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Noosa Surfing

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Hopefully you’ll find everything you want to know about surfing in Noosa here. From where the best surfing beaches can be found to who you can either learn to surf with or hire equipment from it’s all here. If you think we’ve missed out some information comment below and we’ll add it in for you.

World Surfing Reserves

In November 2017 Noosa was named as the 10th World Surfing Reserve! “World Surfing Reserves proactively identifies, designates and preserves outstanding waves, surf zones and surrounding environments around the world.” – according to the Save the Waves Coalition, a nonprofit organisation. (savethewaves.org). Noosa was chosen for it’s “high quality waves, distinct environmental characteristics, surf history and community support.” In addition they state that “the Noosa World Surfing Reserve is an exemplary coastal community dedicated to the preservation of their coastal and surfing resources.”

If that doesn’t convince you that Noosa is an excellent location to learn to surf I’m not sure what will!

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Surf Beaches | Surf Cams | ForecastSurf Festival | Equipment Hire | Surf Schools | Learn to Surf Review

Best Waves and Beaches

Noosa has some great spots for surfing! Some beaches are better for beginners and others should only be visited by experienced surfers. It’s always wise to stick to beaches where there are surf lifesavers and to follow the unspoken rules of surfing etiquette. (I say unspoken but some surfers will definitely tell you what they think of you if you surf irresponsibly!)

Lifesavers patrol Noosa beach on weekends and public holidays from the start of the September school holidays until the May Day long weekend each season.

map of noose surf beaches

1. Main Beach

  • Good for: Beginners
  • Left and Right Handers
  • Better for shortboards

All the surf lessons take place on Noosa main beach near the Rock Wall, so if you’re an experienced surfer it’s probably best to avoid this part of the beach. The Main Beach is also very busy most of the time so you could head a bit further down the beach where you can surf between 2 rock walls. You can catch left or right hand breaks here.

Venturing even further down the beach to Noosa River Mouth (1a on map) you’ll find no surf lifesavers and some very strong currents, so if you’re inexperienced steer clear of this area.

2. First Point

  • Good for: all levels
  • Right Hander
  • Better for longboards.

First Point is where you’ll find the Noosa Surf Life Saving tower. It’s also where the competitions are held during the Noosa Festival of Surfing. Longboarders love First Point so it can get very busy. The beach also gets very busy because of the safe swimming zone flags put out by the surf lifesavers.

When the waves get beyond 5 foot then you’ll start to see a lot more shortboarders as the surfing is fantastic here when the swell is high. Most of the time though First Point is definitely the place for longboards in Noosa.

3. Little Cove

  • Good for: Beginners
  • Right Hander
  • Better for longboards

Little Cove is another great place to learn to surf with waves rarely getting above 3 foot. This is also a really beautiful beach and tends to be a bit quieter than First Point due to the main car park for Little Cove filling up fairly quickly so you might have to go on a bit of a stroll to get here. It doesn’t take long though and is well worth it.

4. Nationals

  • Good for: Experienced surfers only
  • Right Hander
  • Better for shortboards

Nationals is rocky and can therefore be very dangerous. If you can’t control your board then you shouldn’t come anywhere near these waves. If you head towards ‘The Boiling Pot’ you’re going to catch a good wave but they all break on the rocks so be extremely wary and careful.

noosa national park boiling pot

5. Tea Tree Bay

  • Good for: Everyone
  • Right Hander
  • Better for anyone and everyone – even people without surfboards!

Tea Tree Bay might be a bit of a walk but it’s one of the best beaches in the world for surfing. As well as great waves and stunning scenery this is also a great place to spot dolphins and turtles!

6. Granite Bay

  • Good for: more experienced surfers
  • Right Hander
  • Better for shortboarders

Granite Bay is a bit of a trek to get to, but you’ll sometimes get 12 foot waves here so on those rare occasions it’s well worth the walk. As the name suggests Granite Bay is a bit rocky so again be careful.

7. Alexandria Bay

  • Good for: Very experienced surfers who love walking
  • Left and Right Handers
  • Better for people with a death wish!

Alexandria Bay is a long walk and when you get here, there are dangerous rip currents. You’ll not find any surf lifesavers here and very few surfers, and there’s a very good reason for that. Surfing at Alexandria Bay is risky and there have been some nasty accidents here. My advice? Leave your surfboard at home and just come to enjoy the scenery.

8. Nearby Beaches

Make sure you also check out sunshine beach and sunrise which are just a short drive away. Also check out Peregian and Coolum.


