Surf Breaks

Bali doesn't really have an off season with year round waves depending on the location that you place yourself around the island. Catering from beginner to professional surfers with sand bottom beach breaks through to heavy hollow reef breaks, Bali has a range of waves for any level of surfer.

The dry Winter season running from early June to late August is generally offshore along the west coast from Kuta to Uluwatu with the South East tradewinds.

The wet Summer season is offshore on the Nusa Dua to Sanur side of the island with North west winds from early December to late March

Between seasons can be less predictable but there are usually offshore winds somewhere on the island.

West Coast

Breaks Included: Medewi, Balian, Canggu

Medewi

Medewi is located around 2-3hrs drive north west along the coast from Kuta. The traffic is usually very heavy and slow so we would advise leaving as early as possible. There are plenty of rivers mouths all along coast on the way which usually have minimal crowds and fun waves.

Description:
Very fun workable wave for beginners to intermediate surfers with very few barrel sections. Mostly sand bottom lefts and rights.

Best time:
Wet & dry season, early mornings are the best before the wind picks up and it gets blown out.

Best Swell Direction:
South

Best Size:
4-6ft

Best Winds:
Early morning and light
Offshore in N/NE
Cross offshore in NW & E

Crowd Factor:-
Usually mellow with a mix of international surfers.

Balian

Balian is located about 30min before Medewi on the west coast. Once again I would leave as early as possible to avoid the heavy traffic.

Description:
Playful A-Frame that breaks in front of a river mouth. Long lefts with shorter rights. The occasional barrel sections but mostly long rippable walls.

Best time:
Wet & dry season, early mornings are the best before the wind picks up and it gets blown out.

Best Swell Direction:
South

Best Size:
4-6ft

Best Winds:
Early morning and light
Offshore in NE
Cross offshore in N & E/SE

Crowd Factor:
Usually mellow with a mix of international surfers.

Canggu

Canggu is located just north of Seminyak and has 3 main breaks. It has become extremely popular and somewhat famous featuring in many surf DVD's and the pro junior surfing tour for the punchy hollow waves.

Description:

  • Right hander river mouth, this is the main break and is a perfect peak that breaks over shallow black lava rock.
  • Left hander sand bar, breaks in front of the river mouth and is sand bottom wave.
  • Left hander reef break, that runs along the beach in front of cafe's

All these waves can range from waist to head high for Intermediate surfers and head to double head high for Advance surfers only. Don't be fooled as these waves can really pack a punch if you're careful. The best tide is mid to high.

Best time:
Wet & dry season, early mornings are the best in the Dry season before the tradewinds pick up and in the Wet season anytime as the winds are usual light.

Best Swell Direction:
South - South West

Best Size:
3-6ft

Best Winds:
Early mornings and light
Offshore in NE
Cross offshore in N & E

Crowd Factor:
This place gets extremely busy during peak season and is usually filled with a mix of pro juniors, tourists and locals.

Kuta

Breaks Included: Kuta Reef, Airports Left, Airports Right

Kuta Reef

Kuta Reef is around 700m offshore in front of the Sandi Phala Motel. The only way out there is to pay a local boat operator to drop you out there and pick you up an hour or two later.

Description:
Long lefthander that can run for up to 250m when the conditions are right. There are usually a couple of good barrel sections and can be quite fast through some sections.

Best time:
Dry Season from April to October

Best Swell Direction:
South

Best Size:
4-5ft

Best Winds:
Early morning and light as it can be blown out easily.
Offshore in SE tradewinds

Crowd Factor:
This wave is usually always busy and when its good is extremely crowded. There is usually a mix of beginner, intermediate and advance surfers in the water and can be quite difficult negotiating the crowd.

Airport Lefts

Airport Lefts is pretty straight forward. This is a left hand reef break in front of the runway at Tuban Airport. It is around 1km offshore and 1.5kms south of Kuta Reef. Once again you must pay a local boat operator to drop you out to the break and pick you up.

Description:
This is a quite mellow wave that is not super heavy and only runs for around 70m.
It doesn't handle anything bigger then 5ft and starts closing out.

