Exploring the surf at Negeri Ratu

Exploring & surfing beyond Krui & Tanjung Setia

Over the past 20 years the coastline around Krui and Tanjung Setia in South West Sumatra has been slowly developing. The many roads, lanes and tracks used by the local fisherman have provided travellers and developers easy access to explore and exploit. But venture beyond these small pockets of coastal tourist development and you quickly find yourself off the beaten track where a Do It Youself attitude is required.

Children at waterfall near Krui Pesisir Barat Sumatra The coastal road to Kuripan

North of Krui

Krui to Bengkulu is a route well travelled by Indonesians but relatively few foreign tourists. Bus services are daily so the only viable way to explore this area is by motorcycle or car.

Krui to Penengahan

The drive from Krui to Penengahan in the Lemong district is a very popular and highly recommended day trip. The road winds it's way through some of the most beautiful countryside in Pesisir Barat. There are plenty of photo opportunities and some picturesque places to stop for a meal along the way.

View of Pulau Pisang from Tembakak Way Sindi Sumatra

Penengahan to Bintuhan

North of Penengahan at Pekon Lemong the highway leaves the coast and winds it's way through the mountainous jungle for 40km before returning to the coast at Pantai Batas Manola 36km south of Bintuhan.


Bintuhan is the largest town between Krui and Bengkulu. With dozens of beautiful beaches and only 210km from Bengkulu it's fast becoming a destination for domestic tourists.

Visiting Bintuhan before 2017 it was immediately noticable you had moved way beyond the influences of foreign tourist ventures and become immersed in a more genuine Indonesian experience. Since then international surfers have been slowly driffting north from Krui. The next three years is probably the best time to experience the Bintuhan area before Surf Tourism has it's inevitable effect on the local community.

There are a number of surf breaks from Pantai Batas Manola in the south to Kaur, north of Bintuhan. On most days the Bintuhan area suits the beginner surfer or those willing to surf lesser quality but uncrowded waves. This area produces waves comparable to Krui Left and The Peak.

Truck breakdown in Sumatra
Point north of Bintuhan

South of Tanjung Setia

The south is far less traveled, beckoning to those who can't get far enough off the beaten track. It is here, south of Bengkunat, on the road to nowhere, that empty surf breaks can be found and the real adventure begins.

Exploring the South Sumatra coast Getting off the beaten track.

With no tourist infrastructure or accommodation exploring the far south is a real mission. Locals advise that to venture beyond Bengkunat Belimbing district you will need to be accompanied by an armed driver who knows the area well. Personal experience backs up this opinion.

Cultural Sensitivity

Behaviour that's acceptable in many western countries or tolerated in Bali is often considered in very poor taste by the modest people of South Sumatra. Becoming aware of some Sumatran culture and customs is highly recommended for a safe adventure that leaves good will and respect in the communities you visit.

Wooden bridge Mandiri Sejati, Sumatra Exploring Mandiri Beach area 2022