The Gold Coast, Queensland

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The Gold Coast QLDThe Gold Coast QLDThe Gold Coast is located in Queensland on the New South Wales border. It has world famous beaches, nightlife, shopping and some amazing theme parks.
Australia's Gold Coast is famous for its stunning beaches and subtropical rainforests. With 70 kilometres of uninterrupted coastline, the Gold Coast beaches have something for everyone. This vibrant region stretches from Cabarita Beach in New South Wales north to Beenleigh and beautiful South Stradbroke Island.
Follow the roads inland from the sand and surf. Wander through the Gold Coast hinterland for the day or stay awhile in a cosy mountain retreat. A modern transport network links the hinterland and coastal areas with fantastic shopping centres, exciting entertainment parks, accommodation, dining and nightlife.
And a new rail service and motorway connect the Gold Coast with Queensland's capital, Brisbane.


Along the busiest stretch of the Gold Coast is Surfers Paradise beach - a great spot for families with its perfect swimming beach and range of other activities. Free beach volleyball offers fun for all ages, while the nearby cafes and shopping areas make it easy to take a break with an ice-cream or a cool drink. The huge Paradise Centre on the main shopping street, Cavill Avenue, has enough games and rides to keep everyone entertained. If you are a craft lover,
Every Friday night craft markets are set up along the front esplanade of the beach.

Main Beach The Gold CoastMain Beach The Gold CoastSouth of Surfers Paradise is Broadbeach, offering a wide pedestrian shopping area just off the beach with children’s play equipment and fairground rides that run all year. With the beach as your backdrop, shopping can become a totally relaxing experience. Broadbeach is home to Kurrawa Surf Life Saving Club, host of the annual Australian Surf Lifesaving Titles. The area also features an exciting cafe precinct with pavement cafes and restaurants offering something to suit every taste. The gourmet pizzas are a healthy favourite. Broadbeach also offers craft markets on the first and third Sunday of every month on the strand. 

Further south is Burleigh Heads featuring a headland cliff popular with both visitors and locals.
The headland incorporates hectares of National Park which visitors are free to explore. Just south of the headland is Echo Beach, a great place for a picnic, otherwise head north to the sheltered beach and barbecue area, where you can have lunch under the Norfolk pines. Walking paths guide you around to the headland and most are easy to manage with small children.


Travelling to the Gold Coast for many years now, we have found an array of places to eat.
From relaxed beach cafes to elegant restaurants, offering a variety of styles at a range of prices: A few blocks behind Main Beach, Tedder Avenue is a vibrant dining area with a cosmopolitan feel. Informal by day, the area comes alive at night with chic outdoor dining. This is a great spot to enjoy a romantic dinner while the kids are being looked after by one of the area's qualified babysitters we find this a fantastic part of our holiday, gives us a brake and time alone from the kids (for recommendations, just ask your hotel). There are also a handful of wine bars where you can enjoy a pre-dinner drink. You'll find Thai, Japanese and Italian restaurants to tempt you for dinner, as well as plenty of cafes serving coffee and delicious desserts until late. Of course, there are also some great spots to take the kids for a casual family meal.

Things to See and Do

Stradbroke IslandStradbroke IslandStradbroke Island

Situated only a short distance from the Gold Coast,is North Stradbroke Island. This is one of the highlights of our family holiday.
Spend a full day exploring the island in the comfort of a 4WD, stopping at pristine fresh-water lakes, rugged gorges, and beautiful, secluded beaches.
Enjoy an easy walk around Point Lookout headland to view the magnificent Humpback Whales (June - Nov), dolphins, turtles and manta-rays that regularly visit the island.
Relax on the beach or take a swim in the crystal clear waters while a BBQ lunch is prepared for you to enjoy.

