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5 of our favourite point-to-point ocean swim events

In this edition of our favourite swims, we take a look at five of our favourite point-to-point swims.

One of the greatest things about ocean swimming events is that no two are the same.

There’s always a variety of swim course formats to choose from, ranging from the classic around the buoys to the most-loved journey swims, the point-to-points.

In this edition of our favourite swims, we take a look at five of our favourite point-to-point swims you’ll want to add to your ocean swimming bucket list.

1. The Big Swim (Palm to Whale)

  • Location: Palm Beach, NSW
  • Course: South, from Palm Beach to Whale Beach
  • Event month: January

The Big Swim takes swimmers from Palm Beach to Whale Beach and is one of the premier events on the ocean swim calendar.

This swim is one loved by many ocean swimmers and for those that haven’t completed it yet, we suggest adding it to your ocean swimming bucket list because you won’t be disappointed.

Swimmers start at Palm Beach before leaving the safety of the beach out into the open ocean and making the 2.8km journey along the jagged cliff coastline to the beautiful Whale Beach.


  1. Pass the Palm Beach Rock Pool as you leave Palm Beach
  2. View the majesty of the rock faces along the headland
  3. The tree-lined Whale Beach has a regional feel about it

2. Cooly Classic

  • Location: Coolangatta, QLD
  • Course: North, from Snapper Rocks to Kirra Beach
  • Event month: April

The Cooly Classic is one of Queensland’s most popular swims, taking swimmers along some of the world’s most famous surf breaks. If you’re lucky enough you might see Joel Parkinson or Mick Fanning on your way through.

There’s a distance for everyone ranging from 1km to 5km, with courses taking you through Snapper Rocks, Rainbow Bay, Kirra, Greenmount and Coolangatta beaches.

Upon tackling this swim you will be welcomed with crystal clear waters and some swimmers are even lucky enough to see swarming marine life such as turtles and dolphins on this point-to-point swim.

Trust us this is a swim you want to experience for yourself and a must-do for all ocean swimmers.


  1. Pass through one of the world’s most famous surf breaks -Snapper Rocks – on your way out into the deep blue
  2. After you pass through Rainbow Bay, view the lush green headland of Rainbow Bay lookout as you swim through Greenmount Beach
  3. As you come around the Kirra Groyne you will be welcomed into the finish line at Kirra Beach with some of the best crystal clear water you will find on the Gold Coast

3. Forster Club to Club

  • Location: Forster, NSW
  • Course: From One Mile Beach to Forster Beach
  • Event month: April

The Dorsal Club to Club takes swimmers from the One Mile Beach just up Cape Hawke Surf Club out into the open ocean before swimming along the jagged rocky coastline. At one point it’s just you and the ocean before you pass ‘The Tanks’ and head back into the break to Forster Surf Club.

This 3.8km point-to-point journey swim is one of the most satisfying ocean swims with the ocean’s natural elements coming out to play throughout the whole journey.

Fun Fact: ‘The Tanks’ is a rock formation along the coastline and gets its name from a collection of steel ship’s tanks, which were located at this location during the construction of the Forster breakwall in the 1890’s. The water tanks filled the steam engine trains which carried the quarried rocks from Bennetts Head to the present breakwall.


  1. Pass the picturesque Bennetts Head lookout which offers sweeping views of towering cliff faces.
  2. Watch the tiny specs of walkers as they hike along the Bicentennial Walk on the edge of the towering cliffs.
  3. On your home straight you will pass by ‘The Tanks’ a beautiful rock formation.

4. Pier to Perignon 

  • Location: Sorrento, VIC
  • Course: Sorrento Beach to Portsea Beach
  • Event month: February

The Pier to Perignon is one of Victoria’s most iconic ocean swims.

The 4km course takes swimmers along the scenic route from Sorrento to Portsea.

Since starting in 1989, when the two founders put a wager of a Dom Perignon bottle up for grabs, the event has grown to over 1000 swimmers each year, with tickets selling out within minutes.

Post-swim you can enjoy a carnival-like atmosphere, with drink and food stalls. This swim is one you have to experience before hanging up the togs.


  1. On your way out into the water be sure to admire the Scenic Norfolk Island Pines that line the coast.
  2. Gaze up at the beautiful mansions, boat houses and private piers on Millionaire’s Walk as you swim by.
  3. On your way to the finish line, you will be greeted by the stunning two-platform Portsea Pier and beautiful crystal-clear water.

5. Nobbys 2 Newcastle

  • Location: Newcastle, NSW
  • Course: Nobbys Beach to Newcastle
  • Event month: January

The Nobbys 2 Newcastle Ocean Swim is one of the prettiest point-to-point courses you will ever do.

The 2km swim runs from the Nobbys headland at the base of the Nobbys Lighthouse, near where the Pasha Bulker was grounded. Before swimmers swim around the rock shelf, past the stunning Newcastle Ocean Baths and into Newcastle Beach.

On your way around the headland, you will also pass the famed surf spot, Cowrie Hole.

This swim is one you’ll be wanting to tick off your bucket list.


  1. The Nobbys Lighthouse is an active lighthouse on Nobbys Head and sits at the entrance to Newcastle Harbour.
  2. Halfway through your swim, you swim through the famed surf spot ‘Cowrie Hole’ an exposed reef break.
  3. As you near the end of your swim you will pass the Newcastle Ocean Baths located on a stunning rock shelf.
  • Written by Ocean Swims on 20 December 2022
  • (Updated on 10 August 2023)



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