Last updated on January 17th, 2018 at 02:20 am

East Java Istana Ombak Surf Retreat is set beachfront in a magnificent bay with super consistent left and right barrels literally on the doorstep. This is the ultimate Surfers escape. Let Rod and his team at Istana Ombak guide you around this stunning region of Indonesia. Placing an emphasis on sustainability and minimising their carbon foot print, East Java Istana Ombak ensures your visit will be relaxing, surf filled, unforgettable, environmentally low impact and catering to maximum 10 guests!

The Retreat is absolute beachfront set on approx. 4000sqm of prime land with a high quality left and right directly out front within a short paddle.
Your surf experience at Istana Ombak is not limited to the surf out front and your expert hosts are happy to show you other surf spots within close proximity. At least half a dozen other breaks catering to all standards are within an hours drive.  Non Surfers will be as happy as surfers snorkelling, sunbaking on the pristine sand beach or by the infinity pool (due to open in 2012) or strolling through the local village

Package are all inclusive and all meals and drinks. (alcohol at own expenses)

Dining will certainly be a highlight of your stay with fresh produce in abundance fresh Seafood to imported meats accompanied by fresh organic fruit and vegetables and cooked in a variety of ways to suit your taste…Traditional indonesian flavours from Spicy to Mild with some western dishes thrown into the mix. Your hosts will cater to all your requirements   from surf to food, fishing trips, sightseeing etc. and there is nothing rigid about their management style.


From your arrival at Istana Ombak you will be showered with wonderful genuine hospitality and you will leave feeling surfed out, well fed and culturally enrich

Accommodation is super comfortable in well appointed bungalows with private facilities. As you can see in the photos no expense has been spared in the construction of Istana Ombak Eco Resort. All materials used are high quality and timber used is 100% local.  The resort is undergoing constant improvements and now has a stunning beachfront pool (watch the barrels while you are taking a dip) which will be the ultimate place to chill in between surfs.  Rod has created a piece of paradise that you will not want to leave and you will vow to return to.  Those already lucky enough to stay at Istana Ombak have been blown away by this incredible location.
This area of Java is unlike the Indonesia you may have previously experienced.  No hawkers, no nightclubs and best of all NO CROWDS!  Just a total escape from the hustle and bustle of Western society with incredible surf, friendly locals and pristine environment.

Rod Steeles is the man behind East Java Istana Ombak.  Rod grew up surfing the consistently powerful waves around the Lennox Head-Ballina region on the Far North Coast of New South Wales , Australia. The former President of one of Australia’s most respected boardriders clubs – Le-Ba ( Lennox Ballina Boardriders ) – Rod has proven his competitive surfing credentials over the years securing many amateur titles. He is respected not only in Australia but internationally as a brilliant surfer who loves nothing better than stylishly charging heaving reefbreak barrels. With Rods help you will experience amazing waves and some of the nicest people in Indonesia. Rod has travelled Indo far and wide and stumbled upon this pristine region of Java a few years back and established great relations with the local landowners.  Rod’s Istana Ombak Surf Retreat is the only accommodation facility in the bay and it is unlikely any other accommodation will be built here for a while longer.  Rod has found his piece of paradise and is now a respected local, contributing greatly to the local community.

The Surf:
IstanaOmbak translating to Wave Palace is a bay hosting a left on one side and right on the other with both working consistently and surfable at all tides (although low is for experts only).  This East Java bay faces South and catches any kind of swell from south west to the rare south east swell. The best time of the year is the dry season April through October however during the wet season (Nov-Mar) there is plenty of swell but the winds tend to be more variable and offshores not as common over this period.

IstanaOmbak Left
The left has many moods, from playful and rippable to heavy, powerful and unpredictable. The more southerly the swell, the longer and more predicable and playful the left will be. Behind the wave a shelf drops quickly to deep water. This rapid transition makes it a really heavy wave when over five foot, especially at low tide. On bigger swells and lower the tides you can get the biggest barrel of your life but below five foot on high tide it’s a powerful but super rippable wave. Compared to Bingin at under 5, Padang from 6-8′ and Chopes at over 8′. Seen on many magazine covers in 2011 with Bruce Irons and Rizal Tanjung.

