Manly Beach is probably Australia's best known beach, after Bondi. There is still debate as to whether the world's first surf lifesaving club was formed here, but there is no doubt that this is where in 1902 one man helped shake the shackles that had for decades kept Australia's growing interest in the beach and surf at bay. Within a year of William Gocher defying the law and bathing in daylight hours on Manly beach, the floodgates had opened and Australian's began flocking to the beach to walk, bathe and attempt to come to terms with the waves and rips. During the first official bathing season in 1903, 17 people drowned on Manly Beach. A year later a surf club was formed on the beach to safeguard the public, perhaps the world's first. The present Manly SLSC formed in 1911, North Steyne 600 m to the north in 1907 and Queenscliff in 1924. Manly - Queenscliff Beach faces the east, is 1.4 km long and receives waves averaging 1.5 m at Queenscliff dropping toward 1 m at Manly. The sand is whiter and finer than many northern beaches resulting in a flatter wider beach slope and surf zone. Up to 8 rips flow across the bar, with permanent rips against Queenscliff Head and Manly Point, the latter called The Escalator. During big seas the finer sand and waves combine to produce a second bar off Manly with more widely spaced rips.
SLSA provides this information as a guide only. Surf conditions are variable and therefore this information should not be relied upon as a substitute for observation of local conditions and an understanding of your abilities in the surf. SLSA reminds you to always swim between the red and yellow flags and never swim at unpatrolled beaches. SLSA takes all care and responsibility for any translation but it cannot guarantee that all translations will be accurate.