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“You need to go to Rapture!”

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Rapture Surfcamp Bali
Reviewed 1 July 2014

I stayed at rapture surf camp for two weeks in July and honestly, I couldn't have asked for a better experience!

Having never been to Bali before I opted to go the full package, starting with the airport pickup. This proved to be a wise move as I guess in most South East Asian countries the local Taxi drivers are on your case as soon as your outside the terminal. Instead I had my own driver waiting for me with a 'Rapture Surf Camp Bali' sign and a big smile. Perfect!

Arriving to Rapture I was happy to see a large private wall and security at the front gate, no chance of anything going missing. It was a short walk from the beach but I expected that judging by its location on the map.

I arrived at 11 00am and was informed I just missed the complimentary breakfast, no biggie as the lovely kitchen staff were willing to cook me up something and mark it down so I could pay later. Dinner was also complimentary and the combination of vegetarian and non vegetarian meals caters for everyone. Josh (the owner) met me with a handshake and gave me a walk around the camp and a rundown of how things work, and I was very surprised at how lush the place was!

I opted to surf with the intermediate group and was very surprised when I heard they would be back in half an hour to take me surfing with them. Sick! Thought I may have missed the boat. Having not been to Bali before we had a quick discussion on my level and what waves would be suitable for me, then off we went for a surf. Two sessions a day end up being the norm for my entire stay, wow were my arms tired by then! Not too mention drinking beers after a surf overlooking Uluwatu and watching epic sunsets. Without Raptures knowledge of the surf in Bali (which I now know is very subject to wind and tide) there's no way I would have known where I was going.

As a conclusion if your are heading to Bali for the first time or even if you have been before, you need to stay at Rapture. Their knowledge of the area really is second to none, there local and western staff are all very friendly and love having a joke and a laugh and are more than willing to help you out anyway they can! Josh and his wife Maggie mingle with the guests which is great too see and a testament to them that they really want to pleases their guests snd improve their service where they can. Sickest holiday ever!

  • Stayed: June 2014
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Thank RedRobbie85
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rapturesurfcampbali, Owner at Rapture Surfcamp Bali, responded to this reviewResponded 2 July 2014

Thanks for taking the time to write this review it all helps take care and i hope to see you soon

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Reviewed 1 July 2014

After reading the last bad reviews about the camp I do feel I have also have to review my trip to Rapture Camp Bali as I had a great time.

First I have to say I was a total beginner when I went to Bali, I have never surfed before in my life.

As I wanted to surf I read about the sport so that I would not be to unprepared when I start. You have to make yourself clear that surfing is a dangerous sport in the ocean, you have to be in really good physical shape and be an excellent swimmer, if you expect you will be able to surf like in all the videos on youtube in a week or two you will be disappointed as it will probably not happen.

On my day of arrival I took a taxi from the airport, but in my previous contact with the camp they offered a pickup at the airport, but my plane was really late so I had to change my plan.

When I got to the camp a really polite guard said hello and showed me the way to the other staff. During that Time there were a guy from Norway, "Roger", an English surfing guide named "Enda" and three balinese Guides, Andy, Kadek and Dicky. Also there were the owner Josh and his wife and a couple of nice dogs.
The Location looked really clean compared to the rest of Bali. I was show to my room(shared with 3 other people) with AC, simple, clean, everything you need for sleeping and relaxing.
At dinner I got to meet all the other people who got back from surfing. It was easy to connect with other people, everybody was laid back and relaxed. After Dinner Dicky asked me if I was a beginner, he explained me when to meet in the morning and showed me where to get a surfboard and which one would suit me( big guy, 6´5", belly, 37y old). Also he offered to buy some reefies(surf shoes) because there are always some rocks in the water.
The next morning we went to Padang Padang and first did some exercises on the beach. Dicky explained the terms and where to paddle in the water, also where the water comes to the beach and how it leaves through a channel.
I had a hard time and was struggling as I had to realize how hard surfing is. All three guides where in the water and tried to help everybody(a group of 8 beginners) to catch the right waves. After 30min I was so tired I could not paddle anymore. The guides came up to me and pulled/pushed me away from any dangerous rocks, they took care of anybody in the water, and believe me, everybody had their problems. I never felt lost but the first day showed me to have respect for the power of the waves. But its a risky sport in the open ocean and you have to be fit and healthy.

Every morning the guides checked for the swell and where to take the beginners, at night the group had theoretical lessons. It´s a little difficult to understand the guides at first but even though my english is not the best I could understand them, but this is Bali Surf Camp and not a English learning camp. They took us to different beaches including Kuta, Balangan, and more, some with sand and some with reef, but they always told where to go and what to watch out for.

The food in the camp was good but could be a little more variable, but you could always ask for a second or third plate. BEST TUNA BAR-B-Q!!!!! once a week. Also you have the choice to leave for dinner and get good food around the corner really cheap.
I stayed in the camp for 2 weeks, I never had such a relaxing trip of my life. The owner was honest with the things he said and took care of the any problems that occured during that time.
If you want typical five star hotel please don´t go there. If you want to experience authentic surf feeling, clean rooms, cool locations, the best surf spots and a laid back surrounding this is the place to go. I still cannot surf but will sure come back another time to try again with these guys.

