Point Bell forms the eastern boundary of a 19 km long high energy southwest facing beach. The western boundary is the equally prominent Point Sinclair, which protrudes 3 km to the south. While access to Point Bell is limited there is a gravel road out to Point Sinclair and the adjacent Port Le Hunte and Cactus beaches.
The main beach (1324) between points Bell and Sinclair is known as both Cantaby beach after the backing sandhills (Fig. 4.183), and in the west as Shelly beach (Fig. 4.184). The 19 km long beach begins in the east with relatively coarse brown shelly sands, which in the west is replaced by fine white carbonate sands. The sands and the prevailing high waves maintain 200 m wide rip dominated surf zone in the east-centre, with a wider lower gradient and lower energy surf zone at the central cuspate foreland in lee of Pudding Rock, a series of reefs 3 km offshore. Between the foreland and Shelly beach, the gradient stays low, and the surf zone average 400 m in width, with wave slowly decreasing toward Point Sinclair. There is 4WD access to Shelly beach, which is a popular swimming and surfing spot. Active dunes extending up to 4 km inland back the entire beach.
Beach Length: 19km
General Hazard Rating:
There are currently no services provided by Surf Life Saving Australia for this beach. Please take the time to browse the Surf Safety section of this website to learn more about staying safe when swimming at Australian beaches.
Click here to visit general surf education information.
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.