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The Survival of Paradise

01st Jun 2020

It’s like we have gone back in time.

Charter boats are docked, surf resorts are closed and no one can enter, let alone leave their home countries.

The Indian Ocean in particular is getting a nice break. Natives are surfing by themselves maybe for the first time ever and we are seeing wildlife return to lands and waters they once ruled.

Did Paradise need Covid-19 to survive?

Film & Edit by Iñigo Grasset

Film & Edit by Iñigo Grasset / Mentawai Surf Retreat

Surf tourism has been booming for more than a decade. Demand from overseas surfers wanting their annual slice of heaven and perfect waves has led to a growing impact on the very places we call paradise.

With demand, comes a healthy need for supply. Cheap land with long term lease options means cashed up Westerners can simply swoop in and acquire their slice of paradise for the same cost as a Toyota Hilux and build multi-villa resorts with immediate access to some of the best waves on earth.

Sure, these resorts and to an extent charter boats help to keep up with demand BUT the major concern up until this point has been the overcrowding of popular surf breaks and the degeneration of once pristine rainforests and marine eco-systems that make these places the ‘paradise’ we have all taken for granted.

As Corona Virus delays our annual surf adventures to places like the Mentawais, Maldives or the Pacific. We must be selfless in these times and look at the positives. 

There are more birds, fish, turtles, snakes and lizards than ever before. Rainforests are growing without barriers and coral reef systems are regenerating in places that have become speed boat highways in recent times.

Sure, empty waves continue to roll through un-surfed day after day and are as perfect as ever. But, this will all end soon and we can get back to what we love doing soon.

A new energy is coming and I can’t wait to be part of it.

Photography & Videography courtesy of Mentawai Surf Retreat. Check them out and enquire now!

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