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The 5 Best Surf Spots in Western Australia

by Nina Simons

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When people think about Australia, besides kangaroos and koalas, surfing is also one of the first things that remind them of the country. And yet, the sport was introduced in 1915 by Duke Kahanamoku from Hawaii. 

A hundred and three years later, Australia is now one of the greatest surfing destinations in the world, home to successful pro surfers like Mick Fanning, Stephanie Gilmore, and many others. These days, surfing has become a mainstream sport, with several health benefits attributed to it, like muscular strength and cardiovascular improvement. Additionally, this sports allows you to relax and unwind, so many consider it a great way to clear one’s mind and reduce anxiety.

Since Australia is well-known for its gorgeous beaches, riding waves is something everyone wants to experience. There are numerous renowned breaks in the country, but among them, Western Australia offers plenty of opportunities for both beginners and expert surfers. Let’s take a look at the five best surf spots in Western Australia


1. Crystal waters of Cottesloe Beach




Cottesloe Beach, more famously known as Cott, is close to Perth and can be reached by car, bus or train. This is one of the most popular tourist areas, ideal for enjoying clear waters and white sandy beaches. During breaks, you can have a drink or lunch in one of the many cafes and restaurants on the beach.



Photo credit: Charlievdb via Flickr

Despite being crowded, this is a common place for surfers, especially those who’ve just started learning how to stay on the board. Similar to other surfing spots in Australia, you can also enroll in surfing schools or take private lessons. However, pay attention to others enjoying snorkeling and swimming since this beach is also a popular spot for those activities.


2. Secluded beaches of Rottnest Island




Rottnest Island is around 20 km (12 miles) from Perth and located in the Indian Ocean. This is the spot where the local population likes to enjoy some relaxing and private time to surf, fish and swim. This is a unique and special place to ride your board since it’s surrounded by coral reefs and shipwrecks.




Those who seek privacy to surf can choose one of the 20 bays of Rottnest Island. Between breaks, you can go on guided tours and learn a bit about the fascinating history of the island. Also, quokkas, the cute marsupials living on the island, will surely bring a smile to your face even when you fall for the 100th time off the board.


3. Perth’s best surf break of Trigg Island


During summer, Trigg Island is crowded with surfers catching as many waves as possible. If you’re lucky, you may even paddle your board with dolphins around. This is the spot where people gather for some fun and surf, but also bird watching since this is the home of silver gulls and fairy terns. Surf Life Savers will make sure that everyone is safe and enjoy their time on the beach and in the water. Trigg Island beach is also the usual training spot for surfers and future lifeguards.


4. Margaret River’s wealth of beaches



Photo credit: Samantha via Flickr

Southwest of Western Australia, the town of Margaret River offers a surfing location well known among surfers around the world. Famous surf spots like The Box, Rivadog, and Main Break are the highlights.

This area has 75 surfing breaks spread across the 130 km (80 miles) of coastline. Since this surfing break covers so much space, the waves and currents vary from spot to spot. The biggest waves in Australia are actually located here on the Cow Bombie, around 2 km (1.2 miles) offshore. If you plan to try your surfing skills along the Margaret River, consider leaving your belongings in the self-storage facilities in Perth to move more freely.



Photo credit: Robert Young via Flickr

The most important thing for a surfer is to be able to follow the waves, and this coastline will keep you occupied for days.


5. World-class surfing in Gnaraloo Bay



Photo credit: chantae.com

Gnaraloo Bay is a secluded spot for those who enjoy strong winds and fishing opportunities. This place is a long way from Perth and it will take you two hours by airplane and another 140 km (87 miles) by car to get there. The waves at Gnaraloo are suitable for more experienced surfers, and many travel across the world to try out at the famous Tombstones.



Photo credit: education.microsoft.com

Gnaraloo Bay is also the home to the endangered loggerhead turtles, manta rays, and humpback whales. Off the beach, the water is calmer and great for those who want to learn some surf moves or simply enjoy the view from their board. 


In the end

Western Australia offers its visitors a lot, especially those interested in surfing. You can come here as a novice and leave as a fairly decent surfer, but only if you know where to find the right surfing breaks are. Even though surfing seems effortless, waves can be pretty dangerous and you can easily get hurt. So, always listen to the more experienced surfers and don’t try any flashy moves unless your tutor gives you the green light. There is something amazing in observing the sunset from your board or paddle boarding close the shore among the diverse sea life and flora.    


If you want to see what Nina has been up to lately, you can find her on Twitter

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