Snags, sunshine and sack races – here’s where to celebrate Australia Day on the Gold Coast
Just quietly, how great is it that Australia Day falls on a Friday this year? If there’s one thing we love as Aussies, it’s a long weekend, so we’re welcoming these three days of freedom with open arms. Now look, we know that there’s a lot of conversation still to be had about the changing the date of our national day, but there’s one thing us Aussies can all agree on – we’re bloody lucky to call this place home! If you’re keen to soak up the goodness of Australia Day, then here are a bunch of events happening on Friday January 26 (and into the weekend) that will surely make you proud as punch to be Australian.
The Star Gold Coast: Sure, the concept of a barbecue at home is great, but who really enjoys getting out the steel wool and cleaning those hot plates and grills when they’re done? No thank you very much. Head to Garden Kitchen & Bar lawn for a true backyard barbecue this Australia Day with classic nosh like sausage sangas and lamb-shoulder milk-bun rolls. There’s also a killer line-up of local musicians taking the stage for the afternoon, so you can treat your ear holes as well as your stomach.
QT Gold Coast: True to style, QT is throwing a killer bash on the Calypso Terrace this Australia Day, complete with snags, tipples and loads of lamingtons (um, yum). There will be Aussie tunes, signature cocktails and Stone & Wood flowing. Though, if you want to get a bit fancy on January 26, then Bazaar Marketplace will be putting on a spread of delicious Australian dishes from pies to pavlova and a dedicated baked-potato station.
Broadwater Parklands: On the hunt for a family-friendly Australia Day event? Spend the afternoon soaking up the sun at the Broadwater Parklands from 4:00 pm and fill up from the all-nations food truck feast. The event will feature a bunch of local music talent including sets from The Twine, Sunset City and Cheap Fakes. Food trucks, fireworks and live beats by the water? Ahh, yes please.
Southport Sharks: If you like the sound of lamington cocktails (we do) then you’ll want to strategically place yourself at Cabana Bar & Lounge this Australia Day. There will be a free sausage sizzle, acoustic tunes and … wait for it … toad races. There will be lots of family fun happening around the Sharks club that day, from a bush tucker feast at Frenzy’s buffet to a live reptile show and a tribute to Cold Chisel on the main stage.
seagulls: There’s a three-day long celebration happening at seagulls this weekend, with everything from live rock concerts to thong-throwing competitions and crab racing … can this get any more Aussie? You’ll surely work up an appetite, so tuck into Australian-themed eats like Vegemite pizza, Stone & Wood gelato, pavlova and damper at LOT TWO afterwards.
NightQuarter: Cockroach races, thong throwing, dunny-roll throwing (it’s a thing, apparently!), lamington eating, egg and spoon races, snag-eating competitions … yep, it’s going to be a ripper time at NightQuarter this Australia Day evening. There will be plenty of live music, sausage sizzles and food trucks galore … but make sure you save some energy for the sack races.
Bavarian Bier Cafe: How about celebrating the Bavarian way? There will be snags (bratwurst) and beer (in steins) flowing, so can still expect a true-blue vibe. Plus, you can tuck into a limited-edition Oz Day Schnitzelmeister – that’s a 1kg schnitzel with bacon, three eggs and cheese – which will be available for the entire long weekend. Prost! Um, we mean, cheers mate!
Burleigh Beach: We all know that Burleigh is the iconic spot for Gold Coast folk to hang on Australia Day. Get into the fun early though – the annual Burleigh Swim Run Australia Day Challenge will kick off at first light, and then head straight to Burleigh point where you’ll be able to soak up the sunshine with day one (of three) of the Flight Centre Burleigh Pro surf comp. There’s no better way to start your Australia Day than in (or at least near) the surf.
Buffalo Sears: One day really isn’t enough, so Buffalo Sears in Burleigh is holding a three-day Smokin’ Barbecue Festival from Friday through to Sunday. Get yourself a one-litre stein or one of the Aussie-themed cocktail specials and tuck into this smokin’ feast, featuring everything from lamb ribs to chargrilled prawns.
Lost Palms: For music lovers, it’s one of the biggest (if not the biggest) times of the year … the triple j Hottest 100. If you’re keen to revel in the countdown, then get to Miami’s very own watering hole Lost Palms on Saturday January 27 for beers, beats and barbecued eats. Will King Kendrick take out the top spot?
Surfers Paradise Marriott Resort: Get your stretchy pants ready because Citrique restaurant is going all out this Friday with a sensational Aussie buffet filled with some true blue classics. Feast on amazingly fresh, locally sourced seafood as far as your eye can see before making a stop at the live station to treat your tastebuds to the special Kangaroo dish. No need to share.
Justin Lane: Guys, Justin is throwing a rooftop party on Australia Day and you’re invited! Get up there for an afternoon of cocktails and eats in the afternoon sunshine – it all kicks off at 3:00 pm and local legend DJ Little Fritter will have the tunes locked and loaded.