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With its casinos, Jet Skis, yachts and luxury hotels, the Gold Coast looks like it’s straight out of a James Bond movie. Australia’s major theme parks are all here, and the quieter hinterland offers rock climbing, scenic flights and skydiving for thrill seekers. It’s easy to see why millions of visitors flock to the Gold Coast every year: There are more than 30 beaches, including Burleigh Beach, where professional surfers come to compete in February, as well as great shopping and dining.
The Gold Coast encompasses several seaside towns inhabited by over half a million people, making this Australia’s sixth-largest city. The area covers 1,400 square kilometers (541 square miles) from Beenleigh, south of the Queensland capital Brisbane, to Coolangatta Beach at the New South Wales border.
The first Australians, the Aborigines, called this beautiful land of the sun Kurrungul. Europeans settled here, growing and commercialising the area, from the mid-1800s onwards. Tourism boomed in the 1950s, and the golden opportunity to invest in real estate gave the city its name and its skyline.
Some of Australia’s most famous beaches are on the Gold Coast. Two surfing hot spots are Burleigh Beach and Surfers Paradise Beach, an area that’s also popular for shopping and dining. Families looking for a good swimming area will enjoy the calmer waters of Coolangatta Beach.
More family fun awaits at the Gold Coast’s wide range of amusement parks. Interact with marine creatures at Sea World, slide through Wet‘n’Wild Water World, or board the superhero rides at Movie World. You can do all this and more at the biggest Australian theme park, Dreamworld.
The Gold Coast offers year-round entertainment, but you may want to avoid the rowdy “Schoolies” period (when high school graduates celebrate) in November. The weather is hot and humid from December to February (summer), and dry and sunny from June to August (winter). Rain or shine, pack your bathers to enjoy one of Australia’s most popular holiday destinations.
Situated near the beach, this luxury aparthotel is 0.2 mi (0.3 km) from Oracle Boulevard and within 3 mi (5 km) of Surfers Paradise Beach and Cavill Avenue. Oasis Shopping Centre and Broadbeach Mall are also within 10 minutes.
This family-friendly Surfers Paradise hotel is located on the Strip, within a 10-minute walk of SkyPoint Observation Deck, Surfers Paradise Beach, and Cavill Avenue. Timezone and Centro Surfers Paradise are also within 10 minutes.
Situated in North Tamborine, this luxury guesthouse is within 1 mi (2 km) of Tamborine National Park Witches Falls Section, Mount Tamborine Winery, and Witches Falls Winery. Cedar Creek Estate Vineyard and Winery and Glow Worm Caves are also within 2 mi (3 km).
This family-friendly Broadbeach apartment is located by the ocean, within a 10-minute walk of Oracle Boulevard, Broadbeach Mall, and Oasis Shopping Centre. Surfers Paradise Beach and Cavill Avenue are also within 3 mi (5 km).
Mantra on View Hotel is located a block from the beachfront Esplanade, one of Surfers Paradise's entertainment hotspots. A daily shuttle connects guests to Warner Bros. Movie World, SeaWorld, and Dreamworld within a half-hour. Jupiters Casino is a 15-minute drive south.
Located in Surfers Paradise, this beachfront apartment is in the city center and within a 10-minute walk of Infinity Gold Coast, Cavill Avenue, and Surfers Paradise Beach. Sea World is 2.8 mi (4.5 km) away.
Situated by the ocean, this luxury hotel is 0.1 mi (0.1 km) from The Star Gold Coast and within 3 mi (5 km) of Surfers Paradise Beach and Cavill Avenue. Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre and Oasis Shopping Centre are also within 10 minutes.
This family-friendly Coolangatta hotel is located near the airport, within a 10-minute walk of The Strand, Centro Tweed, and Twin Towns Uniting Church. Greenmount Beach and Coolangatta Beach are also within 15 minutes.