Torquay is considered the surfing capital of Victoria, and it is the official start point of the Great Ocean Road. The Bass Strait creates excellent surf, and thousands of people visit annually to enjoy the waves and pristine beaches. But, the history of surfing in Torquay extends back decades to the 1900s. So grab your board shorts, and let’s take a closer look at how Torquay became the birthplace of surfing and the surfing industry.
Torquay and the History of Surfing
When surfing was brought to Australia in 1915 by Hawaiian Duke Kahanamoku, it sparked a movement that continues to this day. The natural waves created by the horseshoe-shaped bay mean that Torquay has long been associated with surfing and surf culture. For example, when inflatable rubber surfoplane’s were invented in the 1930s, they became a popular watercraft among beach-goers until surfers began to push the boundaries and create surfboards with other materials like wood, fiberglass, and foam to improve the boards and optimize their performance.
By the 1960s, there was a full-on surfing revolution afoot. Fred Pyke was a part of this movement, and after experiencing the waves at Torquay, he shifted gears away from his blue-collar trade career to set up a small surfboard business. A few short years later, he pioneered wet-suit making and new surfboard technologies, which changed the game of surfing forever.
It was creative and innovative ideas like these, coupled with the excellent natural surf, which made Torquay, and more specifically Bells Beach, an opportune location to hold surfing contests. Beginning in 1961, originally known as the Bells Beach Surf Classic, the Rip Curl Pro, as it is now known, has been held annually for decades and hosts some of the best world-class surfers. The rich surf culture of Torquay, along with the annual Rip Curl Pro, means that the seaside town continues to be the heartland of surfing in Australia to this day.
Torquay Locals and Surfing
When you drive through the town of Torquay, you know you are in the heartland of surfing. There are board shops, seaside hotels, and excursion kiosks around every corner, and many activities are catered to enjoying the waters. When you are down surfing at Bells Beach and look up to the cliffs, locals say that you can feel the thousands of years of surfing history looking back at you. Of the 15,000 local residents of Torquay, many of them are surfers since this is where you live if you love surfing.
When you book your next trip to Torquay, scheduling some time to check out the excellent natural surf and other local attractions is a must. As the birthplace of surfing and a town so steeped in surfing culture, it is the perfect place for surf enthusiasts to check out. Be sure to come prepared for the water by packing your favorite boy’s and men’s board shorts or beach shorts, and stay cool but stylish in the evenings with resort wear.
If you’re on the hunt for a bargain, then this is your lucky day! Do you believe quality construction justifies a high price tag? Well, Bistro St Tropez swimwear comes with all the luxe design features, but we keep our prices affordable. Discover our extensive range available online now. It’s always the right time of year for swimsuits in Bali. Built in the spirit of Bali, with its paradise beaches, resorts, and tropical hot spots – that’s Bistro St Tropez – wear the feeling.