Malia Jones Surfer
Malia Jones

Malia Jones Surfer Extraordinaire: The Interview

In your dreams. (You couldn't keep up anyway.) But that doesn't mean you can't learn a few things about maximizing your summer fun from surf goddess Malia Jones.

Malia Jones Surfer

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Yes, she wears a bikini well. She also knows much more than you do about what it takes to turn any weekend, anywhere, into an adventure. The Hawaii-born Jones, 31, won the U.S. Amateur Surfing Championships at 15 and, these days, makes a living as a pro free-surfer and model, traveling some 300 days a year to the world’s choicest breaks. So stop staring and listen up.

Malia Jones

Malia Jones Malia Jones in Malibu

Malia Jones

Malia Jones Malia Jones in Malibu

Malia Jones

Malia Jones Malia Jones in Malibu

See Our Malia Jones Photo Gallery

See Jones’s June 2008 Outside Cover

View a Behind-the-Scenes Video of the Cover Shoot

Outside: So what are you doing this weekend?
I leave for Australia in a few hours.

Could be worse.
Well, I travel ten months a year. For my perfect weekend getaway, I’d stay home.

Come on.
OK. I love little road trips.

Sure, until you get lost. At what point should you pull over to ask directions?
It depends how long the trip is. If you’re on a ten-hour drive and you’re ten hours lost, you’d better stop. I think GPS is saving a lot of relationships.

Gotcha: GPS is good. What about an iPhone?
It’s cool to bring it, but the thing better not be on the whole time.

What’s your opinion on surprise trips?
I’ve always wanted to come home and find my bags packed for someplace cool. But it just hasn’t happened.

How much of a weekend should be planned out?
You know, 90 percent of the time nothing goes according to plan anyway. That’s the exciting part. If a flight gets canceled, don’t go home. Just check into a hotel and start your vacation there, then get on the next flight.

So no screaming at the ticket agents? I, uh, have a friend who likes to do that.
You should probably work on that before you take a girl on a vacation. If you like her.

Fair enough. What about hotels posh or rustic?
It has to be somewhere comfortable if you’re going to go for two days. That’s especially important if you’re doing a lot of sports. When you’re out surfing, running on the beach having a full day it’s nice to have that base to come back to and relax.

What about just chilling out at the hotel all day?
I think that’s blowing it, personally.

Sorry. Is it OK for a guy to skip shaving on a trip?
If you want to let your beard grow out, that’s up to you. You might want to keep brushing your teeth, though.

What about wearing Hawaiian shirts?
You know what? The Hawaiian shirt works in Hawaii.

Nice! And puka-shell necklaces?
If you made it yourself or if your girlfriend made it for you, it’s good. But if you’re just buying it off the $2.99 stand, then it’s, well, $2.99.

On a romantic vacation, how much time should couples spend apart?
It depends. You really find out who your partner is when you’re traveling. Some people on vacation are a lot more fun because they don’t have the stress of the normal routine. Some people who you’d think would be fun are uptight about everything. It kind of makes you want a little more “me” time.

Let’s say, for the sake of discussion, that you and I were to go on a trip. Would it be cool if I invited a few buddies?
Oh, my God, that’s the story of my life. Everywhere I travel, there are dudes around me; it’s all dudes, and it’s always about surfing. My perfect weekend involves surfing, but there’d be good restaurants and a nice spa. I can’t just surf four times a day.

I’m not sure that I can surf four times a day, period. That’s all right. If somebody’s not good, you do get held back a bit I have some friends on the Tour, and if they were to drag their boyfriends who don’t surf out to a wave like Teahupoo, the guys would get really hurt. But when you hang back and see them having fun, sometimes that’s more rewarding than the best wave of the day.

Should a man offer to carry a woman’s longboard for her?
Definitely yes. That’s the nicest thing ever.

What about blocking for you in the lineup?
Yeah! That’s a plus about being a woman. Don’t ever say, “I’m a strong woman and I’m not going to take a wave because they’re giving it to me.” You should just take it and say thank you. I really appreciate chivalry. I don’t think it should ever die.

You know, we’re going to get hate mail for putting you on the cover in a bikini.
That’s what I wear every day. I think it’s really nice to see girls in the lineup. It adds that feminine touch. Women bring their own style and grace to surfing which is half of what the sport is anyway.

I’m sorry, did you say “every day”?
What else are you supposed to surf in?

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