Gold CoastAustralia

Image for Gold Coast featuring a city, general coastal views and a coastal town

Visit Gold Coast

For a break in the sun, head to this expansive city: the perfect combination of beaches, theme parks, nightlife, rain forests and mountains.

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.

Where to stay in Gold Coast

Mount Tamborine
Mount Tamborine featuring interior views and drinks or beverages

Mount Tamborine

Known for Relaxing, Bird Watching, Mountains

4.5/5(50 reviews)

Follow the winding road from the coast to the hinterland and experience complete tranquillity on this peaceful rainforest-clad mountain plateau. 

Top hotels in Gold Coast

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
Meriton Suites Broadbeach, Gold Coast
Meriton Suites Broadbeach, Gold Coast
5 out of 5
2669 Gold Coast Highway, Broadbeach, QLD
AU$123
per night
15 Dec. - 16 Dec.

Situated near the boardwalk, this luxury apartment building is within a 10-minute walk of Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre, The Star Gold Coast and ...

4.7/5Exceptional! (1,926 reviews)

"I stay in many hotels.This one tops them all.It was immaculately clean and well presented.Resturants nearby Highly recommended"…"

Reviewed on 30 Nov. 2019

Meriton Suites Broadbeach, Gold Coast
Crowne Plaza Surfers Paradise
Crowne Plaza Surfers Paradise
4.5 out of 5
2807 Gold Coast Highway, Surfers Paradise, QLD
AU$140
per night
15 Dec. - 16 Dec.

Situated near the beach, this luxury hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Surfers Paradise Beach, Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre and Cavill Avenue. Pacific ...

4.3/5Excellent! (2,312 reviews)

"Looks and feels rather tired. Badly in need of renovation."…"

Reviewed on 1 Dec. 2019

Crowne Plaza Surfers Paradise
Mercure Gold Coast Resort
Mercure Gold Coast Resort
4 out of 5
64 Palm Meadows Drive, Carrara, QLD
AU$124
per night
15 Dec. - 16 Dec.

This family-friendly Carrara hotel is located near the airport, 0.1 mi (0.2 km) from Palm Meadows Golf Course, and within 6 mi (10 km) of Metricon Stadium and ...

4.2/5Excellent! (2,033 reviews)

"Like - welcome note from staff in room with towel-folded arogami on bed and in bathroom (original!) No dislike. Highly recommended to anyone visiting Gold Coast."…"

Reviewed on 1 Dec. 2019

Mercure Gold Coast Resort

Popular activities in Gold Coast

Sea World
Image for Sea World

Sea World

4.5/5(1,108 reviews)

Who doesn’t dream of staying overnight in a water park where you can see Jet Ski stunts, life-sized Nickelodeon stars, plus dolphins, sea lions and polar bears?

Warner Bros. Movie World
Image for Warner Bros. Movie World

Warner Bros. Movie World

4.5/5(1,129 reviews)

Watch stunt shows, get on superhero rides, enter the Ice Age 4D Experience and take a splash in the Wild West at Australia’s theme park version of Hollywood.

Dreamworld
Image for Dreamworld

Dreamworld

4/5(523 reviews)

Australia’s biggest amusement park features exciting themed areas with everything from tigers and thrilling rides to vintage V8 super-cars and TV characters.

Surfers Paradise Beach
Image for Surfers Paradise Beach

Surfers Paradise Beach

4.5/5(3,053 reviews)

This stretch of beach is known for its regular sets of rolling waves, with high-rise hotels and bustling nightlife along the sandy shore.

Cavill Avenue
Image for Cavill Avenue

Cavill Avenue

4/5(2,515 reviews)

Bustling nightlife, great shopping and a legendary surfing beach make this avenue the exciting centre of Surfer’s Paradise on the Gold Coast.

Wet'n'Wild Gold Coast
Image for Wet'n'Wild Gold Coast

Wet'n'Wild Gold Coast

4.5/5(769 reviews)

Get an adrenaline kick gliding through caves and tunnels or plunging down a giant water slide, or simply float and splash in a relaxing pool.

Top activities in Gold Coast

3 Day Pass: Warner Bros. Movie World, Sea World & Wet'n'Wild
Image for 3 Day Pass: Warner Bros. Movie World, Sea World & Wet'n'Wild

3 Day Pass: Warner Bros. Movie World, Sea World & Wet'n'Wild

AU$129

Experience all the fun, thrills and adventures at the Gold Coast's biggest and best Theme Parks. With 95 rides, shows and attractions across three theme parks, there’s something for everyone at Warner Bros. Movie World, Sea World and Wet'n'Wild Gold Coast.

Australian Outback Spectacular Dinner & Live Show
Image for Australian Outback Spectacular Dinner & Live Show

Australian Outback Spectacular Dinner & Live Show

AU$100

Embark on a journey to the heartland of Australia through an all new show featuring a transformative arena, mesmerising animals and immersive technology. Delve into the real-life struggles Aussie farmers face and rejoice with them as the community's courage, bravery and generosity help them overcome a stunning, yet unforgiving life on the land.

Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary Tickets
Image for Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary Tickets

Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary Tickets

AU$37

Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary is voted #1 Gold Coast Wildlife Attraction and is nestled within 27 hectares of lush eucalyptus and rainforest. Come face-to-face with extraordinary wildlife in exciting daily shows and hands-on encounters.

7-Day Super Pass: Movie World, Sea World & Wet'n'Wild Water World
Image for 7-Day Super Pass: Movie World, Sea World & Wet'n'Wild Water World

7-Day Super Pass: Movie World, Sea World & Wet'n'Wild Water World

AU$149

Make your next Gold Coast holiday full of fun and family adventures with a Super Pass. Get unlimited entry to Warner Bros. Movie World, Sea World, and Wet’n’Wild Gold Coast.

Gold Coast 4-Park Mega Pass
Image for Gold Coast 4-Park Mega Pass

Gold Coast 4-Park Mega Pass

AU$179

Supersize your Theme Park experience with a Mega Pass. Get unlimited entry to 4 Theme Parks including Warner Bros. Movie World, Sea World, Wet'n'Wild Gold Coast and Paradise Country.

HYPER LAP 2 HOUR JET
Image for HYPER LAP 2 HOUR JET

HYPER LAP 2 HOUR JET

AU$99

This is a 2 hour Tour of the Gold Coast Broad Water.Blast your way along the sub-tropical shores whilst taking in the incredible views the Australian coastline has to offer.

Read travel guides and advice on visiting Gold Coast

Top 10 beach activities
Image for Top 10 beach activities

Top 10 beach activities

Summer is fast-approaching, so we’re answering an important question: What should you do at the beach this year?

Weirdest winter vacation destinations in the Southern Hemisphere
Image for Weirdest winter vacation destinations in the Southern Hemisphere

Weirdest winter vacation destinations in the Southern Hemisphere

The Southern Hemisphere offers half a world’s worth of weird places to go and wild things to do all winter long.

Other places like Gold Coast

Brisbane
Image for Brisbane
Brisbane
Adelaide
Image for Adelaide
Adelaide
Cairns
Image for Cairns
Cairns
Launceston
Image for Launceston
Launceston