Kids of all ages associate the Gold Coast with two words; ‘Theme Parks’. These fun-filled, joy factories are where families and the young at heart go for thrill rides, animal encounters and to make fun family memories.
With the big four theme parks conveniently located across the Gold Coast (some are side-by-side), you’ll find them easily, just follow the laughter and screams and you’ll be falling from the highest drops, speeding down water slides and twisting and turning on roller coasters before you know it.
And, if you’re want to get the most out of the day, here’s how you can maximise your next theme park visit.
If you’re not sure which theme park is for you, have a read through the below information or take this helpful quiz.
Dreamworld and WhiteWater World are a two-in-one theme park for double the family fun. This combo lets you go from wet slides to dry rides and back as many times you like. Teens and big kids will love the Big 9 Thrill Rides including the Giant Drop and the Tower of Terror II. And after all that screaming fun, they can cool off in WhiteWater World’s Cave of Waves or take the plunge down The Wedgie!
With the big kids entertained, you can take your little ones into the Dreamworks Experience to meet the Madagascar Cast and Po, the Kung Fu Panda. They’ll also love exploring Wiggles World in the ABC Kids World and dancing at the shows. Here’s how you can maximise your day at Dreamworld.
Take a break from the rides and enter Tiger Island to learn all about the jungle’s most fearsome predator. If you’re lucky, you may even see tiger cubs! Tiger Island raises conservation awareness and Dreamworld also support the Wildlife Foundation.
If you’re looking for more to explore beyond the thrill rides and water slides, the Dreamworld Corroboree is history fun for the entire family. You’ll learn about ancient Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture, watch interactive performances and participate in fire making, face painting, music and art.
Dreamworld is open 7 days a week from 10am to 5pm, except for Christmas Day and ANZAC Day. You can find the theme park along the Pacific Highway on the Gold Coast in the Coomera Suburb. It’s 20-minutes north of Surfers Paradise and about 40-minutes south of Brisbane.
There is lots of parking spaces at the theme park for those who are driving in. If you’re catching public transport, there are trains that run from Brisbane to the Gold Coast and then buses transfer direct to Dreamworld.
Movie World is the place to go to see your favourite Warner Brothers characters. From the iconic Bugs Bunny to Wonder Woman and Batman, you’ll be able to sneak a photo and see them parade through main street at 3:30pm daily.
Fancy yourself a super hero? Hope on DC thrill rides like the Green Lantern Coaster and the Superman Escape to get your blood pumping. Or, treat the whole family to a Justice League adventure and join Superman and battle against evil in the epic Justice League 3D – The Ride.
When it’s time for a break, settle in and watch Hollywood stunt drivers burn rubber and do awesome car stunts from extreme precision driving to movie quality explosions and car rolls. These shows kick off at 11am and 1:50pm daily.
Movie World is open 7 days a week from 9:30am to 5pm, except for ANZAC Day and Christmas. You’ll find all the fun along the Pacific Motorway in Oxenford on the Gold Coast. If you’re driving from Brisbane, expect a 50-minute car ride (so load the car up with family tunes) or it’s a short 20-minute drive from Surfers Paradise.
Sea World is where you take your family to watch clever dolphins and cheeky seals perform. From front flips to stealing fish, these smart animals will have you in awe and laughing non-stop.
As you wander through the park, you’ll come across polar bears, sharks, penguins and other sea creatures that you can learn about and see up close. Little ones will love the Ray Reef interactive exhibit where they can get up close and personal with the ocean’s most misunderstood inhabitants, the majestic stingray. They are safe to touch and feed.
Looking for action? Head straight to the rides like the Storm Coaster and Jet Rescue or get a real adrenalin rush watching the Jet Stunt Extreme. This show runs twice daily and will leave you on the edge of your seat watching professionals do back flips and other gravity defying stunts.
There’s lots to explore at Sea World and if you want to make the most of your visit, here’s a helpful plan.
Sea World is open 7 days a week from 9:30am to 5pm. The theme park is closed on Christmas Day but is open from 1:30pm to 5pm on ANZAC Day. Located right on the coastline of the Gold Coast, you can find Sea World on Main Beach.
There are lots of ways to get to Sea World and if you’re driving you’ll be able to find a park at the theme park. The drive is about an hour from Brisbane or just 15-minutes from Surfers Paradise. Public transport is also available, and you can catch a train from Brisbane to the Gold Coast. Once on the coast, you can catch the G:Link or buses to Main Beach and Sea World.
It’s time to get Wet’n’Wild! This is the perfect place to be when the Queensland weather heats up. From wild slides to plunges and a giant wave pool, you’ll find every water-fun-filled ride imaginable at Wet’n’Wild. Even if you don’t plan on getting wet, you won’t be able to resist.
The Tornado loops you around and drops you down a huge 40-metre-long tunnel, the Blackhole twists and turns in a spiral of darkness and the Kamikaze plunges you down a vertical 11 metre drop at a steep 70 degree angle. Hold on tight!
With the big kids taken care of, little kids will love playing at the Wet’n’Wild Junior area which features kid-friendly water slides and miniature versions of the larger thrill slides like Tornado and Aqua Racers. There’s also a tipping bucket, so prepare to get wet!
Wet’n’Wild is open from 10am daily, except on ANZAC Day and Christmas Day. You can find Wet’n’Wild next door to Movie World on the Pacific Motorway in Oxenford on the Gold Coast.
It’s about a 50-minute drive from Brisbane or 20-minutes from Surfers Paradise and there’s lots of parking available on site. If you’re catching public transport, trains run regularly from Brisbane to the Gold Coast and then you can catch bus transfers to the theme park.