First Time Tourists Guide in Gold Coast

Image by Matty Rogers from Pixabay

Gold Coast is a coastal city in the state of Queensland, Australia

Gold Coast is famous as a major tourist destination

From the iconic food, the beaches that are popular for its surfing, the national park with its many natural charms, and the city's spectacular attractions like the SkyPoint Observation Deck, and Infinity Attraction, Gold Coast has everything that will definitely piqued your interest to come and explore the city

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SIGHTSEEING

SkyPoint Observation Deck is the only beachside Observation Deck in Australia up to this day. This observation deck is located in the Q1 Building, which is one of the tallest residential buildings in the world with its 322.5 meters height. The observation deck itself is 230 meters above sea level. From here, you will be able to see the 360-degree breathtaking view of the entire Gold Coast city, from the city's many high rise buildings to the sea beyond. Several interesting features can also found here, such as a museum, weather station, theatrette, and a lounge bar.

SkyPoint Observation Deck

Observation deck & cafe offering scenic views from area's highest point, plus nightlife on weekends

Address : Level 77, q1 building/9 Hamilton Ave, Surfers Paradise QLD 4217, Australia

DOWNTOWN

When you're in the Gold Coast, you should definitely stop by the Surfers Paradise Beach. This beach is the Gold Coast's most iconic beach, it is known as Gold Coast's entertainment and tourism center, as well as a perfect destination for you who loves water sports. Just like its name, people often come to this beach to surf and challenge themselves on the waves. The two kilometers stretch of the beach is also the perfect spot to stroll around and enjoy the sea breeze and the view of the high rise buildings that are lining the beach.

Surfers Paradise Beach

Legendary surfing spot with a sand beach, set against a city backdrop with entertainment & shops

Address : 2 Esplanade, Surfers Paradise QLD 4217, Australia

SHOPPING

If you're looking for something to buy while in Gold Coast, make sure to come to the Carrara Markets. This market is Australia's biggest permanent weekend market that has been operating for more than 30 years. Hundreds of stalls are dominating the market by day on Saturday and Sunday from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., and the night market starts to operate from Friday to Saturday at 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. You can pretty much everything here, from clothes, fresh produce, souvenirs, plants, and arts and crafts by the local artists.

Carrara Markets

Weekend open-air market with vendors selling food, fashions & more, plus family & nighttime events

Address : Cnr Manchester Rd &, Gooding Dr, Carrara QLD 4211, Australia

FOOD & DRINK

Gold Coast has several unique dishes that you must try, such as Hamburger with beetroot which is a burger typical to Australia that has been popular since 1950, Pavlova cake, a creamy and sweet dessert, Australian barbeque, Shrimp cocktail, and Vegemite which is a dark brown salty paste often used for a spread on sandwiches,
Vegemite even also considered Australia's national foods.

CULTURE

Since Gold Coast is a coastal city, the culture of the city has been impacted by the development of its beach tourism. Though it is not as big as other cities in Australia, the art scene in Gold Coast is great. It can be seen from the existence of Home of the Arts or HOTA, which is the Gold Coast's main cultural facility for various forms of arts from visual to performing arts. Gold Coast is also popular for its music events that are able to attract people from around the world, like the Big Day Out and Good Vibrations Festival.

BEST TIME TO VISIT

Peak season: The best time to visit Gold Coast is from April to May. The weather is usually sunny during this time, it's not too hot with a low frequency of rain. This is also the best time to enjoy the water of Gold Coast's several beautiful beaches such as the Surfers Paradise Beach.

HOTEL

If you're staying at The Star Gold Coast, you will not only get to enjoy their comfortable bed but also their fascinating features, such as the spa and casino. The casino has more than 70 table games and 1400 machines, so you don't have to worry about not having fun here. Have a relaxing time at the spa that the hotel offers, enjoy the treatment and massages to recharge your energy before continuing your journey of exploring the Gold Coast. QT Gold Coast is another great option of accommodation in the Gold Coast. Located in the center of Surfers Paradise, this hotel features several additional facilities, from an outdoor swimming pool, tennis courts, a restaurant, and a bar. You will also be able to see the beauty of the sea with just a swipe of your room's window.

The Star Gold Coast

Connected by skywalk to the Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre, and by monorail to the Oasis Shopping Centre, this sleek casino hotel sits on an island in Dunlops Canal, and is a 9-minute walk from the beach

Address : 1 Casino Dr, Broadbeach QLD 4218, Australia

QT Gold Coast

Set a block from the beach, this hip, contemporary hotel overlooks the Coral Sea, and is a 3-minute walk from Cypress Avenue tram station and a 10-minute walk from Nerang River

Address : 7 Staghorn Ave, Surfers Paradise QLD 4217, Australia

RESTAURANT

Social Eating House + Bar is an award-winning fine dining restaurant located in the Oracle Boulevard. They serve menus which ingredients are obtained locally, from meat, seafood, and produce. Try their delicious Oysters, Lamb Shoulder, BBQ Fremantle Octopus, and much more delicious menu. Don't forget to complement those delicious foods with a glass of drinks from their wide selection of beverages. Justin Lane Establishment is another great restaurant that is located in the Burleigh Heads. This Italian restaurant serves handmade Italian cuisines. The restaurant has some interesting additions like a rooftop bar, pizzeria and pasta bar. When you visit Justin Lane Establishment, make sure to order their various delicious pasta, pizza, and salads. If you're in a rush and don't have the time to dine in, don't worry, you can order for a takeaway. These delicious foods won't be complete with a glass of good drink, luckily Justin Lane Establishment also has a wide selection of drinks, from cocktails, wine, vodka, beer, and etc.

