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urbnsurf Wave Pool Melbourne review guide

URBNSURF Wave Pool Melbourne – Everything You Need To Know

Thinking about head to URBNSURF wave pool, Melbourne? From wave options to what to bring, here’s everything you need to know!

If you’re thinking about grabbing some man made waves at a wavepool in Australia then URBNSURF wave pool, Melbourne is currently your best option!

As Australias first commercial wave pool and utilising the same tech as The Wave in the UK, URBNSURF offers up perfect, peeling waves year round and is now one of the best surf spots in Australia!

So whether you’re looking at learning to surf or want to score some epic tube time and practice your hacks here’s everything you need to know about the Melbourne wavepool…

URBNSURF Wave Pool, Melbourne – Everything You Need To Know

Getting There

From Melbourne

If you’re already in Melbourne you’re in luck – you’ve got pumping waves right on your doorstep! From Melbourne central it’s just over 20km and will take around 25 minutes. If you’re grabbing an Uber it’ll cost you around AU$40.

From The Rest Of Australia

If you’re heading to the Melbourne wave pool from elsewhere in Australia you’ll want to fly into Tullamarine Airport – which is just a 4 minute drive from the waves! Grabbing an Uber will cost you around $16.

Both Jetstar and Virgin Australia have regular flights in from all over Australia and my return flights from Gold Coast to Melbourne came in at  – including 25kg of luggage and a surfboard.



Where To Stay

If you’ve got a few sessions booked in, potentially over a few days, then you’ll probably be wanting a night or two as part of your trip.

wavepool melbourne urbnsurf australia where to stay hotel cilom airport motelThere are plenty of airport hotel options in the area – but if you want the one closest to the action then Ciloms Airport Motel is the place to head as it’s right across the road from the entrance to URBNSURF.

In fact for my morning sessions I suited up in my hotel room, surfed and then walked straight back to my hot shower before getting changed!

They also include a free airport transfer (which can handle surfboards) making it super convenient.

The rooms are a solid size (more than enough space for boards and gear) and although the decor is slightly dated, it’s clean, comfortable and a great base for your surf trip!




Wave Options & Costs

Ok so now down to the main reason you’re heading to the Melbourne wavepool – the waves themselves! Currently they’re running 5 wave types.

For more info on the best wave setting to choose check out this guide


wavepool melbourne urbnsurf australiaSimilar to a chest high day at the points in Byron or Noosa, the Cruiser Session is the perfect intro the what the wavepool in Melbourne has to offer and for those progressing from whitewater waves.

Also a great session for longboarders too.

  • Multiple Daily Sessions
  • Price = $79
  • Wave Face Height = 1m
  • Wave Length = 12-16 seconds
  • Waves Per Session – 10-12


wavepool melbourne urbnsurf australiaOut of all the wave options this was my personal favourite for really practicing turns and fine tuning equipment.

Fun, rippable and a size where you’re not going to be wary of pushing those turns, advanced and expert surfers are going to love this setting heaps as well.

Whether you’re on a shortboard, log or mini mal this is heaps of fun.

  • Multiple Daily Sessions
  • Price = $79
  • Wave Face Height = 1-1.5m
  • Wave Length = 12-16 seconds
  • Waves Per Session = 10-12





wavepool melbourne urbnsurf australiaFor those wanting to push their progression in bigger waves and also score some barrels the Advanced Sessions are ideal.

The first half of the session offers a fast, rippable wave and then the second half is when the famed barrel section kicks in.

  • Multiple Daily Sessions
  • Price = $79
  • Wave Face Height = 1.6-2m
  • Wave Length = 12-16 seconds
  • Waves Per Session = 10-12

Advanced Turns

wavepool melbourne urbnsurf australiaAs with the advanced session this one starts off with a pretty fast wall. In the second half of the session the final half of the wave slows down a bit – allowing you to get a couple more big turns in. Great for those looking to push their turning technique.

Keep in mind, this session doesn’t barrel.

  • 2 Sessions per day
  • Price = $79
  • Wave Face Height = 1.6-2m
  • Wave Length = 12-16 seconds
  • Waves Per Session = 10-12


wavepool melbourne urbnsurf australiaIf you want the biggest, bets barrels then the Expert Session are what you’re after. It’s essentially the the Advanced Session but barreling from the word go. Drop, tuck, get spat out!

Currently the expert sessions are only running the weekends and book out super fast – so make sure you book in advance.

  • Fri, Sat, Sunday only
  • Price = $129
  • Wave Face Height = 1.6-2m (and chunky!)
  • Wave Length = 12-16 seconds
  • Waves Per Session = 18 (smaller crowd at just 12 surfers)



The Take Off (Inc Top Tips!)

