Surfing Maldives, Maldives Surf Charter Images

Surfing in The Maldives

Remember the three bears? This surf is too hard, this surf is too soft, this surf is just right? The Maldives are just right! The surf in the Maldives has the quality and consistency of Indonesia, but in general is a few feet smaller on any given swell and not quite as heavy.

Most of the surf spots are on the east face of the Maldivian atolls, which cover about 600 miles from north to south, beginning just below the equator and running to 7° north. The government of the Maldives carefully controls access to the surf to encourage the flow of tourist dollars into the country while minimizing the well-known downsides of surf tourism.

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, favorable 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.

The three main surfing areas in the Maldives are the Inner Atolls (North and South Male Atoll, the Central Atolls (Laamu, Meemu, Thea & Dhaaul) and the Outer Atolls ( Gaafu Dhaalu & occasionally Addoo.

Inner Atolls/North and South Male Atolls are islands immediately to the north and south of the capital city of Male. The North Male Atoll generally picks up more swell and this is where the more famous spots are – from north to south: Chickens is a left, Cokes is a right, Pasta Point is the left at Chaaya Island Dhonveli Resort, which also has easy access to the left at Honky's, and the right at Sultans. Those are just a few of the dozen spots in the atolls north of Male and there are just as many in the atolls to the south: Lucky Joes, Guru Lefts, Kates, Foxys, Riptides. All coral reefs, right or lefts, whatever you want, or whatever the wind is doing.

The Central Atolls are approximately 150 miles south of Male and can be accessed either by charter from Male spending a couple days surfing your way down and back up, or by relatively convenient flight from Male to Laamu to maximize surf time. There are many breaks in this zone with very few resorts allowing charters to locate their own slice of private paradise.

The Outer Atolls are approximately 300 miles south of Male and pick up the most swell of the entire chain given its open exposure into the Indian Ocean. Charter boat access is required to provide the best access to the various breaks along the south side of Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll such as Beacons (R), Castaways (R), Five Islands (R), Lover Charms (L), Tiger Stripes (L), Blue Bowls (R), Two Ways (R & L).


The Maldives has surf for almost all levels of surfers, from the more advanced beginner to the more advanced expert. Most surfers will find a short, fun board suitable for most conditions in the Maldives, but bring a longer board for bigger swells. The water is hot and tropical, no wetsuit necessary, but bring along adequate reef protection.