Australia’s Gold Coast is often dubbed the most ‘comprehensive beach holiday destination in the southern hemisphere’ and, if you think that sounds like a bit of a stretch, you really ought to come and see it for yourself. Queensland’s crown jewel is a haven of 40kms of pristine beaches; complemented by enticing and bustling towns and framed by thousands of hectares of stunning rainforest. If you’re looking to savour the very best of Australia, then dare we say the buck stops right here.
A Gold Coast vacation is about as idyllic as can be; you can start every day with an invigorating swim in the Coral Sea, spend your mornings on one of its sparkling beaches, indulge in a superlative seafood lunch feast in one of the many top-notch restaurants, enjoy an afternoon bushwalk through tropical rainforests and be back in time to sip a sundowner whilst watching a breathtaking Gold Coast sunset.
How’s that for holiday perfection?
Where you’ll find it
The Gold Coast is the name given to the 40km stretch of coastline between the NSW/Qld border and Brisbane. It has been a mecca for local beach lovers since time immemorial and has cemented itself as an international holiday destination for well over half a century now. Whilst some say that the busiest hubs, like Surfers Paradise, have been overly developed, we like to think if it this way: the Gold Coast has everything to offer in one gorgeous place; from bustling Surfers where the shopping, nightlife and activities options are near-infinite, to quieter nooks like Coolangatta and Tweed Heads, where one can be as secluded as one likes. In the Gold Coast you can chose to have a beach holiday, a shopping trip, an adrenalin-junkie jaunt or a forest adventure. You can do one or do them all, the choice is all yours.
How to get there
The Gold Coast Airport is located in Coolangatta, at the southern border of Queensland. It is one of Australia’s busiest incoming hubs and handles millions of anticipating tourists every year. You can reach it from a dozen international destinations or every major city in Australia and New Zealand.
Booking a car rental pick-up from Coolangatta Airport is fast becoming the deal of choice for foreign and local visitors alike. The utter convenience of having your own wheels here cannot be emphasized enough. Driving around is extremely easy (even for right-hand-side drivers!) parking is plentiful, road conditions perfect and, of course, the benefit of self-driving on the Gold Coast means that you can reach every corner of its coastline and hinterland whenever it please you.
What to see and do
The Gold Coast’s long and illustrious list of attractions is an infinite collection of outdoor activities. Enjoying the great outdoors is what Australia is all about, and never is this truer than on its sparkling Gold Coast.
No matter where you choose to stay, you’ll always be just metres away from a pristine beach; you’ll find a myriad of water sports offered at the busier beaches of Surfers and plenty of secluded spots on the southern end if sunbathing and frolicking with your family or loved one is what you prefer most. Nature lovers can indulge in day long excursions out in the striking Currumbin Valley and Springbook Nation Park, although a rental car to explore it a length is most definitely needed.
Adventurous souls can scream their hearts out at the super fun theme parks the Gold Coast is so renowned for. From Dreamworld to Sea World, Movie World and Wet’n’Wild, the amount of pure fun offered here is second to none.
If there are two Gold Coast activities everyone should include in their itinerary, they would have to be shopping and dining. Surfers Paradise is the shopping hub of the Gold Coast and is home to an array of pedestrian malls and shopping centres; enough to satisfy all retail-therapy cravings. When it comes to indulging in a little foodie gorge however, rest assured that these can be satisfied everywhere.
Enjoy delectable freshly-caught seafood anywhere on the Gold Coast and you won’t be disappointed. Surfers Paradise is also brimming with an ocean of eateries of all budgets and cuisine, so satisfying your cravings and desires will be incredibly easy to do. Each town is also home to well stocked supermarkets and fantastic fresh-produce markets too; making a self-catering and self-driving vacation the ultimate Gold Coast experience of all.