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Nazaré, a seaside town on Portugal’s Costa de Prata, is home to the biggest surfable waves on the planet.
This month, surfers battled giant waves as optimal weather conditions pushed huge walls of water towards the coast. Many of the surfers made the trip from their home countries especially for the event.
The beach is optimal for surfing huge waves due to a geological phenomenon called the 'Nazare Canyon' which creates waves that are heavier, less predictable and more powerful. The canyon is a 105-mile long and three-mile deep fault that runs along the bottom of the sea. It propels the swell of the Atlantic Ocean towards the coast.
Hundreds of surfing fans came from all over Europe and could be seen watching the events on hills around the beach. The mass gathering prompted authorities to lock off access to the beach's lighthouse to stop too many people gathering close to each other.
In 2017, Nazare became famous for helping Brazilian Rodrigo Koxa into the Guinness Book of World Records after he surfed a 79.9ft wave there.
Earlier this year, Maya Gabeira, also from Brazil, took home the record for highest wave ever surfed by a woman for a 73.49ft roller. The weather forecast for the area predicted conditions which could lead to surfers taking on waves up to 100ft tall. That's equivalent to a 10-storey building.
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The area, which generally produces waves of 6-9 metres (20-30ft) in height, was hit by a rare coincidence of conditions: the swell from the hurricane on top of a mid-Atlantic depression which produced waves breaking almost a mile out and touching, perhaps, 18 metres in height.
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