Welcome to

Gold Coast

Venture into the Gold Coast’s endless playground for some serious fun. Whether you spend your days at a theme park, on the golf course, shopping, learning to surf, dining al fresco or just soaking up the sunshine, one thing’s for sure: life has never been so much fun.

Sun and surf

With 57 kilometres of sandy beaches to choose from, your perfect beach day awaits.
  • Surfing can be tough; luckily the Gold Coast has some of the world’s greatest surfers waiting to teach you to ride. 
  • The breaks at Snapper Rocks, Burleigh Heads and Kirra attract wave-chasers from around the world, especially when major pro surfing events come to town.
Focus on fun

Host of the 2018 Commonwealth Games, there’s more to the Gold Coast than the beach. Major sporting, food, wine, fashion and music events and exhibitions fill the calendar, while Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach are entertainment playgrounds.
  • Do as the locals do and enjoy fish and chips along the Broadwater.
  • Indulge your inner food critic at award-winning restaurants.
  • Hit the casino, see a show or local theatre event or dance your way to sunrise.
The theme park capital 

Now’s the time to tackle those fears. Arm yourself with an action plan and get ready to scream!
  • Ride some of the tallest, fastest and scariest thrill rides in the country.
  • Shoot down waterslides, cuddle a koala and become an extra on a movie set.
Discover the green behind the gold

Jump in the car and within a half hour you’re in the middle of the Gold Coast Hinterland and 100,000 hertares of World Heritage Listed Gondwana Rainforest.
  • Pop a cork at boutique vineyards, sample local produce and be taken in with local arts and crafts in Mount Tamborine.
  • Trade your sandals for shoes and hike one of the walks at Lamington or Springbrook National Parks.
  • Recharge at one of the region’s best health retreats.

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Places to Visit
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Burleigh Head National Park

Burleigh Heads, Gold Coast Area
Free Entry
A wild, natural headland in the heart of the Gold Coast offers walks along the rocky foreshore and through rainforest, and the chance to see whales in spring and sea-eagles soaring along the coast. At Burleigh Head, where ancient volcanic columns meet the sea, this park features rainforest, eucalypt forest, pandanus groves, tussock grassland, coastal heath and mangroves. Its northern side is one of Australia's most famous surfing point breaks. Walk the Ocean view walk around the rocky headland from Tallebudgera Creek and look at the tumbled masses of six-sided basalt columns. Explore the Rainforest circuit, wandering through a living museum of plants, and watch for humpback whales from Tumgun lookout in winter and spring. See Australian brush-turkey nesting mounds, seabirds and water dragons. Picnic on Burleigh foreshore or relax on Echo Beach.

Hinze Dam

Gold Coast MC, Gold Coast Area
Free Entry
After nearly four years under construction, Hinze Dam on the Gold Coast has reopened to the public on 19 December 2011. Hinze Dam was originally constructed in 1976 and was raised in 1989. The AUD395 million Hinze Dam Stage Three upgrade saw the dam wall raised by 15 metres, doubling the dam's capacity and providing increased water security and flood mitigation. Visitors are encouraged to visit the dam and explore the new facilities which include a state-of-the-art Interpretive Centre, lakeside parks, walking, bike and horse trails, increased car parking, toilet facilities and barbecue areas for public use. Two new boat ramps have also been constructed. The Western Boat Ramp (Nerang Murwillumbah Road) and Eastern Boat Ramp (Little Nerang / Range roads) are now open for use. Please note access to the Hinze Dam recreational facilities is now via Advancetown Road. There is no longer access via Gilston Road.

Coomera circuit

Binna Burra, Scenic Rim Area
Free Entry
The Coomera circuit is located in the Binna Burra section of Lamington National Park. This stunning national park covers 20,590 hectares and boasts extensive walking tracks along the McPherson Range, which allow visitors to explore the area's forests, creeks and waterfalls. Dramatic lookouts afford views over the Gold Coast, south-east Queensland and northern New South Wales. Lamington is part of the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area (formerly known as CERRA), which includes the most extensive areas of subtropical rainforest in the world. The scenic Coomera circuit passes through subtropical and warm temperate rainforest and giant brush box forest of Lamington National Park. The gorge is 160 metres deep. Views from the lookout platform provide dramatic evidence of the power of erosion, which has cut through a thick resistant rhyolite lava flow. The circuit climbs beside Coomera Gorge, crossing the river several times before rejoining the Border Track and returning to Binna Burra.

Somerset Trail

Country Valleys, Brisbane Area
Free Entry
At the D’Aguilar Range’s northern end, this huge expanse of rainforest and eucalypt forest in Mount Mee Forest Reserve contains clear creeks, and lookouts with lovely views. Beginning at the Gantry, this mind-calming walk contains beautiful open forests, scribbly gum forests, rainforest remnants, hoop pine plantations and picturesque creek scenery. About halfway along, enjoy the magnificent views to the west, overlooking Somerset and Wivenhoe Dams. On your return, enjoy a picnic at the Gantry picnic area where the remains of the old sawmill that operated here until 1981 can still be seen.

