Beginners’ surfing in Kuta, Bali

Beginner's surfing in Kuta, Bali

Adam and I left planning our 2 week visit to Bali very last minute. After a couple of rushed visits to Malaysia and Singapore on route, we knew we just wanted to take it easy but we also couldn’t ignore that fact it offers some of the best surf in the world. A quick bit of research on beginners’ surfing in Bali told us that the Kuta area, including Seminyak or Legian were good spots.


The beach town of Kuta in Southern Bali is 20 mins from the airport so not surprisingly one of the most popular resort towns in Bali. Our flight was arriving late evening so we chose to stay a couple of nights around Kuta first, get in some surfing and then head for Ubud.

Surfers catching some waves at Kuta beach, Bali
~ Surfers catching some waves at Kuta Beach, Bali

We went with Kuta based on the budget accommodation available. We would have preferred Seminyak down the coast but most of the places in our price range were booked up as it was peak season.

I didn’t have high expectations of the place and it’s just as well, because this resort was not my cup of tea. It’s like what I can only imagine as Magaluf for Australians. I honestly couldn’t wait to leave and discover the true Bali I’d been dreaming about, and happily got to see later on. Anyway that’s a whole different post and as I’ve discovered since leaving Bali, has already been covered by a few travel bloggers. I totally agree with Wandering Earl’s post when tourism goes terribly wrong, and this was a few years ago!

Luckily, the surfing made up for the otherwise, slightly uncomfortable experience in Kuta!

Beginners’ surfing in Kuta

Surfing had actually never really been on my radar before, at least I’d never really been that excited by the thought of it. Perhaps because any thought of it in the UK involves getting in the seriously chilly sea! Adam has been once and was really keen to go surfing here. Seeing as the water is obviously much warmer here and I love jumping through waves anyway I was up for giving it a go.

Jade and Adam with surfboards
~ Adam and me with the biggest surfboard you can get!

You can rent out boards from a number of places in Kuta, but because we were in one of the best places to surf for beginners and I had never surfed before, we decided to do it properly and take a lesson. The sea was also pretty packed so I didn’t want to attempt it and make a fool of myself getting in the way of any pros!

Surf school

There’s a multitude of surf schools around and we chose to go with Odysseys surf school based on their Trip Advisor reviews.

We took a 2.5 hour beginners’ morning group lesson, starting at 8am for $35 each. There were only 4 of us in the group with one instructor so it was well worth it. Our instructor, Rade, was awesome and really supportive of those struggling a little 😉

The school claim to have you standing by the end of the lesson. After a few goes all of us in the group were up on the boards. I actually found I had a couple of good runs and then things started to go downhill the more warn out I got. Surfing is seriously tiring! What with pushing your body up and then dragging your board back through the waves to do it again. We were aching for days!

Jade surfing in Kuta Jade surfing in Kuta Jade surfing in Kuta
~ And I’m up!

We were provided with the lycra tops and board shorts to wear, which was a nice bit of security especially when wearing a not-so-secure bikini. But those board shorts, oh my were they a bother – watch out for that chafing.

The school also take photos of you during the lesson that you can get for an extra fee, but the ones the guy got of me were pretty terrible so I wasn’t making a purchase! Despite not having a zoom lens I was happy with the ones Adam kindly took.

Jade with surfboard on Kuta beach
~ Time to go in solo!

Would I do it again?

Yes! I had so much fun and couldn’t wait to do it again. We made sure to leave a couple of days at the end of our Bali trip to get in some more surfing before heading back to the airport. We did end up going back to Kuta because Odysseys surf school give you a discount card with half price board rental after you do a lesson. We got a board out for an hour for 75,000 rupiah instead of 150,000.

I can’t wait to do some more surfing in Australia!

Would you give surfing a go? If you already surf, where’s been your favourite spot?

10 Responses

    • Jade September 8, 2015 / 1:55 pm

      All girl surf camp? That sounds like so much fun! I’m sure you’ll have a great time 🙂

  1. madi September 8, 2015 / 1:57 pm

    I know this sounds silly but I never even tried surfing when I visited Bali! We stayed in Canguu at a surf camp but it was meant for advanced surfers (tip: do extensive research before going lol) so we never got out. Guess that gives me an excuse to go back doesn’t it?

    • Jade September 8, 2015 / 2:03 pm

      Haha never mind, luckily there’s more to Bali than just surfing! But yes, definitely an excuse to go back 😉

  2. Hannah September 8, 2015 / 3:14 pm

    I’ve always wanted to learn to surf, think I’ll have to make it a goal to learn in Bali now.

    • Jade September 9, 2015 / 4:33 am

      Go for it!

    • Jade September 9, 2015 / 4:37 am

      Haha yeah it’s a pretty popular place. Luckily the school took us to a less crowded spot at the end of the beach, which we went back to when we went out ourselves

    • Jade September 11, 2015 / 6:09 am

      Ooh would love to give it a try there. Glad you felt the same!

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