Kiribati – Your surf trip of a life time

Big and long breaks off Fanning and Kiritimati (Christmas) islands, the final frontier – where “lack of crowds” is a complete understatement, you will be lucky if anyone else is out with you. This is the beauty of the isolation of the central pacific. Of course this exclusiveness is because these places can be a little challenging to get to – however you are in the right place to find out. Only for the truly adventurous surf traveler, below are the details you will need to arrange your surf trip of a life time, and waves you have only dreams about.

Fanning Island (Tabuaeran)

Of all of Kiribati, Fanning is the pick with world class surf waves with almost year round consistent swells. Fanning has breaks on the North and South, making the most of both Northern Hemisphere and Southern Hemisphere swells. The two most consistent breaks are ‘English Harbour’ in the South with strong and consistent March to June; and ‘Whalers Anchorage’ in the North with strong consistent swell from October to March, even picks up some southern swell.

Christmas Island (Kiritimati)

Kiritimati is host to a golden five kilometre stretch of points, reefs and channels between London village and Paris point. This stretch is reputed to have 24 sortable waves – with surf season October through to March. The swell hits Kiritimati about a day or two after it hits Hawaii – a 8′ to 12′ swell at Sunset Beach in Hawaii will result in 6′ to 10′ clean faces in Kiritimati one to two days later. Of the 24 breaks, two third are user friendly with deep channels and sand of soft reef bottom. The other third is has rough coral bottoms and are for experienced surfers only.

Tarawa and Gilbert Islands

Surfing in the Gilbert Islands is not as consistent as Fanning Island and Kiritimati Island in Line Island group, nevertheless it offers quality surf when all the conditions are right. The Gilbert chain is more suited therefore for longer term visitors that have a bit more time and flexibility to catch the surf when it is “on.”

If you’re stopping by Tarawa on a business trip or to visit friends or relatives, there are some decent waves to be found on the end of a rising tide. The most easily to get to breaks in Tarawa are in Temaiku – a village not far from the airport. The best break in Tarawa though is Naa – right at the tip of North Tarawa. After that, there are some breaks off the outer islands – off the Abaiang Atoll near the Ouba Islet, as well as some off Marakei Atoll at Rawanawi Village. These are for only the truely adventurous though.