Gold Coast is a vibrant, modern Aussie city located in Queensland on the east of the country. Australia’s sixth largest city stretches 57 kilometres along the stunning coastline and is crammed with breath-taking natural beauty and picturesque scenery.
The area offers plenty to a visitor and is particularly famed for its surf, sunshine and golden sands – hence the name. But the Gold Coast is more than just beaches. Its forests, waterways and upbeat community are often overshadowed.
The relaxed culture amongst locals is always a selling point for visitors and, although it would be easy to enjoy the natural beauty and bask in the sun all day, the region has a booming industrial network.
The city of Gold Coast attracts approximately 12m visitors every year. What does this beautiful part of the world offer to keep this large number of tourists occupied?
Gold Coast, with its vast expanse, has every type of beach you could wish for. If you look for tranquil, relaxing beaches with beautiful stretches of sand and phenomenal views then Palm Beach, South Stradbroke Island and Currumbin is perfect.
Or perhaps you are the type of person who cannot sit still. Coolangatta and Snapper Rocks provides fantastic surfing conditions and snorkelling spots. Glitter Strip is where all of the fun is at with sun soaked sand and warm clear waves. At Burleigh Hills you can enjoy gorgeous turquoise sea, white sand and an abundance of wildlife.
More upmarket spots, with cafes and bars, are found at Broadbeach and Main Beach. These beaches tend to get busier and there is more happening, with eateries, attractions and shops.
If the beach is not your scene or you simply need a break from the golden shores, the Gold Coast has a plethora of activities to entertain you.
At Warner Bros Movie World you can meet your favourite movie stars and super-heroes, whilst also enjoy some exhilarating adventure rides and movie attractions. It is the perfect day out for young families.
Dreamworld is Australia’s theme park. The biggest and best in the nation with the most rides, attractions and shows to keep young families and children entertained for hours. You will see Shrek, Kung Fu Panda and more than 500 native animals.
If you visit Tamborine Rainforest Skywalk you will be amazed by Gold Coast’s astonishing natural beauty. The stable, high-tech steel skywalk explores the rainforest canopies, as well as rock pools, butterfly lookouts and local history.
Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary is pure natural, fun Australia. Cuddle a koala, say g’day to a kangaroo and see some of the most amazing Aus wildlife. Whilst this is a dream for young kids, you will find many adults and couples enjoying the animals, the shows and the tree-top ropes just as much.
Yes, it is true – Gold Coast is home to a Sea World! Feast your eyes on incredible oceanic animals, such as dolphins, sea lions, sharks and penguins. You will also encounter huge Polar Bears!
For a more grown-up day out, Gold Coast shopping is as modern and diverse as the city itself. There are a number of outlets and shopping centres, namely Harbour Town and Robina. Being a surf haven, there are also a number of specialist surfing shopping locations, like Centre Surfers Paradise and Surfers Paradise Beachfront Markets.
After a busy day down on the luxurious sands or visiting one of the many attractions, Gold Coast has some fantastic restaurants with mouth-watering fare.
Allure on Currumbin serves French-themed dishes in a romantic dining atmosphere. The restaurant is considered one of the prime eating spots on the Gold Coast, cooking local produce perfect for a special occasion. Champagne Brasserie is another gem producing fantastic French fare in a similar atmosphere.
If you are looking for traditional Aussie cuisine then The Little Plate is the perfect place for you to eat. A boutique restaurant with five star service and food, in a relaxed and casual atmosphere. Similarly, Verve Restaurant Café and Bar serves modern Australian favourites and has won awards for its efforts.
Fiona Mayers is a writer for True Blue Migration, Australian immigration specialists.