Simeulue, North Sumatra, Sumatra

surf simeulue

The Island of Simeulue is the most northern island off the coast of West Sumatra that you’ll find any surf camps or surf charters operating in. Positioned at such an angle that the swell travelling up from the Indian Ocean has the longest fetch of any Indonesian island. This means that waves arrive on the shores perfectly groomed with extreme regularity. Its geographical location, at just a fraction north of the equator, means that winds are usually light or glassy. And combined with its abundant coral reef passes that litter its shores, the end result is a world class, wave dense surf region.

More than 12 top quality *named* set-ups in striking distance of the South West Coast, with many more unnamed breaks to be found along 60 miles of unexplored and rarely surfed set-ups.  

simeulue

The best time of year to surf “Pulau Simeulue” is during the dry season, which is late March to early November. Although the southern hemisphere's winter produces the most consistent swells, this region also benefits from west and north-west swell in the off-season, between November and March. These seasonal storms off the coast of India and the Maldives, arrive from a different angle & can even light up new spots – some of which also don’t have names yet.

The majority of the named surf breaks are found around the South West coastline. However the West and North West coast are home to a lot rarely ridden and unnamed breaks that are accessible by a decent road that circles the island.

Although surfing in the islands is somewhat in its infancy compared to West Sumatra’s other surf destinations, Simeulue has 2 distinct areas where surf camps can be found. The main cluster of camps can found overlooking Dylan’s Right, arguably the islands most popular right hander. The second area can be found about 30 mins away in front of an A-frame peak known as The Peak or Jackals.

Charter boats occasionally visit the area but this isn’t a regular occurrence as they prefer uninhabited shores of the nearby Banyak Islands.

travel to Simeulue

Your international flight should arrive into Jakarta, SoekarnoHatta International Airport (CGK) or Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KUL)

From Jakarta or KL, you will need to take a further flight to Medan Airport (KNO) - Kuala Namu International Airport.

From Medan, when travelling to Simeulue - you will need to take an extra flight. Please note although only 40 mins in duration, there is only 1 flight each day.

For more detailed information including airline information, airport transfers and hotels please visit the individual camp pages below.

As a rule, Sumatra is best explored as an intermediate or advanced surfer although there are some camps that cater for beginners in the Mentawais as well as South Sumatra.

Beginner surfer – can only surf the white water & often misses waves. Leaner’s will wipe out regularly on take-off and whilst riding a wave.

Beginner-intermediate surfer – can catch waves regularly, trimming left & right but without performing many manoeuvres.

Intermediate surfer – Will rarely miss catching a wave & will complete most waves from start to finish. Surfers will perform basic manoeuvres such as a cut-back, re-entry and floater.

Intermediate-advanced surfer - will perform most manoeuvres including getting tubed and sometimes aerial manoeuvres. These surfers are competent on point breaks and reef breaks.

Advanced surfer – are fast, stylish and will make surfing look easy. If they’re not performing aerials, then they will be getting tubed all day long or displaying an array of carves, hacks and flowing turns.

Guests should be aware of the following hazards & natural disasters:

Malaria is something that exists but isn’t a problem if guests cover up at dawn & dusk and use plenty of anti-mosquito sprays when not in the surf. Anti-malarial medication can also be taken.

Earthquakes do occur throughout Sumatra on a regular basis. But most of them are non destructive. Most casualties are due to the poor state of its buildings, which 99% of the time, shouldn’t affect any of our guests.

Tsunami’s like the huge one in 2004 are rare. On average, once every five years or so, a large tsunami occurs in “Indonesia”. Generally, damage to the infrastructure exceeds the loss of lives. Most camps in the area have an evacuation plan as well as the charter boats. In fact being on a boat is probably the safest place to be.

Coral Reef – Although it helps shape the mechanical waves of the region, it is also something to be respectful of due it’s sharpness. It’s why we recommend only experienced riders venturing to some of the more dangerous surf spots.

Simeulue, North Sumatra

Mahi Mahi Resort

The finest constructed surf camp to grace the shores of Simeulue, directly in front of an epic A-frame peak...

Surfers From: USD 85 pp / night
Non Surfers From: USD 85 pp / night

Simeulue, North Sumatra SPECIAL OFFER

Salt Simeulue

The only camp with ocean front views directly overlooking the world class right hander, Dylan's Right...

