Victoria is a state located in the southeastern corner of Australia. It is the smallest mainland state in terms of area, but the most densely populated and urbanized. Prior to European settlement, some 30,000 indigenous Australians lived in the area; now over 5 million people now inhabit the region. Victoria is the second most populous Australian state, after New South Wales.

European settlement in Victoria began in the 1830s as a farming community. The discovery of gold in 1851 transformed Victoria into a leading industrial and commercial center. Melbourne is Victoria’s capital and largest city, with more than 70% of all Victorians living there.

South from the New South Wales border the Australia coastline takes are sharp turn to the southwest. This opens the coast up to large winter swells generated in the Bass Strait and the Southern Ocean, but also means that tropical swells from cyclones do not reach this coast. From the NSW border to Lakes Entrance is a stretch of largely untouched virgin coastline. No doubt there are many secret breaks there. Lakes Entrance marks the start of Ninety Mile beach, which does get waves. After Ninety Mile beach, there is another stretch of wild coast in the Wilson’s Promotory area.

Phillip Island further west has great beach breaks and some point breaks. Despite the fact that Tasmania may block some swell, the area is still very consistent as Bass Strait is a very active piece of water. Mornington Peninsula runs from the east side of Port Phillip Bay up towards Melbourne. The very southern tip faces into Bass Strait and has some rather good beach breaks. Port Phillip Bay itself is not for serious surfing, so Melbourne surfers generally head southwest to Queenscliff.

World-famous Bells Beach is at the northern end of a delightful piece of road called the Great Ocean Road. This road follows the coast for the next 100 miles to Warnambool on the southern coast. The first section from Bells to Apollo Bay has many breaks, both beach and rock. Most can be checked as you drive along. From Apollo Bay and Cape Otway, the coast turns west. This coast is completely open to the full force of the Southern Ocean. There are quite a few surf breaks, but local knowledge is necessary to surf the best. Don’t underestimate the waves here – some breaks don’t even show until 8 feet and will hold 15 feet or more.

There are miles of potential from Warrnambool to Portland and onwards to the South Australian border. You will find waves if you are prepared to get off the highway and search.


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Victoria Surf Breaks