Australia’s Beach Culture

Beach huts in Melbourne.
Girl on a surfboard.
Sign warning of a dangerous current in the ocean.
Sunset camel safari along Cable Beach in Western Australia.

The Australian interior is very dry, which has resulted in almost all Australians living near the coast. This geographic spread has led to a country-wide appreciation for beach life, since sand covers a significant part of the country’s shoreline. In accordance with this, fishermen, surfers and vacationers all enthusiastically enjoy their preferred leisure activities on or off the sandy shores, with beach space being plentiful for everybody thanks to Australia’s fairly small population.

Surfing and safety

Along most of Australia’s sandy coast, where as mentioned the vast majority of Australians live, temperatures are warm and pleasant year round. With that said, during winter, the southern parts of the country do get a bit chilly, especially sea temperature-wise. This wintertime cold discourages swimmers from going in the water, but doesn’t necessarily keep passionate surfers away. Fitted in wetsuits, many wind, wave and kite surfers defy the winter climate and enjoy the endless blue for as long as the sun stays up.

In search of the best winds and waves, summertime and wintertime surfers alike often go to unpatrolled waters. This means that they are usually out of reach for life guards and therefore need to be extra knowledgeable of potential dangers. Rips, for example, which are strong currents starting near the shore, can be life-threatening if one is not careful. As a matter of fact, rips that quickly suck people out to sea cause far more fatalities than sharks, illustrating well why one ought to learn about currents or swim and surf in guarded safe zones.

Popular hang-out spot

Along with proper safety, it is also important to Australians to socialize on the beach. Therefore, apart from swimming and sunbathing, people often play volleyball and enjoy picnics here. Moreover, seeking romance or serenity, some Aussies stay on the beach as late as sundown, with people in Western Australia frequently getting a stunning view of the sun setting on the Indian Ocean horizon.