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National Surfing Reserves of Australia

National Surfing Reserve sign at Margaret River Western Australia

There are some beaches and surfing areas throughout Australia that have made significant contributions to our beach lifestyle and are so important that they are forever protected. According to the National Surfing Reserves organisation, these reserves are "iconic places of intrinsic environmental, heritage, sporting and cultural value to a nation. NSR embrace all peoples to enjoy, understand and protect special coastal environments of universal value to the surfing world."

How they're chosen

There are three specific criteria that must be met in order to be declared a National Surfing Reserve:

  1. Quality of the waves (i.e. a national class surfing break) (e.g. North Narrabeen, Snapper Rocks, Margaret River);
  2. A place considered sacred by the local and national surfing community (e.g. Angourie, Crescent Head)
  3. Long term usage of the beach and wave environment by local and national surfing community, e.g. long term surf lifesaving club and/or boardriders club with significant history (e.g. Manly, Killalea)

Ever-growing list of reserves

Currently there are 21 declared National Surfing Reserves in Australia, and the list is constantly growing. These include: