Basic Language For Kitesurf Travelers in Indonesia

Kitesurf travelers in Indonesia surrounded by local community

Being kitesurf travelers in Indonesia is a blessing for who seek adventure and unexplored kitesurf spots.

Indonesia has always been recognized as a surfing mecca, though it is slowly becoming more and more recognized as well as an amazing kiteboarding destination. Being part of the Malay archipelago, the biggest worldwide, Indonesia claims 17,000 islands and most of them are still inhabited giving a huge room to still explore and unveil kitesurf spots in the future.

Like the best waves, you have to wander off the beaten track of Bali to find the best wind …

You have wind all around the year, nevertheless the best kitesurf season is during dry months from May to October. Kitesurf conditions are extremely various from pure flat to demanding waves … name it, Indonesia hast it !

Indonesia overall is a very popular place to visit regardless of its world class waves and wind. Kitesurf travelers from all around the world go to experience the different activities on and off the water.

Here some basic language to fully experience the WONDERFUL INDONESIA, and been able to interact with people, no matter you travel solo or not, in touristic or remote area …

Let’s start by what drive kitesurf travelers in Indonesia!

There is a literal translation “layang-layang selancar” (kite surf), but for Indonesian people this combination sounds really weird. So better to stick with English for this one: KITESURF.

Now let’s look at Indonesian vocabulary surrounding the practice of kitesurf.

It may be useful when you meet locals amazed by this new sport for them, and you can be sure they will come to you curious about it, and striking you with questions.

Beach Pantai Sky Langit Fly Terbang Cool Keren
Sea Laut Sun Matahari Jump Lompat Fun Senang
Sand Pasir Board Papan Play Main Fast Cepat
Water Air Kite Layang-layang Surf Selancar Enjoy Nikmat
Wind Angin Small Kecil Slide Luncur
Wave Ombak Big Besar Sport Olahraga

To make it simple, consider that Bahasa is a phonetic language meaning that you pronounce all the individual letters – There is no trap: no silent letters, no specific sound with special combination of letters, … it is a genuine and sincere language like its people.

Read also: 8 Reasons To Choose Indonesia For A Kitesurfing Trip In Asia


Kitesurf rider in indonesia with local kids playing in the lagoon


Imagine now, you are a solo kitesurf traveler, you finally found a virgin kitesurf spot with 25 gusty knots and travel light with only your favorite 12m kite. You are alone to launch your kite and some Indonesian locals propose to help you. Here some words to avoid crashing in a coconut tree …

Hold Tahan No Tidak OK Setuju Thanks Kasih
Grab Ambil Don’t Jangan Yes Ya Land Darat
Slowly Pelan Stop Berhenti Release Lepas Help Bantu

If despite this, you still land in the coconut tree …

Ouch ! Aduh ! Injury Cedera Medecines Obat Hospital Rumah sakit
Hurt Sakit Wound Luka Doctor Dokter

Now, let’s move backward… you are in the airport with your puffy kitesurf boardbag, and you see the airline staff a bit worried about the size and weight. He/she starts to point out your excess luggage’s (usually 20kg in domestic airlines) – Here some tips to deal with it:

  • Size = Ukuran
  • Weight = Berat
  • It’s okay ! = Tidak apa-apa !
  • Come on ! = Ayolah !
  • Can for free ? = Bisa gratis ?
  • Pleassssse ! = Toloooong !
  • How much the price ? = Harga berapa ?
  • Whatever ! = Tersera ! 

Kitesurf travelers in Indonesia

Want some more ? Here we go !

Greeting people

Selamat + pagi (morning), siang (lunch), sore (afternoon), malam (evening)

General basics

Madam Ibu What Apa How are you ? Apa kabar ?
Sir Bapak Why Kenapa I am good Baik
Westerner Bule What Apa Thank you Terima kasih

Fauna and flora

Tree Pohon Fish Ikan Corals Karang Buffalo Kerbau
Coconut Kelapa Turtle Penyu Monkey Monyet Beef Sapi
Banana Pisang Crab Kepiting Jelly fish Ubur-ubur Horse Kuda
Mango Mangga Dolphins Lumba-lumba Rice Nasi


Go Pergi Straight Lurus Right Kanan Start Mulai
Let’s go Ayo Back Mundur Left Kiri Arrive Datang
Road Jalan U-turn Terbalik Long Lama Hour Jam


Hungry Lapar Eat Makan Thristy Hause Drink Minuman

… and pay the bill:

  • Money = Uang
  • How much ? = Berapa ?
  • Can i have the bill ? = Minta bill ?

Jeneponto sulawesi horse on the beach

Indonesia has 700 dialects, so you may face some variations in the language spoken, but Bahasa remains the official language nationwide that unite the country.

We hope this list of vocabulary will get you started, and encourage you to interact with local communities. As kitesurf travelers in Indonesia, you will have plenty of opportunities to learn more along the way, and plenty of encounters with Indonesian off and on the water.

Selamat jalan!

This is a staging environment