SOME QUICK QUESTIONS
WHAT MAKES SWELL DIFFERENT?
Swell Bali, just like Swell Cabarete, will be one of the few purpose-built Surf & Yoga Retreat / hotels in the world. Designed by renowned architects, Arkana, every care has been taken to create a really comfortable, stylish and enjoyable environment.
When it comes to food, we love to eat good, healthy and tasty organic food, so that is what we serve our clients.
Surf lessons? Our partner surf schools are offering quality surf lessons in a structured manner from surf instructors who have a passion for teaching people how to surf, rather than for surfing themselves.
The Swell Promise to:
- Provide high quality surf lesson courses for beginners, progressive and intermediate level.
- Provide our guests with super-comfortable, clean and stylish rooms.
- Make sure that even though you may arrive alone, you won’t be for long.
- Serve tasty, fresh home-cooked meals.
- Have friendly and knowledgable staff.
- Create a friendly, social and welcoming environment.
WHERE ARE YOU LOCATED?
Swell is located in the heart of Bingin village, 300m from the cliff edge and the charming stairs down to Bingin beach. We are central to access Uluwatu, Padang Padang, Impossibles, Bingin, Dreamland and Balangan surf breaks. Click on this link to see how good our location is.
ON WHICH DAY SHOULD I ARRIVE?
At Swell we don’t have a fixed arrival day. You can arrive any day of the week, as long as we have space for you. Check our availability by contacting Clare.
SWELL SURF GUIDING IN BALI
I would like to visit lots of surf spots; does Swell Bali offer surf guiding?
You can access Bingin Beach, Dreamland and Impossibles via a short walk from Swell Bali to Bingin Beach (200 meters). Our partner surf schools offer guided surf trips to other spots, catering to your surf level (see the question about surf levels below). This might be visiting Uluwatu, Balangan, Padang-Padang (advanced surfers) Baby-Padang-Padang or inside Balangan for beginner and intermediate surfers. We can also organize trips to Serangan and Nusa Dua in wet season, where you can still find some epic waves to suit all surf levels.
Boat trips to find the breaks at Jimbaran, Airport Lefts and Rights are also possible right from our local Bingin beach. Surf guiding prices vary, depending on whether you are a group wishing to find surf spots or a single person who is needing not only a surf guide but also perhaps some surf coaching. Please contact us to see what your options are.
I am a complete beginner surfer; can I get surf lessons whilst staying at Swell Bali?
We work with a couple of different, very good surf schools who teach beginner, novice and intermediate surf lessons: We have a local surf school down at our local Bingin Beach, where you can learn to surf on the higher tides in great beginner/novice/intermediate waves. We also work with a surf school based out of Balangan Beach, about 20 minutes from us. Both of those schools will teach you to surf safely and make sure you have fun whilst learning!
How many surf spots are there in Bali?
Bali is blessed with so many different surf spots, we can’t name them all here. But we will first mention the ones you can get to by foot from our front door and then a paddle; main peak Bingin (fast, barrelling left-hander, experts only), inside Bingin; smaller right and left-handers suitable for intermediates on a higher tide and beginner surfers too. Impossibles; fantastic long left hander, works on high and low tides; intermediates, advanced and expert surfers. Dreamland Beach; lefts and rights on three different peaks; low tide only; intermediates, advanced and experts. If you are a very fit paddler, you can even get to Padang Padang from our place, both the epic barrelling big Padang and the awesome smaller beginner/novice waves at Baby Padang. If not (and novice/beginners won’t be), then it’s less than 10 minutes on a scooter (easily hired here). Balangan Beach is a 10-minute scooter ride for a left-handed point/reef break. Balangan also has great beginner and intermediate surf. The famous Uluwatu is only a 10-minute scooter ride from us (advanced and expert surfers only). Further afield (25 minutes on a scooter) you will find Pandawa, Green Bowl and Nyang Nyang (advanced/experts). Sanur and the breaks around there (has surf for all levels) can be reached from Swell Bali in half an hour/40 minutes by scooter or car. We can arrange car/van transport too if you don’t want to go by scooter.
Is Swell Bali a surf resort?
Yes, Swell Bali has been designed as a specialist surf resort by surfers, for surfers. We know exactly what surfers are looking for in accommodation as we surf ourselves. You want a very comfortable, clean room with nice sheets and pillows, A/C and a spotlessly clean bathroom, you want some other surfers to hang out with, a pool table to shoot some pool, a ping-pong table, a games area, a bar to order a drink, a huge pool and a couple of hammocks to relax in after you’ve been surfing. The ideal surf resort also has great food and a big dining table to enjoy your breakfasts and surf stories with others.
