The Roadtrip Series: our top five weekend beach getaways that stray from the path
Brisbane is a beautiful and bountiful city for many reasons, but we are unfortunately lacking in the beach department. When summer hits and the mercury starts to rise, our first port of call is to bundle into the car and head to the nearest coast to escape the heat. While the classics are classics for a reason (looking at you, Noosa and Surfers), sometimes it pays to branch out of your comfort zone and do a little explorin’ when it comes to your next salty sojourn. We’ve teamed up with our official site partner Mercedez-Benz Brisbane and its beach babe ambassador Sofie Formica to bring you our top five weekend beach getaways that are a little off the beaten track.
As the name might suggest, Rainbow Beach is a colourful stretch of paradise that deserves your attention. Well worth the drive time, this former sand mining town boasts spectacularly hued sands framed by rolling surf and surrounded by lush national parks. Surfing enthusiasts will be pleased to note that Rainbow is home to the longest break in Australia, but not to worry if you’re not down to shred – there is a sweet stretch of patrolled beach perfect for safe swimming. Make sure you pencil in a sunrise or sunset trip to the Carlo Sand Blow – the views out to Double Island Point over the coloured sands will take your breath away.
It’s hard to resist the tranquil vibes of Cabarita Beach, a New South Wales hidden gem nestled between the Gold Coast and Byron. Cabarita boasts large areas of protected wetlands and very limited development, so the vibe around the area exudes maximum chill. There are plenty of spots for lazy barbecues and cute picnics dotted around the area, all boasting amazing views of the water. As an added bonus, your local for the weekend would be the Cabarita Beach Hotel – which happens to be one of only 22 pubs in the whole of Australia that are directly on the beach. Doesn’t get much better than that, huh?
Real talk – Cotton Tree is one of the best-kept secrets on the Sunshine Coast. Often overshadowed by its neighbouring Maroochydore, this low-key hub is the perfect destination to get away from it all but still remains in touch with civilisation. Acting as the midpoint between Maroochydore Beach and the Maroochy River, you can choose between hitting up the waves or even indulging in some pontoon action in the calmer waters. The river is also a great place for a spot of fishing if you care to partake, with plenty of spots along the esplanade selling bait and gear.
When it comes to charming coastal towns, Yamba hits the nail on the head. Known for its killer surf and succulent prawns, this secluded spot is pretty much the ideal temperature year-round (what winter?) so you can plan a sojourn whenever you please. Sitting at the mouth of the gorgeous Clarence River, Yamba retains all the qualities of a small town but loaded with chic and modern touches.If you’ve ever wanted to have a crack at surfing but were too intimidated, Yamba is the place to do it – the gentle breaks are ideal for first-time longboarders.
Yaroomba and Point Arkwright
Hunting for treasure pays off when you hit the jackpot, which is why next-door neighbours Yaroomba and Point Arkwright are worth seeking out. Hiding between Coolum and Marcoola, these two small suburbs both share a retro feel and some of the most beautiful beaches you’re likely to come across in a lifetime. The locals in this area are super friendly and add to the relaxed vibe, but you won’t see loads of people around. A trip to the Point Arkwright lookout and picnic area is a must – take a few beers up and watch the waves roll in.
This post was created with our good friend Sofie Formica, ambassador for our official site partner Mercedes-Benz Brisbane. Vehicle pictured is the Mercedes-BenzE300 Cabriolet. All other images appear courtesy of Tourism Queensland and Tourism New South Wales.