Theme parks, beaches, surfing and rainforests are to be found in the Top 10 List of things to do on the Gold Coast.
Whether it's a family holiday, beach break or sophisticated resort, the Gold Coast has it covered. Find a hip bar and restaurant scene, great shopping, and cafés among the villages along the coast. Enjoy golf courses, thrill-seek your way around world-class theme parks or simply hit the iconic beaches and surf in year-round sunshine.
Watch the sun rise above sandy beaches and the sparkling Pacific Ocean – you’ll be spoiled for choice with the 57 kilometres of coastline this city boasts. Walk along the sand with the locals, or head to Surfers Paradise for seaside fun and easy access to drinks and ice cream. Catch amazing waves at The Spit or Mermaid Beach.
Find water parks, extreme rollercoasters and favourite movie characters at the Gold Coast theme parks. Experience the Justice League 3D ride and meet cartoon characters on Main Street at Warner Bros. Movie World. Splash down at Wet’n’Wild, frolic with dolphins at Sea World or head to Dreamworld and experience its Big Eight thrill rides.
Turn away from the beach and explore the magic of the Great Hinterland Walk. Pass through World Heritage rainforests Lamington and Springbrook, where you access an ancient volcano and spectacular waterfall amidst incredible beauty and native wildlife. Get up close with a crocodile or cuddle koalas at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary.
Explore the Gold Coast’s distinct neighbourhoods, each with their own vibe. Hire a bike and ride Old Burleigh Road, from buzzy Surfers Paradise to chic Broadbeach with its array of cafés, such as vegetarian delight Cardamom Pod. Stay in upmarket Southport or Main Beach, while Nobby Beach and Burleigh Heads are hip and chilled-out surfie neighbourhoods.
Indulge yourself at fabulous five-star hotels like the Palazzo Versace, the high-rise Hilton in the heart of the action, the Sofitel at Broadbeach, or funky QT at Surfers Paradise. For luxe resort stays by the best pools, try the Sheraton Mirage or Marriott Resort and Spa.
See nature from a different angle as you stroll through the rainforest...15 metres (49 feet) above the ground! The Tree Top Walkway, which spans nine suspension bridges, puts you right in the midst of the canopy, where you’ll be surrounded by birds, flowers and – once you reach the 30m-high (98.4 feet) Observation Deck – the sky. The Walkway is free, and requires some climbing.
Ride jet skis on an exhilarating coastal tour. Get your adrenalin rush on a jet boat. Learn to paddleboard or surf at one of the many great schools along the coast. See turtles, stingrays and seahorses as you dive, or for beginners, learn via the Discover Scuba Diving experience.
Pull up a water view table at Bumbles on Budds Beach. Hit Black Coffee Lyrics in Surfers Paradise for sublime coffee and a cool night scene. Try the lamb at fantastic Hellenika at Nobby Beach, or hit the high-end food at celebrity chef Luke Mangan’s Salt Grill.
Find vintage threads and an eclectic bohemian vibe at the Village Markets on Sundays at Burleigh Heads. Or head to Carrara Markets, where 500 stalls and lots of free entertainment will keep you entertained all weekend. Hit up Harbour Town outlet mall for some serious bargains and get a fashion fix at Pacific Fair Shopping Centre.
Beautiful, challenging golf courses await you on the Gold Coast. Choose a resort course like Palmer Gold Coast, carved out of 65 hectares of native woodlands, the RACV Royal Pines Resort that holds the Australian PGA Championships or the Intercontinental that give you access to Sanctuary Cove’s The Palms and The Pines courses. Alternatively try the public courses, such as Parkwood International, an 18-hole course set in contoured bushland, or Links which is located on Hope Island just a 20-minute drive from the Gold Coast.