How do I know what my surf level is?
It’s not really how long you have been surfing, but what you can do on the wave: We have the following scale to try and help you decide whether you are beginner, novice, intermediate, advanced or expert.
Beginner: You’ve never surfed before, or maybe you have taken one or two surf lessons. You can either just about stand up on the surfboard, or you have never even tried. You need help with your pop-up, wave selection and paddling to get into a wave.
Novice: You’ve done several surf lessons, or surf camps, but you still need help in the water. You are not a strong paddler and need help to get into a wave. You may be riding ok in a straight line, but may not yet be turning the surfboard.
Intermediate: You don’t need help catching waves and are able to paddle into a green wave independently. You are able to turn the board on the wave and can ride along the green face.
Note: Many people who are really Novice surfers will call themselves Intermediate because they have had a few surf lessons before: you are not an intermediate surfer unless you are catching waves unaided. If you still need to be pushed into a wave, or you can’t yet turn the board to ride the green face, you are still considered by to be a Novice.
Advanced: You are easily catching larger waves, doing top and bottom turns and adding other skills.
Expert: You are going out in double over-head +, hitting the lip, getting barrelled, doing 360’s (Experts; we really don’t need to tell you).
What are your surf instructors like?
The surf guides and surf instructors we work with are all good surfers themselves. But that’s not all; not every good surfer makes a good surf instructor. The surf schools we work with know the difference between giving the instruction ‘paddle, paddle, stand up!’ and actually explaining how to do it successfully. We also work with excellent surf coaches who can give one-on-one intermediate lessons, to help you if you are stuck at a particular phase of your surfing skills. You can be confident about either learning to surf or improving your surf skills with our partner schools.
Is all surf equipment included within the surf lessons?
Surfboard, leash, rashguard/lycra, and wax are all included within a beginner surf lesson. If you are a beginner or novice surfer, you will first ride a soft-top surfboard, which is very forgiving for those first inevitable falls into the water. Bringing surf booties with you on your surf holiday to Bali is a good idea as a lot of the beginner surf is over reef. If you are looking for intermediate surf lessons, you might want to use your own surfboard, but the schools can also provide one for you.
Can I have a private surf lesson?
Yes, the surf schools we work with can do either a group surf lesson or an individual surf lesson. Bookings in advance are normally required for individual surf lessons as spaces are limited.
I have some surf experience, should I still take a lesson or is surf guiding enough?
At Swell, because we are a surf resort, we have a surf report each evening; around 5pm, our staff will be giving our guests the surf forecast and tide information for all the local spots. They will be able to give advice on where you should head to surf the following day, based on your surf level (see above). However, if you are surfing unfamiliar surf spots, we always recommend taking at least a guide with you for the first few days. Knowing which spot to surf, how big the waves will be if they are really suitable for you and what time to go for the best tide, will give you the best possible surf holiday experience. Getting it wrong can be costly in terms of wasted surf time and at worse, injury.
If you are a beginner, sign up for a beginner surf lessons course with our partner surf school. They will collect you from Swell and take you to where they know you will have a fun, safe and productive surf lesson. The same goes for you if you are somewhere between Novice and Intermediate; being with someone who knows the wave, where to sit and when to paddle, will save you a huge amount of frustration. See our surf level guide above for where to place your surf skill level (and always underestimate your ability!). A surf lesson, unless you are already an advanced surfer, is never a waste of time or money in our opinion.
WHY SHOULD I CHOOSE SWELL?
Off course we are biased in our answer, but if you have doubts on whether a Swell hotel is the best choice for your surf holiday; have a look at the 100’s of reviews that our clients have posted on external sites like TripAdvisor, Facebook or Google.
When we planned Swell we had 1 goal in mind: to make a surf hotel we would want to stay at.
To achieve that goal again, just as with our first hotel in Cabarete, we have designed our building from scratch to be everything you need, and more. We also employ the best staff to look after you and prepare excellent food. We take the fact that you have chosen us very seriously and we won’t let you down!
WHAT IS THE AVERAGE AGE AT SWELL?
The average age of Swell Bali Surf & Yoga Retreat clients varies per week, but generally speaking, the people who come to stay with us on their Bali surf vacation are aged between 25 and 50. That’s not to say that in certain weeks there’s more people in their 20’s than 40’s (or the other way around). Our clients come from all of the world and everyone has one thing in common, they want the comforts of a surf retreat, combined with the social aspect of a surf hostel.
