How to play surf maps and servers on CS:GO

"If you're having a bad day, catch a wave."

Image via Valve

Grinding the ranked ladder of CS:GO day in and out can be fun at first, but even the best players in the world experience burnout somewhere along the line. While taking a break from the game will be the ultimate recharging method, it’s also possible to unwind while playing CS:GO.

There are countless different casual game modes in CS:GO, each taking the legendary shooter title to places one would never imagine. You can find yourself playing hide and seek in a Harry Potter-themed map or lose yourself in the rhythm of a surf map.

You’ll need to complete courses featuring various obstacles by strafing. Strafing in surf maps is a lot smoother than what it is in regular games, and you’ll basically be floating. Some surf maps can feature armed combat, but the most popular ones are categorized as linear and staged.

Linear surf maps feature a single track with a finishing line. This means that you’ll mostly be looking at finishing in one go. While some of these maps show mercy on players by featuring checkpoints, not all of them will be kind enough. If you’re just beginning to surf, staged maps’ level-based gameplay should be better until you get the hang of the game mode.

Surfing is one of the more enjoyable casual experiences you’ll come across while playing CS:GO, and playing too much of it can improve your jump timing. Each CS:GO map features trick grenade spots or high-ground peeking spots that will require you to jump over a teammate to reach. Becoming a surfing master can make sure that you never miss a jump while throwing grenades or trying to get to high-ground, saving you precious time in a round.

Here’s how you can get busy surfing and forget about everything that happened in your last ranked match.

How can you find surf servers/maps on CS:GO?

Before you set foot into the world of surfing, you’ll need to decide on a map to play. Choosing one will be challenging since there are just too many of them, but almost all of them should do the trick to get the surfing itch off.

To browse through the surfing selection of CS:GO, you’ll need to:

  • Launch CS:GO and choose Play.
  • Select Community Server Browser from the drop-down menu.
  • Type in surf or surfing into the search bar and start exploring 

You’ll be able to sort the servers by how many players they have playing at that moment, which will also be an indicator of how popular a server is.

Upon clicking on a server, your game will start downloading the map you’ll be playing and prompt you with all the server rules. Most server rules also specify the map’s difficulty level, and things will get gradually harder moving up from tier one.

It’s also possible to find more competitive servers where you’ll be racing against time with other players. If you’d like to play in a more chill environment without any distractions, you can join a server with zero players or download a custom map to host a match.

How to find and download custom CS:GO surf maps

Most of the popular surfing maps feature playlists filled with surfing maps, and it can get repetitive over time. Downloading custom surfing maps will allow you to challenge yourself with new obstacles.

You’ll also be able to adjust the finer details of each custom map, making them just right for your preference. If you’d like to take a more in-depth look into all the surf mode commands in CS:GO, you can find them here.

Navigate to the Steam Workshop either on your web browser or while playing CS:GO, and make your way to the maps section.

Once you’re in the Workshop Maps section, start searching for surfing maps by typing down surf or surfing into the search bar. We recommend sorting maps by the number of their subscribers since it’s an excellent way to check out all the hit surfing maps in CS:GO.

If you see a map that interests you, click on them and look for the subscribe button. After clicking on the green subscribe icon, you’ll start downloading the maps onto your PC, and they’ll become available in CS:GO.

You’ll need to head over to the Workshop Maps section after launching CS:GO to check out all the community maps you’ve downloaded. Select the map you’d like to play and press Go to launch it. 

What are the most popular surfing maps in CS:GO?

It’s quite challenging to pick the perfect map out of a sea of options. You’ll ultimately want to play a bunch of them to identify your likes and don’t likes when it comes to surfing, but there are still a couple of maps that have proved themselves to be better than their competition.

Here are the best surfing maps in CS:GO to get you started.

XzippyzachX’s Surf Master

Surf Master – Screengrab via XzippyzachX

Surf Master is potentially one of the most straightforward surf maps in CS:GO. It features all the core characteristics of surfing and includes fun courses that aren’t that challenging to complete. 

It’s an excellent map for beginners but may end up being too short for players with experience.


Surf Utopia V3 – Screengrab via Valve

If you’re looking for more variety when it comes to levels and obstacles, then surf_utopia_v3 will be the map for you. The workshop map features a decent variety when it comes to levels and does a great job of handling lightning effects throughout the map.

7thMarchen’s Surf_ski_2_go

Surf Ski 2 Go – Screengrab via 7thMarchen

While the first two maps will be fine for anyone looking to have a single-player experience, they’ll start falling short when you invite your friends to your lobby. With Surf_ski_2_go, you’ll be able to turn your surfing experience into a friendly competition, and you can even increase the steaks by enabling gunplay.

Surf Fillory

Most surfing maps lack the scenery, and surfing indoors can get old quickly. The Surf Fillory map does an excellent job of using mostly in-game elements to give the map a more realistic look and features an endless sea to make it feel closer to real-life surfing.

While you’ll still be surfing relatively higher than the sea below you, it’ll still add to the overall experience.

How to surf in CS:GO?

Though aiming can be a natural talent, surfing is definitely an acquired one. You can learn all the ropes of surfing by training, and most maps will even include guides to give you a headstart.

Once you jump onto a ramp, you’ll notice that you don’t actually have to press W to move forward, but you’ll still need to use your movement keys to stay on the ramp.

Without pressing any movement keys, you’ll fall out of ramps, and the only way to prevent it is by moving toward them. If a ramp is curved toward the left, you’ll want to press D to move to the right and stay on the ramp.

If you start sliding through the lower parts of a ramp, you’ll start gaining speed, but you’ll need to make your way to the top part of it before performing jumps since you’ll need the momentum. Such movements can be done by sliding your camera angle. You’ll need to look at wherever you want to go while surfing but do it slowly to keep your momentum.

You still won’t be able to complete most surf maps in one go, even after mastering all the mechanics of the game mode. Each surf server will feature different layouts and obstacles, which you’ll need to study and master.

Watching video guides of the maps you’re playing can help you get a headstart, and we also recommend watching a couple on how you can surf smoother to make sure you grasp all the basics.  

Some surfing maps will require you to perform bunny hops, which is an essential skill to move faster even in regular CS:GO matches. You’ll be able to use this skill in your ranked matches as well, allowing you to get to sites faster than walking.