Nusa Lembongan

Nusa Lembongan is one of a series of three islands off the coast of mainland Bali, which is made up from Nusa Lembongan, Nusa Ceningan and Nusa Pendina.


Lembongan is truly a great place and is probably still one of the hidden gems in the area. It has natural beauty, is fairly small and you always feel safe.

The decision to go to Lembongan was made due to hearing about the island through a friend at work.

The easiest way to begin the trip to Nusa Lembongan is to land in Bali, then make your way to Sanur. The reason for this is that most of the boats that travel to Lembongan depart from there. We stayed at the Inna Grand in Sanur, which was a short walk to the office of our boat, Sri Rejeki Fast Boat. This was a good choice as they do hotel pick up in Bali then Hotel drop off in Lambongan.


Getting on the boat is the start of the adventure, put your footwear (shoes, thongs or fliplops) into a crate and watch your bags get stacked onto the top deck of the boat. Getting on and off the boat means your going to get wet, at least to the bottom of your shorts. Entry is via the back of the boats and it’s done on the beach. It’s all pretty smooth and easy, just keep phones and ipods in your backpack.

The trip takes about 25 to 30 minutes depending on the seas and weather but it’s a good run. Getting off the boat is pretty much a reverse procedure, again it’s pretty easy. As previously mentioned your boat ride includes the transfer to your accommodation.

We stayed at the Mahagiri Resort in Lembongan, which is one of the newer hotels on the island. First thing you should do when you get there is hire a scooter. It’s again very easy to do as nearly every place hires scooters. For surfers I recommend getting one with a surfboard rack, it makes life easy. It also gives you the chance to have a look around for food places. Scooters or as we called ours, the mighty hog cost around 700,000 Rupiah a day or $7 AUD. You pay and take the scooter, no forms, no licence but some basic instruction….don’t crash as most Travel Insurance don’t cover Scooters. At first the roads seem chaotic but you quickly learn there is a system and a lack of agro, very pleasent indeed.

There are many food options on the island and I have to say they are all good and cater to everyone, even the gluten free, dairy free and vegans. You will quickly find your favourite. We found The Sampan, Bali Eco Deli (great coffee), Mickey’s Sports Bar, Nyomans Warung (great fish in banana leaf), The Deck Cafe & Bar, Tiki Cafe & Bar and the Thai Pantry which has a VW Kombi as a bar on the deck overlooking Lembongan Harbour.


Bali Eco Deli with Scooter Parking

As a surfer I was keen to hit the water. The water is clean, clear and warm. During September it is around 27 degrees each day. The best surfing is on the mid to high tide. I thought it might be ok on the low tide but this was a really bad idea. During this session the reef boots I purchased, paid for themselves six times over.

The main breaks are Playgrounds, Lacerations, Shipwrecks and Ceningan Lefts.

Playgrounds is a nice fun wave for beginners to immediate surfers, which breaks left and right. The left seemed to break better for me and it was fun when I hired a mini mal from the guys at Long Sambung Beach (Coconut Bay). They will also help you out with a lift to the breaks but it’s really not required for Playgrounds. A board will cost you around 500,000 to 700,000 rupiah a day. Again this is only $5 to $7 AUD for the day.


The view of Playgrounds from The Deck Bar & Cafe with Playgrounds on the left and Lacerations on the right.

The next break is Lacerations and I’m glad it never lived up to it’s name. Again good for beginner to intermediate, this wave is a great little right hander and really fun. Between Lacerations and the next break, Shipwrecks is No Mans Land, take note and stay away.

The third break, Shipwrecks is definitely Intermediate to Advanced and although you can paddle out, grab a boat on the way out and paddle in. Shipwrecks really pumps! All the waves have plenty of power in the and the crowds are great during the time I was there anyway.


Lembongan Harbour

Crossing the Yellow Bridge takes you to the other surf break, Ceningan Lefts, a ripper of a left hander. The Yellow Bridge is the only way to get there and is only wide enough for two scooters or one scooter and a few pedestrians with luggage.

There is a small wave at Tamarind Beach on Lembongan and it looked alright for a beginner on a mal.

One of the big drawcards of Lembongan is the amazing sunsets. Grab a Happy Hour drink and sit back and enjoy.


Sunset from Mahagiri Resort

You can do as much or as little as you want on Lembongan. Snorkeling, Scuba Diving, Paddle Boarding or every other watersport like parasailing, even banana boat rides.