Without a doubt the most difficult part of surfing the URBNSURF wave pool in Melbourne is the take off. Even as an experienced surfer I stacked a good few before dialling it in!

wavepool melbourne urbnsurf australia-2I ended sitting about 1.5m off the wall, in line with the first white marker which gave me a much more forgiving roll in. The closer you sit towards the wall and towards the beach the steeper and more hollow the takeoff, so adjust it as needed.

Another tip I found was don’t rush into it:

  1. Ideally go from sitting on your board to laying down when there are 2 surfers in front of you
  2. As the person in front of you paddles for their wave, scoot in behind them, using the momentum of the wave to slide you into the right spot
  3. Check your position and then gently paddle to keep your position
  4.  Start paddling harder as you feel the water suck you backwards
  5.  Lock in, pop up and enjoy the wave!




Can You Get Barrelled?

The simple answer is yes, you can get barrelled at URBNSURF. Get yourself booked onto the Advanced or Expert session for you chance to get into the green-room. 

The advanced session has 2 types of waves – the first being a fast, whackable wall with the second half of the session offering up that famed barrel section.

Expert on the other hand is a barreling wave from the start of the session. You also have the option of “Beast Mode” when the winds offshore too.




What Board Should You Take?

There’s a lot of debate over what boards work best in wave pools and adding extra volume to compensate for the fact it’s fresh, not salt water.

My personal take on it is not to overthink it – take the board you’re most comfortable on and that you ride the most. For my trip that was the Firewire Dominator 2 – which worked perfectly on both the intermediate and advanced waves, including the barrel setting.

I was also thinking about packing in a performance mid-legth like the Seaside and Beyond for the intermediate session but decided against it due to weight allowance on the flight. In the end I didn’t miss it and unless you determined to push your skills on a variety of boards – just pack your go to shortboard.


Surf Lessons

If you’ve never surfed before and want to learn in a controlled environment then a surf lesson at the Wave Pool, Melbourne is s solid shout.

wavepool melbourne urbnsurf australiaThe 1.5 hour lesson includes land based theory and practice with a professional, experienced instructor before hitting the white water in the bay and learning to stand up.

URBNSURF also offers 2 other lesson types for those looking to progress a bit further and get prepared for surfing the main waves at the wave pool – so if you already know how to stand up those are for you.

  • Price = $79 for adults, $69 for kids
  • Includes all equipment
  • Max 8 surfers

Also – if it’s your first experience at a wave pool and you’re a bit nervous about it all they also offer lessons on both Cruiser and Intermediate Sessions – which are the ideal way to get to grips with the takeoff and work on some skills too. 




Surfboard Hire & Rental Gear

If you can’t be bothered to lug your surfboard all the way to URBNSURF (or risk it with the airline baggage handlers!) then there’s a range of rental equipment available – including boards, wetsuits, bodyboards, fins and more.

Board hire wise these include JS, Hayden Shapes, Pyzel and Lost Surfboards, as well as a range of longboards and soft tops too.

Pricing wise you can choose for either 2 hour rental or full day hire:

2-hour options

  • $10 for 2-hour softboard hire
  • $25 for 2-hour hardboard hire
  • $15 for 2-hour wetsuit hire

All-day options

  • $15 for all-day softboard hire
  • $30 for all-day board hire
  • $20 for all-day wetsuit hire

Unfortunately you can’t pre book any gear – so as soon as you arrive at URBNSURF head over to the rental building and pick out what you need!




Three Blue Ducks

wavepool melbourne urbnsurf australiaIf you’re making a whole day out of your trip to the Melbourne wavepool then you’re going to want to keep fuelled between sessions. And you’ll be stoked to discover that the food on offer is next level!

The in-house restaurant at URBNSURF is run by the team at Three Blue Ducks – and they’ve brought their range of award winning cuisine to the wavepool. Opening from 8am until 9pm it’s ideal for a post surf coffee for your dawny session right through to sunset beers watching all the thrills and spills of the barrel session!

With a solid breakfast and all day menu you’ll have plenty of dishes to choose from, in fact I ended up having all my meals there!

If you want a solid feed the pizzas and burgers are amazing, alongside all their starters for those wanting a lighter bite.

And if you’re in more of a rush or just want a snack their takeaway menu includes freshly made sandwiches, wraps, soup and chips.

Check out their full menu here




Photos and Videos

wavepool melbourne urbnsurf australiaWant to get some epic pics of your trip to the URBNSURF Melbourne wavepool? Well the crew of Surf Chimp are the official on site photographers and shoot all the sessions from 7am to 7pm – so make sure you nail that turn or that barrel!

Pricing wise standard pics are $20 each, or for 5+ photos it works out at just $10 a shot. In water pics are $30 a shot.

If you’re heading there with a group or on a private event drop them an email before heading to Melbourne as they do some solid deals on private shoots.

