With waves like this just one of many on offer it’s easy to see why the Mentawais is now known as THE surfing mecca. However, although surfers have been visiting the islands for near on two decades, it has mostly been on surf charter boats and therefore numbers and impact on the area have been minimal. It is only more recently that there has been a spike in land-based tourism, with many one-time tourists now building small resorts. With this comes many issues to address as the local culture meets the modern-day surf culture. It would be a tragedy if this little piece of paradise and its people were ruined by the very resource (its waves) that makes it so special.