72 Hours on the Gold Coast

Discover the best surf breaks, get your thrills in world-class amusement parks and explore lush wilderness in this three-day Gold Coast itinerary. 72 Hours on the Gold Coast
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72 Hours on the Gold Coast

Discover the best surf breaks, get your thrills in world-class amusement parks and explore lush wilderness in this three-day Gold Coast itinerary.



WHAT TO EXPECT

  • Kick back on the beach or learn to surf
  • Get your heart racing at famed theme parks
  • Head back into nature in World Heritage-listed rainforest
     

Fast Facts

  • Time: 3 Days
  • Distance: 90 Kilometres / 56 Miles
  • Transport: Car
  • Nearest Major City: Gold Coast
  • Price: $$
     

Beyond the Gold Coast's glittering high rises you will discover waterfalls, wineries and beachside cafés, as well as theme parks to take you back to your childhood.

DAY 1: SOAK UP THE SUN ON MAIN BEACH

Main Beach, Gold Coast, Queensland

MORNING

Hire a cruiser bike from Get On Your Bike to explore the Gold Coast's string of beachside neighbourhoods. From Surfers Paradise it's a 20-minute ride north to Main Beach. Stop for a swim or book a surf lesson with Get Wet Surf School. Main Beach is popular among local surfers for its open surf break, which means waves break further out away from the shore. Afterwards wander down Tedder Avenue, home to cafés, restaurants and boutiques. Refuel with a typical Australian breakfast and coffee at Beaches Off TedderLark Café or Diva Tea & Coffee House.

AFTERNOON

Hop in a taxi for the 30-minute drive to Burleigh Heads. Relax on the beachfront grass beneath rows of pines and palms, or follow one of the walking trails through Burleigh Heads National Park. Grab a bite in the up-and-coming neighbourhood of Palm Beach – we recommend the American barbecue and craft beers at Lester and Earl.

DAY 2: HEAD TO THE THEME PARKS FOR THRILLS AND SPILLS

Dreamworld, Gold Coast, Queensland

MORNING

Gold Coast theme parks are big draw cards for families for a good reason. Hop on the highest inversion ride in the Southern Hemisphere at Dreamworld in Coomera. Swim with dolphins and get up close to seals at Sea World in Main Beach, or cool down in the giant wave pool at Wet ‘n’ Wild in Oxenford. Shear a sheep, pat a koala and taste bush tucker (food native to Australia) at Paradise Country, or hang out with your favourite characters at Warner Bros. Movie World, both of which are in Oxenford. If you want to visit more than one park, look into a Mega Pass, which gives you entry to Wet ‘n’ Wild, Movie World, Sea World and Paradise Country. Tickets for Dreamworld can be purchased separately.

AFTERNOON

After the morning's excitement, you deserve some rest and relaxation. Indulge in a soothing spa treatment at L’Aqua Day Spa, Calmer Therapies or SpaQ in Surfers Paradise before perusing the evening markets (Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, 4pm-9pm). Dine in Broadbeach or neighbouring Mermaid Beach before heading back to Surfers Paradise to hit up the neon-lit nightlife. Head to Elsewhere, a hot spot for live music, or House of Brews to sample its impressive list of craft beers.

DAY 3: EXPLORE THE RAINFORESTS OF LAMINGTON NATIONAL PARK

Lamington National Park, Queensland

MORNING

Join a four-wheel-drive eco tour to the World Heritage-listed rainforests of the Gold Coast hinterland, an hour drive west of Surfers Paradise. Walk among the rainforest canopy on O’Reilly’s Tree Top Walkway in Lamington National Park or step inside a cave to see the cascading waterfall of Natural Bridge in Springbrook. Afterwards, pick up a gourmet picnic basket from O’Reilly’s Canungra Valley Vineyards and enjoy lunch by the creek.

AFTERNOON

Return to the Gold Coast and watch the sun set over Rainbow Bay, overlooking the famous Snapper Rocks surf break. Eat a delicious burger from Eddie’s Grub House in Coolangatta then take your pick from 40 freshly churned flavours of gelato at Gelato Messina (Hint: salted caramel is the biggest seller).

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