Catching Waves on the Gold Coast

Surfers Paradise, Gold Coast, QLD. © Tourism Queensland

Catching Waves on the Gold Coast

Discover the best breaks or learn to surf in our surfing paradise.

With 70 kilometres of sun-drenched beaches and four epic point breaks, it’s easy to see why the Gold Coast is home to a city called Surfers Paradise.

As well as an international party destination, the Gold Coast boasts some of Australia’s best, most consistent waves and hosts many international surfing competitions. The 35 beaches are patrolled year round by professional lifeguards and have surf to suit all levels of experience. If you’re a surfing novice, the Gold Coast is an ideal place to learn. Sign up with one of the many surf schools, where accredited teachers will help you to stand up on your board and catch your first wave fast

You’re almost guaranteed a wave on the Gold Coast, particularly at The Spit, Main Beach, Narrowneck, Palm Beach and Mermaid Beach. The winds and easterly swells conspire to produce perfect one to two foot swells about once a week, and the point breaks deliver good, uncrowded waves the rest of the time. Every couple of months, offshore cyclones create the mythical four foot waves that draw pods of surfers with boards and dreamy, determined expressions. Boogie boarding is best in the morning before the wind hits, and Narrowneck is great for kite surfing.
If sharks or ships don’t scare you, paddle across the Gold Coast Seaway to South Stradbroke Island and discover some of the cleanest, most consistent breaks in Queensland. The waves make the effort worthwhile, especially at tranquil, pink-hued sunrise.

South of Mermaid Beach and Miami, you can body board or surf the classic right-handers and huge swells of Burleigh Heads. Afterwards, relax in front of the towering stands of old Norfolk Island Pines that have made this protected beach so popular with families.

A little further down the coast, near the New South Wales border, lies the now-legendary Snapper Rocks Superbank. Stretching across Snapper Rocks Point, Rainbow Beach, the old Greenmount Headland, Coolangatta Beach and Kirra, the sand bar was created when sand was transferred from the Tweed River to stop coastal erosion. 

Today the Superbank is home to some of the world’s longest waves, including one reportedly ridden for 1.97 kilometres from Snapper Rocks to Kirra. Talk about never-ending surf!  For this reason, it’s also home to Australia’s most crowded waves, with locals and pro-surfers monopolising the barrels. Kirra is the one beach where surf has suffered since the Superbank changed the shape of Rainbow Bay. However in cyclone swells, you can still catch some quality waves.

When you’ve caught your last wave of the day, head to one of the local surf clubs that line the Gold Coast for food, drinks or to watch a friendly surf competition. Did someone mention paradise?


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