Nias as you’ve never seen it – KabuNohi Resort from World Surfaris & World Snowfaris on Vimeo.
Welcome to KabuNohi Sorake a ‘handmade resort’ on Nias Island with world class waves on the door-step.
As you enter the front gate of KabuNohi Sorake you instantly feel like you’ve entered a very special tropical oasis. The unique building structures, local artefacts and vegetation offer an instant impression of paradise and the quality of the resort in immediately obvious. KabuNohi Sorake is a ‘hand-made resort’ and the first upscale resort in Nias.
The next level in quality, environmental and culturally aware, surfside accommodation.
Australian Mark Flint and his Indonesia wife Debi have spent the best part of the last 30 years on Nias. Mark is regarded as a legend of the surf scene having been there from the early days when they had to swim from a distant beach into the bay to surf at the point.
Mark & Debi have built KabuNohi Sorake Resort on their 2,400 sq./metre freehold private property located ocean front, directly at the surf point: Sorake Beach, Lagundri Bay.
The name Sorake (Zorake), in Nias language means “broken coral rocks”. KabuNohi Sorake Resort commands an absolute beachfront location and the coral sands are pushed up onto the beach to the retaining wall by the breaking waves. The oceanfront garden area has a large and private viewing deck that is a great camera spot covering the view directly up the length of the point, and the 3 wave sections with the Rice Bowl Peak (directly out the front), Kiddies Corner, and the Main Nias Break. This deck is the ultimate place to hang out in between surfs or relax at sunset with a cold Bintang. Non-surfers will enjoy this relaxation area as much as the surfers with some shaded areas to relax in a deck chair with a good book whilst catching the sea breeze and checking out the surf action beyond.
Mark has met travelling surfers from all corners of the globe over the years and whilst they love the surf and vibe of Nias, many have expressed the need to have higher quality accommodation and food on offer so they can bring their non-surfing partners and families to enjoy the wonders of Sorake Beach. KabuNohi Sorake will meet the higher standard requirements of couples, families and discerning surfers looking for quality accommodation, the highest quality cuisine and personalised service.
The first floor of KabuNohi Surf House is split between the owner’s private room on one side and a large guest room on the other side, with an open plan living room as the central area for guests to relax.
The KabuNohi Sorake property covers 100m from the front gate (Sorake Road) through to the ocean front. Mark’s study of Feng Shui has ensured a perfect design/layout of the resort and the breezeway, from ocean to road, ensures a cooling breeze most of the time.
3 accommodation categories at KabuNohi
- Deluxe Bungalows
- Standard Bungalows
- The KabuNohi Surf House
All bungalows are connected via wooden walkways on one elevation, and wheel chairs can access all of the property. Bungalows are spread throughout the property and built to within 30m of the beach viewing platform. This maintains a privacy barrier and green buffer zone. There is a walkway through the small garden of banana pineapples, root potato tropical trees and coconuts to the front surf view area at KabuNohi Sorake. The resort prides itself on maintaining guest privacy.
All air-conditioned bungalows are hexagonal in shape with attached private bathrooms. The bungalows are constructed with solid foundations and the strongest fixtures, architecturally designed to with-stand the strongest winds and earth tremors. The unique thatched rooves with large overhangs were modelled off a traditional Nias hat and delicate hand carved features ornate the buildings. KabuNohi Sorake is indeed a unique ‘handmade resort’ and has provided employment for local builders, wood carvers and clever craftsmen during the construction, and will continue to do so in the maintenance. Mark and Debi are very committed to providing employment and opportunities for the local community of South Nias.
Deluxe Bungalows: The 2 Deluxe Bungalows offer panoramic views over the gardens and the bay beyond (Rice Bowl section of the wave). Deluxe bedrooms are 25m2 with an attached private indoor/outdoor tropical bathroom. The handmade timber furnishings, décor and original artworks compliment the natural environment and you are instantly immersed in your own tropical hideaway as you enter the private and deluxe zone of the resort. A gate divides the deluxe zone from the standard bungalow area and there is a private kitchen area with fridge, drinking water and tea/coffee making facilities for use by deluxe guests. Fruit and other snacks will be replenished daily.
Standard Bungalows: The 2 Standard Bungalows are almost identical to the Deluxe Bungalows with the same tropical indoor/outdoor bathroom, however, they are slightly smaller in size with 19m2 bedrooms. These bungalows overlook the gardens and are in close proximity to the main bar / dining / kitchen / reception area where guests can help themselves to fruit, drinking water and tea & coffee.
KabuNohi Surf House: On the first floor of the main house is a large room that will sleep up to 4 guests in fan cooled comfort. It can be configured with 4 x singles (dorm style) or 1 x double & 2 x singles (for families).
Guests in KabuNohi Surf House have their own private bathroom with hot water and another dressing room area for luggage/clothes storage. This is very comfortable for single surfers or families on a budget looking to enjoy the KabuNohi Sorake experience at very reasonable rates. The centerpiece upstairs is a huge relaxing lounge area for use by KabuNohi Surf House guests to kick back and enjoy the ambiance of this traditional wooden building. This is a fantastic space to relax. Guests can walk downstairs for drinking water, fruit, tea & coffee.
