Where to go surfing in Lombok

We chose to visit Indonesia partly because of its reputation as a surfing destination. Surfing in Lombok was one of the most memorable parts of our trip. Before I begin, let me start by saying I’m not a very experienced surfer (still) and I definitely wasn’t when we visited Lombok. I had surfed a hand full of times in Portugal (no, not Nazare 😉 ) and in Morocco. The surf camp in Lombok that we stayed at was fantastic, and met all of our needs.

During the first few weeks of our trip to Indonesia we desperately searched for decent beginners spots to surf in Bali. First, around Nusa Dua, then in Canggu, and even in Seminyak (which I quickly learned was disgusting). 

After being let down time and again, we found Drop In surf camp in Kuta Lombok (not to be confused with Kuta Bali) and headed there between Christmas and New Years after our days on Gili Air. Thankfully someone else cancelled their bungalow and it was ours to swoop up. Our week at Drop In was probably the best week of our entire 4 week trip to Indonesia – the surfing in Lombok was incredible. Drop In is owned by Solli, a badass German lady who manages the camp and is the mastermind behind the camp and the cafe. The bungalows are designed perfectly (what more could you expect from a German? they think of everything) and the food is some of the best you’ll find in Kuta (probably in all of Lombok for that matter). More on the bungalows and food later…

If you are a beginner surfer, Drop In is the place for you. As I mentioned, I had surfed in Portugal and Morocco before at a few surf camps, and thought my experience in those places was typical. The instructors gave some tips on how to get up on the board from the sand, then watched from the beach as I struggled and crashed into the water with nearly every attempt to get up. Every time I surfed at these camps I felt really nervous – I felt like no one was really watching me or helping me to improve. Not so at Drop In. This was easily the best surfing experience I’ve had and after a few days, my nervousness was healed.

surfing in Lombom
Drop In’s surf boards

So, what can you expect at Drop In?

First of all, you’ve gotta book for a week at a time – trust me it is worth it.

You’ll surf about 2-3 hours every day, typically leaving from the camp between 6:30-8:00 am, which of course gives you the rest of the day to check out the beautiful beaches and areas around Kuta (by the way, Kuta boasts much prettier beaches than Bali…).

You won’t surf from the beach, however. I was pretty nervous about that at first, after hearing that we would surf a reef break. Initially I was worried that I would cut up my legs with every fall into the water but luckily the reef is so deep there, that you probably won’t even get close to touching it if you fall in. Instead of going out from the beach, like I was used to from Portugal and Morocco, you’ll head to the small village of Gerupuk where you’ll hop on a wooden fisherman’s boat and be driven out to the line up.

Imagine this: sitting in a colorful wooden boat coasting out over turquoise water. Behind you the small village of Gerupuk shrinks away and you head toward Inside, the surf spot you’ll visit most days which faces rolling green hills with the majestic Mt. Rinjani looming in its purple shadow in the background. Yes, it is as breathtaking as it sounds.

surfing in lombok
heading out to the waves
surfing in lombok
bye Gerupuk… hello waves!

The waves in Gerupuk are great for beginners. I felt like I learned to surf for the first time because I actually got to experience GOOD waves. Initially, the waves can be intimidating – they can be quite high (definitely overhead) – but they break pretty slowly and roll over the reef for a really long time, meaning you have both plenty of time to get up, and plenty of time to ride the wave once you are up. For a beginner, it is the best of both worlds.

There are usually 3 or 4 instructors from Drop In who will ride out to the waves with you. Typically they will sit in the line up and call you to paddle to them once a set is coming. Every day when we went out, we were only with a group of four of us plus the instructors, so you get tons of personal attention. Once you are ready with them in the line up, they’ll watch the waves approaching from behind and help you catch a green wave by giving you a push and also yelling when you need to pop up. Unless you’re pretty strong, chances are that you’ll need the push when the wave approaches.

