest swells. Crowds are not a major factor in Asturias. Surfing tends to be highly concentrated at a handful of spots such as Salinas, near the heavily populated industrial centre of Avilés, a few areas near the city of Gijón, and at Tapia, which is now a well-known contest site. Outside of these areas you can often find totally uncrowded surf. Surfboards are practically all shortboards, although there is a growing longboard movement in Salinas. There are few surf shops and most equipment is brought in from Cantabria or the Basque Country. Notable spots include Rodiles, a rivermouth left-hander in a beautiful setting, similar to Mundaka, El Mongol, a powerful right-hander in the centre of Gijón, and the solid beachbreaks at Tapia. Asturias is more consistent than those areas further west and a good place to visit during spring, summer and autumn.