Featured in countless surf movies and magazines, with perfect waves and endless barrels, the Mentawai Islands are one of the most sought-after surf trips on the planet.
Off the western coast of Sumatra, in the northern part of Indonesia, around 70 islands and inlets make up the Mentawais, one of the most consistent and most wave-dense surfing destinations in the world.
Remote tropical islands, palm-fringed beaches, warm water, and world-class waves at almost every turn. There are literally hundreds of surf breaks, from world-famous rights like Lance’s Right and Rifles to hollow lefts like Macaronis and Greenbush. No wonder it’s a bucket-list destination for surfers and non-surfers alike!
Image credit: Maki Boat
The prime surfing season in the Mentawais is between March and October/November. This roughly coincides with the dry season, as well as the best time to surf throughout most of Indonesia.
But thanks to their location – getting the most out of the southwestern swells that are consistently being pumped through the Java Trench – there are waves in the Mentawai Islands all year round.
Between December and February, the waves are smaller and mellower, thus more suitable for intermediate surfers. The main difference between the prime season and the off-season lies in the wave size. There are also fewer crowds and northwesterly winds actually favor some of the lesser-known waves.
The water temperature is warm year-round, between 26-28°C (79-82°F).