Here at Green Overhead we regularly get asked by our community what boards should I take to the Maldives?
Without having a crystal ball at hand the best response we can give is always keep an eye on the forecast. Ideally we would all love to be in a situation where we have multiple boards sat at home to choose from but sadly we know this is not often the case.
However, if it looks like a solid swell is on the way, pack your everyday shortboard like an Alone Raptor, a similar backup and a step up board with a bit more length. If the swell is looking pretty average, take that same regular short board but chuck in a fun board instead that packs plenty of volume and has the versatility to be setup as a twinny or a quad like the Alone Thirteen. If space allows then we would also recommend taking a board that could be used in a variety of conditions. Either the Alone Captain or the Next Easy Rider would be our personal recommendations.
This way you are totally covered should a sudden swell pop out of nowhere. What you can guarantee is that there will always be a rideable wave in the Maldives because of the exposure it has to the Indian Ocean. Although easily comparable in natural beauty it is nowhere near as heavy as Indo so you will not need a bigger board or a gun. Certain waves in the Maldives do pack a punch when it is big such as Chickens and Cokes but because the swell travels from a longer distance and the reefs aren't as steep as Indo you wont need as much foam under your chest to paddle into the waves or get down the face without sliding out.
If you want a second opinion, we caught up with John Jameson who has clocked up over 20 trips to the Maldives over the years...
"The Maldives has a variety of waves on offer which is what makes it such a desirable destination. It's quite easy to assume that because most of the spots are reef breaks that you would need something a bit bigger than your normal shortboard to enable you to paddle into the waves and get you to your feet quicker. This isn't the case. In fact most of the reefs are totally flat in the Maldives.
Like most reef breaks, there are normally multiple take off points. Some are steeper and faster than others but most of them have a take off point where you can ease into the wave and still get a long ride making it popular with all abilities of surfers.
I usually recommend that if your heading to the Maldvies bring a board that you feel confident riding in all conditions. Even with waves a little bigger than perhaps your used to, your normal short board will be able to handle it. The waves are generally pretty friendly in the Maldives and have come from a long way in the Indian Ocean so therefore give you a lot of power under your feet enabling you to make powerful turns and shoot through make able barrels at speed.
For your second board I usually pack something that can make your day playful in small conditions. A smaller size but with more volume like a twin fin, quad or even a mini-mal. If space allows, for your third choice I would throw in the board bag something which would suit bigger conditions in the 6ft/double over head range. These swells happen every couple of weeks during the peak season and hang around for 2-3 days so it is good to be prepared just in case. I wouldn't worry if these sort of waves are out of your comfort zone though as the Maldives has so many waves to choose from that there is always somewhere else to surf if swell of this magnitude does arrive. Spots like Ninja's will often be smaller on these type of days".
If you have a trip booked to the Maldives with us here at Green Overhead we are more than happy to assist you with all aspects of your booking from start to finish. Having visited the Maldives on multiple occasions we are able to offer you first hand advice on what boards to pack as well as fins, board bags, leashes and anything else you will need to consider for your trip of a lifetime.