In Queensland’s southeast coast, the City of the Gold Coast extends beyond the borders of Surfers Paradise. You'll find swanky hotels, the city’s premier arts hub Hota, and dining and nightlife scenes. The vibe here is relaxed. The Gold Coast is a city best explored through your taste buds. The Gold Coast's star attraction is its beaches, including the world-renowned stretch of sand at Surfers Paradise. Beyond the beaches, discover laid-back neighborhoods, the culinary scene and the Gold Coast's famous theme parks. And don’t miss a trip into the subtropical hinterland for rain forest walks and waterfalls. With Gold Coast Australia Travel you'll want to beach hop along the coast, get your heart racing at world-class theme parks, and swim beneath waterfalls in the Gold Coast hinterland. For information on all of the great beaches in Gold Coast Australia, << Click Here >>.
Gold Coast Weather (When to Visit)
While it may be tempting to visit the Gold Coast during the summer months of December to February, these periods can become uncomfortably warm and provide inconsistent tropical weather. Also, due to the destination’s popularity internationally, these periods become incredibly crowded with families travelling during the school holidays. Also, it’s important to avoid visiting during mid-November to early December as this marks the “schoolies” and festival periods. During this period, the Gold Coast becomes incredibly crowded with prices for accommodation and activities rising extensively. While Easter does fall in either March or April, travelling just after the school holiday period ends is the ideal time to visit. Visiting between April to May means experiencing the most comfortable temperatures and lower rainfall. This is also the cheapest time to visit the Gold Coast.
Best Gold Coast Area Beaches
Always a popular surfing destination due to its widely renowned surf break, Burleigh Heads and the point which is a hot spot for weekend barbecues and picnics due to its large, scenic park which overlooks the ocean. Burleigh provides a pleasant beach atmosphere that is protected by the point to the south and offers one of the best all-round swimming, body boarding and surfing beaches on the Gold Coast.
Broadbeach has ample sand to throw down your towel. Shade is sparse so pack your sunscreen and umbrella, or head to Pratten Park with its large playground for the kids and free BBQs. Pacific Fair Shopping Center is a 10-minute stroll from the water and is certain to impress any shopaholic.
Tallebudgera Creek is an eye-searingly blue estuary, fringed by one of the best beaches on the Gold Coast. Here, you can sun worship and swim without fear of getting tumble rolled by a vicious wave. This beach is also patrolled by lifeguards and is perfect for young families.
Main Beach is fringed by sand dunes and some glitzy sprawling resorts. This expansive stretch of white sand continues all the way north to the Spit, with glimpses to South Stradbroke Island. If you’re swimming, patrolled sections are sparse and the surf can get treacherous on occasion, so always seek out the red and yellow flags!
Pandanus palms and Tamarisk pines perfectly frame this beach, and there’s plenty of sand for everyone, even on busy weekends. A wide, paved boulevard lines the entire stretch, ideal for walking, biking, skateboarding, or roller-blading, and free outdoor gym equipment is sprinkled along the track if you want to work off any recent overindulging. Visit our Surfers Paradise Gold Coast Australia guide for more information on Surfers Paradise.
Best Gold Coast Area Tours & Activities
Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary General Entry Ticket
Enjoy a close encounter with Australia's native animals at the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary, located on the Gold Coast. Your ticket includes admission to the park plus daily keeper presentations and animal shows. Admire critters such as the kangaroo, Tasmanian devil, koala, wombat, echidna and reptiles that live in natural-style bush and rainforest habitats. Walk through the stunning 5-acre forest of the Lost Valley and see unique flora and wildlife such as lemurs, red pandas, capybaras and other exotic reptiles. Learn more about the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary Entry.
Hot Air Ballooning including Champagne Breakfast
Take to the skies for an unforgettable hot air balloon flight over the Gold Coast hinterland. Departing from your Gold Coast accommodation, soar over beautiful vineyards, pastures, and forests as the landscape is bathed in golden morning light. Choose from two flight lengths, and cap off your thrilling morning with a savory sparkling wine breakfast and cellar door visit at O'Reilly's homestead and boutique vineyard. Learn more about the Hot Air Ballooning w/Champagne Breakfast.