Koala at David Fleay Wildlife ParkKoala at David Fleay Wildlife ParkDavid Fleay Wildlife Park

Discover the amazing collection of Queensland's rare and threatened species amongst a backdrop of rainforest, eucalypt forest and wetlands.
Daily Presentations include:

  • Crocodiles
  • Tree Kangaroo
  • Cassowary
  • 2 Koala Contact Zone Sessions
  • Nocturnal House
  • Snakes Alive
  • Fur, Feathers & Scales Children's Show 

Extreme Jetboating

Prepare yourself for Extreme Exhilaration aboard the Gold Coast's V8 powered Jet Boat.

Imagine hurtling along at speeds in excess of 70km/h aboard awesome V8 powered jet boats.
A heart stopping combo of high speed slides and turns, fishtails and 360° spins are guaranteed to get your adrenalin pumping. 45 Minutes of Pure Adrenalin! If visiting the Gold Coast you will just have to try this. After a lot of talking into I have never regreted the ride.

Sea WorldSharks at Sea WorldSharks at Sea World

Sea World is a one of the major attractions in the Gold Coast theme park scene.
Linked to the cute and human friendly dolphin, the rides and exhibits have a high educational theme, and is very kids and family friendly. Sea world is located close to Surfers Paradise beach, approximately a 10 minute drive from the beach.

Sea World has a resort which gives patrons special admission prices. The Sea World Nara resort is connected via a monorail to the theme park.

Sea World Nara Resort is set amongst beautiful tropical gardens on the Broadwater.
The resort offers 5 grades of accommodation and features 5 restaurants and bars and provides regular shuttle bus transfer to Surfers Paradise, Warner Bros. Movie World,
Wet n Wild Water World, Paradise Country as well as Pacific Fair. Although very expensive Nara Resort is excellent accommadation.

Shark Bay

When you first enter, you will see a great expansive pool – this is Shark Bay. There are three main sections to Shark Bay, which is the Touch Pools and Inter-tidal Zone, Shark Lagoon, and Reef Lagoon. Reef Lagoon is a reef environment and contains Leopard sharks, Blacktip Reef sharks, Nervous sharks, Epaulette sharks, with Shovelnose rays, Cowtail rays, Moari Wrasse, Red Emperor, and a variety of reef fish. Shark Lagoon is a larger body of water and contains Tiger sharks, Dusky Whaler Sharks and Blue Whaler sharks. Shark Bay is one of the main attractions of Sea World, as you get to get up close to the human eating species of sharks. (For a small fee, if you are brave enough you can even dive with the lagoon keepers in Shark Bay.)

Dolphin cove

Dolphin cove is a highlight of the park. With two shows per day, during peak seasons, the amphitheatre can get packed. With an enthusiastic crowd, the stars of the show are the 6 or so dolphins of various ages and sizes. Their interactions with the trainers are amazing, and they do not fail to educate and entertain the audience. I think most people would trade in their day jobs to be a dolphin trainer, because it looks like all fun. Yes, you can pay for this privilege too.

Polar Bear

The Polar Bear enclosure is like most city zoos. They have an enclosure, in which you can view them from above, ground level, and below water. It seems a little odd that polar bears can live in 35 degree heat, but they seem to enjoy their enclosure and you can get relatively close and see how huge they are.

Sea World Rides

The kids can ride most of the rides . There are a few rides which are scarier, but they are generally tame and shorter than the other theme parks. The “corkscrew” rollercoaster is pretty much generic, with a few twists and turns, however it is not meant to be a main attraction.

For the thrill seekers, there is not much that can freak you out. Like at most of the other parks, there are additional activities you can do, if you pay more. At Sea World, you can take a helicopter ride, swim with the dolphins, or even spend a whole day with the trainer and hang with the dolphins. But these activities are not cheap, being trainer for a day costs around AUD260 for 4.5hrs.

The food is not that great, and there is little variety except for pre-packaged processed deep fried foods. I would advice to pack your own lunch.
The Dockside Tavern serves a-la-carte food, but it comes at a cost, which may not equal the quality you would expect. However, the view from here is great; you can sit on the balcony and see the dolphins below or watch people scream on the Pirate Ship.

