Do you want to get away from crowds?
Now is the time of year to ask the question: Where can I go between October and March to maximise the opportunity for perfect surf?
The hardcore and aspiring pro surfers all head in one direction – the North Shore of Oahu.
Of course that is understandable, as the North Shore of Oahu is the pinnacle, the testing ground, the seven mile miracle. There’s just so much variety and consistency in such close proximity. However, if you aren’t up to being cleaned up by a rogue west peak at Sunset Beach, or battling every wannabe and actual pros for waves, or just aren’t at that level?
Thankfully, the Pacific is a very large ocean, and swells spread far and wide.
Paddler’s perspective of fun-sized P-Pass
Looking at the globe, its easy to see a decent swell may cross the equator and head south until it finally unloads with perfect form on a distant reef.
Ideally, that reef faces NW and is offshore in the trade winds, or it’s in the tropical doldrums and rarely wind affected.
Now that we have set the criteria, where can we find epic surf with few others around?
There are 3 reliable options to consider
- North Coast of PNG (open to north swells, in doldrums = glassy perfection)
- Micronesia (NW facing reef passes out of deep water + offshore in trade winds = P-Pass perfection)
- Samoa (Hawaiian swells arrive 2 days later, longer period, smaller and more perfect)
Vanimo – Papua New Guinea
The north coast of Papua New Guinea has gained a reputation for fun, clean perfect surf with no crowds. To make the most of it, you need the widest possible swell window to send long-lined goodness your way. The furthermost north and west you can get for mainland PNG surf is Vanimo. Drawing in all available swell from the North Pacific, but protected from crowding by the visionary PNG surf plan, Vanimo offers a wide selection of breaks from user-friendly, long-walled reef-point breaks through to fast and hollow performance waves. The lifestyle is simple here: quality waves and ancient local culture unaffected by tourism.
Perfect P-Pass – Photo Simon Williams
The legendary P-Pass in Micronesia is actually easier and more accessible than expected. Most swells at P-Pass are user-friendly 3-6 foot. A roll-in takeoff, a couple of pumps, then a barrel that stays open or a rippable wall, then a deep channel – perfection. On land, Pohnpei Surf Club has a quality small hotel with great bars and restaurants nearby to make it a great surf trip lifestyle. To make it even better, you can now fly to Pohnpei on the same day: leave Sydney or Brisbane in the morning, land in Pohnpei late evening, sleep, get up, go surfing. The same schedule you expect from a high end trip to the Maldives.
The airfares on this new route with Air Niugini are also great value. If you book and pay before 15 October 2016, you can get 7 nights at Pohnpei Surf Club including airfares ex Sydney or Brisbane for around AU$3,000 or 10 nights for less than AU$3,900.
The rarely considered option is the north coast of the South Pacific islands. A NW swell that hits Hawaii will arrive in Samoa a couple of days later, longer period, smaller and absolutely perfect. One of the best weeks of surfing in my life was one of these swells: a week of 20-second north swell from 6 foot plus down to a super fun 3-foot perfection.
If you feel the need for a surf trip anytime between now and April, we have the plans to put you in the path of a perfectly formed, long period North Pacific swell train!
|Discover our Pacific Ocean surf travel deals|
To celebrate the end of summer and the beginning of surfers’ season, i.e. autumn, we are giving away the ultimate Ocean and Earth surf travel pack valued at $600.
Ocean & Earth have long been the world leaders in quality and innovative surf hardware and accessories. This ultimate surf travel pack contains the following necessary travel companions: A premium, heavy-duty double 6’6’’cover, wheel carry bag, backpack, grip and One Piece leash.
This is an awesome prize for every surf traveller from O&E and you get a chance to win it by booking your next trip with The Perfect Wave.
The winner of the summer draw is Samuel Carson. Congratulations, Sam!
|Vanimo Surf Lodge|
From AU$1,050 for 7 nights
Remote, empty waves. A left or a right just outside your bungalow, perfect scene for your Papua New Guinea Surf. Come here to search for waves along the coast, stay in traditional huts with fellow surfers & share a stories over a cold beer at night.
|The PNG Explorer|
From AU$3,990 for 10 nights
Live life to the fullest, have the waves for yourself and score recently-discovered breaks. Life on PNG Explorer is stripped to simplicity – beers, empty waves, epic fishing, beach BBQ and great abundant food. Photo & Video from the trip is also included.
|Nusa Island Retreat|
From AU$1,849 for 7 nights
Leave the civilization behind, stay in beautiful beach huts, have the waves for yourself & enjoy the chilled out vibe of this fascinating Papua New Guinea surf.
|Rubio Plantation Retreat|
From AU$1,700 for 7 nights
Every surf adventurer dreams of remote coastline with empty surf breaks, discovering the long coastline and staying in beach huts. Rubio is an eco plantation with great food and friendly local staff.
|Pohnpei Surf Club – P-pass|
From AU$3,000 for 7 nights incl. flights
Besides from the world-famous P-Pass, at Pohnpei Surf Club you will get to score a bunch of other waves, with great food and lots of extra activities in between the surf sessions.
|Coconuts Beach Club|
From AU$1,229 for 7 nights
Recently rebuilt, beautiful and traditional Samoan beachfront resort with day spa for the non surfing partners. Manoa Tours runs the surf program right from the beach in front of the resort.
|Sinalei Resort & Spa|
From A$1,277 for 7 nights
A traditionally Samoan resort with luxury. From simple garden view rooms to absolute beachfront, there is something for every budget. Plus the amazing Presidential Suite for a family or small group looking for something extra special.
|Aganoa Lodge Samoa|
From AU$2,000 for 6 nights
They have transformed this quiet Pacific hideaway into a prime escape destination. The perfect, uncrowded, affordable option for surfers, couples and families. Only five hours from the Australian east coast and Hawaii.