Gold Coast: Australia’s Party Central

The Gold Coast is synonymous with sun and fun. Whether you spend your days on the sand and your nights in the hippest clubs or make it a mission to check out all of the area’s theme parks with the kids, glitz and action are guaranteed. The Gold Coast’s largest city is Surfers Paradise, where skyscrapers and upmarket condos line the waterfront. A number of apartments within these towers are available for holiday rental and ensure sweeping views of the glistening coast. Beyond Surfers, Broadbeach welcomes visitors seeking to be within easy driving distance of the fun, without foregoing a good night’s sleep.

Gold Coast’s Beaches and Surfing

With a name like Surfers Paradise, it isn’t hard to imagine that the waves attract the world’s best surfers. Each year, Surfers Paradise hosts the Quicksilver and Roxy Professional Championships. It follows that several great surf schools have set up shop, ready to teach a new generation. You can even learn the craft from world surf champion Cheyne Horan, who opened an academy in the area. Aside from surfing, visitors can take advantage of the long boardwalk for a seaside stroll and warm water throughout the year for swimming. Surfers Paradise Beach is always bustling, with shopping malls and condos across the road, so travellers seeking a quieter atmosphere can head over to Broadbeach, an upscale neighbourhood favoured by Gold Coast locals. The town’s beach is perfect for families looking for some holiday respite and is separated from gourmet cafes and fashionable boutiques by a leafy foreshore reserve. If you have energy to spare, walk the 4km from Broadbeach to Surfers Paradise right along the sand.

Nightlife and Shopping

The Gold Coast is widely considered Down Under’s party Mecca, with its Miami meets Vegas meets Ibiza vibe. Partygoers of all ages will find their niche. Be sure to pay a visit to Vanity, the area’s hottest nightclub, swarming with beautiful people dressed to the nines. High rollers may prefer the Vegas-inspired venue Sin City and if you really want to see a Gold Coast establishment, stop by Cocktails and Dreams, which has been around since 1989 and boasts two private bars for functions. During the day, shopaholics can discover a panoply of malls and boutiques, with everything from high street to high fashion bands. Surfers Paradise is home to Cavill Mall, a sprawling open air shopping complex directly opposite the beach. The mall’s main walkway is lined by attractions that include a Ripley’s Believe It or Not museum and family-friendly restaurants. You can stock up on surf gear and get your fix of the latest trends. If you prefer more upmarket retail therapy, Main Beach’s Waterfront Mirage and Broadbeach’s Oracle Boulevard are good options.

Family Friendly Gold Coast Holidays

If you’re travelling the kids, don’t let the party scene scare you away from the varied family-friendly attractions available around the Gold Coast. From July to November, young and old will delight in whale watching tours in the surrounding waters. Spend a half day cruising through the ocean to spot these migrating marine mammals. Contact Whales in Paradise, based in Surfers, for schedule and pricing information. Alternately, children and adults will surely be entertained at Infinity, a unique maze suitable for those aged 8 and over. Wander through twenty futuristic worlds, accompanied by sounds and lightshows. Finally, take in the Gold Coast from up high during a one-hour balloon ride. Enjoy a bird’s-eye view over the water and hinterland- be sure you to bring your camera!

Gold Coast Theme Parks

The Gold Coast is Australia’s theme park capital. Main Beach features Sea World, with its dolphin and seal shows, animal information tours, a ton of rides and the only polar bears Down Under. The easily star-struck can spend the day at Warner Bros Movie World, which offers rides based on popular films. Children will get a kick out of seeing their favourite cartoon characters walking around! When it comes to adrenaline rushes, Dreamworld is the place to be, with its famous Big 6 Thrill Rides. Think free falling from 38 stories high or being swung around at 75km per hour, for starters. If you’re planning to visit more than one theme park, you can select from several pass options to save money.

The Gold Coast in Brief

The Gold Coast specialises in fun, but the area’s uber-commercialisation may not be everyone’s cup of tea. The constantly buzzing atmosphere of Surfers Paradise can get exhausting, so those seeking a relaxing break may prefer nearby Broadbeach or the hinterland, which encompasses several national parks. When it comes to the Gold Coast, chances are you’ll love it or hate it, but you have to experience the frenzy at least once!

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