Surfing in Shellharbour
For a memorable adventure, Shellharbour is a great surfing destination. The Farm and Mystics are iconic National Surfing Reserves in the Killalea State Recreation Area, about 90 minutes’ drive from Sydney on the unspoilt NSW South Coast.
Only 500 metres separates The Farm and Mystics, and each surf spot offers a different wave experience. The Farm is at Killalea’s northern end and is unique as it faces southeast. It has ‘largely deep water and an open rolling wave’, while the southern Mystics is ‘short, peaky, thick and wedge-like’, according to the National Surfing Reserves.
Killalea is a pristine scenic reserve with littoral rainforest and seabird breeding areas. There are nature walks, picnic areas with barbecue facilities, kiosk, accommodation including a bunk house and camping ground, and other amenities. You can spot humpback and other whales migrating along the spectacular South Coast between May and November.
Pines Surfing Academy and Australian Surf Tours run surf lessons at Killalea. These accredited surf schools offer a variety of experiences for all skill levels, from beginners to surfers wanting to master aerial moves. Learning how to ride a surfboard is great fun and a lesson will have you conquering the waves in no time.
There are more unspoilt beaches along the gorgeous Shellharbour coastline where you can enjoy surfing and bodyboarding. Warilla Beach curves 2km from Windang Island, near Lake Illawarra’s mouth, to Barrack Point. You’ll find a quality left-hand break on the south side of Windang Island and Illawarra Surf Academy can give you a lesson.
On either side of the pretty harbour near Shellharbour Village are two popular sandy beaches, Shellharbour North Beach and Shellharbour South Beach. The southern beach is near the heritage-listed Bass Point Reserve. There are beach breaks along both stretches of sand and a right-hander off the southern rocks at Shellharbour South.
There are many places to stay near the Warilla and Shellharbour beaches to suit all budgets, from beachside caravan and camping parks to stylish beach houses, apartments and motels.