Every eatery has Wi-Fi, you can keep in contact with the outside world and make your friends envious with your Instagram and Facebook posts while having a cool Bintang.


Bintang by the pool

Speaking of Bintang, the local small shops and the Adi Mart do largies for 350,000 rupiah ($3.50 AUD). Wine is quite expensive as are spirits however if you are going to have a mojito then this is the place to do it, especially at sunset.

Nusa lembongan is an amazing paradise, it’s Bali but not Bali if that makes sense. We had a 10 day stay on Lembongan and many people we met along the way, wished they stayed longer. It’s relaxing and great for everyone from backpackers to 5 Star, singles to families. Just try to stay away from the last two weeks of September, nothing bad will happen then, I just want it all to myself.

Craig Tonks


Go Pro Hero 4

Go Pro 4 Session



The Go Pro Hero 4 Session is another leap forward in self capture camera technology. These

days if the subject is moving, then it’s being captured on a Go Pro.


The newest in the line, the Hero Session 4 is 50% smaller and much more compact.


The biggest feature for surfers, is the fact that the waterproof case is no longer needed,

the floaty backdoor is now a surround, which means it encloses the camera instead of

just sticking to the back of it.



Another feature that will enhance the user experience is the ball joint that lets you

change the camera around without having to unclip it, which is great for in the water.


The battery is now integrated so charging is just done by a USB port and once you

turn the camera on, it’s filming so know more wondering whether you are in

film mode or not.


There is some great waves being captured by local surfers and some mind


stills in the shore breaks around town.


So getting technical, the camera shoots a still at 8MP and 1440 @ 30 frames

per second or 1080 @ 60 frames per second.


A big congratulations to Go Pro for keeping the mounts the same,

a smart move for many enthusiasts.


I’ve been a fan of the Go Pro since day one and can’t see the demand



This is some serious camera and if you thought the Go Pro range

couldn’t possibly get better, then you’d be wrong. This is a must have

piece of kit.

Surfoplane – An Icon Thrives




In 1933 Dr Ernest Smithers invented a product that would not only save countless

lives on the 6th February 1938 in the infamous Black Sunday rescues at Bondi Beach

where over 250 lives were saved but has been under the feet of some of our decorated

surfing world champions.


The humble Surfoplane were a staple the beaches around Australia and the world for

over 40 years and with the possibility of the brand disappearing, Land & Sea Sports

stepped in and saved the iconic label.


Not only does Land & Sea Sports sell the classic Surfoplane, it has a range of products

under the Surfoplane name which includes Bodyboards, Longboards, Shortboards

and now Skateboards.


The best thing about the Longboards and Shortboards is the Low Impact Foam Deck

designed for safety during those learning times. The boards still perform similar to

their fibreglass or epoxy counterparts.


The Shortboard comes in a 6”6 Fish and a 6ft Performance Tri-fin which sell for $299 & $249 respectively and the Byron Bay Longboard comes

in 7ft and 8ft for a very reasonable $299 & $349.

Byron Bay Logger 7ft Mustard


A great item for when the waves aren’t playing the game, is the range of

Surfoplane Skateboards.


The Bondi Cruiser, Coastal Rider and Surf Self Rider all have a classic retro look

with the Bondi and Coastal boards having a bamboo deck with the Self Rider

being made from Canadian Maple.


It’s such a credit to see companies keeping our iconic brands alive and while

these may not be for the hardcore surfer, they are loads of Summer fun.

The Perfect Wave

Surf Trips


Surfing locally is great, you know the breaks and you know the people yet you keep seeing

some amazing waves in surf magazines, wishing you could surf waves like that.

Island Time


Well you can, there are a range of surf trips out there to some exotic locations around the

world but how do you figure out where and when to go?


You can ask other people where they have been to but there is much more to it than word

of mouth and as most people know, local knowledge is a handy thing to have.


“A good surf travel company can select the right trip for you, right down to the airfares

and transfers” states Ben Horvath, Marketing Manager from The Perfect Wave who

specialise in Surf Travel.

Roughing It

Roughing It


“We try to build the trip around you and your needs. Our consultants are all specialists

in the surf and snow travel industry and we want you to have the best experience



The Perfect Wave are a one stop shop for surf travel but be prepared for questions

from the consultants.


“We generally want to find out where you think you’d like to go, what time of year

you’re looking at and whether the location is suited to your ability”.


