So how's it like living on the Gold Coast? Imagine 300 days of sunshine annually, awesome surfing beaches, lush rainforest hinterland, fun theme parks, and peaceful sanctuaries. These are just some of the wonderful things that you can experience in Australia's coastal city.
Gold Coast is a city in the Australian state of Queensland. It is the second most populous city in the state and the sixth most populous city in the country. It is also the most populous non-capital city in the country.
The city has a reputation of a major tourist destination because of its sunny subtropical climate, surfing beaches, canal and waterway systems, its high-rise dominated skyline, nightlife and, last but not the least, its rainforest hinterland.
To help you achieve the ultimate Gold Coast adventure, we at VroomVroomVroom have come up with a list of things that you can do and places where you can stay.
THINGS TO DO
35 Tomewin St, Currumbin QLD 4223
There's more to the Gold Coast than just riding the waves, you can also learn more about surfing by visiting Surf World. This is the only surfing heritage and beach culture museum in Queensland. Get a glimpse of how surfboards evolved through the years by checking out its exhibitions, which consist of more than 150 surfboards, iconic surf images, rare memorabilia and iPad interviews with surfing legends.
Soul Shopping Centre, Cavill Mall, Surfers Paradise Queensland
Get ready to be amazed! Ripley's Surfers Paradise, which features 15 themed galleries that showcase all kinds of oddities, illusions, mysteries, and amazing stories. You will find things that can't be seen anywhere else, such as real shrunken heads and rare dinosaur eggs. After an unforgettable trip to the Odditorium, why not try the Laser Race Challenge? Let's see if you can navigate through a web of lasers just like what Tom Cruise did in “Mission Impossible”.
Surfers Paradise Blvd, Surfers Paradise Queensland 4217
Looking for the ultimate mini-golf challenge in the heart of Surfers Paradise? Make sure to check out King Tutt's Putt Putt, which can now also be found in the Carrara Markets. The putt putt course in the Surfers Paradise features glow-in-the-dark caves and Ancient Egypt setting as well as King Kong and ferocious dinosaurs replicas. The Carrara Markets location, on the other hand, will take you on an incredible journey through time at Pirate Cove, Dinosaurs, and Medieval Times and gives you a glimpse of the Asian Ruins of Cambodia.
333 Geissmann Dr, North Tamborine QLD 4272
Experience a magical setting when you stroll along the Tamborine Rainforest Skywalk, which is surrounded by lush trees, breathtaking fauna, tumbling creek, and impressive rockpools. The new eco-adventure attraction allows visitors to explore the Tamborine Mountain in a different way. The Skywalk is the longest canopy walk in South East Queensland with a measurement of 300 meters. Nature lovers will surely enjoy the 50-minute walk to paradise.
Tamborine Mountain Rd, QLD 4272
Nature meets adventure at Thunderbird Park on Tamborine Mountain. Come for the day or stay and play. Adventures include fossicking for treasure filled thundereggs, laser skirmish in a jungle village and the Tree Top Challenge high ropes course. Try the new SkyFall and drop 11 metres to the ground. Ride a FreeGo electric bike through the rainforest or take in the scenery on horseback. Activities are suitable for most age groups and fun for all the family.
WHERE TO STAY
Tamborine Mountain Rd, QLD 4272
Thunderbird Park shares a 112 hectare rainforest property with Cedar Creek Lodges. It's perfect for a romantic break or a family holiday. Choose a shaded campsite, a contemporary room or a two bedroom private lodge. Most holiday packages include a big barbecue breakfast with the birds. Rooms and lodges have self catering facilities. Light meals, snacks and drinks are available on Thunderbird Terrace and the licensed on site Rainforest Restaurant serves breakfast and dinner daily.
64 Palm Meadows Drive, Carrara, QLD 4211
If you're looking for a place to unwind and relax, then the best place to stay is at the Mercure Gold Coast Resort. This beautiful resort is just a few minutes away from the pristine beaches, fun theme parks, Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary, and numerous shopping destinations. Mercure Gold Coast features 280 rooms with its own balcony, courtyard or patio. There are also interconnecting rooms for those staying in large groups. All rooms are equipped with modern amenities to make your stay more comfortable.
