Surfs Up at URBNSURF, Tullamarine: Dine, Surf and Play!

The waves are always pumping at URBNSURF, Australia’s first surf park! The huge facility in Tullamarine, close to Melbourne airport, offers Melburnians and visitors a crystal-clear, MCG-sized surfing lagoon.

For a start, they offer lessons and surfing sessions, with 30 participants booked into each side of the big wave pool lagoon. Surfers should book ahead, and spectators are most welcome to hang out on the foreshore, staying behind the yellow line.

With a premium restaurant and bar overlooking the pool, plus a playground and shaded sun lounges, this is a wonderful destination for surf-loving families and groups.

The nitty gritty details are available from URBNSURF‘s website so you can get inside and enjoy your session.

URBNSURF Amy Gardner images ()


URBNSURF Melbourne uses Wavegarden’s next-generation Cove technology in its surfing lagoon to deliver high-quality, authentic surfing waves every hour, day and night, year-round. Yes, unlike at a surf beach you can now surf at night, thanks to some huge stadium.

A while ago we were invited to try out URBNSURF as complete surfing novices. It turns out that learning to surf at URBNSURF is even better than learning at the beach!

Why is learning to surf at URBNSURF even better than learning at the beach?

Firstly, the pool is segregated by beginner, intermediate and advanced zones and the waves are controlled by a push of a button. The size, shape, power and frequency of the waves can be adjusted to suit all abilities, from first-timers through to elite athletes. That means for our beginner group you aren’t constantly being barraged by waves – there’s time to take a break, listen to instructions and catch your breath before the next wave. 

Secondly, the water is shallow at the learner’s end and there are no mystery creatures or foliage hiding under the water. Kids can easily stand their ground as they wait their turn on the board. 

Thirdly, the facilities at URBNSURF make the before and after surfing experience more convenient than a beach. Spectators can hang out on a day bed by the water’s edge and you can set up home base inside a bookable cabana.

URBNSURF Amy Gardner images

Can I get equipment and food at URBNSURF?

Yes you can!  The food, store and change room facilities are top notch.

And the best part? The surf shop and hire store are right there, the food options are right there, the hot outdoor showers and change rooms are right there. No trekking gear up and down the beach or making a sandy mess in the car. 

URBNSURF Amy Gardner images

Dining at Three Blue Ducks

URBNSURF Melbourne is home to Melbourne’s first restaurant operations by Sydney-based Three Blue Ducks. They serve delicious, healthy breakfast, lunch and dinner and beverages all year round, with views of the lagoon.

Expect smoky flavours and locally-sourced produce cooked in the pizza oven, rotisserie and charcoal pit. The kids menu features tasty and hearty meals like half a roast chicken, penne pasta, crumbed fish and a cheeseburger.

You can visit Three Blue Ducks without paying to surf at URBNSURF. A great option for families or groups to enjoy the lively atmosphere, have a play at the playground and watch the surfers doing their thing.

URBNSURF kids burger Amy Gardner images

What else can you do at URBNSURF?

Other lagoon-side amenities include a children’s playground, hot tubs (for a sort of apres-ski experience!) and various landscaped spaces to relax and enjoy the view. I reckon URBNSURF is a perfect venue for birthday parties and group gatherings!

My kids enjoyed the playground and sandpit, watching the surfers up-close from the spectator viewing point and lounging by beach pool. Aeroplane fans will be happy as you can regularly spot giant aircraft coming in to land.

A concrete path surrounds the lagoon wave pool, and my kids brought their scooters for extra fun. Just note that children must be supervised at all times.

URBNSURF Amy Gardner images ()

Do we need to take a lesson?

If you are a beginner surfer then I strongly recommend that you sign up at the Surf Academy for lessons. All beginners, whether they are kids or adults, are normally taught together – but depending on numbers the children and adults may be split up into separate groups. Lessons start for children from 6+ years. 

We start off by going into the hire store to put on our wetsuits (you can BYO equipment too). There are wetsuits for all seasons, as the water is not heated. The reason is that the amount of energy required to heat such a huge body of water would be unsustainable.

The lessons last for 1 hour 45 minutes, with a briefing on land where everyone practices their stance and balance first before spending approximately 30 minutes in the water.

There are two instructors with the group – one to push the kids onto the wave and one to catch them at the other end (and warn them to get off the board at the black line). 

I am amazed that both Lady AB and Baby 2.0 are able to stand on their boards for short periods by the end of their first lesson. In fact, all the children are successful to varying degrees. 

If you do not want to take lessons then you can book to surf in a one-hour block. 

Note that URBNSURF is a surf park and not a wave pool. You cannot pay just to go splash in the water. Young children can take a soft board or bodyboard to play in the knee-high rolling waves in The Bays and need to be supervised by an adult at all times. 

URBNSURF is an amazing facility that caters to beginners through to pros. It provides consistent, perfect waves day in day out, which means for keen surfers you’re not as beholden to the weather gods. I’m also told that because the waves keep coming there is less alpha-male posturing in the lineup compared to a beach, as everyone knows that they’ll get a go. This means that it’s arguably less intimidating for female surfers to share waves. 

Get ready to #SurfMore all through the year at URBNSURF! Be sure to book prior to your visit as the pool can only accommodate a maximum of 60 surfers at any time.

Click here for the best family friendly beaches in Melbourne

URBNSURF Amy Gardner images

Tips for visiting URBNSURF

  • You can BYO gear or hire it all from URBNSURF;
  • bookings recommended as the pool can accommodate a maximum of 60 surfers at any time;
  • If you are a beginner, highly recommend you sign up at the Surf Academy for lessons;
  • There are no specific children’s lessons as you are graded on ability/experience;
  • Lessons go for 1 hour and 45 minutes;
  • Facilities include day beds, bookable cabanas, change rooms, children’s playground and sand pit, hot tubs;
  • The Three Blue Ducks restaurant and bar has a great selection of food and drink, plus a good kids menu, with highchairs and baby change facilities;
  • You can visit Three Blue Ducks without paying to surf at URBNSURF.
  • URBNSURF is not a wave pool;
  • Young children can take a soft board or bodyboard to play in the knee-high rolling waves in The Bays and need to be supervised by an adult at all times;
  • Lagoon is suitable for kids 6+ years;
  • Entry is free for kids 0-5 years but they will not be able to enter the lagoon, only spectate;
  • Free parking on site;
  • 7 minutes drive from Melbourne Airport to URBNSURF Melbourne.

I hope this post has helped or inspired you! Get my awesome weekly newsletter in your inbox every week to find out more ways for your family to have fun together!

About Joyce Watts

Joyce Watts is a former intellectual property, IT and media lawyer turned serial entrepreneur.

As well as being the founder of TOT: HOT OR NOT she helps businesses with their SEO, email marketing & social media as BrightSmart.com.au; she owns an online bike store CycleStyle.com.au and develops and produces creative experiences for families via WheelieGoodFun.com. She used to publish another popular lifestyle and food blog called MEL: HOT OR NOT The decisive guide to Melbourne.

She lives in inner-city Melbourne with her husband, two children and seven bikes.

Discover Melbourne's top family fun in 5 minutes, for free

Our weekly newsletter brings busy parents and carers the best activities for kids in Melbourne + Victoria. It's your best 5-minute read for creating quality family time!

"*" indicates required fields

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.