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LowPressure Stormrider Surf Guide says:

North Male Atolls

Over the last decade, Maldives has gained a solid reputation for clean, almost beginner-friendly waves that break on the most exposed parts of the atoll reefs. Comprised of 26 atolls, surfing in the Maldives has remained focused on North Malé, which claims the best density of lefts and rights within a 2hr cruise. Combined with an appealing proximity to Hulhumalé international airport, it’s an especially convenient, fun-wave playground for time-restricted, wealthy travellers. The Maldives surf has been one of the longest kept secrets, because Australian Tony Hinde managed to keep it quiet among his close friends between 1974 and 1988. These days, the 4 passes gathering the bulk of the swell are often crowded with all types and abilities of recreational surfers, from the resorts, guest-houses or charter boats, but the vibe is always laid-back and friendly.

Find more general info about when to go and statistics on the Low Pressure’s Stormrider Guide website.


Central Male Atolls

While the Maldives surf scene revolves around the popular breaks of North Malé atolls, there is also a number of breaks in the South Male Atoll area, including Quarters (Gulhi), Kate's (near Veligandu Huraa/Palm Tree Island Resort), Natives (Kandooma Resort, who claim exclusivity over the rights) and Riptides/Foxy’s (near Guraidhoo Island), a chunky mid channel right, facing a racy, shallow left. Vaafu misses out on east coast surf due to its extended south coast, but Meemu has a little cluster of waves accessed by the Medhufushi resort and occasional safari boats. Veyvah holds fun, zippy lefts with great length of ride. Tucked in a bit, Mulah needs more swell to serve up user-friendly rolling rights for improvers plus. Mulhi Inside is a full wrap right, that needs big swell but is SE wind protected, while the long walls of Outside work from tiny and are offshore in SW winds.

The western atolls of Alifu, Faafu and Dhaalu are wind exposed and cut off from the SE-S swell supply, although there are a few waves at southern and western passes in certain conditions, but few charters are bothering to look carefully enough.

Find more general info about when to go and statistics on the Low Pressure’s Stormrider Guide website.


Thaa and Laamu Atolls

The Maldives are 26 flat coral atolls ringed with 1,200 islands, only a few of which are known for the quality of their surf. With an Indian Ocean swell window from direct E through S to W, Laamu atoll and Thaa atoll are newly discovered central atoll surf zones with many high-quality reef pass setups. These two atolls alone present 150 islands and almost 650km (400mi) of coastline to the frequent swell. The central atolls of the Maldives enjoy an abundance of medium-sized, perfect reefbreaks, the majority of which are righthanders. A settled and peaceful area of sparse population, access to the majority of these waves is by charter boat alone, despite planned resorts. Unlike other island chains, the expense and low number of boats in this area of the Maldives keeps crowds low. With waves such as Mikado and Yin Yang known for their pristine barrels, under the right conditions the central atolls are tropical perfection.

Find more general info about when to go and statistics on the Low Pressure’s Stormrider Guide website.


Huvadhoo Atoll

The 26 pancake-flat atolls of the Maldives are coralline formations that formed around the edges of volcanic peaks, thrusting up from diverging plates in the Earth's crust. These peaks then subsided, leaving the characteristic ring shaped atolls to continue to grow around the original coastline. This pattern has created a surfing playground rife with reef passes amongst the 1,200 islands, which are part of the 2000km (3280mi) ridge extending from Lakshadweep to Chagos Islands. Southern hemisphere swells cross the equator bringing lined up, smaller swell to the shallow fringing reefs, and predictable monsoonal winds govern the seasons. The southern atolls, namely Gaafu Dhaalu (South Huvadhoo) has an exposed south-facing coast, boasting a dozen good passes, in a 2 hr cruising zone. Charter boats are the only form of access, making this an expensive, luxury type surf trip, but unlike the Mentawai's, only a few boats operate in the area. Three southern atolls tried to break away from the Maldivian government as recently as 1962, keeping this area well outside the "Tourist Zone" and government permits are required for foreigners to travel here. Maldivian pioneer, Tony Hussein, discovered the areas potential in 1973, keeping it to himself until the first charters began in 1993, but it remains a secluded destination on the world surf atlas. 