Other things to do on the Goldy
Theme Parks - With 4 major theme parks in the city, you will be sure to find one that suits you and your family. There's not just awesome rides and fun filled activities to enjoy, you can also participate in educational shows and see wildlife upfront and personal. Choose from Wet'n'Wild, Dreamworld, Movieworld and Seaworld. With plenty of parking, you are sure to find good parking for the day.
Beaches - You can't go to the Gold Coast without spending a day at the beach. No matter what month you are there, the weather should still permit you to have a great day at the beach. The best part about a day at the beach is that it's free. Once again, there is a heap of street parking along the coastline so don't stress about where to park your rental car. Richard at VroomVroomVroom strongly recommends that all tourists Go Ride a Wave with a surfing lesson at Surfers Paradise. They are very accomodating to beginners and very friendly. They are also the most popular spot for surf board hire. It is important to be prepared so check out Boardcave for the best Surfboards and Surf Hardware deals.
Shop until you absolutely drop - Being a very popular tourist destination means Bargains! Bargains! Bargains! With so many shopping malls sprawled throughout the metropolitan area, you will definitely find one that you will LOVE. If you are a bit of a shopaholic be sure to book a rental car with plenty of trunk space.
Gold Coast Hinterland - Even though the coastline is so inviting and the white sandy beaches are hard to pass up, most days of the year, take your rental car and drive inland to see lush green pastures and tree lined roads. Its a great way to escape the hustle and bustle of the tourist strip without having to drive too far. You can even enjoy pristine waterfalls where locals like to swim.
Just enjoy our hotel - Depending on where your staying, you can opt to just stay put and enjoy the luxuries that come with being in a hotel environment. Some even have Kids Clubs so the kids are taken care of.
If you are not sure what to do after reading our tips, we are sure that once you arrive and collect your car hire, you will find that you end up running out of time, as the attractions on the Gold Coast are endless.
Gold Coast Scenic Drives in your car hire
Gold Coast offers some of the best scenic drives
in the country. Among of these routes are the Great Ocean Road, the Snowy Mountains Highway, the Tasmanian West Coast and the Adelaide Hills that you can easily drive in your car hire.
Here we have suggestions of scenic routes
that can keep you occupied for an hour, half a day, or even the whole day. Depends on your mood on which route to take in your Gold Coast car rental. If you don't have the whole day, you can skip some of the places listed here. But if you decide to sit behind the wheel the whole day? even though tiring? you will be greatly rewarded by the beauty that will surely overwhelm you in these scenic routes. And guess what, you'll be driving in more asphalts that you can imagine.
Before we start the trip here are some tips:
- If you complete the roundtrip, you'll see as much as you can on one tank of fuel, but you can do individual sections of the route if you're not planning to drive all day.
- Even though you'll never be more than ten minutes away from a town on any part of the route, it is still advisable for you to bring water.
- Mobile phones won't work on some parts of the route, especially in the mountains around the NSW border and Mount Tamborine.
- And, you won't find much traffic on the back roads, but you should still look out for cars and speeding motorbikes ?the routes are popular scenic drives.
1) Gold Coast Scenic Drive
Take the ultimate Gold Coast scenic drive in a roundtrip. You can start anywhere you like. But we'll assume that your trip starts at Surfers Paradise because that's where most people are staying on holidays.
From the Gold Coast Highway, head north and you'll be in awed with the enchanting Main Beach and along the edge of the marvelous Broadwater through Southport, Labrador and Runaway Bay.
You'll be able to see yachts cruising and seagulls gliding above the waters. If you leave on a Saturday morning, expect for a bit of traffic. After passing the Runaway Bay, you'll see signs to Sanctuary Cove ?a prestige Golf Course development and a boutique shopping Village? where you can have a look around the area.
After the Cove, you'll see signs to the Pacific Highway and Brisbane. If you're already on the Pacific Highway, look out for the left hand exit to Mount Tamborine when you get past Dreamworld. Take the route and it will lead you out past an area of acreages and then up the mountain to Tamborine Village. Head over to North Tamborine and you'll se signs pointing to various bushwalks and National Parks. You can also take short strolls around the mountain and see stunning rainforests.