Gold Coast Jet Boat Ride from Main Beach
Zip through the scenic Gold Coast Broadwater on a high-octane jet boat ride that combines speed-driven fun with sightseeing. Hang on as your boat performs 360-degree spins, power slides and other tricks, then slow down to see Southport Yacht Club, Palazzo Versace Hotel and Marina Mirage. You'll also buzz past Seaworld, the mansions of Sovereign Island and Moreton Bay Marine Park, venturing further than other similar tours. Dolphins and other marine life often seen in these waterways — keep your eyes peeled! Learn more about the Jet Boat Ride from Main Beach.
Gold Coast Tandem Skydive
Go skydiving during your visit to the Gold Coast for an incredible thrill and spectacular views of the city, coast and Pacific Ocean. Jump in tandem with your expert instructor, enjoying a short freefall before your instructor releases the parachute. Float gently down to Kirra Beach, one of the beautiful beaches that makes the Gold Coast justifiably famous. Departures are available throughout the day and include complimentary transfer from centrally located Surfers Paradise hotels. Learn more about the Gold Coast Tandem Skydive.
Gold Coast Solo or Tandem Parasailing
Enjoy a sky-high adventure on the Gold Coast on a parasailing tour. As you float through the air behind the boat, admire views of Surfers Paradise and the islands of the Gold Coast. You can go by yourself or with a partner. Learn more about the Solo or Tandem Parasailing.
Best Gold Coast Australia Restaurants
The Fish House $31 – 60
From the outside, The Fish House at Burleigh Heads looks like a simple brick diner. Step inside to discover what's earned this modest-looking eatery an enviable two hats for 2017 (hats are the Australian equivalent of Michelin stars). A southern European twist elevates fresh Australian seafood: try lemony fish soup; steamed coral trout with ginger and shallots; or a whole rock lobster. For real decadence, add a caviar course to your order. Telephone: 7 5535 7725 Web: The Fish House
Social Eating House $11 – 30
Near Mamasan in Broadbeach's Oracle precinct is Social Eating House. As the name suggests, Social is all about sharing small and large plates of goodness. The tapas menu might feature softshell crab with Asian slaw and chilli caramel; prawns with peach and prosciutto drizzled with hazelnut vinaigrette; slow-roasted saltbush lamb; and Asahi-battered King George whiting. The charcuterie cabinet is filled with jamon, prosciutto and salamis from Spain, Italy and Australia, as well as rustic terrines. Telephone: 7 5504 5210 Web: Social Eating House
Hellenika $11 – 30
From flawless food to irreproachable service, Hellenika is where to head when you want fine-dining quality without the fuss … and access to a treasure trove of more than 500 wines. “It’s simple, authentic, home-style food, designed to be placed in the middle of the table to share,” Simon says. The mezze menu at the rooftop Bar Hellenika suits more casual catch-ups. It’s developing a reputation for its sunset sessions. Telephone: 7 5572 8009 Web: Hellenika
The Fireplace $11 – 30
As the name suggests Sanctuary Cove’s signature dining destination is perfect to mark a winter occasion with its wood-fired cuisine and cozy ambiance. The winter menu still features the house favorites, lamb strip loin and the braised short ribs, but it’s worth checking out the added pasta dishes for pure comfort, along with the mains of pork belly in fig puree wrapped in prosciutto and the Queensland barramundi teamed with octopus and spinach vichyssoise. Telephone: 7 5636 6757 Web: The Fireplace
Vanitas Restaurant $31 – 60
Overlooking the lagoon with starched white tablecloths and signature Versace tableware, the scene is set for sophisticated Italian dining lovingly handmade onsite. The menu, as in Italy, changes with the seasons and August 7 marks the start of Vanitas’ annual Truffle Month, featuring a truffle degustazione menu. Telephone: 7 5509 8000 Web: Vanitas Restaurant
Best Gold Coast Australia Nightlife
Elsewhere Bar – Surfers Paradise
Celebrating its 15th year in Surfers Paradise this year, Elsewhere Bar has made its mark on the nightclub circuit for being a little different. Electronic Boogie Show is on Friday nights, and features the newest tracks in techno, house, and dance music. The Elsewhere Saturday Night Show includes a rotating lineup of the best local DJs. Finally, Sundays are reserved for Royale nights. See why Elsewhere is a favorite nightclub among Gold Coast locals. Telephone: 7 5592 6880 Web: Elsewhere Bar.
