I can say without an iota of doubt in my mind that Woolamai has one of the best surfing breaks on Phillip Island. Woolamai surfing is meant for experienced surfers and I definitely would not recommend it to novices and beginners.
This live surf feed is curtesy of CoastWatch and is optimised for mobile devices.
They have included ads within the feed – sorry!!
Enjoying Woolamai Surf
Woolamai offers both left and right breaks which can be long. In fact, you can surf right till the shore! Where else can you enjoy this fascinating experience? The beach is renowned for its constant moderate to high waves. I usually get an average height of 1.7 metres, but at times it can be higher.
The surf zone is about 250 metres wide and has an inner bar that is cut by deep and rather strong rips every 250 metres. The outer bar has more widely spaced rips. I have never had a problem spotting the rips, as they make deep holes in the beach and this makes it very easy to see them.
Amenities at Woolamai
As the beach is extremely popular with surfers, there is no dearth of amenities at Woolamai. Not only can you find great restaurants and hotels in a 5-kilometre radius, there also is ample parking space. If you are hungry after your surfing session, you can satiate your hunger at the Surf Life Saving Club (SLSC) café.
I find it quite reassuring that Woolamai is safe for surfing, as the beach is patrolled by SLSC during the peak summer months when the beach is crowded with surfers. However, even during other seasons, it draws its share of surfing enthusiasts, who don’t seem to mind the cold water.
If you haven’t brought your surfboard, don’t worry. There are surf shops in the vicinity where you can pick up some the best crafted surfboards.
Best Time to Surf
Woolamai surfing is known for its multiple sand breaks, both left as well as right. However, the best time to surf is about two hours before high tide, and you can continue surfing for an hour after high tide.
The frequency of surf and breaks in the area is consistent. On a normal day, the wave length is short, about 50 metres, but on a good day, the length can be anywhere from 50 to 150 metres. The swell sizes starts less than 1 metre, but it holds up 2.5 metres or more. So, definitely an opportunity to enjoy your surfing to the hilt!
The best swells occur when there are Southwest winds blowing. I would recommend the middle to southern end of Woolamai, as this area offers the best wave conditions when there is a North to Northeast wind. If you are not used to rips, I would suggest you avoid the northern end of the beach, as the rips here are really very strong.
Like most other surf beaches on Phillip Island, Woolamai has its share of hazards that even experienced surfers should beware of. These include strong undertows and rips.
I have always maintained Woolamai is the best surf indicator of Phillip Island. If there is no swell at Woolamai, you’ll not find swells anywhere else on the Island. So, go right ahead and have a thrilling Woolamai surfing experience. You’ll not regret it.