An emphasis is on high energy fresh food using the best ingredients with an amazing array of fresh fruits, vegetables and protein. Mark Flint is an excellent cook and has put together a varied, tasty and wholesome menu that will satisfy most people. Dietary requirements can be catered for if advised in advance.
Breakfast: Pre-Surf early morning – bowl of cereal with fruit and drink.
Post Surf: Omelet, eggs or local style breakfast, toast, fruit juice/tea/coffee.
Lunch: A variety of options from day to day such as gourmet sandwiches, salads and noodles.
Dinner: A variety of hot and cold dishes such as fresh fish, pasta, vegies, chicken and salads.
Food will be of the highest standard and will definitely be a highlight of your trip. Nowhere in Nias will you find food of such high quality.
Surf KabuNohi Sorake Resort – Nias
At KabuNohi Sorake, the passion is most definitely surfing. Besides having the prime point wave on the doorstep, there are also other surf options in the immediate area. Several of these locations may depend on your surfing / waterman skills and in the immediate vicinity there are locations that work on a variety of conditions.
The Surf Point at Sorake in Lagundri Bay is one of the premier waves on the West Coast of Sumatra and earns a top 10 rating in the world’s top “A” grade waves. Lagundri Bay is protected by hills and large coconut plantations that direct and fan the offshores down into the bay. Historically Lagundri is little effected by any adverse winds, hence known to sailors as a good all weather anchorage. Unknown to many, Sorake has consistent surf all year round.
Surf Season: November to February is classed as Low Season with the outside point breaking less frequently than Peak Season (March to October), although generally once or twice a week there a 3-6’ point waves. During the low season, Kiddies Corner really comes into its own.
Kiddies Corner: The grommet and older guy’s paradise! Here is a small wave that runs perfectly down the line, hugging the reef and if linked it can serve up long rip-able walls of fun with rides over 100m long. For the short board rippers, this little wave machine is one of the most rip-able and air-able waves anywhere. For older mellow surfers who travel with a fun board, they will have hours of fun trying to link the sections together. KabuNohi Sorake founder, Mark Flint says “besides the name Kiddies Corner, I have personally nick-named this section of the wave as the exercise machine, as it keeps me fit, is super fun and my daily exercise!” It’s so easy to access/exit with a very short walk up or down the private beach track at KabuNohi Sorake. It is a perfect funboard wave and Mark will have a small quiver of longboards for rent for anyone wishing to try. Unfortunately, the domestic airlines will not uplift board bags over 6’8” in length. A fat fishy funboard is a great option for older guys wanting to have a ball at Kiddies orner.
Rice Bowl Section: This is a small right and left peak right at the end of Kiddies Corner, short shallow and tubing. When this starts breaking the up and coming mini grommets locals are on. Rice Bowls is a good sign that there is movement in the swell. It breaks directly out the front of KabuNohi Sorake and provides great late afternoon entertainment from the surf deck whilst enjoying a cold Bintang.
Main Break – The Point (Keyhole): This iconic wave in Nias is nicknamed ‘the keyhole section’ as when it’s working you paddle out a Keyhole in the reef at the back of the wave. From the keyhole, it is a 50m paddle to the take off. Here you can surf from 4 to 15 foot waves that break consistently, with predictable sections. The water depth is even and the reef is relatively flat. Current is nil most of the time and tidal variance is very slight apart from full moon. The wave is fast and powerful and offers a perfectly formed high tubing wave. The KabuNohi local guides will give you a personalised introduction to the Point and take you out through the Keyhole and then give you the vital landmark pointers (Coconut trees etc) so you know if you are sitting too deep or not out far enough to avoid the clean up sets. The KabuNohi surf guides will give you some vital pointers on the wave itself and the best way to approach it.
Local surfers in general are very friendly if you have a chat with them and wait your turn. They will call you into set waves if you are cool in the water. Your turn arrives and you’re in prime spot for a set wave! Put in that extra stroke and enter with speed and you’ll be set for the ride of your life. Often you should take the high line rather than do a deep bottom turn. This high-line could set you up for an exciting barrel or you might be racing to get through to the next section where you’ve got some time to drop down and draw out a nice bottom turn and smack the lip before launching into the end section which will often throw out a nice almond barrel that spits you out into the channel.
On smaller days it may not barrel as much however it becomes a very rippable high performance wave and you may even be able to milk it and fade back to connect with Kiddies Corner and take another 100m of skate park through to the Rice Bowl… now that’s a big paddle back to the Point, but well worth it.
Unlike other Indo breaks, The Point breaks in deep water and it would be very rare to touch the bottom even if launched over the falls. If caught in the impact zone you can change direction rather than try and paddle through it and head for the deep water of the channel and back out to the point, being careful not to cut it too fine and cop a wide set on the head.