Melbas On The Park – Surfers Paradise
Melbas on the Park is a Surfers Paradise institution, and one of the region’s top entertainment destinations. Melbas has been serving locals and visitors alike since 1981. It’s home to a restaurant and bar, a gaming lounge, and a nightclub on level two. Melbas says its nightclub is where “quality and exclusivity reigns”. There are booths available to book, a VIP Cocktail Bar, and a rotating lineup of the coast’s best commercial, dance, and R&B DJs. Melbas also has a dress code, so dress to impress! Telephone: 7 5538 7411 Web: Melbas On The Park.
Cocktails Nightclub – Surfers Paradise
Cocktails Nightclub (formerly known as Cocktails & Dreams) has been owned by the same management since its opening in 1989. Following its complete refurbishment, Cocktails is now one of the largest dance clubs in Surfers Paradise. It boasts three separate rooms — including a popular R&B room — which each focus on a different musical genre, so it caters to all tastes. There’s also a secluded pool table area, for people who need a break from the dance floor. Telephone: 7 5592 1955 Web: Cocktails Nightclub.
The Avenue – Surfers Paradise
The Avenue is the self-proclaimed heart of Surfers Paradise nightlife. It’s a restaurant, nightclub, and entertainment venue. Its Backroom is where the magic happens. With the latest technology, sound, and light fittings, this multi-million dollar venue is in a league of its own. The Avenue hosts many up-and-coming DJs as well, so definitely visit the official website to see who is hitting the decks next, or during your visit. Telephone: 7 5592 1678 Web: The Avenue.
SinCity Nightclub – Surfers Paradise
Stepping into SinCity Nightclub is like stepping into Las Vegas itself. There’s scantily clad bar and waitstaff; chandeliers and velvet furnishings; and a VIP section fit for the rich and famous. Every VIP booth booking gets you a personal server all night, as well as bottle service. The booths at SinCity Nightclub are named after visiting celebrities, including Justin Bieber, Russell Brand, Snoop Dogg, Mike Tyson, and Conor McGregor. Telephone: 7 5538 7543 Web: SinCity Nightclub.
Best Gold Coast Australia Hotels
Located just 650 feet from the beach, Xanadu Resort offers modern apartments with stunning Gold Coast views. It features 2 swimming pools, a hot tub, a sauna and fitness center. Each apartment at Xanadu Resort has a spacious balcony overlooking the beach. All include a kitchen with dishwasher and washing machine, and living room with DVD player and cable TV. Internet access can be enjoyed in the apartments.
Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort
Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort Gold Coast features a pool bar, a health spa and direct beach access. This luxurious property is located on the beachfront and is a 10-minute drive from Surfers Paradise and a 15-minute drive from Jupiters Casino.
Meriton Suites Southport
Just 5 minutes’ walk from the beach, Meriton Suites Broadbeach offers luxurious accommodation. Leisure facilities include an indoor and outdoor pool, a sauna, hot tub and fitness centre. Some suites feature stunning ocean views. Guests enjoy unlimited free WiFi at the property.
Peppers Soul Surfer's Paradise
Boasting 77 floors and overlooking Surfers Paradise Beach, each apartment at Peppers Soul Surfers Paradise offers in-room WiFi, a spa bath and a private balcony with uninterrupted ocean and hinterland views. The property features an outdoor pool, a spa pool and fitness center.
Surfers Paradise Marriott Resort & Spa
Featuring a private saltwater lagoon, sandy beaches and an artificial reef with tropical fish, the 28-story Marriott Resort & Spa is set in the heart of Surfers Paradise. Guests enjoy panoramic hinterland and river views, 5 on-site dining options, the Ruby Spa and a fitness center.
Located just 350 feet from the golden sands of Surfers Paradise Beach, and trackside to the world-famous Gold Coast 600 Supercar race, Rhapsody Resort offers modern and luxurious self-contained accommodations with free WiFi and free parking. Guests can enjoy a leisurely swim in the outdoor pool, or admire the stunning ocean views from the rooftop terrace and BBQ area.