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Things to do in Gold Coast

Things to do in  Gold Coast

Welcome to Gold Coast

If your Aussie travel fantasies consist of sun-soaked beaches, bronzed surfers, and sunset cocktails, the Gold Coast should top your to-do list. Queensland’s most famous holiday destination is blessed with more than 25 miles (40 kilometers) of pristine sands, year-round sunshine, and world-class surf. Surfers Paradise is a haven for backpackers and renowned for its nonstop nightlife, while the elegant coastal resorts of Broadbeach, Main Beach, and Miami offer fine dining, romantic canal cruises, and the coast’s biggest shopping mall. Those with kids in tow will find theme parks—including Sea World, WhiteWater World, and Movie World—right on their doorstep, while animal lovers can spy koalas at the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary. Of course, the number-one draw to the Gold Coast is its beaches, and there are endless options for water sports, kayaking, jet skiing, scuba diving, and whale-watching tours, as well as adrenaline-fueled activities such as skydiving or hot-air ballooning. For a change of scenery, Byron Bay, North Stradbroke Island, and the Sunshine Coast are all close enough for a single-day tour. If the sun and surf get to be too much, Brisbane—just an hour away—has shady parks, edgy art museums, and riverfront restaurants. Alternatively, escape the beach altogether to explore the famous Village Markets in Burleigh Heads; or head into the hinterlands, where Lamington National Park, Springbrook National Park, Burleigh Heads National Park, and Tamborine Mountain offer ample opportunities for guided hikes, cycling excursions, rain-forest walks, and glow-worm tours.

Top 15 attractions in Gold Coast

Tamborine National Park

Located in the Gold Coast Hinterlands, Tamborine National Park is known for its natural beauty, rich biodiversity, and breathtaking views over the Gold Coast and the Pacific Ocean to the east and the Scenic Rim to the west. Queensland’s first national park, Tamborine is a popular destination for locals and visitors alike.More

Springbrook National Park

Part of the UNESCO World Heritage–listed Gondwana Rainforests, the startling landscapes of Springbrook National Park are among the many highlights of Queensland’s Gold Coast Hinterlands. Carved out by an ancient volcano, the rugged plateau is now a natural wonderland of forested gorges, jagged cliffs, and cascading waterfalls.More

Glow Worm Caves Tamborine Mountain

Located on the grounds of the Cedar Creek Estate Winery on Mt. Tamborine, the Glow Worm Caves Tamborine Mountain are one of the best spots on the Gold Coast to view glowworms. See thousands of these creatures during the daytime in a darkened, controlled environment designed to mimic their natural habitat.More

Sea World Gold Coast

One of Australia’s biggest marine parks, Sea World Gold Coast is home to dolphins, rays, sharks, polar bears, and seals. The family attraction has thrilling rides, educational exhibits, and daily live shows, and it’s also involved in marine life rescue and rehabilitation efforts along the Gold Coast.More

Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary

Set minutes from the Gold Coast beaches, Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary is one of the best places in Queensland to see native Australian animals. Founded in 1947, the sanctuary encompasses 27 hectares (66 acres) of rain forest; its resident fauna includes kangaroos, koalas, wombats, Tasmanian devils, and rainbow lorikeets.More

Dracula's Cabaret Gold Coast

Arguably Queensland’s most popular dinner shower, Dracula’s Cabaret on the bustling Gold Coast is an evening of sexy, scary, and spectacular burlesque theater and comedy. The adventure begins the moment you enter the soaring, Gothic style castle, where gargoyles peer down from six stories up and fruit bats circle overhead. Ride the ghost train into the theater and prepare for a scare at each turn, before perusing a menu of ghoulish cocktails and settling in for the show. The entertaining wait staff, or “Draculettes,” keep the humor flowing throughout dinner, and set the stage for a wild evening of scary and sexual comedy. Aside from the vaudeville cabaret and intricate, detailed costumes, the visual effects are out of this world and are accompanied by live, fast-paced music that will have you on the edge of your seat. Add in death-defying aerial performers and mind-bending optical illusions, and Dracula’s Cabaret is an unforgettable evening of fun on Queensland’s Gold Coast.More

Marina Mirage

Indulge in some retail therapy and fine dining with a view at Marina Mirage, a luxury waterfront shopping and dining destination on the Gold Coast. Located on the Southport Spit, Marina Mirage features over 70 designer boutiques and award-winning waterfront restaurants, and also offers a marina and helicopter services.More

Tamborine Mountain Distillery

While it may be located back in the hills of the rugged Gold Coast hinterland, Tamborine Mountain Distillery is a place that despite its size and location competes with some of the world’s largest and most well known distilleries. In 2014 alone, this small pot distillery garnered 300 awards for their brand of spirits and liqueurs, from vodka and schnapps to brandy, gin, and fruity eaux de vie. Proud of their small batch, small scale vibe, the distillery has purposely kept their driveway too narrow for large-scale buses, choosing instead to focus on small, person-to-person visits. While visiting the distillery to sample the products, hear how this family moved from Tasmania and began to run their own fruit farm, eventually fermenting and distilling the fruit their family of four couldn’t eat. Now, after 20 plus years of taking fruit and turning it into spirits, the distillery produces nearly every flavor of liquor imaginable. Try a refreshing limoncello or one of the flavored vodkas, or go all in with a shot of absinthe before sampling the toffee liqueur. If you find a particular style you like, the gift shop sells everything from bottles to shot glasses and visitor souvenirs, and cocktail enthusiasts will be blown away by this small pot still in the hills.More

