Ujung Bocur surf break South Sumatra

Planning your surf trip to Krui South Sumatra

The Krui area has been on the surf radar for over 20 years and there are some good reasons it did not become a major surf destination. If your considering a surf trip to the Krui area make sure you tick all the required boxes.

Some basic facts:

  • During the high season an average of 1 quality swell hits the coast every 11 days and lasts 4 days.
  • Only 1 in 3 swells is the correct direction for the breaks in Tanjung Setia and Krui.
  • The South West Coast of Sumatra is notorious for long flat spells even during peak season.

What's required for a Krui surf trip ?

Time, mobility and intermediate surfing skills are must haves. However it's luck that could make or break your trip.

Karang Nyimbor (Ujung Bocur) surf break July 2023 Karang Nyimbor (Ujung Bocur) 3 excellent days July 2023
Karang Nyimbor (Ujung Bocur) surf break June 2023 Karang Nyimbor (Ujung Bocur) poor conditions June 2023

Time and luck

On a 10 day trip your fate is in the hands of "lady luck". There is a chance your trip could coincide with a 7 to 10 day Krui flat spell. On a longer 6 to 8 week trip you should count on hitting at least one flat spell.

  Recommended min stay: 4 weeks.

Level of surfing

The South Sumatra mainland is most suited to intermediate surfers with the skill to surf solid waves over shallow, sharp, unforgiving reefs. It's important to honestly evaluate your skill level and adjust your expectations and travel dates accordingly.


This is not the ideal destination to learn how to surf in a couple of weeks. Surfing the major breaks during peak season (June to September) you'll have to compete for waves and run the risk of spending your trip frustrated and pissed off.

Take note that the winds are not favourable for Mandiri Beach from June to September.


There was a period when advanced surfers visited the Krui area. They came to score empty lineups on those perfect days at Way Jambu and Honey Smacks. Since the crowds arrived far fewer advanced surfers visit the area.

  Recommended min surfing skill: intermediate.

Krui Left in July Krui Left July 2017 ~ © Nana Gapero
Way Jambu tube ride 2013 Perfect Way Jambu 2013


On the same day it's common to find Krui Left flat, Mandiri Beach blown out, tide too low at Way Jambu and Karang Nyimbor (Ujung Bocur) the only option. You need to be mobile, traveling to where the conditions are the best. The distance between breaks is too far to walk and the Krui area has no public transport system.

This leaves you with 3 options:

  • Limit yourself to one surf break near your accommodation. Not recommended.
  • Hire a scooter. Legally requires an International Drivers Licence.
  • Hire a car and driver. Expensive unless you share with others.

  Recommended transport: car or scooter hire.

Ujung Bocur 3 mtrs Flat Krui Left May 05 2024
Ujung Bocur 3 mtrs & Krui Left flat on May 5 2024

The growing crowds

Be warned. It's a lie that the Krui area is still an uncrowded surf destination. If your visting Krui May to September you should mentally prepare for the crowds so you can maintain your stoke and avoid disappointment.

With hundreds of surfers and dozens of surf guides posting the conditions at every break on Social Media there is no way to avoid the crowds. There are no hidden "secret spots" and even the northern area of Utara is now getting hectic.

  Recommended attitude: laidback.

Surfing at Krui Left Pesisir Barat
Flat and crowded Krui Left .7 mtr ~ July 2022

When to come

Below are some general dates to consider when planning your trip. You could add some modern crystal ball science to your planning and track the forecasted El Niño-Southern Oscillation cycle. On the other hand you could just deal out a Taro card deck and arrive at the same place.

Surfing in season - June to September

During the southern hemisphere winter the Great Southern Ocean sends an average of 1 large long lasting swell a week towards the Sumatran coast. Offshore winds make this the best time to score 1.8 mtr plus surf at Krui Left, The Peak, Ujung Bocur and Way Jambu.

The best swells seem to be those that explode into the Indian ocean off the east coast of Africa.

  The WSL Krui Pro takes place in May or June so you need to plan around this event.

Surfing off season – October to May

It's summer in the Great Southern Ocean and fewer smaller swells hit Sumatra. In general swell consistency and size begins dropping off mid September as the Southern Ocean winds down.

On an average year you can expect 1 decent swell per month and long flat spells of up to 14 days.

September to November

This period can be an excellent choice to enjoy smaller crowds and smaller swells but still have a good chance to catch a solid swell. Offshore days at Mandiri Beach and Jenny's Right should be increasing.

November and December

The rainy season is starting to kick in but these months can sometimes be good for surfing the peaks of Mandiri Beach and Jenny's Right with offshore winds.

December to March

Most years this period is the worst of the rainy season and you can expect howling onshore winds and rain. Most surfers have left the area. Those that have stayed spend their days traveling to the Utara area in the rain hoping for offshore winds.

On rare occassions this time of the year can be quite dry with light variable winds. During these years the swell size is between .5 to 1 mtr with the odd swell over 1.5 mtrs (once a month) hitting the Krui area.

April and May

A transitional period often providing the best conditions for Mandiri Beach with offshore winds prevailing late into the day.

  Recommended months: May to October.


If your on a short trip and plan to surf Way Jambu or Jimmy's Right make sure the prevailing tides will be favourable.

Tides on this coastline can be really funky. Some months there are virtually no daytime high tides for 2 weeks. At most breaks a tide of .0 to .3 mtrs is getting dangerously low.

Extreme low tide Krui Left Sept 2023 Extreme low tides Krui Left ~ 2023