Kiwi acting superstar Manu Bennett spends a lot of time seeing fans at Comic Cons worldwide.

But on a recent trip to attend the Hawaiian Comic Con he took some time to revisit his lifelong passion, surfing.

Up on the north shore of Oahu, famous for its big waves, he took time out to catch up with some surfing legends, including former world surfing champ Tom Curren and former Pipeline Master Liam McNamara.

Manu Bennett. Photo / Supplied
Manu Bennett. Photo / Supplied

"Liam is the owner of the North Shore Surf Shop, he set me up with the necessary equipment to go riding giants. Liam is the brother of Garret, the world record-holder for biggest wave ever surfed. Garret rode a 100ft wave at the Nazare surf break in Portugal," Bennett tells Spy. "Being on the ocean keeps me charged when I'm not competing for acting roles."


Bennett says he had a lucky escape on his first trip to Hawaii in 2012 when he surfed Sunset Point — which had waves as high as 12m — and "almost drowned when I was held under by two giant set waves".

"This trip I was determined not to be scared off, but to surf again," he said.

"Once again, the waves were huge, so Liam suggested I use an impact vest for buoyancy, which gave me added confidence. Garret uses the same vest when riding giant waves.

"After a couple of hours meditating, I suited up and paddled out through the channel and into the line-up. It was pretty intimidating, but that's where you measure your own resolve and after 30 minutes of watching the break, I paddled into one of the biggest waves of my life."

The former Spartacus and Arrow star says he finished filming his second US feature film last December and his perfect mix in life now, is the sea and acting.

Bennett recently moved to Pukehina, a half-hour drive from Mt Maunganui.

"Last weekend I got the surfboards out with my daughters," he says.