Check out their official website for all the info – or drop into the Photography Office when you’re at the Melbourne wavepool. All photos are available on the day and are available to buy and download off the site for 2 weeks.




What’s The Cost For An URBNSURF Surf Trip?

If you’re planning a strike mission to Melbourne to score some waves at the wave pool then here’s a quick rundown of the cost to help you budget:

  • Return flights (Gold Coast) = $258 (inc 20kg luggage and board bag)
  • 3 x surf sessions = $237
  • 1 night at Cilom Motel = $155
  • Food & Drink (lunch, dinner, brekkie, lunch, couple of coffees) = $120 approx
  • TOTAL = $770

Obviously if there are a few of you heading there you can split the overnight accomodation and also your luggage and board bag costs too. Also be aware you can keep your food and drink costs lower or really smash it out of the park too depending on what you go with and if you add in any booze!

Jetstar also have some epic fare deals on as well into Tullamarine so you can get your return flights from as little as $57 each way.




Would I Recommend It?

 Simply put, yes – I’d definitely recommend a trip to the URBNSURF wave pool in Melbourne – it’s a great day out.

wavepool melbourne urbnsurf australiaWhat I would say though is don’t just go for a single session, ideally you’ll want 2-3 during your time there to take full advantage of the waves on offer and really make the most of your sessions after dialling in that take off and getting comfortable with it all.

Start off with a session lower than what you think you want to surf, just to figure it out and ease you into it.

On the flip side though, don’t over extend yourself and try to pack too many sessions in.

Your mindset going into the time at URBNSURF is also going to have a huge impact on if you enjoy your time there. Ultimately a wave pool is a gym for surfers – it wont replace the ocean, but it’s a great opportunity to really push your skills to the next level in a short time frame.

Give yourself some goals for each session, take advantage of the repetition and also don’t be afraid to use it to get your backhand skills up to speed too.

If I was going again (and I’m already planning on it!) I’d be aiming for 2 intermediate sessions and an Advanced or Expert session. That way I get two solid training sessions followed by some barrels!





How far is URBNSURF from Melbourne Airport?

Just 4 minutes drive – which will cost around $16 in an Uber

What Time Do Sessions Run?

Sessions run 7 days a week, starting hourly from 6am and finishing at 9pm.

Is It Saltwater?

Nope, URBNSURF is a fresh water, chlorinated pool

Is it better than the ocean?

This is the million dollar question! As I’ve touched on before – wavepools are never going to replace the ocean. There’s something about the nature, the unpredictability and the rewards of hunting out a wave in the ocean that no wavepool will ever replace.

However, if you’re looking to drastically improve your surfing and progress quickly then yes, it does beat the ocean.

Perfect, guaranteed waves – a trip to the wavepool in Melbourne is going to help you fine tune everything. It’s basically a gym for surfers!

Is it safe?

In some ways yes, in others no! It’s safe in the respect the environment is much more controlled than the ocean and beach – with plenty of lifeguard cover and the ability to turn off the waves if something happens. 

However – the bottom (and side!) is concrete, so if you bail things can be unforgiving, especially in the barreling sessions.

Listen to the surf guides, be aware of other surfers and protect your head and you should be fine.

Can I take photos?

You’re free to take pics all around URBNSURF, including up the side by the takeoff spot with a compact camera or cameraphone. However if you’re packing a DSLR or professional gear you’ll need a media pass – as Surf Chimp are the official on site photographers.

You’re also not allowed to go up the central pier to take pics or to watch.

What about non surfers?

If you’ve got non surfers coming along with you it’s still a fun day out, especially when the sun in shining! You can also get involved on a full session on a bodyboard and the Swim In The Bays Pass gives you to opportunity to have a swim and enjoy the whitewash – priced at $30 an adult, $20 per child.

If you don’t want to get wet then spectator passes are $5 per person.

What’s The Water Temp? (Will You Need A Wetsuit?)

The water temp at the Melbourne wavepool varies a lot depending on the season and weather. For my trip in late April the water was around 15 degrees, so I surfed in my Project Blank 3/2 steamer.

During summer the pool heats up pretty quickly and reach early 20’s for some board short/bikini sessions!

Where Can I Chill Out?

If you’re hanging out at the Melbourne wavepool all day then there’s plenty of areas to chill out between surf sessions. There are lounge chairs, an expansive grassed area, or free to use cabanas complete with board rack – or of course grab a beer or coffee at Three Blue Ducks too.

If you want your own private space or have a big group of you you can also hire a private cabana (complete with sofas, board rack and power points) which are $300 for 4 hours or $500 for the full day and accomodate up to 24 people.




Are you planing a trip to the URBNSURF Wave Pool Melbourne?

do you have any other questions?


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