New South Wales, Sydney
Freshwater Beach is home to the first widely publicised stand up wave riding event, when legendary Hawaiian Duke Kahanamoku and young Australian Isabel Letham rode rolling waves to shore - the crowd on the beach were stoked. Almost 100 years on, the waves at Freshwater are still providing a heap of fun for kids, beginners and experienced surfers alike, so much so, that at the height of summer it would appear that half of Sydney is out here in the water enjoying a swim or surf.
A great summer option that is protected from north winds and north to east swells. On higher tides, soft waves spill gently over the broad sandbar with the best spot for beginners found towards the northern end of the beach. Freshwater is excellent for catching both whitewater waves and for those starting out catching their first green waves. The waves do close out and can dump here at low tide so stick to high tide for catching green waves. Low tide is excellent for introducing small kids to catching their first whitewater waves.
In summer, surf before or after the lifeguards put the swimming only red and yellow flags up for more space to practise. Be aware of the rip that forms in the northern corner during big swells, along with rips that form towards the more dangerous southern half of the beach, where the line up is best left for experienced surfers.
During south winds or moderate to big south swells, head to the south end of Manly Beach for easier surfing conditions.
Good Wind Direction
Best on North East to South West winds.
Good Swell Direction For Fun Beginner Waves
Moderate North to East swells and small South East to South swells.
Rocks, Rip Currents and Marine Life.
Car parks are located to the north and south of the surf club.
Patrolled daily from early September until the end of May - always swim between the red and yellow flags.
Beginners & kids are best to surf at beaches when Lifeguards are on patrol or with a friend who has decades of surfing experience.
Located at the surf club and at the rock pool.
There's a beach kiosk in the surf club, plus two cafes at the southern end of the beach. Freshwater Village (also known as Harbord Village) offers more options.