13 February 2012
Picture Manly Beach—known as one of Sydney’s most beautiful beaches—with its miles of tree-lined soft sand and perfect surf. Now mix in the world’s best surfers, action sports, live music concerts, art, fashion and roughly 100,000 people across nine days, and you’ve got the Australian Open of Surfing!
The ASP tour’s best will hit Manly on February 11 to launch the country’s biggest-ever action sports and youth culture festival, the Australian Open of Surfing, presented by Hurley and Billabong. While the surfing competitions will take centre stage, there are plenty of other activities designed to attract beach lovers, surfing enthusiasts and youth travelers alike, like the unique wooden bowl structure, dubbed the “Beach Bowl”. This has been constructed especially for the skateboarding competition—featuring three divisions (Juniors, Pro, and Pro Masters) and showcasing more than 80 competitors.
Large-scale music performances from Australian artists will also hit the stage throughout the event, drawing more crowds out to the beach for some music in the famous Australian summer sun. On Friday 17, check out DJ Grant Smillie, followed by the punk-hop of Bluejuice, before Sydney’s favourite dance act, Sneaky Sound System. On Saturday 18, don’t miss the Channel [V] stage with Stonefield, Children Collide and then a secret headliner – one of the greatest ever live bands!
Having an event of this size in Manly also allows the crowds to enjoy some of the extensive opportunities in the area for waterfront dining, exciting nightlife, contemporary fashion boutiques, museums and adventure activities. Almost everyone can find something to enjoy with opportunities to try out beach volleyball, kayaking, paddle boarding, surf lessons, or even whale watching, while the more retail-oriented traveler can stroll through the stores, arcades and boardwalks discovering Australian handmade jewellery, clothes, shoes and artworks.
An event to keep your eye out for is the Australian Surfing Awards, held this year on February 16. This surfing night of nights will be held in Manly and will be featuring the who’s who of the Australian surfing community. Each year the Awards are presented to recognize those who have continued to develop surfing in Australia. These include a number of support categories that recognize the broad spectrum of individuals, as well as organizations who are involved in the industry through events, business, competition, media, photography, movies, club, travel, administration or pioneering new initiatives.
The nine days of the Australian Open of Surfing will combine world-class athletes, artists and fans in a celebration of youth-culture, innovation and athleticism at Manly Beach—the birthplace of modern surfing.
If you’re not a Sydney-sider, Virgin Australia and STA Travel offer travel packages for young travelers starting as low as $1,160*! This includes roundtrip airfare from Los Angeles and five nights’ accommodation at a choice of hotels. For more information and to purchase travel packages, please visit:http://www.statravel.com/virgin-australia-student-tickets.htm
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Photo Credit: http://australianopenofsurfing.com/manly12/news-article/introducing-the-australian-open-of-surfing