And for sure have a Bintang beer at Uluwatu at sunset, never to forget..... :-)

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with friends
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1  Thank East57th
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rapturesurfcampbali, Owner at Rapture Surfcamp Bali, responded to this reviewResponded 2 July 2014

Thanks mate loved it much appreciated

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Reviewed 16 June 2014

This was my first time in Bali and the Rapture was a good choice.
The staff is helpfull and nice.
The room was clean.
The camp is at 10 min driving from almost every spots in the Bukit.
I had a really great time here.
A Special thx to Mitch.

  • Stayed: May 2014
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Thank Coffeenistere
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rapturesurfcampbali, Owner at Rapture Surfcamp Bali, responded to this reviewResponded 21 March 2015

Thanks for this great to mention mitch hes a great guy

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Reviewed 11 June 2014

When I left Switzerland the help the guys /girls provided via Facebook was fantastic.

The google reviews sounded very convincing so I went down to Pecatu area which is 30 min from Kuta area away (main area where most of the things usually go down).

I talked to Jasmine (who booked my course for six days (she was very helpful) and obviously of the same nationality sometimes helps. My opinion of her consultation (in respect to what course I should take 1day / 3days / 6 days) seemed fair and comprehensible.

I was instructed well what to bring (sun creme, little money for lunch.. etc.)

First day we picked up T-shirts at camp. And then I just got a beginners board. I had no clue about anything anyway.

We went out to Padang Padang.

"Introduction" : everybody stands in a circle. Guy called "dicky" which had been behaving like an immature teenager during the drive to the spot (from camp) gives a very unclear speech in Australian English. English is my mother tongue but often I couldn't understand the guy.

He asked 1 question (who had booked what course?) and asked some jargon questions and used words like paddling / channel / tail etc... which I really did not understand at all (O.K. paddling was somehow understandable out of the context later but again if you've never seen a surf board or stood on one you can't expect people to understand what "popping up" or p"paddling" means.

People now split into 3 different groups.

This guy who is absolutely demotivated talks for five minutes about ocean safety. Half of it not understandable for the German girls which were in my group so I had to translate and their English was really good. Quick introduction to paddling / popping up and holding your balance.

Off we go in to the water. Not a sandy beach but all sharp stones and very difficult to walk. We are told to surf down the wave and then take a " safe channel " between the mushroom rock and the cliffs.

Our guide is so quick all the beginners cannot possibly follow him. First big wave of anxiety rises looking at the 1.5-2 meter high waves. I'm surprised and anxious as I did not expect these kind of waves in the beginning (but I tag along because I think this must be some kind of minimal depth / hight for waves). Water gets really deep. Our "surf instructor Andy" is gone. I don't see him anymore.

Somehow one of the girls of my group show me the path to him.

NO clear instructions. NO help. NO idea what I'm doing. The guy just tells me to "paddle paddle paddle". And then at some random point to pop up from the board.

I surf down take the safe channel to get behind the waves. this time the waves are even beginner and I really struggle hard to even get through (tiredness as well). I'm struggling and panicking because I keep tipping of the board. I shout and wave my hand for help. NObody sees me. I do it again. Some more experienced surfers from our group help me out and show me what to do. I really felt that if I had been a weak guy / less physically trained another person could have easily drowned.

I felt really unsafe out there all alone and not happy at all.


The whole morning this keeps happening. The afternoon he finally starts to realize the waves were too big for us so he takes us into shallower water.. WHAT A SMART IDEA! (sorry for my sarcasm)

Again he's not motivated, not nice, not happy and beach is totally unsuitable (scars everywhere from the stone cuts)

After the first attempt I would have quit. I gave them a second chance. It was no good.

I went to the reception and confronted Jasmine with those facts because in my opinion it is only a matter of time until someone drowns or gets serioulsy injured. (By reading other reviews apparently this has happened already). She asked the manager (the immature teenager to have the situation explained by me) and my guide had no say in it and was sitting outside of the discussion (he was left out).

When we discussed this issue in an open circle, I told them what I felt as a guy / as a beginner.

After having listened to my concerns, Jasmine took up the input as a serious issue while all the other instructors were just trying to reject my FACTUAL criticism and trying to put it off as the "newbie" that has no experience and that I would not be able to judge because this is my first time.

I defended my position saying that it's nothing personal I just wanted to tell them that it could happen sooner or later (that somebody would drown) AND that it is not what the surf instructor sees as a threat (big waves) but rather the surf student which cannot properly judge whether something was dangerous or not. But having a negative feeling is always a bad sign and feeling left alone is even worse. So that's what I told them to improve.

They offered me a second day to try it at a different spot but I refused to go on a second day with them.

I had to pa / I payed one day.