Once again, The Point is so easy to enter the surf zone via the Keyhole and exit the surf by a prone out on a wave and heading high up the reef to head in the direction of KabuNohi private walkway back into the resort. There is a fresh water shower at the top of the steps. You are likely to get the barrel of your life here and more than likely have a photo to prove it as the resort has local photographers lined up to shoot your sessions and offer you a photo package at a very reasonable price.
Indicators – Outside Lagundri Bay: The picture-perfect wave that peels down the outside point letting you know that the sets are focused on the point! Paddle and take a right turn out of the main break “Keyhole” and watch this mesmerizing wave peel down the shallow reef. It is advised to best watch the locals here because if they are paddling out it’s a good sign that the swell angle is good. Indicators breaks perfectly on a shallow reef edge (the local guides can advise you and surf with you here).
Sobatu – Deep Jungle Right Hand Wave: (The venue for O’Neil Deep Jungle Open WQS event 2000). A walk up around the point to this challenging wave is for experienced surfers only. Usually a mission here is well planned and documented. KabuNohi has a speed boat available for strike/photography missions to Nias’s heaviest and most challenging wave.
Rockstars Right: With the right direction in the swell and favourable winds, the surf guides can arrange a car and take you to Rockstars Right for a session. A 45-min drive along the east coast will get you there. An easy paddle out through the bay to a mechanical righthander that will throw you a few barrels and have you grinning from ear to hear.
Other surf options accessible from KabuNohi Sorake: Guided boat trips to these breaks can be worth getting off the beaten track for a day (payable directly to the resort).
• Secret Beach (1/2 day car /motorbike river crossing beach walk)
• West Coast Surf Hunt (car trip minimum 1 day)
• West Coast Afulu & Secrets (car trip extended overnight)
• East coast Surf Hunt (car or motor bike ½ – 1 day)
• Hinako Islands (Dive-Fish-Surf) day trips by speed boat
Surf Access: On small days (inside section usually low season) you can access the waves by walking on the resort’s private path across the reef to the inside waves right in front of the property.
When the point is firing the safest, fastest and most efficient way to access the point wave, is walk or jog from the resort’s main gate along the Sorake Beach village road 150m and walk across the reef via the keyhole crack in the reef. This crack in the reef allows you a safe entry from behind the wave and a dry hair easy paddle from the Keyhole to the main point, take off zone. It really is very easy and even on the bigger days it’s very easy access to the break.
To exit the surf, you just catch a wave and prone in across the top of the flat reef to the step stone walk and private beach path into the resort. KabuNohi Sorake is a private resort with a unique view looking up the point at all the 3 sections of the wave.
Nias has an old and colourful history (head hunting and slave trade was renowned in this region). The South of Nias was known for hard warriors and dominating kings from the hilltop villages. The unique architecture of these villages can be still seen today.
Botohili Village: In the resort’s immediate vicinity and within walking distance, there are two traditional villages. 500m up the back of the hill from KabuNohi Sorake is the village of Botohilitano. This is the village that assimilated / facilitated the first surfers into being the traditional owners of the coconut plantations that grow on “the Point”.
Hiliametaniha Village: A 40 min walk down the point along Lagundri Beach and up the hill (alternatively 10 mins on motorbike) takes you to the traditional village of “Hiliametaniha”. Due to little influence from tourists, this village is still very traditional. You will literally feel like you’re walking back in time. Hiliametaniha Village also gives you a fantastic view over Lagundri Bay “The Point” up the indicator reef to Sobatu Bay.
Bowamataluo Village: (Sun Hill) is where the biggest king’s house can be found. It is said to be over 200 years old. This massive wooden building sits atop huge wooden poles. Bowamataluo Village is renowned for its cultural displays of war dancing and the famous stone jumping sport and the sun hill sunset.
Town & Village Market Days: The Local Town of Teluk Dalam (Deep Harbor) has shops open every day except Sunday and has Indonesian Banks with ATM machines that accept visa card. A trip to this town is interesting and if you need to buy things there is a traditional market as well as a small supermarket. Prices in the shops are cheaper than what you will find around Sorake.
Traditional Markets (Hari Hambala): A 30 min drive from Sorake is the village of Amadaya. Every Thursday there is a traditional roadside market here that is very busy. Produce from the surrounding mountain villages is spread along the side of the main road and sellers and buyers bargain for goods. Here you can get a great perspective of Nias village life and the Nias people. These markets, the scenery of the plantation mountains, and the rice paddies enroute to Amadaya, all provide great photo opportunities.
Treks & Jungle Walk: Villages, Markets, Waterfalls, Rice Paddies, Rubber Coconut and Cassava Plantations. Trek hill and dale from village to village on the old farm plantation tracks. These treks can be for a trip to the waterfall (1/2 day) or overnight staying in the village!
* Sobatu Bay rock pools and coral channel swim spot (10-15 min leisurely coconut plantation and reef walk).
* Alawasa Rocks and sand beach (40 mins reef and coconut plantation walk).
* Waterfall (1/2-day Car /Motorbike and walking trail).