Whether you’re an avid surfer or a grommet (surf slang for a young wave-rider); whether you seek breaks to ride or calm water to relax; whether you prefer open ocean or ocean-fed rock pools – the Kiama region‘s blissful beaches don’t disappoint. Extending from Minnamurra in the north to Gerroa in the south, this part of the NSW South Coast is paradise for those who like sea, sunshine and sand. The most difficult decision to make is where to start.
Just off the Minnamurra River lies one of the coast’s most legendary surf spots: Minnamurra Beach, known locally as Mystics, stretching from a rocky headland to a volcanic outcrop. The swell here is so reliable that the area has been proclaimed part of Killalea State Park’s National Surfing Reserve. Travelling south toward Kiama you’ll discover yet more breaks at Jones, Boneyard and Bombo beaches. In Kiama itself, Surf Beach draws board-bearers to its northern break, known as ‘The Wedge’.
Further south still you’ll find Werri Beach in the sleepy seaside village of Gerringong, where point breaks flank the sand on each side. If you’re new to the sport, or want to brush up on your skills, Gerroa’s Seven Mile Beach is the place to be. Here you can sign up for lessons with Land’s Edge Surf School, Surf Camp Australia or Gerringong Surf School.
Don’t be fooled by its name – Kiama’s Surf Beach includes a calm, sheltered bay, ideal for swimming and splashing about with kids. Equally family-friendly is Kendalls Beach, with shallow waters and gentle waves, and sheltered Easts Beach, a short walk from the Little Blowhole. Because of its length, Seven Mile Beach offers a variety of conditions; avoid the waves and you’ll find calm water to swim, fish and snorkel before retiring to one of the picnic areas for a barbeque.
New South Wales boasts more than 100 ocean pools, built over the sea or carved directly into the coastal rock. You’ll discover a few on the South Coast, including two in Kiama: the 50-metre-long Continental Rock Pool in Black Beach Reserve, and Blowhole Point Rock Pool, which includes a shallow wading area for kids.
A short drive south in Gerringong, Ourie Rock Pool occupies the southern end of Werri Beach and features a separate wading pool, while Boat Harbour Rock Pool is a postcard-perfect spot for swimming and snorkelling – it’s south of the Whale Watching Platform.