How do kids make it look so easy? Epic family surf lessons Rainbow Beach

How hard can it be? Standing on a board on top of the water with poise, balance and style, while being whisked towards the beach on a slow moving wave. The boys made it look so easy. On our last beach holiday to the beautiful Rainbow Beach on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland we decided to do something different. Something we had never done before. Learning to surf.

Surfing is an activity I’ve always wanted to try but never quite had the nerve. This summer I decided to get out of my comfort zone and make it happen. Finding the best spot in Australia to learn was easy, as I’d been eyeing off Epic Ocean Adventure’s surf lessons at Rainbow Beach for a few years.

What appealed to me most was you got to learn on the longest wave in Australia, with the most stunning backdrop of the coloured sand cliffs. From having swum at Double Island Point where they hold the lessons, I knew the waves were usually pretty gentle, and there were no big crowds to witness your form.

As the sun rose for our morning of surfing, I packed the towels, water, sunscreen and a few snacks but was undecided as to whether to take the bite cream. I was a little worried about the boys getting stung by a bluebottle jellyfish, as one of the boys had already been stung. (It’s also very important as a mother to have something to worry about.) In the rush to get out the door, I decided that I worried too much and should leave the cream at home.

Learn to Surf Rainbow Beach

So off we head with the guys from Epic Ocean Adventure for what was going to be an adventure to remember. We pile into the back of owner Ty van Santen’s Toyota troop carrier to drive the 15 minutes along the golden sand, to our surf spot at Double Island Point.

We had driven this beach a number of times before but we learnt so much more with Ty as our guide about the ocean animals, the changing conditions and the beach itself. We stopped to look at the holes created by hundreds of stingrays and to witness the thousands of tiny soldier crabs marching across the sand.

The time came to learn how to surf, so we set up the boards on the beach for practice on dry land. Great idea. Maybe this wasn’t going to be so hard after all. As we walked to the water, our instructor and co-owner Sean revealed it would probably only take the boys two waves to be able to stand, while we might take a lot longer.

Now I wish I had learnt as a child instead of waiting until I was in my 40’s with a bung hip. Lucky for us, Sean was the most patient and encouraging person ever. On top of that he was a great teacher and a Dad, so knew how to get the most out of the boys. As predicted the boys effortlessly stood up on the second wave, and by the end of the two-hour lesson, they were surfing most of the way into the beach. What a great achievement and incredible thrill for them.

Learn to surf Rainbow Beach Queensland Travel with Boys

Photo by Damian Henry at Epics

Well let’s just say we parents didn’t quite make it anywhere near surfing into the beach, but were so happy that we gave it a go. Maybe with a bit more practice! I’m blaming my lack of form on the long tentacles of the bluebottle jellyfish that decided to wrap around my legs half way through the lesson. That and my diminishing fitness levels! After much cursing and pacing along the beach, I did get back in, but with a little less enthusiasm. Wish I’d bought that bite cream with me now!

I was seriously impressed by the way the guys from Epic Ocean Adventures conducted their lessons. From booking through to the water, they were all friendly, informative, and always ready to help. Would I use them again? Definitely. I thought they were so good I paid to go kayaking with the dolphins the following day, and would love to go back in the September school holidays to go kayaking with the whales.

Top Tip for Rainbow Beach surf lessons:

If you have the flexibility, ask the guys at Epic what surf lessons have the least amount of people. We went on a day when there was our family and one other person, however if we had gone on the next day there would have been double that.

Also, take a look at our Aussie beach survival guide for great tips and tricks for your day at the beach, looking at everything from chafing to stingers, sand to sunburn.

Epic Ocean Adventures learn to surf Rainbow Beach

Surf lessons are held at different times every day because they have to be during low tide so the vehicles can access the beach.

Depart from Rainbow Beach $65 per person for 3-hour trip OR

Depart from Noosa $120 per person for 5-6 hour trip.

Prices correct as at 20 December 2017.


Take a look at our comprehensive guide of what to do, where to stay and where to eat at Rainbow Beach.

Disclosure: We received a discounted rate on the learn to surf lessons however this did not alter our thoughts about the activity. All opinions are our own and reflect our experience on the day. Some of the links on this page are affiliate links. This means, at no additional cost to you, if you book after clicking on a link, we may earn a small commission. We book our travel through these companies, so please consider booking your travel through these links as it helps buy us much-needed coffee and fuel to travel, so we can continue providing you with the best information on family travel.

Family surf lessons Rainbow Beach kids Travel with Boys