The options for travel include land or boat based and they know the right places

to take your family or significant other.

Escaping the Sun

Escaping the Sun


A quick look at the menu shows a trip that would be many surfers dream trip.


The “Surfing with A Legend” package see’s the surfers head on a surfing trip with

the likes of Occy, Barton Lynch, Bob McTavish,and Pam Burridge..


One thing The Perfect Waves specialize in is surf trips designed for women. The trip



called, “She Surfs” is an all girl surf trip.


There are two tours for women, with one designed for beginner to immediate, which has two qualified surf coaches and a surf guide that are focused on finding the right wave in the right conditions.


The other trip for women stays at the Atoli Resort in Mentawai, has a range of world class breaks not far from the front door. This trip includes land based accommodation and a surf photographer to document your epic waves.


The men aren’t left out by any means.


It doesn’t matter if your dreams are to charge the long walls of the Mentawai or learning to surf at Swimming Pools, Fiji then there is a trip for you.


For the men, everything is on the table and the menu is spectacular. Why not tey something different and sample the delights of lesser known spots like Sri Lanka?


The large range of trips cover most of the planet, if there’s surf then there’s a trip.


A quick glance at the website will show surf trips for Longboards, Bodyboards and even Stand Up Paddleboards.


Even thinking of traveling with your significant other?


There are packages for couples that surf yet The Perfect Waves have you covered if they don’t.


Next month we take a look at individual trips. First stop on the journey is Mentawai.

That Shark

We have all seen the footage a thousand times now of the “Fanning Shark” but lets dig a little

deeper and hopefully put it into perspective.




What made this different to any other attack?


The big difference was it was live on television and streamed live on the World Surf League

(WSL) website. By breaking it down further, the camera was actually on Fanning at the time

the shark arrived on the scene.


It could have happened during the first wave Julian Wilson caught or on his paddle back out

but it happened as he was on screen.


Any shark experience will shake up anyone, specially those who grew up after the Jaws era,

a film that made some people rethink their love of the ocean.


Many surfers have shark stories even me.


Surfing with a mate on an unpatrolled beach in Northern NSW, a 6ft shark swam directly

under me and freaked me out and what followed can only be described as a very quick paddle in.


Always one to face fears head on we paddled out again the next day and somehow my legrope

came off. The long swim in which seemed to take forever was a good chance to think about

sharks and is probably how my fascination with them began.


Becoming a Scuba Diver a few years later gave me the opportunity to get up close and

personal with these majestic creatures.


As a avid watcher of shark documentary’s on the Discovery Channel, it’s interesting to

see the behaviour at J Bay.


Great Whites are known to attack from underneath at speeds of up to 40km/h with a bit

force of 4,000psi which is massive.


During an attack a film covers the eye to protect it from damage. The shark relies on

sensors in it’s nose to guide it.


Due to attacking blind, the animal doesn’t know what it has till it grabs it. Due to the

ferocity of the initial attack, most humans die from blood loss and rarely eaten as Hollywood

would have us believe.


The Fanning Shark may have been young and taking a bit of a look but happened to get

caught up in Fannings legrope, however try telling Fanning this.


Commentator Peter Mel tried to say this but was quickly shutdown.


So where to from here for Fanning?


The main thing is to clear the head and get back in the water, the quicker the better.


The drive home from the airport could be more dangerous but no one can imagine how

shaken up he is, same for Julian Wilson.


Wilson was paddling back out when it all unfolded and it is well known now, the thought

processes running through his mind.


Were the actions of Wilson brave?


Paddling towards an area where an attack could be occurring is brave. It takes much

more than guts. It is a heroic act and should be seen as so.


As during last Summer the people of Newcastle have learned that sharks will be more

common as they chase bait closer to shore.


The Newcastle shark had it’s own Twitter account (@Newyshark) and recently re-emerged with the appearance of (@j bayshark).


The Newy Shark even had it’s own range of clothing, placing some humour into the plight

of the surf starved surfers over Summer.


Surfers will always venture out into the water as the chances of an attack are slim at best.

We are luckily not a favoured food of sharks.


Whilst the Fanning incident was rare, it is a timely reminder that we share our beloved

ocean with many creatures.


We are surfers, we love and protect the ocean but we are small and insignificant in the

scheme of things. This includes protecting the sharks we so often fear.


Fanning and Wilson will be back. They will be nervous that first time and probably many

times after that, but be assured that this will not stop them.