Moderately hazardous: 4-6
Highly hazardous: 7-8
Extremely hazardous: 9-10
Kawana Beach is the main recreational section of the 9 km long beach that runs due south from Point Cartwright to Curmmundi Creek mouth. The main Noosa-Caloundra Road runs between 1 and 2 km west of the beach. There are six settlements/sections along the beach. The northern end of the beach, called Point Cartwright Beach (1549A) is backed by high rise apartments. This type of development continues south, with the addition of residential and holiday houses and canal estates developed in the 1970's along Buddina (1549B), Kawana (1549C) and Warana (1549D) Beaches. These settlements all parallel the beach, with a densely vegetated foreshore reserve separating them from the beach. South of Warana, the housing development continues at Bokarina (1549E), with only the southern 1 km bordering Wurtulla Beach (1549F) down to Curmmundi Creek likely to remain natural, as an environmental park.
The beach faces due east and receives waves that average 1.5 m for much of its length, decreasing slightly toward the creek mouth. These waves maintain a 200 m wide double bar system, with the inner bar usually attached to the beach and cut by rips every 250 to 300 m during and following higher waves. A continuous deep trough parallels the inner bar, with the outer bar cut by more widely spaced rips. There is also a strong permanent rip running out against Point Cartwright and tidal shoals and occasional deep channels at Curmmundi Creek mouth, particularly when the creek is open.
The beachfront drive makes a detour at Kawana around the Kawana Waters Surf Life Saving Club, which was established, along with the development, in 1980. The club house is backed by a broad, grassy reserve and a large parking area. The main shopping area is also just behind the beach.
This is a potentially hazardous beach containing up to 35 rips. The safest place to swim is at Kawana, in the patrolled area. Keep an eye out for the rips and stay on the inner portion of the attached bars. Be careful if swimming near Point Cartwright, owing to the strong rip, or near the creek mouth where tidal currents can be very strong.
There are numerous beach breaks along the entire beach. They work best in a moderate swell at high tide.
A popular beach for beach fishing either into the rip holes, when present, or casting out into the deep longshore trough. There is also rock fishing off Point Cartwright and at the creek mouth when open.
A long beach backed by a ribbon of housing development. The beachfront remains in a natural state, with good access points along most of the beach. However the safest swimming is in the area patrolled by the Kawana Waters Surf Life Saving Club.
- Formal parking area