Fearless surf seekers requiring a serene tropical island nirvana, away from the hustle of the mainstream tourist industry with adrenaline-charged swells, need look no further than Sumbawa.
The beauty of this destination lies in the unpolished splendor of its rugged coastline but the real worth here is to be found in the surf. It is dominated by high performance swells suitable for only the most experienced wave riders. There are a variety of breaks for all levels on offer but it is the awesome power of the likes of ‘Super Suck’, ‘Scar Reef’ and ‘Lakey Peak’ which really charges the blood. In addition to the plentiful named waves, uncharted surf spots are scattered up and down Sumbawa’s expansive coastline just waiting for discovery.
We are the Sumbawa Surf Travel Experts
The best conditions on the island can be found in the morning as the trade winds effect the quality of the waves later in the day. As the bulk of the waves are high performance reef breaks it is very important to utilize shallow reef tide charts both for the sake of safety and to get the optimum time in the water.
Nestled in the west of Indonesia, between Lombok and Flores this island is larger than Bali and Lombok combined. It has two main surf regions in the south east and the south west and we highly recommend that you visit both on your trip. Each region has a bevy of surf friendly accommodation on offer. To travel between the two regions takes approximately 10 hours by bus or 6 hours by motorbike or car and covers a distance of around 400km.
Indonesia is basically a year-round surf destination, but the best time of year and also the most popular is between the months of April until the end of October as the monster winter storms march the swell lines from down south and to the left across the open Indian Ocean untouched until they hit here and with light trade winds blowing from the south-east.
With the wet season beginning towards the end of October and lasting through to March, your peak rainfall will come in January and February with the high pressure systems flowing south from the Asian mainland combined with humid air from the Indian Ocean bring rain throughout Indonesia – but sometimes the northern and western islands get the lions share compared to those in the south and east.
Has 2 waves, a right and a left on each side of the deep reef channel called Cobblestones. The right walls up with some wackable sections and the left barrels into the channel. It is a swell magnet & handles size. Best on a mid-high tide.
A fun right hander on the south coast. Best to go there on smaller days with NW winds which is mainly the wet season.
Is the perfect A-Frame wave as it rears up and fires both ways. The right can offer deep backdoor pits. Gets too shallow on the low tide. When the left is pumping is spits out mechanical tubes. Both sides offer rides from 40-50mts. Lakey’s gets crowded when it is below 6ft, however, when a solid swell rolls in and it is over 7ft+ it sorts the boys out from the men as it turns into a heaving monster. On the smaller days intermediate surfers are able to surf here as the reef is fairly user-friendly, except during spring tides.
350 mts across the bay is Lakey Pipe. Below lays a sharp reef with an easy take off. The swell marches in from deep water then jacks up on the shelf & throws out a heaving barrel that you can backdoor. Best time to surf is between mid-high tide & 6ft. Can handle 8ft+
Is the biggest swell magnet around the Lakey’s area. There are 3 waves at Nangadoro, a barreling left and 2 rights.
350m to the North of Lakey’s is a closeout section called No-Mans. If the conditions are right may have a short in smaller swells.
Needs a massive SW swell, mid-high tide, & Northerly’s to make this wave happen. If the swell is solid there are better options in close proximity.
Nungas is very similar to G-land, however, a smaller version. The long left reels down the reef for up to 200mts with some smackable sections & barrels. Nungas needs a solid swell as it is situated in a bay.
Periscopes is a cracking right hand barrel that is quick from start to finish. Needs a solid south swell & can handle 6-8ft. Best early in the morning to beat the crowds and a high tide as the wave needs water over the reef.
Scar Reef also known as “Scars” is located in West Sumbawa. High risk = high reward as the reef is very sharp and gets very shallow on the lower tides. Straight off the take-off the lip throws out then churns out multiple tube sections that you can backdoor racing down the line towards the gnarly inside section which closes out. The wave has many moods as the tide changes. On the low tide it starts to produce cylindrical mid-tide bowls. Best on a S-SW swell & SE winds & can handle 8-10ft+.
“Supers” is very shallow & super sharp, however, worth the risk. As a solid W-SW swell starts to roll in this wave starts to light up showing is spectacular colours. As big walls of water march in and break off the boil on the outside of the bay it sucks up into a heaving left bowl that fires down the reef for 200mts+. The inside section of this reef gets really shallow before finally shutting down. Best on a S-SW swell, mid tide & SE winds.
Directly situated in front of the Nomad surf resort there is tropical’s left & right. The Left is a long point break that has nice walls for you to carve your way down the line. The Right hander on the other side of the channel hits the reef quick then barrels off down the line.
Yo-yo’s – The Wedge & The Hook
Are swell magnets as the swell marches into Sekongkang Bay it refracts off the cliffs allowing the SW swells to refract off the steep cliffs to form “The Wedge” which is an easy launch into some short punchy right handers. Further down the reef is the “The Hook” where you may get some barrels. Both waves do not handle the SE winds or big swells. Early mornings are the best with a mid tide.