Best time:
Dry Season from April to October

Best Swell Direction:
South

Best Size:
4-5ft

Best Winds:
Early morning and light as it can be blown out easily.
Offshore in SE tradewinds/p>

Crowd Factor:
This wave gets quite crowded with a range of beginners to intermediate surfers due to its close location to the main tourist area of Kuta.

Airport Rights

Once again Airport Rights is pretty straight forward. This is the right hander on the southern side of the runway at Tuban Airport. It cannot be seen from Kuta. Once again you must pay a local boat operator to drop you out to the break and pick you up but it will usually cost a little more as its further offshore.

Description:
This wave needs a bit of swell to start working and is best on a high tide early morning. Waves can run for 100+m and has a few barrel sections and is very fun to surf for the intermediate surfers.

Best time:
Dry Season from April to October

Best Swell Direction:
South

Best Size:
3-6ft

Best Winds:
Early morning and light as it can be blown out easily.
Offshore in SE tradewinds

Crowd Factor:
This wave is usually crowded especially when it's turned on. Expect crowds in the 50+ range.

Bukit

Dreamland, Bingin, Impossibles, Padang Padang, Uluwatu, Greenballs, Nusa Dua, Sri Lanka

Dreamland

Dreamland has a beautiful white sandy beach and is just a short walk from Bingin or around a 20min drive south from the airport.

Description:
There are a few different waves here depending on the tide and swell size. - The A-Frame in the middle is the best wave and works on a big swell with a low tide and breaks both left and right. This wave is quite rippable and has a long wall and can link up to the shorey but usually no barrel sections - The Shorey also work well in the same conditions and can be quite punchy - There is also a right hander on the north end of the beach that breaks in front of the headland on the right swell and tide.

These waves are always fun and great for beginners to intermediate surfers as they break over a sand bottom.

Best time:
Dry Season from April to October

Best Swell Direction:
South

Best Size:
4-8ft

Best Winds:
Early morning and light as it can be blown out easily.
Offshore in SE tradewinds

Crowd Factor:
There is never usually a heavy crowd here with a mix of international surfers all on holidays with the odd local tearing up the shorey.

Bingin

Bingin is the next reef south of Balangan it can be a little tricky to find as the turnoff is small with no signs and is only a dirt road.

Description:
The wave is a hollow, mechanical left hander that breaks the same way over a shallow reef. This wave is a short wave with a quick take off, pull in and pull off with the exception to a little end section for a couple of turns. Don't ride it too long however as you will be caught over the cheese grater section. This wave works on a low to high tide depending on the swell size and would be recommended for intermediate to advance surfers only on the low to medium tide and for beginners or Mal Riders on the high tide.

Best time:
Dry Season from April to October

Best Swell Direction:
South

Best Size:
3-6ft

Best Winds:
Offshore in SE tradewinds

Crowd Factor:
Bingin is gets crowded in peak season and can be quite a hussle to get a wave if you don't know what your doing due to the small take off zone.

Impossibles

Impossibles is located between Bingin and Padang-Padang and can be seen from either spot.

Description:
Impossibles is a long left hander and has 3 main sections which breaks up the crowds. On a good day with the right swell and wind all 3 sections can link up and you can get the ride of your life through to the end section of Bingin which is more then a 600m away. This wave is very fast and heavy and breaks over a sharp shallow reef and works best on a mid tide with a big swell to link up the 3 sections.

Best time:
Dry Season from April to October

Best Swell Direction:
South

Best Size:
4-8ft

Best Winds:
Offshore in SE tradewinds

Crowd Factor:
There is not much of a crowd out here usually due to the multiple take off spots and the fast racey sections that can be hard to make unless you're an intermediate to advance surfer.

Padang Padang

Padang-Padang is known as Bali Pipeline and is located around 30min south of the airport. It has a beautiful white sandy beach but don't let that fool you as the main break of Padang-Padang break over shallow reef.

Description:
The main break of Padang-Padang is very fast, heavy and hollow left hander and is only for advance surfers. It breaks over a shallow sharp coral reef and has a heavy takeoff zone straight into the barrel. It is a favourite amongst body boarders for this reason but also for surfers.

