Surfing in Canggu, Bali - The ultimate surf guide

Bali is a highly-ranked surf destination on many surfers' bucket lists, and we sure understand the love and longing for this paradise island! Here’s our guide to what you’ll need to know to prepare for a surf trip of a lifetime. Bali has amazing food, stunning nature and great waves, what more than that can one ask for in a surf trip? Our Bali surf camp is located in beautiful Canggu and here’s everything you’ll need to know before arriving!

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Traffic and transportation: How to get around in Bali

The traffic in Bali is quite hectic with roads packed with cars and motorbikes. Be prepared to spend some time in traffic jams in tourist areas like Canggu and Ubud, even short distances on the roads can unfortunately take a very long time.

Arriving and departing to and from the surf camp

Our surf camp is located roughly 40 minutes away from Denpasar International Airport (DPS), also called Bali Ngurah Rai International Airport, and you can get there by our Lapoint transfer by answering our welcome email when you have booked your trip. The transfer can pick you up at whichever time you want and the drive takes around 50 minutes.

Getting around in Bali

A popular way to get around on the island is to rent a motorbike, just make sure that you wear proper shoes and protection. Many people drive the bikes in flip-flops or even barefoot, which will be extremely dangerous if you get into an accident. And don’t forget to wear a  helmet! Riding the bike without a shirt is both dangerous and frowned upon.

Even short distances on the roads can take a long time. If the cafe where you’ll meet up with your friends is located ten minutes away, then it's a good decision to head over there 20 minutes before the set time. Rush hour is during the late morning and in the afternoon/early evening for tourists, when they head out for day trips and then again when they return from the trip. The local rush hour is early morning and afternoon/early evening.

Some cars offer snacks and water during long car rides, but it’s a good idea to bring some water and snacks with you just in case. 

Delicious local food: What and where to eat in Bali

Food in Bali is amazing (this alone is a great reason to visit the island!) and you can find great cafes and restaurants close to the surf camp. There are many healthy options and many places are perfect to find both vegan and gluten-free dishes. You will also find warungs around Bali, a warung is a business (like a cafe, store or restaurant) that is family-owned.

Traditional Balinese and Indonesian food
  • Nasi goreng: A popular dish in Indonesia that consists of fried rice, vegetables and meats.

  • Babi Guling: Babi Guling, or pig roast, is a traditional Balinese dish.

  • Lawar: A traditional Balinese dish that’s made of mixed coconut, vegetable and meat.

  • Sambal Matah: A Balinese salsa that adds some spice to your meal.

  • Nasi Jinggo: A simple but delicious dish that consists of rice, chicken, noodles and sambal goreng.

  • Sate lilit: One of Bali’s signature foods, minced meat that’s wrapped around a stick made out of lemongrass or bamboo. 

  • Nasi Campur Bali: A rice dish served with different vegetables, meats and other sides on a banana leaf, usually together with sate lilit. There are often three variants of the dish: nasi campur ayam (with chicken), nasi campur pedas (which is spicy) or the Bali classic nasi campur babi that is with Babi Guling pork. 

  • Rujak Buleleng: A fresh and spicy fruit salad that contains fruits and vegetables like jicama, guava and mango.

  • Es Daluman: A coconut drink that is made with palm sugar and green jelly from Dalumen leaves. 

Weather and seasons: When’s the best time to visit Bali for surfing?

Bali is a tropical island with nice temperatures from January to December. Even though it's a nice destination 365 days a year, it’s good to be prepared that the trip might look different depending on which month you’ll arrive. The temperature varies from around 25-28 degrees Celcius throughout the year, though the rainy season has high humidity. The water temperature around Bali is between 27-29 degrees Celcius. 

The seasons in Bali are divided into the dry season (May to October) and the rainy/wet season (November to April). Beginner surfers will enjoy the Bali waves all around the year, and surfers on level 3 might like the consistent swells and nice waves from April to September. The rain will usually occur during the morning hours and a couple of hours in the evening during the rainy season, but the days are mostly sunny.

Packing: What should I bring for my Bali surf trip?

A common mistake for travelers coming to Bali is overpacking. Trust us, you don’t want to be backpacking around the island with way more things than you’ll actually need during your trip. Here are some tips for what you should pack.

  • Passport

  • Proper shoes: Remember to bring a pair of good shoes if you are planning on renting a motorbike or going on a hike.

  • A first aid kit: It’s a good idea to pack a small first aid kit with you that contains antibiotics and painkillers since it’s easy to get “Bali's belly”, AKA symptoms like food poisoning.

  • Mosquito spray: Just like us, mosquitos love Bali! So don't forget the mosquito repellent at home. 

  • Sunscreen: Bring sunscreen with high SPF and make sure that it’s ocean and reef-friendly. We sell zink at the camp. 

  • Water bottle: We don't sell plastic water bottles at the camp, so remember to bring a reusable bottle with you. You can also buy an environmentally friendly bottle at the camp.

  • Light clothes: The temperature on the island is hot all around the year so bring light clothes and a hat to protect you from the sun.

  • Swimsuits and board shorts: You won't need a wetsuit while surfing in Bali, but bring swimwear that is fitting for surfing. You don't want your bikini or board shorts to fall off during your first wipeout!

  • Beach towel: We provide bath towels at the surf camp, but remember to bring a towel for the beach (or buy one at the local shops).

  • A raincoat: Bring an umbrella and a waterproof jacket you’re going to visit Bali during the wet season.

Underwater shot of surfer sitting on surfboard


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