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Kuta beach is the most famous surf destination in Bali! Thousands of people from all over the world come here to surfing! What differentiate Bali from other waves in the world is that it offers waves 365 days in a variety of different breaks for all levels! You will see lots of surfers from beginner to professional surfers paddling in the waves of Kuta beach!🏄♀️🏄🏄♀️
Aside from amazing waves is its price! It is so much cheaper to surf in Bali! When we visited Australia, it cost around S$25/hour to learn surfing while in Kuta Beach, Bali it was S$ 13/per hour (1 to 1 coaching). Nonetheless, it is uncomparable because Australia is the home to some of the most beautiful stretches of coastline in the world! But for beginners who want to learn to surf, I recommend you to “test the water” in Bali because it is cheaper! After you have learned in Bali, next time you go surfing, you already have some basic and experience in surfing!
Before heading out to Kuta beach, I asked
How difficult is surfing?
Twice as hard as flow rider in wave house Singapore.
WAH! VERRRRYYYY DIFFICULT LEH!
They further explained that
For 2 hours, you will be able to stand twice?
And the rest of the time you will be waiting, paddling, and falling…
It sounds really daunting at that point of time but it was really something I want to tick off my bucket list since I didn’t have the chance to surf in Australia!😂
Thankfully, I had some practice at Wave House Singapore before having the true surfing experience in the Beach! ☺️
Getting a Surf Instructor in Kuta Beach, Bali!
Getting a surf instructor is necessary for first timer. Unlike in Australia, you don’t need to book a lesson in advance because there are plenty of “instructors” waiting for you! There are a couple to licensed, well-established surf school (typically those with a building/school) but plenty of “street side surf school” along the beach. These street side instructors are local people that do not have proper certificates to coach beginners to intermediate surfers. They will ask you continuously “You want to surf? How much you want? You tell me.” It’s kind of scary to even stop and express your interest by saying “berapa?” (How much?) Once you stop and ask, all of them would know you are here to try surfing and they start approaching you. I am not sure if they are allowed to get business in such a way. There were many security guards around but they probably had a conspiracy with the street vendors.
When negotiating make sure you set your requirement clearly before jumping into the sea.
Price IDR 250K per person (2hrs) 💰
Duration 2 hours means 2 hours🕑
One Student to One Instructor 1⃣:1⃣
Rash Guard or Wetsuit Provided
Shower Facilities 🚿
1. Price – IDR 250K per person (2hrs) 💰
Typically, the rates are starting from IDR 250 K (~S$26) per person for 2 hours! As usual, they would love to make as much money as possible so they would offer you a much higher price knowing that you would bargain. The first man offered us IDR 250 K directly but we left. The second offered us IDR 300K and lowered it to IDR 250 K after some bargaining. Deal made. So, this kind of things is a bit of luck and feeling! Sometimes too desperate for business will also kill you haha! The first guy was bothering us too much! Bobian he was trying to get business also. Even when we walk back after surfing he was still ranting and scolding us.😪😪 Just don’t care about them lor.
2. Duration – 2 hours means 2 hours 🕑
I made it a point to put 2 hours as a point to note because of our experience!
101 BALI SCAMS! They tried to cheat us by reducing our surf time😏
Despite stating clearly that the price of IDR 250K = 1 person 1 board 1 Instructors for 2 hours. They told us “time up” after an hour! As none of us knew the timing (no watch in the sea) we followed our Instructors back to where we got the board, we had no idea of what time it was. But because our friend, Lynn, who didn’t surf was supposed to meet us back here after 2hrs but she was nowhere to be seen. All we felt was that it seems a bit short and not tiring enough for a 2 hours surfing! When I went to ask what time it was and true enough it was only 11 am and we started surfing at 10 am. When we asked the boss, he realised we found out! Reluctantly, they brought us back to the water for another 30 mins. We were really disappointed when we were “cheated” but at least he let us play for another 30mins!☹️☹️
✨Do check your starting time! Or just ask “what time is it now” when you start so they know you know what time you started!
Some “surf school” offered
- 2 hours – 1 hour with an instructor, 1 hour you play on your own.
- 2 hours with an instructor
👉Go for 2 hours with Instructors.
It’s negotiable if they offer you the first, you can “bargain” with them. Having an instructor with you will make your life much easier especially for first timer!
