Zach Zocher joins Niyama Maldives as professional ‘Surf Dude’
Niyama Private Islands Maldives has announced its very own professional ‘Surf Dude’ Zach Zocher, as the resort positions itself as the premier luxury surfing destination in the Maldives.
Growing up in Cape Town, Zach started surfing at the age of 10 and soon represented his province in the South African Surfing Championships. Still a teenager, he immigrated to Australia with his parents and landed in the beautiful seaside town of Avoca.
“In Avoca I surfed every day and I loved the sense of adventure and exploration that surfing offered me. It is here that my passion became an obsession and my travels in search of perfect waves started,” said Zach.
Zach’s epic surf adventures have taken him to some of the world’s surf spots from Jeffery’s Bay in his home country of South Africa, to Trestles and Blacks Beach in California, to the eponymous Bells Beach in Australia and various breaks around the Mentawai Islands.
During a surf expedition in the Maldives, he discovered Niyama.
“Most of the surf spots in this area remain undiscovered, but at Niyama the secret is right in front of you. It’s the only luxury resort sporting surf-able waves that break directly onto the island,” said Zach.
“The resort offers adjoining twin islands, Chill and Play, and just off the edge of Play Island’s Surf Corner is Vodi surf point – a classic, powerful left hand ride that breaks onto the shore. Off to the West and just five minutes away by speedboat is Kasabu surf point at Kudahuvadhoo Corner – a superb right hander with barrelling sections. Head East for ten minutes to Hocus Pocus at Maeenboodhoo Corner for another barrelling right hander.”
Raving about the surf conditions, Zach continued to rave about the waves around Niyama and how they are relatively mellow and playful, but challenging at times and suitable for intermediate to advanced surfers, with some spots perfect for beginner coaching.
As the resort was gearing up to introduce a series of surf options and tailored services, Zach took the opportunity to offer his expertise on the spot. He then returned soon after as the head of surf operations at Niyama.
Float, Niyama’s water sports operator, offers an array of tailor-made surf programmes and services to suit every surfer.
“From beginner coaching courses to various surf pass options that offer on-demand boat transfers to surf points located away from the resort, I am on hand to coax first timers or use video analysis to help intermediate surfers get to the next level,” said Zach.
“The best thing about surfing at Niyama is the fact that the surf points are off the beaten track with uncrowded waves and high quality breaks.”
Zach also confessed that, despite having surfed some of the best spots around the globe, nothing compared to arguably the ultimate luxury surf experience offered at the resort – a private seaplane at surfers’ disposal to discover and surf secret spots.
“The seaplane allows surfers to discover untouched waves anywhere in the ocean, and swim back to the plane for the scenic short journey back to the resort,” said Zach.
“I am super excited about this opportunity and I cannot wait to explore and share the secret surf spots of this stunning country with my fellow surfers.”
Accessible by a 40-minute seaplane flight from the main Velana International Airport, the blissful resort of Niyama Private Islands Maldives offers 86 studios and overwater pavilions spread across two islands, allowing guests to find comfort both indoors and outdoors. The luxury resort, located in the southern Dhaalu atoll, features endless dining options including Edge, an overwater restaurant only accessible by boat, and Tribal, a modern campfire dining fare complete with tiki torches.
Featuring a 24-hour spa, Niyama Private Islands Maldives is also home to the world’s first underwater club. In addition, guests seeking to explore the waters can pick their favourite water sport at Float, which offers PADI dive courses, or go sailing on traditional Maldivian wooden boats called Dhonis. There is even a marine biology lab for coral rehabilitation and education.