NIAS ISLAND: SORAKI AND LAGUNDRI

The Lagundri bay is a curved bay gulf forming a horseshoe in the South of Nias Island. The bay is house of the leading lady as far as Surf goes: the Main Break, Soraki Point or simply “The point”, however you want to call this classic surfing point in Indonesia. This break is considered second only to some of the most important ones in Hawaii.

lagundry-soraky-surfcamp-pleasure Since the mid ‘70s, when this world-class break was first surfed by a group of “Aussies” (Australians), Soraki has been receiving surfers from all around the globe. The place evolved from an original secret spot among a couple of daring friends, to being house for several international competitions during the ’90 (Also the World Surfing Championship in 2000). “The point” has the most epic right handed barreling waves over a coral reef (That’s where it gets its name: Sorake means numerous reefs according to the locals).

It is notorious because of its effortless paddle out and the progressive, round-shaped, energical tubes which have, according to the surfers, reached 15 feet, although regular waves measure from 3 to 6 feet. Usually it is not a highly crowded spot and the break has a consistent frequency (150 days a year).

surfing-lagundry-soraky-surfcamp-pleasureThe Soraki Point is recommended only for skilled surfers. However, after dying in deep waters, the Point produces a lower decreasing sloppy swell that breaks again a few meters to the left in what is called the Kiddies Corner, a perfect break for beginners and children to practice.

Most of the Breaks in Nias has been accentuated after the 9.2 (on the Richter scale) earthquake that strucked the island from the North in 2004. The ocean distorted the geography of the Island, eating parts of the land and withdrawing from some others. As far as surfing is concerned tubes are becoming more curved and increasing in length. While before the earthquake waves lasted 7 seconds, now they may get to 9.

The Island is nick named “All time Nias” after the continuous set of waves delivered in the Sorake Bay. Anytime is a good time here. However, the best time is during the dry season, from June to September. Most Surfing competitions are held in June and July.

Although Sorake is the core break in Nias Island there are many other points. Read our article “Best Surfing Spots in Nias Island” to fin out more.

STONE JUMPING ON NIAS ISLAND

Culturally speaking people in Nias kept their traditions almost intact. The Island would have been completely isolated for centuries if it weren’t because of the trading people use to practice among the nearby villages. Thus it is a priceless occasion to have a glimpse of one of the few megalithic cultures that has been reserved through ages upon ages by their local residents. Pleasure Island Surf camp highly recommends not leaving the Island without getting a flavor of the many dances and celebrations performed by the Tano Niha (Island’s native name) inhabitants.

nias-island-surfing-jumping-stonesThere is one ritual that stands out among others. Stone Jumping or Hombo Batu was a virility ritual for boys in Nias Island at the twilight of their childhood. They literally had to jump over a 6 feet stone to prove their manhood. Originally this rock had spikes and sharp bamboo reeds on top so it was especially dangerous and led to injuries or even dead. Hombo Batu was the final step of a series of war training boys had to go through. Courageous young men had to demonstrate that they were ready to become warriors. Usually the jumping was performed by kids from the age of ten.

Though age was directly related to the stone height and consequently to the difficulty of the challenge.

Some archeologist affirms that this island conserves one of the last traces of a Megalithic culture. People in Nias perform the ceremony as it was done centuries ago. Villagers are dressed with the traditional yellow and black costumes, the scenario shaped only with the ancient houses, with the dramatically convex spired bricked roofs. You can still appreciate this everlasting ritual that gives you a vivid picture of a truly ancient culture not far at all from the Pleasure Surfcamp, in the Bawamotaluo town (South Nias).

Not just surfing in Nias Island but also traditional activities

This tradition started in Nias Island at a time when there were frequent battles between the neighboring tribes and villages. The endless story of Landlords (men) fighting over territory. Nias has been an emblematic example. This warlike culture is also the reason why the architecture of the island is so particular. High pointed roofs and walls with bamboo stakes everywhere was actually a defensive architectural strategy. These buildings serve even nowadays as the artistic natural stage for the jumping celebration.

The celebration is accompanied by the most refined pieces of folk music and dancing that were formerly played and performed to increase the warriors’ ferocity. You simply can’t miss this experience if you pass by the Pleasure Surfcamp.


 

CONTACT US AND GET DISCOUNTS FOR OUR BLOG’S READERS

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

Subject

Your Message