Huvadhoo atoll is about to see an explosion in numbers as a number of land based resorts open, leaving the long range charters with more crowds than they are used to.

Find more general info about when to go and statistics on the Low Pressure’s Stormrider Guide website.


Addu Atoll

With 26 atolls, Maldives obviously has much more to offer than the crowded spots around Malé and the charter boat reefs of Gaafu Dhaalu. Directly below the Equator is the southernmost Addu Atoll where Gan island was used as a British Royal Air Force base until 1976. When tourism started to boom in the 80’s, many people from Gan and neighbouring Foammulah were recruited in the resorts because they could speak good English. The result now is a thriving population of 20,000, living in some of the biggest villages in the Maldives, connected by the second longest road system and causeways, linking the western shores of Addu. Best known for diving wrecks like British Loyalty, torpedoed by the Japanese in 1942, the Maldives is slowly unveiling it’s potential for surfing. First scoped by Tony Hussein in 1996, very few people have surfed Addu until recently. The Quiksilver Crossing briefly stopped there in 2003, Antony Colas scored in August 2004, meeting Welsh pilot, Andy Burr, who stayed there for a year, becoming the first “local”. The reality is that Addu Atoll doesn’t have Maldivian standard, perfectly shaped, soft-breaking waves. Beginner/improvers will struggle with the technical breaks that require speedy riding techniques and the sharky, shallow reefs can be intimidating.

Find more general info about when to go and statistics on the Low Pressure’s Stormrider Guide website.


Condition descriptions provided by the Operator

All the waves in the Maldives break on coral reefs. The best surf is on the eastern and southern edges of the atolls, where the reef has just the right orientation to swell and wind direction. In those perfect spots, the Maldives surf season produces consistent, clean, straight swell lines.

The Surf Season

The Surf Season runs from mid February to November, when low pressure systems in the southern Indian Ocean generate consistent swells.

The early part of the season has the most stable weather, with light, favourable winds. Swell consistency and size improves from February, with March, April and May having very clean conditions.

June to August have the most potential for big swells, although tropical storms can be more common in these months.

September and October are also very consistent months for swell, with winds less variable and tropical storms becoming less frequent. November is still quite consistent for small to medium size waves and the weather is usually perfect for a beach holiday.

North Male’ Atoll Breaks

North Male’ Atoll has the biggest concentration of resorts and the most accessible, best-known, and most popular breaks in the Maldives.

Pasta Point: Perfect long peeling left. Most consistent of North Male’ Atoll breaks. Good from small to big swells. (Access restricted to Atoll Adventures guests at Chaaya Dhonveli).
Sultans: Excellent right with great barrels over 4′. A great peak takeoff that turns into a thick tube on the inside.
Honky’s: Long wrapping left. Best wave in the Maldives on its day. Perfect 150 yard ride with long walls and an inside section that stands up bigger than the takeoff.
Jailbreak: Long right that is brilliant. The fastest wave in the Maldives with long walls and three tube sections.
Chickens: Long & fast left. Best on higher tide.
Colas: Barrelling right.
Lohis: Two-sectioned left off Huduranfushi Resort. Links up well on a big SE swell and high tides. (Access restricted to guests of Lohifushi Resort)
Piddlies (Ninja’s): Mellow right. Good long board wave. Moderate Swell.
Tombstones: Great long right that needs a big swell

South Male’ Atoll Breaks

South Male’ Atoll breaks are usually a couple of feet smaller than those in North Male’ Atoll, but can be excellent if there’s a big swell. There are a few resorts here, but the best option for surfers is a boat-based Inner & Central Atolls Surf Charter trip.

Gurus: left that works well with a big south swell and a north wind
: small, quick right
: short little left-hander
: short right that works with a south-west wind and a solid swell
Stops: fast right with a great bowl section

PP/Night from US$ 500