IstanaOmbak Right
The right is a hollow peak on most tides, providing more ripable waves with more water over the reef.  Westerly swells are best for the right, pushing further down the reef for a longer ride. Long-period southwest swells in the two-to-six foot range are ideal. The bigger it is the higher it needs to be. The higher the tide the more it turns into a ripple wave and the end section isn’t to shallow. When the swell is bigger then 5 foot. The current can cause bumps up the face on the out going tide as the water rushes out over the reef as the channel is very small. When bigger and lower tides its for experienced surfers only. When it’s a little higher and small its a safe wave for all levels of surfing. Keiran Perrow compared this wave to backdoor Pipe on a perfect 6′ day recently.

Other Waves

This area of Java has loads of bays and waves‚ many still uncharted because of the landscape, thick forests and lack of access. In saying that, there are several other waves within a short drive and walk, and the resort has a boat to access other spots. But 98 percent of the time you will want to just surf out the front of the resort.

Puncher: Longboard/Shortboard -Basic to Intermediate wave. Rivermouth/beachbreak: 1 hour drive from Wave Palace:
Left hander this is a long left hander that is a great beginner and intermediate wave with a easy take off and a sloping wall to carve along.  1-4 foot is an easy wave  and it can break up to 10 foot and if the sand banks are in correct position this can be a 200metre + wave  Over 4foot for intermediate and experienced surfers…   (PERFECT longboarders wave)

Harbour: Intermediate beach break: 1 hour drive from Istana Ombak

Right hander that breaks when there is a decent swell this breaks around a break wall a long righthander that has some nice wally sections and the occasional barrel

Surfpoint Y -Intermediate wave: 20 mins drive from Istana Ombak

There is 3 coves here all with waves although there is one cove that has the best of the rest… there is a right hander that barrels and some steep wall sections and then the left hander that is a nice wally wave  both for intermediate surfers.

Surf seasons:

April-October: Best breaks   Bay Left & Right, Pancer Beach

November-March: Best breaks  Bay Rights, Pancer Beach, Harbour and Surfpoint Y.

* Even though our scheduled departures run between March and November the resort is open all year and some great wet season waves can be had during Nov-Mar period.

Other Activities

Fishing – Some great fishing awaits in the tropical waters off Java, in the unlikely event of small surf the boat is ready and waiting for you to jump on and start reeling some whoppers. Rod and his team love to take you out in their boat and the fishing is amazing in this region.

Cave Walk – An amazing natural feature is this area of Java is Gong Cave one of the most beautiful caves in South Asia. The limestone cave is a worth visting even if the surf is pumping and if you can fit it in your schedule you’ll be rewarded.
Bat Island Cruises
Spear fishing directly out front of the resort.


  1. Chris
    November 28, 2011

    Whats the best way to get there. Regarding flights

    • michael
      November 28, 2011

      Dear Chris, thanks for you message. Send me an email on or call on +62 361 287 555 cheers Michael

  2. Nick Collins
    December 12, 2011

    How do you check the avaliablity for 2012 for wave palace me and a few mates are very interested.

    • michael
      December 13, 2011

      Hi Nick,

      Thanks for your comment. Please send me an email to, letting me know dates you wish to travel and i will reply to your email immediately.. thanks again Michael Hill

    • greg brice
      March 19, 2013

      g day,looking at availability round the 21st ofjuly to the 31st july mate for wave a team in tow,2 families totalling 8 (4 kids ages 4 and 6)Is there a pool for the missus yet ? and whats facilities like for the groms? Where pretty amped for something different than the well worn path of most of indo nowdays.cheers

  3. rodrigo martins
    March 30, 2013

    what is the availabillity for april and may? how much for 12 nights? how do i get there?

    • michael
      April 1, 2013

      Hi Rodrigo,

      We still have some availability in April and also May.. can you please send me an email to so i can reply to you with prices etc.. kind regards Michael Hill


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East Java – Istana Ombak

  • East Java
  • Istana Ombak

ISTANA OMBAK Surf Retreat:

Packages Includes: Return airfares, Return Hotel to Airport transfers, Beachside Accommodation with ensuite, all meals
Best Season: Best from April till October
Surf Suitability: Hard core walls and barrels
Traveller Suitability: Couples, Families, Friends