Lake Illawarra (Warra in Aboriginal, meaning ‘pleasant place near the sea’) is just over an hour’s drive south of Sydney. This beautiful body of water covers nearly 36 square kms & gathers water from the Illawarra escarpment as well as a narrow tidal entrance at Windang. There’s various entry and exit points around the lake, but a favourite amongst locals is Reddall Reserve, Lake Illawarra.
If you’re travelling south from Sydney, you’ll drive across Windang bridge and take in your first view of the water both east and west of the bridge. You’ll be mapping out your route and unpacking your SUP as you pull into the car park backing onto a small sandy shoreline. There’s a small kiosk, water station, kids playground, coastal bike track, outdoor exercise equipment, BBQ facilities and plenty to do for the whole family. This area is incredible at all times of the day, and it’s extra amazing at night.
We recommend joining Stand Up Paddle Boarding Shellharbour, for a night SUP. They’ll provide you with a Red Paddle Co inflatable SUP to cruise around the small sand island under the stars. Keep your eyes peeled for the local sting rays, crabs, fish and jellyfish that appear to glow from underneath.
Where the lake makes its way to the ocean, and there’s some swell around, you’ll score small but epic left handers curling off the northern break wall. If you prefer smooth water, you’ve got the whole lake to explore whether that’s solo or an XL SUP with friends! But be sure to get up early to catch the sunrise over the ocean, you’ll be spoilt for silhouette photographs as the sun ball cracks the horizon & rises up. Most cringe at the thought of an early alarm, but when they experience their first sunrise on the water, they always come back for more.
Make the most of everything this lake has to offer and head out on your all round Ride board. Whether you decide to enjoy the tranquil water at sun rise or paddle your way for some waves, this board is the answer!
Car park next to the lake.
Anywhere you see suitable on the shore.