Sawtell Beach

Sawtell Beach

New South Wales, Coffs Coast

The picturesque village of Sawtell is a great spot for a quiet holiday or day trip, and tucked up in the southern corner of Sawtell Beach you can find soft, cruisy waves during small swells. It can get busy here, so make sure you practise surfing etiquette to keep the vibe positive in the line up.

Conditions can be inappropriate for beginners during moderate to big swells, when this spot is best left to experienced surfers.

Wave Type
Beginners will often find a sandbar right in the southern corner of the beach, good for catching whitewater waves, or even green waves that break gently when the surf is small and the tide high. A fun right often breaks out the back and a left on the inside, again at high tide. Watch out for the rips that form around the rocks and offshore reefs in the southern corner.

For safer options during big swells, when Sawtell Beach is too dangerous for beginners, check out Jetty Beach in Coffs or drive further north to Woolgoolga or Arrawarra, or even Trial Bay at South West Rocks to the south if the surf is massive.

Good Wind Direction
Best on South to North West winds.

Good Swell Direction For Fun Beginner Waves
Small North to East to South swells.

- Rocks
- Rip Currents
- Marine life

Have fun surfing Sawtell by practising surfing etiquette and surf safety.

Walk from town or the car park sits high up on the rocky southern headland that provides stunning views of the surrounding coastline and hinterland.

Lifeguard Patrolled
Patrolled daily from September until the end of the Easter school holidays. 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 southern end of the shopping strip, one block back from the beach and at Wonga Park, located in the middle of the beach.

Closest Shops
Great cafes, restaurants, boutiques, supermarket, local pub, accommodation and Sunpatch Surf Shop can all be found in Sawtell.

Photos of Sawtell Beach

Sawtell lookout
Photo: Kelly Ratcliffe


Sawtell Beach south end sandbar

South end sandbar
Photo: Kelly Ratcliffe


Sawtell surf fun

Sawtell surf fun
Photo: Kelly Ratcliffe


Sawtell Beach flat sandbar

The attached sandbar at the south end of the beach often connects with the island offshore and offers a good spot for surfing in the whitewater during lower tides. Catching green waves is best during higher tides.
Photo: Kelly Ratcliffe


Another view of the south end sandbar on the right and a deep water rip current in the middle of the photo.
Photo: Kelly Ratcliffe