After the short stop, you can now head over to Eagle Heights and back down the mountain to Nerang.
2) Nerang to Murwillumbah via Springbrook and Natural Arch
Once in Nerang, find the Pacific Highway and head south until you see the turn to Mudgeeraba. Drive through Mudgeeraba and follow the signs to Springbrook. Watch out for signs because the road has plenty of sharp corners, narrow curved wooden bridges, and hairpins.
The road up the mountain to Springbrook is safe, but there's nothing wrong if you'll take it slow. But if you're more of a daredevil, add a bit of horsepower under the bonnet and you will definitely think that you're in heaven.
There are plenty of lookouts and little shops in Springbrook that will surely interest you. But when you've looked out to your heart's content, you can head back the way you came. Go through the section where the road splits in two and then take the next left. In a bout five to ten minutes of curves, you'll end up at a T intersection. Turn left and head towards Numinbah Valley and Natural Arch where you can chill for a while and grab something to eat.
After a short rest, continue heading south through the valley and then take the right hadn turn to Natural Arch where you can take a short bushwalk and absorb the beauty of the surroundings.
After the short walk, head back to the road that goes through the valley, turn left, and follow the signs to Murwillumbah. You'll cross the NSW/Qld border at a mountain pass about five to ten minutes down the road. And I assure you that the view is magnificent. Continue to Murwillumbah and treat yourself to an amazing changing of scenery which begins in temperate rainforest and heads down through farmlands, pretty valleys, charming towns, and ends up in sugarcane fields. If you're into cold beverage, follow the signs to the center of Murwillumbah and find a pub.
3) Murwillumbah to Coolangatta
If you want to get back to the Gold Coast, you'll have two options. The first option: if you're out of time and can't bear another curve, follow the signs to the freeway and travel back to Coolangatta at 110km/hr along a new and fairly scenic motoway.
But if you still have plenty of time and ready to take another bracing drive, head back out the way you came into Murwillumbah, go across the bridge to where you have turned right after coming through from the Numinbah Valley and keep going straight ahead and follow the signs to Currumbim.
You'll drive through cane fields for about ten minutes and then you'll head back up into and over the mountains on the border through banana plantations and rainforest, with incredible views across the Tweed Valley all the way to Mount Warning. Keep following the winding road for about 15-25 minutes until you arrive at Currumbim Creek road. Then, turn right and follow the creek all the way back to the traffic lights at the Pacific Highway. Turn right and follow the signs to the airport and Coolangatta.
Coolangatta back to Surfers Paradise
Coolangatta shares the state border with Tweed Heads and is a great place for an afternoon ice cream. Follow the road along the coastline and you'll pass and see for 15 minutes, some of the most famous surf breaks in the world ?including Kirra Beach, Snapper Rocks, Greenmount and Duranbah.
4) O'Reilly's and Lamington National Park
If you're after a shorter drive yet still up for beautiful sceneries, take the route through O'Reilly's and Lamington National Park via Canungra.
The whole roundtrip will only take 3 hours if you don't stop, but I'm sure you'll want to stop. *chuckling*
You can have a shorter drive yet still witness some historic areas of the Gold Coast. Lamington National Park is waiting for you. There are some bushy mountain corners for 40 kilometers, but it's a good road so you can take is as fast or slow as you like, as long as it doesn't exceed the speed limits.
Once again, our starting point is in Surfers Paradise. Follow the signs to Nerang and then Hinze Dam. 5 minutes out of Nerang, and before you see a turn to Mt. Tamborine, on the right side you'll see a route to Canungara, take it.
The road is quite boring for a bit until you get to a historic river mill on your right hand side and then the turn to Henri Roberts Drive which leads up Mount Tamborine on your right. If you want to go up the mountain, take the turn. If not, then just follow the road and keep going southwest to Canungra.
The road will lead you alongside hills and dales and past a few rivers and wineries ?all of which are quite scenic. After a few minutes, you'll be driving through a more rugged hilly section which makes up the Canungra Army Base Military Training Area.