DreamworldMovie WorldMovie World

Gold Coast, Australia: Dreamworld is centrally located between Brisbane and the Gold Coast.


Air: Dreamworld is one hour's drive from Brisbane Airport and 40 minutes from Gold Coast Airport.

Car: For easy access, Dreamworld is located adjacent the M1 Pacific Motorway (exit 54) at Coomera, just 30 minutes drive from Surfers Paradise and 45 minutes drive from Brisbane city.

Train: The Coomera Railway Station is a short stroll from Dreamworld’s front gates with regular services to and from Brisbane and the Gold Coast.

Bus: Dreamworld is an official bus stop for services between Brisbane and the Gold Coast.
Shuttle bus services also are available from major hotels.

Dreamworld is the ultimate, action-packed adventure for the whole family.

Feeling brave? Test your ticker on The Big 5 Thrill Rides including Giant Drop, Tower of Terror, Cyclone Rollercoaster, Wipeout and The Claw.

Soak up the fun with Spongebob Squarepants at the coolest kid's zone in the world.
Nick Central is bursting with 16 rides and attractions and all your favourite Nickelodeon Characters.

Ride in the Big Red Car, sail on the S.S. Feathersword and meet The Wiggles Friends every
day at the world's first Wiggles World.

Wet'n Wild Water World

Visit Wet'n'Wild Water World, Australia's premier water theme park on the Gold Coast.
Enjoy all the fun and excitement of the world's latest slides, pools and attractions at the largest Australian water theme park. Experience a day of splashtacular Gold Coast theme park fun for the whole family.

Wet'n'Wild Water World is located next to Warner Bros. Movie World on the M1 Pacific Motorway, 20 km north of Surfers Paradise and 50 km south of Brisbane.

Free car parking is available at the front of the park. Reserved parking is also available for disabled guests adjacent to the main gate.

Warner Bros. Movie World is located on Australia's Gold Coast, just a 20 minute drive north of Surfers Paradise and 45 minutes south of Brisbane.

Arriving By Car

From Surfers Paradise, drive along the Gold Coast Highway to Smith Street and follow the signs to Brisbane and the Pacific Motorway. The exit to Warner Bros. Movie World is clearly signed.

From Brisbane, follow the signs to the Pacific Motorway and the Gold Coast. You can't miss the turn off directing you straight to Warner Bros. Movie World.

Free car parking is available at the front of the park.

Warner Bros. Movie World is a whole world of entertainment. From heart-thumping thrill rides like Lethal Weapon to the colourful but gentle rides in Looney Tunes Village to the laugh-a-minute antics of the Police Academy Stunt Show ...Warner Bros. Movie World has something for everyone.
No matter how many times we visit the Gold Coast I just the whole family just have to visit Movie World everytime. I feel like I am in some American Movie when we visit here.


The Gold Coast has a subtropical climate with warm, mild winters and hot, bright summers and with 287 days of sunshine annually.

The Gold Coast climate is ideally situated for holidaying as well as living and studying.
There is plenty of sunshine that makes surfing the most popular local sport with water
temperatures around 19-21 degrees Celsius all year round. The Gold Coast climate is well
suited to outdoor activities with more holiday makers visiting here than anywhere else in Australia.

Spring: September to November 15-25C (59-77F)
Summer: December to February 20-28C (68-83F)
Autumn: March to May 16-25C (61-77F)
Winter: June to August 11-21C (52-70F)


On our last family holiday to the Gold Coast a month ago we stayed at th Horizons Holiday Apartments. They are Self cartered Apartments and
resonabley priced. Self Cartered apartments are great for families as you can cater for yourself and I find it oftened works out cheaper.

For other accommadation on the Gold Coast take a look at some of these. There are a combination of lower price and highter priced tarrafs.

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