Newport Beach was a quiet rural area until the 1930s, when weekenders started visiting, followed by residential development in the 1950s and 60s. The beach however was popular early with the Newport Beach SLSC being formed in 1911. Today Barrenjoey Road runs behind the northern half of the beach, which is adjacent to the shopping area, with a substantial reserve between the road and the beach providing a park, parking, picnic facilities and the surf club. South of the club a large stormwater drains crosses the beach, beyond which the backing slopes rise towards 50 m high Bungan Head.
The 1.3 km long beach faces east and extends from the rocks at Newport Head in a gentle arc to the lee of Newport Reef, a sandstone reef that extends 1 km due east and substantially reduces the east and southeast swell toward the south. Wave height decreases down the beach from 1 m in the north to less than 0.5 m in the south. The surf reflects this having an attached bar the length of the beach, but usually only cut by 2-3 rips north of the surf club, with permanent rips against the northern rocks and around the small northern reef. To the south the bar is usually continuous with no rips (Fig. 4.199 & 4.200). A narrow sand beach continues on past the rock pool, between the rocks and the cliff.
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.