I really cannot recommend this school at all for beginners (no theory, no practicing). The surf classes are useless (described above). The guided lessons are useless as well you might as well rent a board and go off on your own if you have the experience. (from what I hard from other participants)

Overall expensive for what you get and very bad service.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled solo
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16  Thank Ritravelleraa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rapturesurfcampbali, Owner at Rapture Surfcamp Bali, responded to this reviewResponded 15 June 2014

Before you left we had our discussion and you came to the conclusion that surfing just wasn't for you especially when you cant swim. You were told you didn't have to pay but you insisted to pay the day you used and we refunded your other 5 days and you were happy when you left and still you go ahead and write terrible untrue words. You did book group lessons and i believe if you had private lessons you would have been fine. BUT

Sometimes in life you come across people who you just cannot please doesn't matter how much you do for them or how well you treat them. As you can see from 81 of my previous excellent reviews and my now 2 terrible reviews which one is yours i think we are doing a great job and my guides are trying there best. Its not easy for an Indonesian to speak perfect English considering they teach themselves and schooling here is terrible and teaches them nothing, so i'm sorry but dicky and all my staff try there hardest to speak the best English they can and for someone like you who thinks he deserves better English then go to a country which has English as there mother tongue dont come to Bali which is INDONESIAN language.

If you come on holidays with a bad attitude then your going to go nowhere and have a bad holiday so dont blame my staff who are my good friends and do the most they can for me and my buisness and 99% of my cleints will back them on this.

Dicky has an Australian accent as im Australian and im his boss who tries to teach him english and his qualifications are Australian standards ASI.

AS we can see from your 20 page essay review on every second of the day you are in need of some fun in your life so go out and enjoy life its to short to sit in your room writing bad words about good people, i take insults very serious on my staff/friends who do there best and that's all that matters at the end of the day. I hope you find happiness in your life come back and give it another try your more than welcome but come with a good attitude please.

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Reviewed 10 June 2014

Had a great time at Rapture. The instructors were experienced and very good teachers. They had us all up on waves in no time. Would definitely recommend this to people looking to surf in bali. You can also walk or scooter to lots of things nearby.

  • Stayed: May 2014
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Thank biancal339
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rapturesurfcampbali, Owner at Rapture Surfcamp Bali, responded to this reviewResponded 15 June 2014

Thanks Bianca for your kind words it helps all to see how it really is in our surf school i hope to see you again sometime soon.

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Reviewed 13 May 2014

Stayed here for 8 days in March doing beginner classes. Had an amazing time with great people, from people on a 2 week holiday to those backpacking for longer and the Rapture team. Accommodation was clean, quiet, cool and laid out around the pool which was great to relax with a milkshake after surfing. The instructors took us to the best spots for our level each day at the right time, and they get you up and surfing quickly - I'd never surfed before - and make sure you stay safe and learn the etiquette!!! Food was a good mix each night and lots of it. Josh, Maggie and the team make everything easy and help you with what you need - scooters, day trips, surf equipment and advice. There are a few restaurants that you can walk to nearby and shop and launderette. I hope I'll be back or if not at least to try the closer Portugal camp. Thanks for a great few days, new friends and new skills!

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled solo
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2  Thank 132SmithL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rapturesurfcampbali, Owner at Rapture Surfcamp Bali, responded to this reviewResponded 15 June 2014

People like you make a great camp loved having you here and would love to see you again thanks Gorgeous

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Reviewed 3 May 2014

I was lucky enough to spend two months teaching yoga at the Rapture camp. As soon as I arrived I felt like I was part of the family. It is such a relaxed environment that it is impossible not to enjoy yourself there. I had an absolutely fantastic time and learned so much during my time there. Whether with Sunny in the kitchen (delicious food with a smile!), or surfing out with Dicky, Kadek, and Andy (who are full of laughs, yet provide a safe environment), there was always something new to take home with me. Josh has created a really incredible camp that will always hold a special place in my heart. I hope to return one day to continue surfing and living the good life. Just go!

Stayed: December 2013, travelled solo
2  Thank Talia W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rapturesurfcampbali, Owner at Rapture Surfcamp Bali, responded to this reviewResponded 15 June 2014

Talia as ive said before in previous responses its great good people who make my camp so much fun and homely so thanks for coming and really hope to see you again in Bali or where ever you are keep in contact and thankyou

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Additional Information about Rapture Surfcamp Bali

Address: Padang Padang, Pecatu, Indonesia
Phone Number:
Region: Indonesia > Bali > Nusa Dua Peninsula > Pecatu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free Parking Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 66 Speciality Lodging in Pecatu
Price Range: £31 - £89 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Rapturecamps is a network of four surf camps in Bali, Portugal and Nicaragua that strives to provide excellent surf vacations and surf schools for people from all over the world. Whether you are a beginner looking for a surf school or a more experienced surfer wanting to discover new surf breaks, we are here to help you get the very best from your surfing experience. We offer great surf in top-class accommodation. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Rapture Surfcamp Bali Pecatu

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