Surfers From: USD 85 60 pp / night
Non Surfers From: USD 60 pp / night

Simeulue, North Sumatra SPECIAL OFFER

Simeulue Surf Lodges

Just a stones throw from Dylan's Right, certainly one of Simeulue's best and most consistent waves...

Surfers From: USD 65 65 pp / night
Non Surfers From: USD 65 pp / night

Simeulue, North Sumatra

Simeulue Surf House

Sunset vistas from its impressive deck and just 100m to Dylans Right, a world class wave by anyone's standards...

Surfers From: USD 54 pp / night
Non Surfers From: USD 54 pp / night

Wave Quality: Good fun
Wave Direction: Left & Right
Also Known As: Jackals
Experience: Intermediate+
Consistency: Very
Wave Type: Reef & Sand
Crowd: 10-20 surfers
Season: Year round

The most consistent wave on the island, this A-frame peak happily holds 2'-10’ and breaks both left and right over sand and flat reef. It’s as much fun as it looks from the photos with a barrel or steep wall from start to finish depending on the tide. The Left is the longer of the 2 waves but both break across all the tides with the lower tide offering more tubes. 

Wave Quality: very Good
Wave Direction: Right
Also Known As: Dylan's Right
Experience: Intermediate+
Consistency: Average
Wave Type: Reef
Crowd: 10-20 surfers
Season: April until October

Dylan’s right is a user friendly, perfect, mechanical right hander best surfed around head high and bigger. Although a relatively short wave, what it lacks in length it makes up for in quality. When it’s working, it offers flawless shape and extreme consistency with easy barrel sections and bowly carvable walls. During the main surf season, it’s one of the more consistent reefs in the area as well as being one of the region’s most popular waves. Dylan’s breaks across shallow reef on the inside of a large south west facing bay. Booties advised.

Wave Quality: World Class
Wave Direction: Right
Also Known As: T-Bags
Experience: Advanced
Consistency: Average
Wave Type: Reef
Crowd: 5-20 surfers
Season: April until October

Lying off the southern coast of Simeulue on Pulau Tapah, Tea Bags is a smoking right hander breaking on shallow reef that freight trains relentlessly for up to 150m. Challenging, hollow, and often perfect, this wave is thick, hard and square and is ideally surfed with a bit of extra foam so you get into the wave nice and early. T-Bags can handle up to triple over-head, but also works from around just over head high. Although it’s a wave capable of delivering the best barrel of your life, it’s generally advised for more experienced riders only, as well as reef booties for some added protection. To reach the island it takes approximately 30 minutes from Simeulue.

Wave Quality: Good
Wave Direction: Left
Also Known As: Dylan's Left
Experience: Intermediate+
Consistency: Consistent
Wave Type: Reef
Crowd: 5-10 surfers
Season: April until October

Located close by to Dylan’s right, what this wave lacks in quality, it makes up for in consistency. In fact, with more swell comes more quality, with a super fun left reef break coming to life, when a mid range south swell arrives on its shores. Less hollow and less perfect than the more popular right, it still offers a good option for the intermediate travelling surfer especially when the right is onshore. 

Wave Quality: Good
Wave Direction: Left
Also Known As: Thailands Left
Experience: Intermediate+
Consistency: Consistent
Wave Type: Reef
Crowd: 5-15 surfers
Season: April until October

From Simeulue, Thailand's Left is accessed by road followed by a short 15 minute boat ride across to an idyllic tropical island. Breaking in deep water, this 200m ride offers long and playful walls, perfect for those looking for a cruisey session or those new to surfing over reef. Suitable for most abilities and wave craft – it’s a consistent spot, with an easy take-off and enough variety to keep most surfers happy. Works best with a solid south to south west swell and on low tide with north-east winds. Set in a very scenic location which with its iridescent colours & live coral is certainly worth a trip just for the snorkelling.

Wave Quality: Good
Wave Direction: Right
Also Known As: Thailands Right
Experience: Intermediate+
Consistency: Inconsistent
Wave Type: Reef
Crowd: 5-15 surfers
Season: April until October

Thailand’s Right is fairly short, fast paced tube that on its day, can really produce the goods. When the elements unite, expect fast, down the line mechanical tubes, running along this excellent coral reef pass. Requires a significant swell to light up – it tends to be a good choice when other spots are maxed out. A handy key hole provides easy access but watch out for the inside section, which can become sketchy particularly on the lower tide. Reef boots advisable.