Social Eating House + Bar

Social Eating House and Bar is a casual fine dining restaurant and bar located in the Oracle precinct in Broadbeach Gold Coast Queensland

Address : shop 137/3 Oracle Bvd, Broadbeach QLD 4218, Australia

Justin Lane Establishment

Gourmet pizzeria with communal benches and a quirky chandelier, for cocktails and Italian bites

Address : 1708-1710 Gold Coast Hwy, Burleigh Heads QLD 4220, Australia

CAFE

Bam Bam Bakehouse is the perfect place to grab a bite for a breakfast. This bakery and cafe serve house-baked pastries and bread, as well as other breakfast and lunch menu. The cafe opens seven days a week and you can start to enjoy their delicious food from 6:30 a.m. until 2:00 p.m, from Warm Croissant, Acai Bowl, Cinnamon Roll, Bam Bam Benny, Kiss My Hass, and many more. You can also order fresh juice and milkshakes to complete your tasty meal. Another great place to have a delicious place of breakfast is Little Mermaid Cafe that is located by the Mermaid Beach. They offer healthy options menus such as Acai Bowl, Brunch Bowl, Eggs Benedict, Avocado on Toast, and Gourmet Burgers. Tasty coffees are also available as a perfect match for your breakfast.

Bam Bam Bakehouse

Leafy bakery & cafe offering house-baked pastries & bread, plus eclectic breakfast & lunch fare

Address : 2519 Gold Coast Hwy, Mermaid Beach QLD 4218, Australia

Little Mermaid Cafe

Meters from the ocean and brimming with lush green leaves, Little Mermaid is a coastal retreat which embodies the Gold Coast’s gorgeous fusion of coastline and subtropical hinterland

Address : 1a/2557 Gold Coast Hwy, Mermaid Beach QLD 4218, Australia

BAR AND NIGHTLIFE

Miami Marketta is the best place to visit to enjoy good nighttime in Gold Coast. Every Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday the night market turns into a lively place full of various street food from around the world. More than 1000 outdoor seatings are available to accommodate people who want to explore the street food scene in the Miami Marketta. Bars with a great selection of drinks can also be found here. The venue also has a main stage that often uses for live performances by talented local musicians. If you want to have a unique nightlife experience in Gold Coast, then you should come to Dracula's Cabaret Gold Coast. This place is not for those with a faint heart. You have to prepare yourself for a thrilling Vampire-themed performance that will definitely pique your curiosity. Enjoy their performance with a companion of amazing food and drink that they provide. Make sure to secure a ticket beforehand.

Miami Marketta

Unfussy indoor-outdoor night market offering global street fare, cocktails & beers plus live music

Address : 23 Hillcrest Parade, Miami QLD 4220, Australia

Dracula's Cabaret Gold Coast

Renowned horror-themed cabaret dining experience with 'Death by Chocolate' for dessert

Address : 1 Hooker Blvd, Broadbeach QLD 4218, Australia

INTERESTING PLACE

Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary was first opened in 1947 and today it's known for its feeding of a big flock of free-flying rainbow lorikeets. The sanctuary also has a number of events, shows, and attractions with the animal that makes this place popular to visit. Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary also takes conservation seriously. The sanctuary takes part in 16 conservation projects to help several species from going extinct. Enjoying outdoor activities in Gold Coast is easy, especially if you come to Burleigh Head National Park. You can walk along the trail in the park and discover several incredible features that the park has, from rainforest eucalyptus forest, pandanus groves, creeks, mangroves, and even beaches.

Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary

Native animals on display in natural surrounds, plus shows, encounters & a wildlife hospital

Address : 28 Tomewin St, Currumbin QLD 4223, Australia

Burleigh Head National Park

Coastal headland area with shoreline & rainforest trails, plus wildlife viewing

Address : Goodwin Terrace, Burleigh Heads QLD 4220, Australia

INSTAGRAMMABLE SPOT

Snapper Rocks is a small rocky outcrop in Gold Coast, it's famous for the man-made surf breaks called the Superbank. Here, international surfing competitions are often held, like the annual World Surf Leagues' Quiksilver and Roxy Pros. Infinity Attraction is a funhouse where you can immerse in incredible art installations with special effects, sound effects, and trippy music. The dreamlike attraction opens daily from 10:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. When you enter this place, you will be able to experience different emotions in each different world, such as Inter-Dimensional Space, The Cyclotron, Electron Maze, The Mystery Zone, and many more.

Snapper Rocks

Natural formation with a unique rock pool along with scenic views overlooking the beach

Address : Snapper Rocks Rd, Coolangatta QLD 4225, Australia

Infinity Attraction

Funhouse attraction where guests encounter illusion-based special effects & music

Address : Centre, Towers of Chevron Renaissance, Surfers Paradise QLD 4217, Australia