The Gold Coast is a subtropical paradise that attracts numerous holiday travelers each year. The region, located in Queensland, Australia, is famous for its pristine beaches, lush rainforests, cosmopolitan eateries, and extravagant shopping venues. Let’s be truthful, parents want to take their family on a holiday that doesn’t just centre on Disney characters and kiddie rides; they crave a travel destination that literally has something for every member of the family to enjoy. The Gold Coast is the perfect holiday hotspot because it really does provide attractions that appeal to individuals of all ages. So, now that I’ve touched on the Gold Coast’s general virtues as a holiday getaway, let me get more specific. The following is a list of ten family activities that you will not want to miss during your visit:
1. The Hinterland
Take your family on hikes on Tambourine Mountain, or explore the numerous farms and wineries in the Hinterland region. Your family can sample homemade cheeses, chocolates, wines and liqueurs while enjoying the many verdant green vistas of the Gold Coast’s rainforest region. Be sure to stop by O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat to try out a treetops walkway that lets you literally walk across a stretch of rainforest from a vantage point as high as the tallest surrounding trees.
2. Hot Air Ballooning
Old and young family members alike will enjoy taking in the Gold Coast from the heights afforded by a hot air balloon. Float far above the beaches, forests and metropolitan regions of Queensland and enjoy the whimsy of travel by way of a colourful balloon full of hot air.
3. Carrara Markets
This permanent weekend marketplace offers much more than just fruits and vegetables to families on holiday in the Gold Coast. Over 500 stalls are set up every Friday and Saturday, offering every sort of souvenir and oddity imaginable. Pony rides, face painting, trampoline jumps and other carnival-type distractions are also available. However, be sure to use a reliable currency converter before shopping at Carrara, to ensure that you do not overpay for any goods you purchase.
4. Beach Bumming
If there is one thing the Gold Coast has plenty of, it’s gorgeous beaches. Take the family to one of these sandy shores to enjoy the sun and surf of subtropical Australia:
* South Stradbroke Island – Your family can actually camp out on this Island that doesn’t get the large wave action that other Gold Coast beaches receive on a daily basis. The kids can swim safely in these tame waters, while mom and dad can soak in the sun and the teenagers can enjoy a few water sports.
* Surfers Paradise – The name of this beach says it all. Surfboard and bodyboard hire are available in the nearby Cavill Mall, and lessons are available to the entire family at reasonable rates.
* North Stradbroke Island – Snorkelling and scuba diving are the two biggest draws of this Gold Coast beach that also provides lifeguards for swimmer safety.
5. Adventure Parks
Take your kids to either the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary or Thunderbird Park and enjoy a day full of rope courses, zip lines, and family team-building exercises. Long after the initial adrenaline rush has worn off, each member of the family will likely rehash the memories you’ve created together in this outdoor adventure zone.
6. Glow Worm Caves
The entire family will get a kick out of a guided tour through a man-made glow worm cave. Located on Tamborine Mountain, this luminous attraction is filled with a magical and otherworldly feeling that will likely delight and awe every family member, regardless of their age.
7. Dinner Theatre
Leave it to the Aussies to put on stellar theatrics while serving up a feast. The Australian Outback Spectacular packs out a 1,000-seat arena every night and puts on a show that includes live horses, music, extravagant lighting and a full-on Australian BBQ. The show is geared toward families, so it will be appropriate for the young ones as well as the grown-ups.
8. Putt Putt
The Gold Coast takes mini-golf to a whole new level in the Mermaid Beach neighbourhood by offering 3 different 18-hole courses, all of which have their own outlandish theme: Fun Run, Jungle Trail, and Waterways. Food and plenty of video games round out the experience, and make for an entire day of fun for the whole family.
9. Whale Watching
No member of the family is likely to yawn while watching Humpback whales in their natural element. Other aquatic creatures like dolphins, giant turtles, and seabirds often make appearances during the whale watching experience. Take the family out on a guided whale watching tour in Gold Coast waters, complete with water-level observation decks and basic tea service.
10. Theme Parks
The Gold Coast just happens to be known as the “Theme Park Capital” of the entire southern hemisphere. Just a few of the many theme parks available in the region include: Sea World, Movie World, and Dream World. Thrill rides, educational exhibits, aquatic shows, and theatrical presentations abound at these parks that never fail to entertain visitors.
The Gold Coast is literally teeming with family attractions, and this list is hardly exhaustive. UK residents on holiday simply could not find a more beautiful and appealing locale for the next family vacation. So get out there, and have some fun!