The tranquil, carefree days of Australian summers passed are recaptured at Halcyon House – Australia’s most unique beachside property. Located on Australia’s east coast, boutique hotel Halcyon House holds a spectacular beachfront location in Cabarita Beach. Guests from around the world can spend Halcyon day’s poolside sipping cocktails, dining in the gorgeously fitted out restaurant Paper Daisy, relaxing at Halcyon spa, or enjoying one of Halcyon’s 21 uniquely designed rooms and suites.
What we love
Surf lessons with Joel Parkinson
Where to surf
With such a vast coastline, it might be easier to talk through Australia’s best surfing hubs that allow the most concentration of world class waves within striking distance. Byron Bay is a perfect example, which apart from its coastal scenery, wildlife, whale watching, snorkelling, dining and nightlife also delivers hollow sand bottom barrels at The Pass, Broken and Lennox Head. The Gold Coast, with world famous waves like the Superbank and Burleigh, is also only an hour’s drive to the north. On the opposite coast, Margaret River, in South Western Australia, boasts a dozen of world class reef breaks within a 30-kilometres stretch as well as renowned wineries, restaurants and incredible flora and fauna. In Victoria the town of Torquay is the gateway to the legendary waves of Bells and Winkipop. It is also the start of the Great Ocean Road, an Australian National Heritage listed 250-kilometre stretch of road that takes in some of the most stunning coastline anywhere in the world. Finally Sydney is not only the funnest surf city on the planet, but is also perfect for accessing the more remote, quality waves on the South Coast of NSW.
Best Surf Breaks
16kms off the coast of Perth, “Rotty” offers several extraordinary reef breaks with Strickland Bay its best.
Surfers Point near Margaret River is internationally renowned as the best break in the area and home to the Margaret River Pro.
Even further north than Kalbarri the Bluff, and its close neighbour Gnaraloo, offer power and perfection in equal measures in a stunning untouched desert environment.
Located in Kalbarri in the north-west this is one Australia’s most powerful lefts.
The Goldie is a legendary swell magnet and home to some of the best waves in the world including Burleigh, Currumbin, Kirra, Snapper Rocks and Duranbah.
New South Wales
Famed point break near Yamba that provides waves in all swells and conditions and is earned a rep as one of the world’s most high performance waves.
New South Wales
Sydney is blessed with scores of surfable points and reefs, some of the best being Narrabeen, Dee Why, Curl Curl, Manly, Cronulla, Maroubra and Bondi.
New South Wales
Sandon Point, Windang Island and The Boneyard are quality, well-known reef breaks, while further south Black Rock, Ulladulla Bombie and Merimbula Bar rival any in the world for quality.
The most famous break in the South Coast is Bells Beach, an icon of Australian surfing, where the Rip Curl Pro has been held every Easter for 50 years.
Adjacent to Bells, Winki offers a racetrack of high speed walls that can travel for up to 300 metres.
West of Apollo Bay this is a stunning, untouched beach that offers ever changing, but world class beachbreaks along its two kilometres.
Located on the Nullarbor Plain in the desert of South Australia this is a real Mecca for the hardcore Australian surf traveller with a variety of reef breaks offering perfect, uncrowded, if a little sharky, waves.
When to go
The general rule on Australia's surfable stretches is that autumn and winter (March to August) are the best seasons for surf. Offshore winds blow predominantly off the land and intense low-pressure systems frequently zip across the bottom of the continent in the Southern Ocean, before migrating east into the Tasman Sea sending lines of thick, powerful swell onto the exposed stretches of the Western Australia, South Australia, Victoria, Tasmania and New South Wales coastlines. The only exception to this rule is the famous point breaks of the Queensland coast which best come to life during the summer cyclone season from December to March.
The list of things to do in Australia is nearly endless. Visit the outback and Uluru to get a feel for First Nation culture, which is one of the oldest on Earth. Cruise through wine country in the Hunter and Barossa Valleys. Tour a crocodile farm, explore a rainforest or dive the Great Barrier reef. Australia can provide a lifetime of adventure both above and below the sea.
Considered by some to be the world’s largest island, Australia offers a range of environments including rainforests, mountain ranges, dry central deserts and some truly stunning beaches. With the majority of Australia’s population living within 50 km of the coast a beach culture pervades most aspects of the Australian community. Australia is an easy, laid back nation with a love of the outdoors. Its cosmopolitan cities Melbourne and Sydney offer great food and nightlife and Sydney’s distinctive Opera House and Harbour Bridge are icons themselves. In addition Australia is home to some unique wildlife, like the koala bear, the wombat, the duck-billed platypus and, of course, the kangaroo. There are national parks and wildlife reserves to explore and many wine regions to visit. Other natural sites include the Twelve Apostles, the Great Barrier Reef, Kakadu National Park and the sacred sandstone monolith of Uluru.
Australia’s busiest and best-connected airport is in Sydney (SYD). Consider connecting or flying directly to Cairns (CNS), the Gold Coast (OOL) or Brisbane (BNE) or the East Coast destinations. Melbourne (MEL), Adelaide (ADL) and Perth (PER) also receive international flights.
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