Best Of All Lookout

Located high on a plateau in Springbrook National Park, part of the UNESCO World Heritage–listed Gondwana Rainforests, the Best of All Lookout certainly lives up to its name. It offers expansive and spectacular views of the Gold Coast Hinterland, the Gold Coast coastline, and the Pacific Ocean.More


Just south of Surfers Paradise, Broadbeach, or Broadie as it’s known to locals, offers all the appeal of its more famous neighbor—a great stretch of beach, surf-worthy waves, and extensive dining, shopping, and entertainment options—but in a more manageable size and with fewer crowds.More


A multimedia experience engaging all of the senses, Infinity is a journey through mazes of special effects that create a dream-like atmosphere. Sound fields, lights, music, and visual illusions challenge the mind and stretch the imagination of those who navigate the funhouse.There are 20 different environments, each with its own unique interactive experience. Ranging from a laser room to a time warp, electron maze, and inter-dimensional space, visitors are treated to a feast for all the senses throughout. The creator of Infinity has an art background, and the innovative and immersive displays on an “electronic canvas” push the boundaries of artistic expression, eliciting powerful emotional responses. Truly a unique experience, Infinity lives up to its name by altering one’s sense of time, space and what is possible.More

Warner Bros. Movie World

From movie-themed thrill rides and 4D movie experiences to spectacular stunt shows and star-studded parades featuring everyone from Shrek to Scooby-Doo, Warner Bros. Movie World is one of Australia’s coolest theme parks. The site lives up to its promise of bringing Hollywood to the Gold Coast.More

Lamington National Park

Part of Australia’s Gondwana Rainforests, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Lamington National Park is a paradise for nature lovers and adventure seekers. Covering 77 square miles (200 square kilometers), it’s known for its rich biodiversity, ancient trees, over 500 waterfalls, and more than 100 miles (160 kilometers) of hiking trails.More

WhiteWater World

As Australia’s biggest waterpark, WhiteWater World boasts more than 140 rides, slides, and attractions. Highlights include the Cave of Waves wave pool; the Pipeline Plunge splash zone; The Rip family raft ride; and The Wedgie, a 5-story power slide that runs along a translucent pipe and barrel.More


Offering more than 50 rides and attractions, Dreamworld is Australia’s largest theme park and one of the most popular Gold Coast family attractions. With big-thrill rides, live shows, the adjoining WhiteWater World water park, and animal residents—including tigers, koalas, and crocodiles—there’s something to entertain all ages.More

Trip ideas

Gold Coast Theme Parks Guide

Gold Coast Theme Parks Guide

Operators have paid Viator more to have their experiences featured here

Recent reviews from experiences in Gold Coast

Great service and company
Kathy_M, Aug 2022
Gold Coast Airport Departure Transfer
I would highly recommend this company for GOLD COAST activities
Definitely a must do!!
Georgina_M, Aug 2022
Whale Watching Tour with Spirit of Gold Coast
They did everything they could to make sure we were sure to see whales that day and we definitely did!
Best way to see parts of Gold Coast
Eleesha_S, Jun 2022
Gold Coast Jet Boat Ride Adventure Ride
It was an amazing experience for everyone to see parts of Gold Coast
Amazing art
Sabika_A, May 2022
ArtVo Gold Coast - Queensland's first 'trick art' gallery
I was looking around on google for things to do in the gold coast and this place was one of the things that i came across.
Mine was an airport pick- up, and I...
Pamela_S, Jan 2014
Gold Coast Airport Arrival Transfer
Mine was an airport pick- up, and I was so happy to see my bus driver there with a sign, when my Jetstar flight was an hour late into the Gold Coast at 10.
Gold Coast is a great tourist...
Devesh O, Sep 2013
Gold Coast dedicated stops to Theme Parks Return Transfer
The main attractions of this place are the theme parks- Dream world, Movie World, Wet n wild and the Sea world.
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People Also Ask

What is the Gold Coast famous for?

The Gold Coast is famous for its long, developed beaches, top surfing spots at Surfers Paradise, shopping centers, nightlife, restaurants, and amusement parks. Popular parks include Dreamworld, Sea World, and Wet’n’Wild. Inland from the coast are the Tamborine and Lamington national parks, with popular hiking trails, viewpoints, waterfalls, and wildlife.

How many days do you need on the Gold Coast?

Spend a minimum of three days on the Gold Coast to enjoy the beaches, amusement parks, wildlife sanctuaries, and shopping and dining. With five to seven days, you can get out into the neighboring national parks for hiking, bird-watching, and wildlife spotting.

What is there to do on the Gold Coast aside from theme parks?

While the Gold Coast is famous for its amusement parks, there’s more to do. Swim or surf at the beaches, drink and dine at some of Queensland’s finest bars and restaurants, meet wildlife at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary, or get active and hike in the nearby Tamborine or Lamington national parks.

What can you do for free on the Gold Coast?

It doesn’t cost anything to experience the Gold Coast's beautiful beaches and natural areas. Try swimming and lounging on the beach, checking out the flora at the Gold Coast Regional Botanic Gardens, soaking in the Currumbin Rock Pools, and hiking in one or more national parks, including Lamington or Springbrook.

Where should I go for a day trip on the Gold Coast?

With just one day to spend on the Gold Coast, head for a beach. Main Beach, Surfers Paradise, Broadbeach, and Burleigh Heads are all good options. Surfers will want to check out aptly named Surfers Paradise, while hikers will enjoy the trails at Burleigh Head National Park.

Is the Gold Coast worth visiting?

Yes. The Gold Coast is worth visiting whatever your interests and preferences. Family travelers enjoy the amusement parks and wildlife attractions, lovers of the outdoors take advantage of the many surrounding national parks, and other independent travelers revel in the nightlife, shopping, dining, and multitude of beaches.


Gold Coast information

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Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
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