Surf Cams

Webcam: Noosa Heads – last 24 hours
Noosa Head: Noosa


Surf Forecast


Surfing Festival

With Noosa being such a great place to surf it’ll probably come as no surprise that a massive surf festival is held here every March. The Noosa Surf Festival is a big event on the worldwide surf calendar and is absolutely not to be missed. Find out more about Noosa Festival of Surfing.

noosa festival of surfing


Hire a Surfboard

If you already know how to surf but haven’t brought your kit with you then there are several places where you can hire surfboards, body boards, rash suits, wetsuits and more.

All information and prices correct as of 12/02/18

Learn to Surf
  • Surfboard Hire – Soft and Hard Boards available for half day, full day or weekly rental. Boards delivered to your door. Contact them for prices.
  • Body Board Hire – Contact them for prices.
  • Rash Suit / Wetsuit – Included in price of equipment hire.
  • Also available to hire – Kayaks
Noosa Surf Lessons
  • Surfboard Hire – From $25 for 2 hours, up to $45 for over 4 hours (maximum 1 day)
  • Body Board Hire – $15 per day
  • Rash Suit / Wetsuit – Included in price of equipment hire.
  • Also available to hire – N/A
Underground Surf
  • Surfboard Hire – From $20 for up to 4 hours for a standard board to $170 for 5 days hire of a performance board
  • Body Board Hire – Contact them for prices.
  • Rash Suit / Wetsuit – Contact them for prices.
  • Also available to hire – Stand Up Paddle Boards ($40 for up to 4 hours)
Go Ride a Wave
  • Surfboard Hire – From $25 for 2 hours, up to $45 for all day (hard surfboards available for additional $10)
  • Body Board Hire – From $20 for 2 hours up to $35 for the whole day.
  • Rash Suit / Wetsuit – Included in price of equipment hire or from $15 for 2 hours.
  • Also available to hire – N/A
Noosa Surf Shop
  • Surfboard Hire – From $25 for hard surfboards for 2 hours (longer rentals available with negotiation)
  • Body Board Hire – From $15 for 2 hours (longer rentals available with negotiation)
  • Rash Suit / Wetsuit – Contact them for details
  • Also available to hire – Stand Up Paddle Boards

If you’re staying at Nomads Noosa then we also have surfboards and bodyboards for hire on a first come serve basis.

Nomads Noosa
  • Surfboard Hire – $20 and ID held as deposit, no cost unless broken fins etc.
  • Body Board Hire – as above
  • Speak to the hostel staff at reception for more information.

noosa festival of surfing


Learn to Surf

Surfing Schools

All information and prices correct as of 12/02/18

Merrick’s Learn to Surf
  • Group Lessons – From 2 Hours at 9am or 1.30pm
  • Student / Teacher Ratio – 8:1
  • Price – from $65 per person
  • Website – http://www.learntosurf.com.au/
  • Also Available – You can also book private sessions for 1 or 2 people, 3 x 2 hour and 5 x 2 hour sessions, or surf and stay packages from 3 to 5 days.

Noosa Surf Lessons
  • Group Lessons – From 1.5 hours
  • Student / Teacher Ratio – 3:1
  • Price – from $65 per person
  • Website – http://www.noosasurflessons.com.au/
  • Also Available – 2:1 and 1:1 student teacher ratios, 3 x 2 hour and 5 x 2 hour sessions. For an additional $20 you can rent your surfboard and wetsuit until 5pm after your lesson.

learn to surf noosa

Learn to Surf – Review

Written by Erin Jones, Mad Travel Agent at Nomads Noosa

Surfing is definitely a MUST when you are staying in Noosa. Noosa has got one of the world’s best surf schools: ‘Merrick’s Learn to Surf’. Merrick is a 2 time World Champion Surfer so you know you’re learning with the best! In fact they guarantee the best surf lessons in Australia and the safest training location! As the last recognised surf school travelling North and the first place travelling South, it’s a unique location. These are some of the reasons why I decided to take a lesson to see if they could get me standing up on the board within 1 day.

And yes, they could. They came and picked me up with a cool 4 wheel drive from Nomads Noosa, where I work. Whilst sitting in the car they gave me some basic information about what was going to happen and where. When we arrived at our location we parked in Noosa Woods, near Main Beach, picked up the boards and wetsuits to make our way down to the beach.

The water was rough and we got warned to stay out of ‘the rip’, it is really hard to get out of there once you are in. I would definitely remember that part if I was you. Then the instructor showed us how to paddle and get up on your board on the beach until the fun part began: performing in the water! yeah!!

It wasn’t that easy to get into the rough water with such a massive board tied to your leg, but once you’re in you will just try to paddle. And after that we immediately tried to stand up. And yeah I was amazed: the first attempt was a good try! I was standing on my board! Oh Yeah! I had a great time surfing, so I really want to thank ‘Learn to Surf’ for this amazing experience!


For more information about surf lessons in Noosa visit one of our Mad Travel Shops in one of our Nomads Hostels.

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