surfing in lombok
Catching a big wave my last day surfing in Lombok with Drop In

I’ve never felt more safe or confident than when I surfed with the instructors at Drop In. And, I learned a lot. By the last day I barely needed any help with getting pushed or told when to pop up, and I caught nearly every wave and rode it till it died out. It was fantastic.

trek mt rinjani

Drop In Surf Camp

Drop In was also the most comfortable and nicest place we stayed in all our time in Indonesia. Yes, it was more expensive than the rest, but it was so worth it. The bungalows at Drop In have everything you need. Comfortable beds. Fluffy towels. Laundry service. Insect repellent. Bug spray FOR YOUR ROOM!These things can only be appreciated once you’ve been traveling around for weeks at a time and experienced the nightly task of killing all mosquitos in your room before you finally crash.

drop in lombok
Our bungalow
drop in lombok
The porch on our bungalow… I might have fallen asleep here a few times
drop in Lombok
Our “industrial” style bungalow at Drop In

Not only do they have everything you need, but they are really comfortable, and well designed. I would know, since we experienced an earthquake when we stayed there! Needless to say, the bungalows are still standing 😉

If you stay at Drop In you’ll have breakfast included daily in your stay, which will be welcome when you need to fuel up for your morning of surfing every day. They also serve lunch, which already gets tempting at 11:15 when you’ve surfed for 2 1/2 hours and are already starving. You can eat either in the guest area, or the public cafe, which also offers an array of German cakes AND cheesecake! Try finding that anywhere else on Lombok, I dare you.

drop in lombok
Solli’s famous cake

You can of course stay at Drop In even if you don’t plan to do the surf package. But if you’re there, it would be a real shame not to do the surf package. Maybe needless to say, but Drop In also offers scooters for rent which you’ll definitely need since it is located slightly outside of the main area of Kuta. It is very close to Tanjung Aan Beach and Seger Beach.

We loved our time surfing in Lombok Island at Drop In so much that we often talk about going back there for 2 weeks just to surf more… we haven’t planned our next trip yet, but we’ll be back for sure.

Did this post help you plan for surfing on Lombok? Let me know in the comments below!

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surfing in lombok


    • gab.grow@gmail.com Reply

      you should definitely go! it is incredible 🙂

  1. wow, what a gorgeous place to surf! I wish I knew how, this is inspirational to get out there on the water! love your photos!

  2. Actually, when thinking of Lombok, I would never think of surfing, but I’m also not a surfer… And seriously, waking up that early while on vacation?! It’s not really my thing, but it’s good to check out opinions on it, as I might try it some day… Hey, that Drop In Camp looks really cute though 😉

  3. Thanks for the photos! I wanted to try a surf camp once and this one looks just perfect, so maybe in the future.

    • gab.grow@gmail.com Reply

      one of the most popular in the world! 🙂

  4. This is a stunning place. You really make me want to learn to surf as well. The location is lovely and where you stayed. Its really beautiful.

  5. I haven’t yet tried surfing. I guess because I’m not that good swimmer. The bungalow looks really cute.

  6. I’ve always wanted to go to Lombok! I didn’t know they were so well known for their surfing! I’ve actually never been before! That cake looked really yummy too!

  7. I love this! I’ve only surfed once in Hawaii but it was an absolute blast, and this seems like a great experience. I would love to get a picture like that of me cruising through some waves! (plus that cake looks delicious!) I’ll have to go there ASAP

    • gab.grow@gmail.com Reply

      definitely check out Lombok if you want to surf, it is perfect there!

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  11. Oh, you are the also beginner to surfing, all right? I always want to learn surfing, but I haven’t had any chances before. I am about to spend 2 weeks in Indonesia to learn it and wonder which destination that I should choose between Bali and Lombok. Thanks so much for your sharing!

    • gab.grow@gmail.com Reply

      Lombok is definitely the right choice! The waves are great there for learning, but you do need a guide if you’ve never surfed since they can sometimes be intimidating. Lombok’s beaches are way more beautiful than Bali’s and the island is still developing (although very quickly). I just got back from another trip there yesterday and surfed again, it was great. Head to Kuta Lombok for the best surfing 🙂

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