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Teiki Mathieu Baillan surfing a self-made Alaia surfboard in Lances Left, Mentawaï, Indonesia. Photo by C. Naslain, 2009.
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Fickle - To answer the poster below, Tonga is fickle. Verrrrrry fickle. It is easy for people with a vested interest in attracting tourists to Tonga to take photos on the best day of the year and post them on their websites, thus giving the impression that it is consistently like that. I worked in Tonga for 6 months and trust me, it is often flat for weeks, even months at a time. Unlike other South Pacific nations, the swell window is extremely small, because it needs to wrap into a protected bay to hit the reefs for them to break. You can even see it breaking huge on a bombie out to see from Ha'atafu, and it be 1-2 foot out the front. Very frustrating! In saying that it can get pretty good, but I would say you would have about 20 days a year of good surf in Tonga... not the best odds that's for sure. It's not cheap either, so Indo is definitely a better option, even though it is more crowded you will get way more waves. Hope this helps
its not a hoax - Aint been to Tonga myself but actually...alotta net sources bout surfing say tis a really gr8 place to surf.... anyways..... hows it there actually??? ffs, some ppl say its a shoite place, some people- its incredible... wanna go there myself and no1 can help.... why is it that some people hate cos 'theres no swell' the place while some love cos "nice place,gr8 swell, gr8 hollow waves'..... hmmmm
tonga = hoax!! - tonga is a great for a surf trip if you love a place that hardly ever has swell, only has small waves when it does come, and where you can only surf for a few hours either side of high tide...
More to tonga than this.... - I was really glad to see that this guide to Tonga's waves is very incomplete. Hell, it only lists waves in the far southern Tongatapu group. For those who want to search, both the central Ha'apai group and the northern Vava'u group of islands also have reef waves of consequence. You'll need a boat, some goood nuatical charts and lots of time to explore though...
- 8 foot tonga??? clearly you have a funny way of measuring waves. im thinking you would call a head high wave 6 foot?
tonga has mad surf - spent 14 days in tonga at the start of jan, and every single day had waves, ranging from 3 foot to 8 foot. great place to go for a surf trip and also a good place to relax. i recommend tonga to anyone.
- tonga only has small waves, and is often flat, but thats not to say its not worth a visit. its very mellow and relaxing, and the waves, if you get a swell can be fun. but i wouldnt say its a place for a serious surfer. more a place for an older surfer and/or a family to relax and get some small, fun waves... that sums it up pretty well i reckon
Tonga January 2006 - Spent 10days in Tonga at the end of January and met some great people, surfed some of the best quality left and right handers i have surfed over 25 years of surfing.Also the food is magnificant
- I agree. Tonga is a beautiful place but an absolute hoax for waves. Never gets any swell and tonnes of kooks staying at Ha'atafu crowding what little waves are around!
- Surf in Tonga? Well, there can be small, fun waves (around head high) BUT ONLY IF YOU ARE LUCKY!! A 3-4 foot swell is considered to be "absolutely pumping" by Tongan standards and it can be flat for WEEKS at a time. ha'atafu will always have surfers waiting to hit it regardless of conditions too
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