Gold Coast, QLD: Destination Guide

Gold Coast 960x 350

Experience the blissful, laid back attitude of the Gold Coast for yourself, and you'll understand why this is one of Australia's most popular holiday destinations.

Read on to discover the best things to see and do on the Gold Coast or find and book accommodation on the Gold Coast today.

About the Gold Coast

Sun, surf and sand. The one place in Australia that can never be said to be short of things to do is the sunny Gold Coast.  Home to numerous theme parks, the Gold Coast welcomes thrill seekers of all ages. Beyond the amusement parks, Gold Coast has many galleries, museums and wonderful dining options. Plus, it is the most bio-diverse city in Australia offering everything from beautiful beaches and foreshores to subtropical rainforests.

Things to do on the Gold Coast

With over 70km of sand to choose from, take a dip at one of the famous beaches including Surfers Paradise, Broadbeach, Burleigh and Coolangatta. For a walk with a difference check out O’Reilly’s Tree Top Walk which allows you to walk through the canopy and look down at the native flora and fauna. And if that tickles your fancy, swim in a mountain stream or walk under a waterfall at one of the National Parks in the Gold Coast hinterland which do not charge an entry fee. Looking for a picnic spot? Head to Broadwater Parklands where you can fish off the pier while the kids enjoy the water playground and jumping pillow (just like a jumping castle!). For families, the Gold Coast is also home to Wax Museum the largest of its kind in Australia and the interactive fun museum Ripley’s Believe It Or Not! Odditorium brimming with jaw dropping exhibits. The SkyPoint Observation Deck is also worth a look, as it offers 360 degree views of the city.

Attractions on the Gold Coast

Theme Parks

The Gold Coast is famous for its countless theme parks enjoyed by people of all ages. Meet your favourite super heroes at Warner Bros. Movie World or visit Dreamworld for heart stopping rides and the chance to see the Bengal and Sumatran tigers and over 500 native Australian animals. For some slippery fun head to Wet ‘n’ Wild Water World or get up close and personal with dolphins, seals and other sea creatures at Sea World. Finally, for a theme park with a twist head to Mt Tamborine’s Adventure Parc for the chance to climb through the treetops and sail down the flying foxes in the gorgeous Gold Coast hinterland.

Gold Coast Events

Gold Coast hosts a range of events and festivals throughout the year. For music lovers, Gold Coast offers many major music festivals such as Big Day Out and Good Vibrations. Head to Coolangatta for the Cooly Rocks On Festival in June which celebrates all things Elvis; think rock ‘n’ roll, classic cars and retro outfits. Boaties will enjoy having a peek at everything from luxury yachts to jet skis at the Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show held in May. While the punters and fashionistas should attend the Magic Millions carnival in January. The carnival is the second biggest Australian horse racing event behind the Melbourne Cup.

Carrara Markets

The Carrara Markets is the largest permanent market in Australia where you are sure to find a curious assortment of treasures in one of the 500 stalls.

Gold Coast Hinterland

Those who appreciate fine wine should check out the Gold Coast Hinterland wine region which is home to over 14 wineries.

Getting to the Gold Coast

Located on Queensland's south east coast, the Gold Coast is about 80km south of Brisbane.

By car

Driving from Brisbane to th Gold Coast will take about two hours.

When to visit the Gold Coast

The Gold Coast offers visitors a sunny respite throughout the year. Due to the year-round warm weather the area is particular busy in the Australian winter school holiday season due to the influx of sun-seeking families. If you are headed to the Gold Coast for diving the best time of the year to visit is between April to October as the waters are clearer.

Where to stay on the Gold Coast

The is an abundance of places to stay on the Gold Coast, with something for every taste and budget. For more accommodation options in and around the Gold Coast, click here.

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Gold Coast Holiday Parks