Bali is where surfing first took off in Indonesia as it is home to some of the most perfect waves in the world. Whilst being an ultimate surf discovery in the early 70's Bali has since took off and became a serious tourist destination. Bali offers a wide variety of surf breaks to cover all levels of surfing. Thunderous waves such as Padang Padang and Uluwatu can cater for the experts whilst the likes of Dreamland and Kuta Beach are an excellent starting point for the less experienced surfers. Bali offers excellent waves all year round as somewhere along the coastline is able to deliver offshore winds during both the wet and dry seasons. It is extremely rare, if not impossible for there to not be a surfable wave somewhere on the island at any time.
For detailed descriptions on Bali's best surf locations, purchase eBook Surfing in Bali by Tim Omi and Jim Cramer.
What to bring on your surf trip:
Don't stress if you forget to bring something on your surf trip to Bali. You can find everything you need or everything you have forgotten in Bali ;o) Except for your passport!
The Dry Season
The Dry season (from mid-April to mid-October) is the most predominant season as it is the most consistent time of year for swells and almost always offering offshore (East to South-East) trade winds on the west coast. Big southerly ground swells are consistent during this time of year as it is winter in the southern hemisphere and the Indian Ocean is in full force. The west coast of Bali really fires up during the dry season and most of the time the waves are picture perfect so bring your camera to get some insane photos of thumping left hand reef breaks. However, don't worry if you are not the most experienced of surfer, as there is something on offer for everyone.
The Wet Season
The Wet season (from mid-October to mid-April) is the time of year where Bali can be a little bit less predictable with swells but still offers some world class waves. This is the time for the East coast to start firing. The trade winds are generally from the North-West directions so there can be a lot of offshore time on the East coast to be had. The benefits of being in Bali at this time of year include surfing less crowded waves and a variety of pumping right handers to be had. There can be a lot of rain at this time of year, hence being called the Wet Season. However, rest assured that you will be rewarded with some decent uncrowded waves for putting up with the wet weather. January and February tend to be the wettest months but overall it is very manageable.
We recommend these Surf companies:
A Great Resource Book: Fielding's Surfing Indonesia In-Depth Guide to Boarding on the World's Largest Archipelago by Leonard Lueras, Lorca Lueras, Kathy Knoles