Paddleboarding the Atlantic


Chris Bertish is a Big Wave Surfing Mavericks champion; Stand Up Paddle Boarding Guinness World Record Holder and Ocean Pioneer.

He recently redefined the concept of Extreme Adventure by becoming the first person ever to Stand Up Paddle across any ocean. Defying all odds, Chris paddled 7500km - solo, unsupported and unassisted - for 93 days, across the Atlantic Ocean from Morocco, Africa to Antigua in the Caribbean. This is a truly unparalleled global feat!

On Thursday March 9 2017, Chris completed an epic journey of 93 days and 4,600 miles as he single-handedly piloted his stand-up paddleboard across the Atlantic Ocean from Morocco to Antigua. This unbelievable effort was in aid of Operation Smile and two South African charities. Chris has set out to raise the equivalent of $200, 000 dollars to be held in annuities which will change the lives of children with cleft lip and cleft palate for many years to come.

The multiple world record holder in long distance stand-up paddle boarding previously won the 2010 Mavericks Big Wave Invitational in some of the largest waves ever ridden in a contest and holds the distinction of being the first person to catch a wave by paddling in at the infamous Hawaiian surf break Jaws. He emphasised that his journey was worth all of the hardship he faced, as the money would be donated to a charity that helped children affected by cleft conditions. “Knowing the impact this will have,” he says, “made every day out on the open ocean worthwhile.”

9400 Chris Bertish Photo Credit Brian Overfelt.jpg

By conquering this challenge, Chris showed the world that we all have the power to overcome the impossible. His philosophy is one of positive change – starting with ourselves; we can make a difference to others and the environment. This is the message Chris shares in all his talks and public appearances.

From Chris’ motivational and inspirational speaking messages, to the charities he supports – it’s all focused around making the impossible, possible. In fact, everything he does is aimed at inspiring people to be at their best and be the change they want to see in the world.

Known to inspire, educate and motivate audiences by sharing his captivating experiences, Chris delivers a spellbinding and mesmerizing narrative complimented by a powerful audiovisual presentation that will blow you away. You will be inspired to adopt a “can do” attitude and implement the tools and skills he teaches through his powerful storytelling.

Inspiring your greatest potential is Chris’s purpose. Your challenge is to make the change. Be the change. Leave a positive impact on others and the world.


Inspired by Chris' story? Why not take on your own challenge in aid of Operation Smile by doing one of our extreme challenges? Find out more.

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“Every child that has a facial deformity is our responsibility. If we don’t take care of that child, there’s no guarantee that anyone else will.”

- Kathy Magee, Operation Smile Co-founder and President