IS THIS SUITABLE FOR A FAMILY SURF CAMP EXPERIENCE?
Generally speaking, we get more solo travelers and couples without kids than we do families. We have set our minimum age at 13, so that our guests can enjoy mainly adult company.
If you are interested in joining our Bingin Surf & Yoga Retreat with your family, if your children are 13 and up, make sure to contact us asap, since spaces are limited and these popular holidays fill up a while in advance.
I AM TRAVELLING SOLO, IS THAT OK?
About 70% of the clients who come to Swell Bali for a luxury surf camp, travel solo. As a result, we’ve made it very easy to meet like-minded travelers from all over the world, to surf, eat and chill together. If you are looking for a social Bali surf holiday, then a stay at Swell will definitely be the right option for you.
Have a look at our reviews on external sites like Tripadvisor and you will see the social aspect at Swell Bali as the no.1 recurring theme.
About Swell :
After opening our first surf camp in the Dominican Republic in 2010 with such a positive response from our guests, we’ve been searching for another ideal location to build our second surf hotel. The search was not easy; we bought land in Costa Rica and spent a long time in Mexico whilst we searched for a location we knew our guests would love. We gave up on both of those locations eventually, either because the waves were not quite good enough, or because outside of surfing, there were was nothing else to do, or nowhere decent to eat a nice meal out. Jeroen, co-owner of Swell and my husband from the Netherlands, had always loved Bali and so he went back 3 years ago to see if it was still the beautiful island he remembered. He found it so and convinced me, Clare, (originally from the UK) to come and see for myself. Initially, I didn’t like Bali too much as we started in Seminyak and Canggu; I found to be busy places with too much traffic. It was when we drove out to the Bukit Penisula that I fell in love and most particularly with one of the most stunning beaches I had ever seen, right in the least spoiled, quiet Balinese community of Bingin village.
We were already experienced in running a successful luxury surf camp and know exactly what our clients need; a stylish, safe and social place to stay whilst they surf, learn to surf, or just chill. Swell Bali was born of all our experience so far for the best Bali surf & yoga retreat experience, and has been designed and built especially to cater to all your needs: A comfortable room with a divine bed, A/C and ensuite, a large communal space to hang out with fellow guests, a beautiful swimming pool and superb staff to look after you, all just a few minutes walk to the surf. We know about food too and you will have a great breakfast to set you up and some simple, tasty dinners at the surf hotel to get to know your fellow guests a little better. Our great location also means you are a short walk to lovely restaurants like the Cashew Tree or Casa Asia.
A Luxury surf camp/surf hotel
We hired well-known architects to design Swell Bali, our 2nd stylish, luxury Bali surf camp . Tremendous planning and thought has gone into every aspect of Swell Bali’s design.
If you are new to surfing, we will set up your surf lessons with an excellent surf school who can either teach you to surf right here at Bingin beach, or at beautiful Balangan beach.
If you are an intermediate surfer, we can set you up with a surf guide who will help you find the right wave for your level of surfing. We can also arrange progressive or intermediate surf lessons for you to suit your skills with our partner surf school.
If you are an expert surfer who wants quality accommodation and people to hang out with, look no further than Swell Bali. Bingin, a world class barrelling wave is 200m from our front door. Impossibles can also be reached by foot and a paddle. Balangan, Padang-Padang and Uluwatu are all less than 10 minutes by scooter, or, with a surf guide we can set up for you.
If you are into Yoga rather than surfing and want a sociable place to stay, Swell surf hotel in Bingin has a wide choice of Yoga classes on offer locally. You could take Yoga classes at the Bali Training Center and Temple Lodge, both of which are a charming walk away.
Since opening our first surf camp in 2010, we have hosted more than 7000 guests and taught 1000’s of people how to surf in a safe environment. Our first hotel won multiple awards and has 100’s of excellent reviews from happy guests. Swell Cabarete continues to be one of the top destinations for couples, groups and solo travelers to go to as the #1 luxury surf holiday. Now, Swell Bali will offer the same level of comfort, friendship and style to surfers of all levels.
Swell Bali offers package surf holidays that take all the hassle out of the planning, with airport transfers included in our week-long packages, transport to the beaches and much more, all Swell guests can enjoy a stress-free holiday right from the start. You just have to book your flights, and we take care of the rest!
With so many daily flights available into Denpasar (DPS) from all over the world, you will find it very easy to get to Swell Bali!