This island measures about 280 kilometers long from east to west and varies in width from 15 to 90 kilometers. Compared to Bali and Lombok, Sumbawa is relatively uncrowded being about three times the size of Bali with less than a fourth the population. The people of Sumbawa are mostly farmers and ranchers by trade. In times they prospered through the sale of fine horses and fragrant woods (sapan and sandalwood), but now they live a much rougher life than do their Lombok and Bali neighbours to the west. Sumbawa's distinctly Australasian climate, flora and fauna lend a thorny, dry and scrub-cutting edge to day-to-day life and survival. The three main and most famous spots surfed on the west coast of Sumbawa are Scar Reef, Super Suck and Yo-Yo's.
Scar Reef, just south of the Jelinggah Beach headland, is a great left-hander and hollow wave that is best at lower tides. Either side of low tide will cause this wave to break further down the line towards the jutting headland. Higher tides bring the wave closer to the inside and cause it to section considerably. Scar reef picks up plenty of swell depending on direction, but it is particularly good-and waves are hollow and superb-on a big south swell.
Super Suck , off the village of Malok about a half hour past the town of Taliwang, is the most famous and sought after wave on this rugged coast. When Super Suck is working, it is really working and will make your trip to Sumbawa more than worthwhile. Big walls of water break off a boil rock on the outside of the bay and suck up into a thick and heavy left that bowls and winds down the reef for a few hundred meters. The inside section of this reef gets really shallow.
Yo-Yo's, just south of Super Suck at Sekongkang Bay, is your best West Sumbawa bet when everything else is small. This beautiful bay offers two different spots. The best is about 400 meters from a towering cliff. It is a right, sometimes called The Hook, which gets really good and holds up to six feet of swell. This wave is fast and hollow and features shifting peaks. It breaks and is rideable on all tides except a dead-low one. The second wave here, located right up against the cliff is called The Wedge and can handle six to eight feet of swell before closing out. It consists of a shifty and mushy outside peak that winds into a fast and bowling inside section. April to October, tradewinds can blow Yo-Yo's out, so mornings are best.
East Sumbawa ( Lakey Beach )
There are 5 world class surfing waves situated in the same bay directly in front of Lakey Beach
The main wave 'The peak' has a left and a right hand take off.
Lakey Peak - An intense hollow right & left-hand peak, with the left generally being longer, the right can fire on the proper swell direction. A frame with a guaranteed backdoor for those with the balls to pull in. Best at 5-8 foot that holds all sizes and goes off at mid-tides, and the left can provide some deep barrels to surfed at low tides if the swell is big enough.
Lakey Pipe is on either side of 'The peak' a popular wave amongst the body boarders and 'Nomans' which is suitable for the more extreme surfer. 'The beachy' only breaks in the lagoon with the big swells and is more suitable for the less experienced surfer.
Lakey Left - Across the channel from the peak. With right size swell and direction this normally sectiony wave can line up and provide deep, lined-up barrels.
Lakey Right - A few hundred meters down the beach. A short, bowling right-hander that breaks into a deep water dent in the reef. Some fun barrels. Holds only to about 8’.
Cobblestones is another popular wave within walking distance of the hotels.
Nungas - The big left across from Periscopes. Under 8’ the wave breaks down into several sections of 50 meters or so, one or all may be surfable. But at 8’ the sections start to connect offering rides of 200 meters or more, with flat spots, hot-dog walls, full-on barrels all thrown into one ride. Best take-off spot is determined on an hourly basis. Can handle a crowd and swells as big as they come.
Periscopes - A fun right-hander wave at the eastern end of a long reef that sticks way out into the bay, Periscopes can offer a high, tight barrel over a relatively safe reef platform, and a clean exit into a channel. A short paddle out . Better at high tides with glassy or N (offshore) winds. Blown out by dry season trades. Holds only to about 8’. About a mile walk up the beach from the surf camp.
Surf all Year Round
The Peak Swell period is from April to September.
Late and Early season October to March can offer perfect clean conditions with light winds.