The coastline of the Krui region of southern Sumatra rivals any part of Indonesia in terms of consistency and quality of waves. So why haven’t you heard of it? The “downside” for some people is that the major surf zones are rather spread apart (30-45 mins. between the big spots), the closest airport is a 6 hour drive, and there still isn’t an established surf map as this area is still pretty un-explored. The obvious upside to those problems is a pristine Indonesian jungle teeming with waves that are still relatively un-crowded. Trust us, the good outweighs the bad.
The Krui area of South Sumatra has a large variety of waves, small crowds, consistent swell and the winds usually offshore at one of the breaks. Grabbing your board and jumping on the next plane might seem like the only things missing to make for a surf trip. But this stretch of coast requires two more things to make that trip a success … time and ‘local knowledge’.
The average surf adventure to South Sumatra is 10 days but in my experience thats just not enough time in this area to guarantee you will score excellent waves. Most of the swell hits the coast from a southerly direction and that’s just not ideal for this coastline. When the swell direction is ‘off’ wave quality and consistency suffers and everything becomes very unpredictable. During the season 1 swell hits the coast a week … but usually only 1 in 3 swells will be SW.
So if your planning a surf trip to Sumatra’s South West coast be sure to give yourself enough time to experience it at its best.
Surfing in season – June to September
During winter the Great Southern Ocean sends an average of 1 large long lasting swell every week towards the Sumatran coast from a more South to South Westerly direction. Off-shore winds make this the best time to score 2 mtr plus surf at breaks like Krui, The Peak, Ujung Bocur and Way Jambu.
Surfing off season – October to May
Its summer in the Great Southern Ocean and fewer smaller swells hit Sumatra from a more Southerly to South Easterly direction. December to February can be particularly inconsistent with only 1 to 2 storms a month and the winds on-shore at the major reef breaks.
Surfing April and May
A transitional period often providing the best conditions for Mandiri Beach with off-shore winds prevailing late into the day.
There are waves everywhere. Bali Village to the south, Jennys, the beaches near the sunken ship, Banana Island, and all of the ones that no one has named yet. Make friends with the other people in camp, compare notes, hire a guide, or get out and explore.
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