If you want to make the ultimate surfing trip where there’s plenty of surf, then look no other further than the Mentawai Islands in Indonesia. Indonesia offers the ultimate in surf travel adventures.
First time surf travelers to Indonesia sent back reports of impossibly perfect crystal tubes, white sand beaches fringed with palm trees, warm weather and brilliant sunshine, and local people who were friendly and hospitable. It wasn’t just a surfing experience, it was paradise.
The Mentawai Islands are located 130km off the west coast of Western Sumatra, the island chain offers some of the best surf to be found anywhere in the world. It’s also right in the middle of the Hindia Ocean so that is why this island is surrounded by wide and beautiful ocean.
There are 4 main Islands that make up the archipelago, including the island of South Pagai, Sipora island, island of Siberut, and North Pagai Island. Among the four islands, the island of Siberut is the largest island.
Mentawai Islands is everything you consider exotic from it’s surfing spots, indigenous cultural experiences and untouched natural scenary.
Some of the best places to surf at the Mentawai Islands are Nyangnyang, Botik, Coral corpse, Mainuk, and Masilok. The tourist peak times are usually in July and August. During those months, the waves at the Mentawai Islands are very high reaching about 7 meters. The Mentawai islands are even very popular for surf competitions that are held at international level. One of the reasons why travelers love to surf here is because the point surf is less than 400 points. The waves also vary, from moderate to extreme.
There are other activities that can be carried out when you visit the Mentawai islands. You can also go trekking around of the island. The island is relatively unspoiled, so you will see beautiful and dense tropical forest scenery. You can also hang out with the natives there, and learn about their lifestyle. They live a very natural distinctive tribal lifestyle that does not have much interference from modern infrastructure and life.
Many different cultures exist on the Mentawai Islands. The indigenous people here are not familiar with modern farming methods or even the manufacturing of metal, so it still looks like they live in the first Neolithic era. The area is inhabited by a majority of the Mentawai tribe, which is approximately 30 thousand inhabitants. They mostly come from the island of Siberut. Each family consists on average of about 5 to 15 people, and they live in the village or in the forest where they work.
The presence of foreign tourists is felt on the Mentawai islands by the existence of several luxury resorts, especially around the coast. If you want an exclusive tour, you can stay at one of the resorts. So while surfing, you can relax in one of the luxury lodges. Various organizations state that the surfing waves at Mentawai are the third best in the World after the waves in Hawaii and Tahiti.
Due to the high degree of it’s natural environment, Siberut in the Mentawai Islands are included in the list of world biosphere reserves by the UNESCO organization. This island is worth being protected, especially since there are 4 primates endemic to this island, the pig-tailed monkey (Simias concolor), Joja or Mentawai langur (Presbytis potenziani), dwarf siamang (Hylobates klosii), and the Mentawai monkey (Macaca pagensis).
Well, I hope I’ve given you a glimpse into the true beauty of visiting the Mentawai Islands in West Sumatra, Indonesia. Without a doubt, it’ll be a lifelong experience.