Hit the out-of-office and get away for a staycay on the Gold Coast
We could probably all do with a little weekend getaway right about now. Whether your dream holiday involves endless beach days, chasing waterfalls, boating, camping or fishing adventures – the Gold Coast has it all. Lucky for us, we needn’t travel interstate to experience a relaxing getaway but when it comes to booking, position is everything. Unlike some cities that are clustered together, the Gold Coast is linear in nature – so unless you enjoy spending your holiday time in transit, you really want to stay where you plan to play. To help with your planning, we’ve teamed up with our pals at Gold Coast Tourist Parks to give you the low-down on where to base yourself to get the most out of your sunny vacay.
For the salty souls
The southern Gold Coast is regarded by some as the spiritual home of surfing on the Gold Coast. If your ideal getaway involves stretches of stunning white-sand beaches and perfect peelers, Kirra Beach Tourist Park is the ultimate base for you. Boardies and bare feet are the prevailing dress code here, with Kirra boasting that kind of old-school village vibe that makes you want to quit your day job and go surfing every day. Beyond beaches, there’s more to discover at Kirra. The cafe and restaurant scene is thriving so if you fancy long lunches and sundowners with a sensational view, you’ll be spoilt for choice with a myriad of places in walking distance. The park itself is also one of the few dog-friendly holiday parks, so you can even bring your fur baby!
It’s hailed as a boaties’ best-kept secret and for good reason. Jacobs Well Tourist Park is perched right on the water’s edge, which means all you have to do is throw in a line and wait for the fish to bite. Boaties will be in their version of heaven with a multi-lane boat ramp right outside the park and direct access to Moreton Bay Marine Park – one of the largest estuarine bays in Australia. The fishing is excellent all year round with whiting, bream and flathead in abundance and there are plenty of nearby islands to explore. There’s a range of accommodation options, including unpowered sites from $34 through to a two-bedroom cabin from $135. If you’d rather go glamping than camping, the safari tents are kitted out with all of the mod-cons like a kitchenette, fridge, microwave, TV, comfy couch and bedding.
Family fun for kids (and the ‘big kids’ at heart)
Holidaying with kids can be a tricky balance between getting out and doing all of the things as well as carving out time for much-needed rest and relaxation. Broadwater Tourist Park offers the best of both worlds – a laid-back atmosphere that’s just far enough away from the excitement of Surfers Paradise. Located on the shore of the pristine Broadwater, which is essentially one big playground for kids and ‘big kids’ alike, holidaymakers can fill their days with water sports, swimming, fishing, or nothing at all. The little ones will love exploring The Rockpools splash park in nearby Broadwater Parklands (it’s free!) and when hunger hits, there’s a fish and chippery right there to quell the cravings. Want to spoil the whole family? Sea World is just around the corner!
Get amongst the action
If you’re the kind of vacay-lover that just can’t help but pack in the fun, then Main Beach Tourist Park is the ultimate landing pad. Centrally located in Main Beach, you can choose to pop over to Surfers Paradise or just take it easy and hit the beach instead – some would call it the best of both worlds. If you’re keen to check out the theme parks and indulge in a spot of shopping, jump on the light rail or take a short stroll to the much-loved cafes and restaurants of Tedder Avenue thanks to the park’s central location. You’re also perfectly positioned to discover the new Seaway Promenade, an accessible walkway that has just opened along the south wall of the Gold Coast Seaway. The almost-700-m promenade offers breathtaking unobstructed views of the city’s coastline, hinterland and across to South Stradbroke Island.
Low key beach days
Nestled in the ultimate locale between the headland and the beach, Ocean Beach Tourist Park is the perfect balance of convenient and quiet. When it comes time to venture out for a bite, the surf club and Piccolo Espresso are right next door or you can head along the esplanade to Nobbys Beach for wining and dining – plus a spot of boutique browsing. Dust off the sand and roll into your tent (or cabin, if you’re about the little luxuries) and fall asleep to the sound of the waves on the park’s doorstep, recharging for another day of surfing, walking and soaking up a holiday in paradise. If you consider yourself a content master, the iconic rainbow staircase is where to get the shot. These stairs will take you uphill for the view and then down along the esplanade into beautiful Burleigh Heads.
Scenes for the sunset lovers
The secret is now out – Burleigh Heads serves up some jaw-dropping scenes pretty much every day of the week. Burleigh Heads Tourist Park is in a prime spot, meaning that if you’re an early bird, you can take just a few steps and perch up on Burleigh Hill. Watch the surfers at one of the coast’s best surf breaks while you sip on a coffee from nearby Nook and enjoy the sunshine. Otherwise, head to the hill for sunset then wander over to the iconic James Street precinct for dinner and cocktails at one of the incredible restaurants and bars. Plus, you can rest your head in one of the super-cute vintage vans that are now available for Insta-worthy stays. If you’re looking for something special, embark on a journey of discovery with a guided rainforest walk tour wrapping around the magical ‘Dreaming Mountain’, Jellurgal. You will learn about the Aboriginal history and culture of the Gold Coast, meet a traditional custodian and hear the Dreamtime stories associated with the creation of Jellurgal.
Dive right in to the Gold Coast lifestyle
Soak up everything the picturesque Tallebudgera Creek has to offer at the Tallebudgera Creek Tourist Park, which is set upon the banks of the famous aqua-hued waterway. The whole family can spend days by the beach, sandy and salty, with your hardest choice will be which swim spot to take a dip in. With Burleigh Headland on your doorstep, you can choose to take an invigorating morning walk around to the cafes of Burleigh Heads or you can duck down to the Palm Beach eateries to have a bite. Ocean lovers are spoilt for choice with paddle boarding, kayaking, surfing and snorkelling all favourite pastimes of creek-goers. There’s also boat access, a swimming enclosure in the creek and waterslides for the kids!
Sail to an island paradise
Head over to South Straddie for a weekend of oceanside adventure. Whether you choose to stay at Currigee or Tipplers Campgrounds, you’ll need to get there by water taxi, your own boat or jetski. It’s a complete escape from the hustle and bustle, offering the chance for you to truly relax and unwind. In saying that, you’ll still be able to access Tipplers cafe for breakfast, lunch and dinner, plus the Tipplers Kiosk for your essentials and supplies. Spend long days immersed in nature (you can even walk through the island for incredible surf beaches) before spending balmy nights by the campfire. Now that’s livin’!
This article was created in partnership with our friends at Gold Coast Tourist Parks.