There is also the lesser known Padang-Padang right which breaks in front of the white sandy beach and is very mellow and perfect for beginners and Mal Riders. You will often see surf schools here teaching classes of tourists due to its very easy to ride unbroken swell that is reformed from the whitewash of the main break out the back. Best on a high tide.

Best time:
Dry Season from April to October

Best Swell Direction:
South

Best Size:
2-8ft

Best Winds:
Offshore in SE tradewinds

Crowd Factor:
Due to its world wide notoriety the Main Break gets extremely crowded and usually has a heavy vibe to it like the Hawaiian Pipeline. This is for advance surfers as you could get seriously injured being in the wrong spot at the wrong time. On the other end of the spectrum this wave can give you a ride you will talk about for the rest of your life.

Uluwatu

Uluwatu is located on the south-western tip of the Bukit Peninsula and can be easily found by car or bike. This wave is very consistent and is used as the indicator for the wind and swell conditions for surrounding waves. Uluwatu itself is usually quite busy and is a known tourist destination for the Temple and world class waves.

Description:
Ulu's is broken up into 5 sections and is for intermediate to advance surfers only.

  • The Bombie will break only in the biggest swells and can be ridden up to 20ft in size or bigger.
  • Outside corner only breaks in the biggest swells also and on a low tide and is considered to be one of the best waves anywhere in the world. It wont even break unless its 8ft plus and will then link through Temples, The Peak & Racetracks if your game.
  • Temples is a long heavy barrelling wave and works best on a mid to high tide.
  • The Peak is located right in front of all the warungs and is the main break that is surfed. Its inline with the cave as you paddle out and is best on a high tide also.
  • The Racetrack is the end section that is super fast, shallow, hollow, heavy barrel but makeable if you know what your doing as it works best on the low tide.

Best time:
Dry Season from April to October

Best Swell Direction:
South

Best Size:
Anything from 3-20ft

Best Winds:
Offshore in SE tradewinds

Crowd Factor:
Ulu's is usually always heavily crowded from the 2-6ft range as it's a swell magnet and usually always has waves. However when it's bigger and the Bombie and Outside corner are breaking the crowds are spread out over these spots and Temples and The Peak and is only for the advance surfers.

Greenballs

Green Balls is located on the southern tip of the Bukit Peninsula. This place can be difficult to find.

Description:
This is a heavy, thick right hander and usually too big to surf due the location facing directly into the open ocean. This wave is very dangerous has some very strong currents. This wave is for the advance surfers only and not to be surfed alone.

Best time:
Wet Season

Best Swell Direction:
South

Best Size:
4-6ft

Best Winds:
Early morning and light
Offshore in W/NW

Crowd Factor:
There is never a crowd here usually due to the difficult location and 500 odd steep steps down the cliff edge which is extremely tiring walking back up after a long surf.

Nusa Dua

Nusa Dua is considered the most consistent right reef break in Bali. To get to it you must drive into the town itself then weave your way south.

Description:
The wave is about 800m offshore and you will need to pay a local boat operator to drop you out there and pick you up. This wave is rarely under 4ft and has 3 separate take of zones. The current is very strong and it breaks over a shallow reef. This wave is for intermediate and advance surfers only who are always aware or their surround conditions.

Best time:
Wet Season

Best Swell Direction:
South

Best Size:
4-6ft

Best Winds:
Offshore in W/NW

Crowd Factor:
There is usually a big crowd here due to the fact it is so consistent.

Sri Lanka

Usually a couple of foot smaller then Nusa Dua. This wave is located in front of Club Med in Nusa Dua.

Description:
This is a long right hander with a good hollow barrel end section into the channel. Best before and after low tide and breaks over a shallow reef. Recommended for intermediate to advance surfers only.

Best time:
Wet Season

Best Swell Direction:
South / South-East

Best Size:
4-6ft

Best Winds:
Offshore in W/NW

Crowd Factor:
The crowds here are usually not too bad because when this place has waves Nusa Dua is usually going off.