3. One Student to One Instructor 1⃣:1⃣
One instructor to one student is super duper important especially for first-time surfer!!! Can you imagine you need help and your instructor is busy helping someone? GG Sia! 😰And seriously, you need help pretty much of the time because the wave is too strong, the surfboard doesn’t listen to you, and your paddling brings you nowhere! These instructors are godlike man, not only they can swim well they can even push the boards with you lying on top of it. You can feel the push and then you move forward by quite a big distance! Even if when we paddle, we felt like we didn’t even move HAHA. Basically, the instructors determine whether you come out saying surfing is fun or surfing is tiring! Thank goodness for us, our Instructors were nice and really helped us!😊😊
They would help us to get from the shore out to the sea to catch the wave and then swim to retrieve us and repeat it over and over again! We managed to get brilliant instructors that were friendly, patience and helpful. My instructor would always tell us to relax and don’t be afraid especially when a huge wave is approaching!! Surfing is not just about your physical strength, mentally you also need to calm down and not panic! After a while, you would get used to it and enjoy crashing the waves.🌊🌊
4. Rash Guard or Wetsuit Provided
It’s also good to ask if rash guards or wetsuit are provided because it is definitely necessary to protect against rashes caused by abrasion. You spend most of the time on the board paddling and rubbing against the surfboard. It’s easy to get abrasions or blister especially if you’re not doing it correctly! It is important to wear rash guards to protect against cuts and burns.
5. Shower Facilities🚿
And lastly, showering facilities for a quick rinse will be good if they have because you will be sandy and salty. Unless you want to stay salty, it’s better to rinse your body and get the salt wash off.🚿🚿
Where we got our surf instructors?
So we manage to get our instructors with all the requirements above met from the beachside (those not legit ones). It was from this mini lifeguard post/small house on the beach. Lockers and wetsuit available inside. Looks quite okay, so we tried! There are 5 instructors in the team but our instructor told me that he is moving around and not always there. On some days, he’s a lifeguard at Kuta beach. On some days, he teaches surfing. Overall, all the surfing instructors were really quite nice! They helped us and provided pointers and we all manage to stand eventually! It may be slightly challenging to find them as they may not be permanently stationed there.
Many would say it’s safer to go to the surf school, how safe is surf school I am not sure how unsafe are those local beachside surf instructors I also don’t know.🤔🤔 We got our surfing Instructors from the not legit surf school. Some people find it a bit dodgy, but I had a great experience and felt that was good and safe! They taught us pretty well and we manage to stand up in no time. I think most of them can teach quite well even they are not from established surf school because they basically in the sea every day. However, it is important that you gauge for yourself if you are uncomfortable with your instructors or they are not taking care of your safety.
Don’t risk your life for that IDR 25K (~S$26).
Now that you know how to get a surfing instructor, what is it like to surf?
The lesson starts on land where you simulate being in the water. You will lie on the board, paddle and stand upon your instructor call! This prepares you for the real surfing in the water!
This prepares you for the real surfing in the water!🏖
Time to try surfing for real!!🏄♀️
Your leg very all wrong but very strong still can stand! WAHAHAHA
YES! I DO SQUATS EVERYDAY!
LOLL SO FUNNY😂😂😂
Out in the water, you have to (from Towkaynew’s first surfing experience in Bali)
- Paddle the surfboard out to the sea against the strong waves
- Do a U-turn
- Ready for a big wave
- When the big wave comes, paddle a bit, and do a mighty push-up then stand up
- Find your balance and stand
I think he described it pretty well and that is a tiring process! Most of the time, you stand and try to do a super cool pose but after a while you get wiped out and fall into the “washing machine”. You get up and look for your instructor hoping that he will be coming to get you HAHA! This is why you really need an instructor!
All in all, surfing in Kuta beach is a fun and safe activity with an instructor. Ours was NOTCHBAD (means good lah!) except that the boss tried to reduce the timing but that is Bali HAHA. They really have 101 ways to scam you! My first surfing experience wasn’t as bad and traumatising as what I heard from others! But I was also told that it was because I have a good instructor! I would definitely surf again!🏄♀️🏄🏄♀️
Word of advice: For first-timer, it is a must to have an instructor. Do not test the wave on your own! Safety First!
I wouldn’t recommend non-swimmers to try surfing because
We cannot beat the nature.