Soaking Up Australia's Surf History in Torquay, Victoria, Australia
Australian Surfing has a style and attitude all its own. Paddle out near the surf-mecca of Torquay, and you're sure to gain insight into what makes local wave-riding unique. To really understand its distinct evolution, however, you'll have to go to the Surf World Museum, which offers a nostalgic look at the olden days of Aussie surfing. The characters profiled are a mix of mavericks and rogues, men and women who chased waves around the world with a fearless spirit. Rotating exhibits focus on beach culture, big-wave contests and classic photos while the "Board Room" charts the history of the surfboard itself. Check out a local shaper at work or watch a few minutes of a vintage Australian surf flick. By the time you leave, you'll be itching to get into the ocean—with two feet on your board and a deferential nod to those who came before you.