East Coast

Breaks Included: Hyatt Reef, Tandjungs (Left & Right), Sanur Reef, Keramas

Hyatt Reef

Located in front of the Hyatt Resort in Sanur this wave is 2km offshore and needs to be accessed by a local boat operator.

Description:
Right hander with long walls and a barrel section this wave best works on a high tide with little to no wind at all. Be careful of the currents.

Best time:
Wet Season

Best Swell Direction:
South / South-East

Best Size:
4-6ft

Best Winds:
Offshore in W/NW

Crowd Factor:
This wave isn't usually too crowded due the distance offshore and the other breaks close by like Sanur Reef and Tanjungs.

Tandjungs (Left & Right)

This wave is located in front of the Tandjung Sari Hotel and the Sanur Beach Markets.

Description:
A couple of very fun lefts and rights best surfed on a low tide with a decent swell. Breaks over reef and is usually very long and fast recommended for intermediate to advance surfers.

Best time:
Wet Season

Best Swell Direction:
South / South-East

Best Size:
4-6ft

Best Winds:
Offshore in W/NW

Crowd Factor:
Usually only a few locals and international surfers as the crowd is usually at Sanur Reef.

Sanur Reef

This wave is located in front of the Bali Beach Hotel and can be paddled out to.

Description:
This is considered to be one of the best waves in Bali on its day. Long right hander that breaks over sharp shallow coral reef. Best surfed around 6ft which means Nusa Dua is usually maxing out.

Best time:
Wet Season

Best Swell Direction:
South / South-East

Best Size:
4-6ft

Best Winds:
Offshore in W/NW

Crowd Factor:
This wave is usually very crowded when its working due to the fact that everywhere else is usually maxing out.

Keramas

This place was a well kept secret for many decades but now due to its fame on many surf DVD's this place is very crowded and everyone is onto it when it's turned on.

Description:
This is a world class right hander that can be surfed from waist high to triple over head. Best surfed early mornings before the wind picks up. It's a very hollow, heavy barrelling wave that breaks over a black lava rock reef close to shore.

Best time:
Wet Season

Best Swell Direction:
South / South-East

Best Size:
3-8ft

Best Winds:
Early morning light winds
Offshore in W/NW

Crowd Factor:
This wave gets very crowded these days but can still be caught with a minimal crowd early morning.

Nusa Lembongan

Breaks Included: Shipwrecks, Lacerations, Playgrounds

Shipwrecks

This is the most famous break on Nusa Lembongan.

Description:
A reliable right hander with a long wall and great barrels sections. This wave rarely gets under 4ft and is best surfed on a mid tide at 4-6ft for advanced surfers only. This wave has strong currents and breaks over a shallow reef close to a sunken shipwreck.

Best time:
Dry Season

Best Swell Direction:
South-West

Best Size:
4-8ft

Best Winds:
Offshore in SE / E

Crowd Factor:
This wave can get crowded big but usually with experienced surfers.

Lacerations

This is the next break south of Shipwrecks.

Description:
This wave is much faster, hollower and far more dangerous then Shipwrecks. It breaks on super shallow live coral reef and is only for advanced surfers. Booties and even a Gath helmet would not go a stray here.

Best time:
Wet Season

Best Swell Direction:
South / South-East

Best Size:
3-8ft

Best Winds:
Early morning light winds
Offshore in W/NW

Crowd Factor:
This wave is not usually too crowded due to the consequences of not making the barrel or take off.

Playgrounds

This is the last break on Nusa Lembongan

Description:
The name says it all. This wave is super fun and user friendly. A Left and right hander that breaks over a soft coral reef. This wave can have some fun little barrels and good sections for whacking off the top. It's a favourite with Mal Riders and intermediate surfers as its best surfed on a mid to high tide.

Best time:
Wet Season

Best Swell Direction:
South / South-East

Best Size:
2-6ft

Best Winds:
Early morning light winds
Offshore in W/NW

Crowd Factor:
This wave usually has a bit of a crowd but everyone always seems quite mellow.