Surfing waves of history at Bells Beach
Bells Beach is a renowned surf beach located 100 kilometers southwest of Melbourne, near the towns of Torquay and Jan Juc.
Bells Beach is the home of the world's longest-running surfing competition - the Rip Curl Pro - an event formerly known as the Bells Beach Surf Classic, which got started in 1961.
The pioneers of surfing in Bells Beach were Torquay locals Owen Yateman and Vic Tantau. They rode the first waves in the late 1940s.
This is probably the most important surf spot in the 35,876 kilometers (22,292 miles) of Australia's mainland coastline. It's the surfing capital of the land of kangaroos, with a low shark attack record.
The natural amphitheater and unique point-break ensure an amazing show at Bells Beach, which is comprised of several breaks including The Bowl, Outside Bells and Rincon.
The Bowl, the steep final section of the wave, is the main break with Outside Bells producing a long, fast, even wall when surf gets above six feet.
Rincon is predominantly a high-tide wave and runs closer to the rocks. Johanna and Winkipop offer alternatives if necessary. Winkipop often works better under more diverse conditions than the other nearby breaks.
However, the big swells and offshore winds common here help show off Bells at its best, in a regular basis. This is, however, a tricky wave. You won't find many barrels, but there are plenty of wave faces to be challenged.
The best season to surf Bells Beach is between March and October, with the Southern Ocean storms delivering solid surf. Australia's most famous surf spot is a right-hand reef wave, and it breaks on almost any tide.
Get on the Great Ocean Road and prepare to ride the wave of a lifetime. Ring the bell at Bells Beach.