Stab Magazine | From Where You’d Rather Be: The World’s Best Beachbreaks – Spot X, Indonesia

From Where You’d Rather Be: The World’s Best Beachbreaks – Spot X, Indonesia

Words by Tom Freed | Photos by Tom Carey Whenever someone utters the phrase “from where you’d rather be,” Stab’s collective mind’s eye immediately focuses on a sand-bottomed setup beneath a smiling sun. We’re talking beachbreaks. Trunks. Bath water. All the finer things! And, since we so adore such things, we’ve decided to team up […]

news // Mar 8, 2016
Words by stab
Reading Time: 5 minutes

Words by Tom Freed | Photos by Tom Carey

Whenever someone utters the phrase “from where you’d rather be,” Stab’s collective mind’s eye immediately focuses on a sand-bottomed setup beneath a smiling sun. We’re talking beachbreaks. Trunks. Bath water. All the finer things! And, since we so adore such things, we’ve decided to team up with our like-minded pals at to deliver you a new series: The World’s Best Beachbreaks.

We’ll be detailing, visually but also through written text, all our favourite sand setups from around the world. The requirements? Nothing but golden grains beneath, nothing but a warm orb above, trunk temperatures only, and a perfect setup to end the day with a Corona and lime.

No. 5: Spot X, Indonesia

And on the eighth day… God created The Beachie. A slice of shoreline lost in the equatorial jungle that transforms all prior-hyperbole and clichés into something more fantastic than a dream. Something divine. Something perfect. Something far from civilization with blinding white sand, translucent water, steamy air and wedges-galore. Some call it Spot-X, some whisper of its ways in hushed voices and darting eyes. Surrounded by countless, reeling right and left reefbreaks in the region, some would call it heresy to visit Indo for a sandbar. But lo, we as surfers are natural renegades, gypsies, heretics and seekers of beauty and perfection and fuck those Puritans; sometimes a man wants hollow, spitting electricity over soft grains of future-glass. Even in Indonesia. So we seek, find, and the Lord smiles as we enjoy His hidden wonders.


Lemme break it down for ya:

Go: April-Oct.

Land in: Medan, North Sumatra or Padang, West Sumatra.

Then: Get on a charter boat headed ‘cross the Mentawai Strait or hop a PJ like Kanye would en route the Batu Isles.

Stay: At Telo Island Lodge (all-inclusive, playboy!) or on a charter boat, either-or; you gotta drop bills for the dream.

Bring a: Few shortboards that like to backdoor both ways. That sounded dirty, but The Beachie thumps and can break sticks. You may need backup.


What’s she like? Active. Breaks on anything and close to shore — the shore being the most magical beach you’ve ever set your corneas on. A few kilometres of ivory grains kissing a hazy, singing, breathing rainforest teeming with monitor lizards and coconut trees and mabes an odd Sumatran tiger. I said mabes. Oh and the surf? Peaks on peaks of heavy, shallow pic-perf A-frames wedging, bending, growing and tooting you into Kingdom Come. ‘Frames the color of blue on an acid trip, mate. Water as warm as the blood bubbling in your surf-psyched bod, brother. Wedges with side-waves and weirdly fantastic refraction to slip in behind the peak of. (Mind your own grammar!) Too big over six feet, rampy and playful under three feet, heaven on earth at four feet, sweet prince. Quite powerful for her stature and size, mind you. (She bites!)

What really makes her tick? Exposure. No, not mag coverage and Instagrams, but the mere fact that The Beachie faces a lot of open ocean, and moreover incoming Southwest swells. Any swells, really. So exposed, actually, that you don’t really wanna visit her on a significant swell that’s got the rest of the reefs all hot and bothered. She’ll be closed out and too big if ya do. She is a sand bar, too, so big swells can mess with her form, but bottom line, she breaks on anything, pretty much any time of the year.

Other options in the area… While The Beachie is pretty much the only beach break in a 100-mile radius, there’s always, you know… reef breaks. Like G.T.’s, a hollow Lance’s Right style righthander not far from the Beachie. Max’s Left is another longer option nearby for the goofyfooters, especially when the swell is up. And then there’s Lagundri Bay, Nias somewhere north of you if you’ve got a boat and a ton of breaks in a place that starts with “M” to the south.


For a good time… There’s a village beyond the bush just off the beachie with stiff, frosty Mai Tais and Piñas served by Russian models in thongs… Sorry, that was actually a Lariam dream from the Malaria meds. Yer kinda S.O.L. in the going-out department in equatorial-offshore-island-Indo. You’ll just have to settle for fresh fish, nasi-goreng, and the mixed company of your surf charter and/or surf camp. Also in case ya forgot, those hundred tubes you got all day: That was a good time.

At all costs, don’t mess with Malaria. Not nearly as gnarly as Ebola, but much nastier than Bali Belly, most all islands off Sumatra got a butt-load of mozzies and many of them carry Malaria — which could put ya on yer back for a couple weeks. Slop on that bug-spray outside of the water or use prophylactics, and tend to your reef cuts while you’re at it. Jk, you’ve been surfing over sand ya slick dog, you. Oh, be respectful of the village women, too. Their daddies got machetes for non-committal male-suitors.

OK, I hear ya, but what’s a pro say? Parker Coffin says, “It’s one of those rare waves that literally looks like a swimming pool. It’s so warm and has that same color. The sand is so white and the water is so blue that it burns your eyes. I remember that about the place, how by the end of the day I couldn’t open my eyes from how bright it was… and also I couldn’t talk because I lost my voice from hooting at my friends since the waves were that damn good! To describe the setup, there were these non-stop shifty little wedges and peaks up the beach that were super random and all soooo hollow. Sometimes there’d be a long wait, but then three in a row would come your way.”


Get at beachbreak number 12, Ehukai Beach Park, right here.
Get at beachbreak number 11, Bocas del Toro, right here.
Get at beachbreak number 10, Fernando De Noronha, right here.
Get at beachbreak number 9, Outer Banks, right here.
Get at beachbreak number 8, SW Beachies, right here.
Get at beachbreak number 7, Black’s, right here.
Get at beachbreak number 6, Peniche, right here.


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