You'll see big signs everywhere saying that you shouldn't go bushwalking off the road or you might get shot. Remember to follow signs.
After about 10 minutes and passing the Canungra Army Barracks, which are at an intersection, turn right and keep following the signs to Canungra ?which is now only a few kilometers west. Before arriving at the town, you'll see signs for a historic tunnel, which looks like a hole in a hill and is not really worth getting out of the car.
Once in town, take a look around some cute cafés, a small park and a large tudor style pub which is popular with bikers ?people who likes winding roads. Not the gang people who likes to shoot at people.
After looking around, follow the road that the pub is on. You'll see signs to “O'Reilly's” ?a guesthouse at the top of the mountains in Lamington National Park. After about 15 minutes of heading through a pleasant little valley, you'll start driving over cattle grids and you'll quickly find yourself on one of the best drivers' roads in Queensland ?a 50 kilometer road, winding, smooth, full of single-lane hairpin bend and blind corners with splendid views in all sides. You might think that the road is a little intimidating. But guess what, in this road, you'll only face danger if you're driving with your eyes closed.
Once you get to the top, you'll be in a totally different climate and landscape to the rest of Gold Coast. The area is greener and the trees are totally taller.
5) Eagleby Wetland Reserve
Are you an avi-tourist? Visit Gold Coast's Eagleby Wetland Reserve.
Eagleby Wetland Reserve is a reclaimed wetland around a water treatment plant on the Albert River. It's located between the Logan and Albert Rivers.
The Wetlands feature varied bird habitats such as melaleuca and brackish swamps, freshwater lakes, woodlands, cane fields and open grassland. In the Reserve, you can also see about 203 Australian native bird species, including 17 of the 24 Australian Raptors, and almost half of the bird species found in Queensland.
Around Gold Coast: Bilinga
A beautiful day to all of you, my friends! Gramps Ben here again is very delighted today because his grandkids visited. They really missed their old man — and I missed them too. Actually, they told me that they really missed their grandpa and grandpa's traveling stories. Well, what can I say? I love to see beautiful places.
Every time they visit, they like listening to my adventures. So, I allow them to choose from a certain list the name of the place that they wanted to know about. And today, theychose the suburb of Bilinga. And of course, I immediately told them about my experiences when I was there. This morning, I shared my wonderful experiences with my grandkids. And now, I'd like to share it with you.
Bilingais a suburb located on the Nerang-Tweed Railway line, in the southern part of Gold Coast. It has a population of about 1,436.
“Bilinga” is coined from the word “Biliba” or bats. And its name was adopted during 1918 as a place name for crown lands on the north of Coolangatta. Bilinga has a population of about 1,709 and it presently holds the smallest population. But guess what, Bilingahas the second oldest population of residents in the whole of Australia.
Some of Bilinga's special tourist stops are:
Gold Coast Airport
One of the attractions of Bilinga is the Gold Coast Airport, which has a beautiful aerial view.
The Airport is located near the Queensland and New South Wales coastal border towns of Coolangatta and Tweef Heads. It is the entrance to the Gold Coast and Northern New South Wales.
The airport is about 100 kilometers from the south of Brisbane and about 20 kilometers to the south of the famous Surfers Paradise.
Bila Vista Holiday Apartments
If you plan to stay long at Bilinga, the Bila Vista Holiday Apartments is one of the best places to stay in.
The Bila Vista Holiday Apartments in Bilinga is a charming 3-storey walk-up apartment complex that features one and two bedroom, fully self-contained, air-condition apartments.
Bila Vista is the perfect spot for relaxation. It's only a five minute drive from the Airport and a two minute walk to the beach and to the North Kirr Surf Club!
For my trip to Bilinga, I rented a car because if I bring my own car, processing will take up time — and I'll be on a plane. A colleague suggested this VroomVroomVroom to me and now I'm suggesting this site to you because their customer service EXCELLENT! And this site also allows you to compare prices of cars from top rental companies thus, allowing you to choose a car that will fit nicely your budget.
So, connect to the internet, book a car, and visit the adoring place of Bilinga. And I assure you, you won't be disappointed! Enjoy!