In an island nation like Australia it makes sense that so many people hold the beach so close to their hearts, and for many people that beach lifestyle revolves around surfing. Australia is blessed with some of the best surf spots, with over 25,000km of coastline and host to waves of all descriptions.
For the entry-level surfer it is hard to beat the one thousand kilometre stretch from Noosa in the north to Sydney in the south. Queensland's Sunshine Coast offers warm, friendly waves perfect for learning the basics and growing your confidence, while a little further south the Gold Coast is Australia's surfing mecca, home to numerous world champions, some of the best waves on the planet, and plenty of surf schools keen to get you up to speed. The crowd factor can be a little off-putting, and some of the waves simply aren't suitable for a novice, but the lure of the turquoise Pacific Ocean is hard to beat.
Crossing the border into New South Wales, Byron Bay just might be learner surfer heaven! A fun hippie town with plenty of backpackers the water is warm and conditions are perfect for anyone from a beginner to a pro, and there are plenty of surf schools in town to get you ripping in no time. Further south to Sydney the coast is dotted with dozens of sleepy fishing villages just begging to be explored, and with a bit of luck you might find perfect waves with nobody around. There are also bus tours plying this stretch of coast, loaded with equipment and coaches and all the inside knowledge you need to find those highly sought-after empty waves.
In Sydney, Manly and Bondi are the two famous beaches you'll be wanting to hit up, both for their iconic status, and the number of surf schools and beginner-friendly conditions they offer. Below Sydney the South Coast of New South Wales serves up some of Australia's most ferocious waves, and has something for any surfer of an intermediate level or above.
Moving into Victoria the water is cold but the waves are consistent. In the east the Mornington Peninsula and Philip Island have great waves for surfers of all levels, while south-west of Melbourne surf capital Torquay is the gateway to the iconic Surf Coast. One thousand kilometres of coast stretches to the South Australian border, and with a bit of looking around surfers of all abilities can easily find waves to their desire.
South Australia and Tasmania serve up powerful, isolated conditions for advanced surfers only, while Western Australia is home to every sort of wave imaginable, from the famed Margaret River region in the south-west to Perth's Rottnest Island, and the desert lefthanders of Kalbarri and beyond in the north. A 4WD vehicle and a first-aid kit are recommended at all times! Australia is as close to surfing heaven as it comes, so what are you waiting for? Jump in your car and start exploring the best surf spots Australia has to offer!