Guidebook Bells Beach is an iconic Australian surfing destination


Bells Beach is an iconic Australian surfing destination

“A rather small bay situated between two equally unremarkable headlands,” writes Traveller, a hardcore surfer’s beach that catches the swells from the Southern Ocean, “which slow down and steepen over the reef-strewn shallows, that foment the outstanding surf.” Waves can rise to five metres (although three to four is the average), and the consistency for which the beach is also famed arises, in part, from the fact that “the bottom is not especially sandy and hence is not prone to shifting sand bars which would create great variability.”

And here are some other great places to surf outside Melbourne, from HomeAway.

“Ah, Bells Beach… what can we say about Bells” asks Red Bull. “Well, it’s by far one of the most iconic waves on this planet … it’s a wave like no other. Hell, even to non-surfers it means something!” And although it might not offer up the best waves of the World Tour, “there’s something about the history that keeps on drawing back the world’s best surfers, year after year.”

It’s a beach with plenty of waves for all levels of surfing, according to Surfer Today. “On a classic day, all you've got to do is run down the stairs, paddle out, and get lucky. You may well catch the wave of your life.” And Bells Beach never loses its core qualities: “whether you're being tested in 12-foot waves or simply having fun in two-foot surf, this place will always keep you pumped.”

And if you want a technical description of the waves, here’s how Magic Seaweed describes Bells Beach: “a classic and consistent right point that breaks on almost any tide, any wind and any decent swell from SE-SW. It’s a long wave broken into 3 sections (which may just link up in huge swells), starting outside at Rincon, leading into Bell's Bowl and finishing in the beach shorebreak. Power is always associated with this wave and few escape the flogging of an outside set on the head and gruelling paddle outs as it grows beyond double overhead. When small it is playful and ripable, offering endless carve and cutback corners along a lengthy platform reef that is prone to some long, unmakeable sections.”

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