Bellthorpe National Park

Country Valleys, Brisbane Area
Free Entry
Bellthorpe National Park is at the southern end of the Conondale Range. Rugged bush land with rainforest, waterfalls and attractive creeks is home to a large number of plant species and a haven for many endangered and threatened animals. Picnic beside a rock pool at the Stony Creek day-use area. Look for frogs and lizards around the rock pools. Identify the many forest birds. There are no formal walking tracks but visitors can walk along the forest roads; which are also used for horse riding, mountain-bike riding and four-wheel driving. Visitors need to be well prepared and self-sufficient.

Tamborine National Park

Tamborine, Logan City Area
Free Entry
Towering 560 metres high, this park is a green oasis, offering glimpses of the Pacific Ocean and Gold Coast skyline to the east and national parks of the Scenic Rim to the west. The park includes Witches Falls (which in 1908 became Queensland's first national park) and Cedar Grove, The Knoll and Palm Grove sections. The mountain features basalt columns, cliffs, rocky outcrops, numerous waterfalls and lush rainforest. It is also home to the rare Albert's lyrebird and shining burrawang. Explore some of the park's nine walking tracks that lead to scenic views, beautiful waterfalls, forests of large red cedars and groves of tall piccabeen palms. At Curtis Falls, sit quietly in the early morning or late afternoon for a chance to spot a platypus. Enjoy a picnic at The Knoll or Witches Falls. Catch a glimpse of the near threatened Albert's lyrebird or hear it mimicking calls of other birds, particularly during the winter months.

Tree Top Walkway

Canungra, Scenic Rim Area
Free Entry
O'Reilly's Tree Top Walk allows you to walk through a canopy of flowering and fruiting trees covered by vines whilst you explore the epiphytic orchids and ferns surrounded by the many birds and animals that inhabit the tree tops. The Tree Top Walk, was the first of its kind in Australia, is 180 metres in length and is made up of nine suspension bridges, with much of the walkway being 15 metres above the ground. Profiles depicting the rainforest flora close by have been placed along the walkway to assist visitors in identifying the plants in the immediate vicinity. Two observation decks have been constructed in a Strangler Fig above the walk way, the highest one being 30 metres (approximately 110 feet) above the ground. The Tree Top Walk is a unique and innovative structure that gives visitors what can only be described as an exhilarating experience - a chance to observe life in the rainforest canopy at close range for the first time in their lives. Free of charge and there is no age or height restrictions for this activity. However, parental guidance of young children during the climbing aspect of the activity is recommended.

Tooloona Creek circuit

Canungra, Scenic Rim Area
Free Entry
The Tooloona Creek circuit combines the very best that Lamington National Park has to offer - scenic waterfalls, boulder-strewn creeks, tall rainforests, gnarled Antarctic beech trees and views over Byron Bay and the World-Heritage listed rainforests of Queensland and New South Wales. The track branches from the Box Forest circuit near Elabana Falls. From here, walk up beside Toolona Creek to a gorge and past its headwaters to emerge on the Border Track near Wanungara Lookout. See Chalahn and Tooloona Falls and a myriad of cascades along the way. Enjoy cameo views through the trees over the coast and border ranges before returning along the Border Track to Green Mountains.

Mount Merino

Binna Burra, Scenic Rim Area
Free Entry
The Mount Merino walk is located in the Binna Burra section of Lamington National Park. This stunning national park boasts extensive walking tracks along the McPherson Range, which allow visitors to explore the area's forests, creeks and waterfalls. Dramatic lookouts afford views over the Gold Coast, south-east Queensland and northern New South Wales. Lamington is part of the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area, which includes the most extensive areas of subtropical rainforest in the world. Mt Merino is reached by following the Border Track through subtropical and temperate rainforest, crossing the head waters and tributaries of the Coomera River including Bower Bird Creek. and Dragoon Bird Creek. Coomera circuit track leads off to the right and shortly afterwards the Mount Hobwee circuit junction on the left. 100 metres further on is Yargabullang Lookout, providing wonderful views towards Mount Warning. The track continues to the an Antarctic Beech covered summit and a spectacular view of the Mount Warning caldera and the McPherson Range.

Lower Bellbird circuit

Binna Burra, Scenic Rim Area
Free Entry
The Lower Bellbird Circuit is in the Binna Burra section of Lamington National Park which boasts extensive walking tracks along the McPherson Range, allowing visitors to explore the area's forests, creeks and waterfalls. Dramatic lookouts afford views over the Gold Coast, south-east Queensland and northern New South Wales. The Lower Bellbird track uses part of the Ships Stern track as far as the bottom of Nixon Creek Valley. The track then descends sharply into the Nixon Creek valley. Down the track, the outcrop known as Kong Gong Rock is reached with the track passing through a cleft in the rock. The track winds down through eucalypt forest and reaches the Lower Bellbird circuit junction where it passes into rainforest and mixed forest with eucalypts and casuarinas. The track finally leaves the rainforest and enters an area where there was an old dairy farm and traces of its previous existence are still readily visible.
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