Surfing in Shellharbour

If you don’t want to compete for waves on the busy surf breaks of Sydney, pack up your board escape the city and find some of the state’s best breaks and beautiful beaches in Shellharbour on the NSW South Coast.

Sun rising over The Farm in Killalea State Park in Shellharbour Area, South Coast

The Farm and Mystics

Two of the most famous breaks are virtually side by side in the beautiful Killalea Reserve, a designated National Surfing Reserve. Killalea Beach (locals call it ‘The Farm’) is on the northern end of the reserve and faces southeast, while Minnamurra Beach (known locally as ‘Mystics’) is at the southern end.

Killalea also delivers out of the surf, with nature walks through rainforest, panoramic coastal views and picnic areas with barbecues. During whale watching season (May to November) you might even be able to spot migrating humpbacks as they cruise by.

Surf lessons at The Farm in Killalea State Park - South Coast

The beach life

There are other excellent beaches along the Shellharbour coastline where you can go for a body surf, a leisurely swim, bodyboarding or surfing. 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. 

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.

Woman learning to surf with Pines Surfing Academy Surf School at Killalea Beach ('The Farm'), Shell Cove, Shellharbour Area

Learn to surf

It is not just experienced surfers who love surfing around Shellharbour, absolute beginners can sign up for surf lessons at various beaches through Australian Surf Tours and Pines Surfing Academy. These accredited surf schools offer a variety of experiences for all skill levels, from novices to surfers wanting to master aerial moves. Learning how to ride a surfboard is great fun and a hobby you can have for life.

Stay a little longer

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. There is even accommodation available at Killalea, with a campground and bunkhouse at Reflections Killalea Reserve. The bunkhouse caters for groups of up to 40 – great for boardriders’ clubs or a gaggle of grommets.

Surfing Highlights