Pristine stretches of picture-perfect beaches, waves crashing on the shore as active locals and their gorgeous dogs start the day with a beachfront jog. Bustling coffee shops and quaint eateries serving up healthy bites with a focus on local, seasonal produce. Vintage and thrift stores, stocked to the hilt with one-off threads and beautiful boutiques offering high-end wares. The Gold Coast is a distinctly wonderful mix of earthy energy and vibrant culture. It’s no wonder it’s a must-see destination for so many, with millions of visitors flocking to the glittering Gold Coast streets each year. To help you make the most of your holiday, here are 79 of the very BEST things to do on the gorgeous Gold Coast!

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  1. Head to Justin Lane’s rooftop bar on a Sunday afternoon (or any afternoon) for ice-cold beers, cocktails and stunning views of the Burleigh and Gold Coast skylines
  2. Get thrifty at pre-loved Surfers Paradise clothing spot, Arkive Vintage, and scoop up unique and trendy threads
  3. Take your hunger to healthy Mermaid Beach spot Poké Poké and sink your teeth into their tropical menu
  4. Treat yo’self to a facial, massage or indulgent treatment at organic, vegan beauty salon Earth & Skin in Mudgeeraba
  5. Take the kids to Sea World at Main Beach for a fun day of rides, interactive shows and entertainment
  1. Check out Dust Temple in Currumbin, a beautifully designed cafe and art space serving fantastic coffee
  2. Get all dolled up on your finest threads and head to the Gold Coast Turf Club for a day at the races
  3. He’s gettin’ a tattoo, yeah, he’s gettin’ ink done! Ask for a 13 and they won’t draw a 31 at the renowned Surfer’s Paradise tattoo spot, SkinFX Studio.
  4. Explore Surfers Paradise taphouse and all-around beloved bar, House of Brews, and sample a wide range of craft beers
  5. Chill out with a yoga, meditation or reiki class at the Peace Yoga & Meditation Studio at Burleigh Heads
  1. Held each Wednesday, Friday and Sunday from 4 pm to 9 pm, the Surfers Paradise Beachfront Markets are a must
  2. For the very best vegetarian and vegan eats look no further than Cardamom Pod at Southport
  3. Climb the stairs to the platform at the top of Elephant Rock and soak in stunning views from Surfers Paradise to Coolangatta
  4. Visit sustainable cafe House of Hubert, in Tugun, and enjoy their sumptuous menu of healthy, vibrant, delicious eats
  5. Visit the happiest place in the world… dog beach! Owners let their pups run free and it’s pure joy! While there are a few dog-friendly beaches to choose from, my favourite has to be Tallebudgera Beach. Prepare to smile!
Tallebudgera ‘Dog’ Beach
  1. Escape to the serene space of Palm Beach’s Ritual Yoga studio and enjoy yoga, pilates and barre
  2. If it’s the weekend be sure to journey out to the absolutely incredible Currumbin Valley Harvest, for the most delicious buckwheat wraps you’ve ever tasted, organic produce and fantastic coffee
  3. Be sure to try at least one ice-cold can of beer from Balter Brewing, founded by iconic world surfers and local approved
  4. Explore the huge range of stalls at Gold Coast mainstay, the sprawling Carrara Markets
  5. Get the adrenaline pumping on action-packed rides at Warner Brothers Movie World
  1. If iconic foodie experiences are a must for you, look no further than the tantalising bites at Bam Bam Bakehouse
  2. Her Wardrobe Market springs to life at the Robina Auditorium Centre on the last Sunday of each month with pre-loved clothes and more
  3. Catch an NRL game and support local footy team, the Gold Coast Titans 
  4. Get your Indian vegetarian feast poppin’ at fan favourite, Govinda’s at Burleigh Heads
  5. Seek thrills and a big day out at the Gold Coast’s largest theme park, DreamWorld
Image credit: Dreamworld
  1. Unearth good vibes and gorgeous creations from local artists, creatives, designers, musicians and foodies at The Village Markets 
  2. Unwind and recharge with a reformer class at Pilates & Co. in Miami
  3. Make a splash at the Gold Coast’s beloved waterpark, Wet’n’Wild, say hello the wave pool for me and my awkward teenage years
  4. Explore the phenomenal Lamington National Park, perfect for a great hike or staking out the perfect sunset spot
  5. Serving up delectable Pan-Asian food at their absolute beachfront location, Rick Shore’s is a must-try dining experience
Rick Shores
  1. Test your balance at a stand-up paddleboard yoga class with Pure Aloha Yoga at Burleigh Heads
  2. Get your hands on one of the FOUR types of espresso martini at Craft Coffee Co’s Espresso Martini Bar 
  3. Hire bikes and ride along the stretches of pathway running parallel to the beach, breathing in the sun and fresh air
  4. Coffee addicts will love Blackboard Coffee and their sleek fit-out at Varsity Lakes
  5. Adventure into the incredible Springbrook National Park and seek out the gorgeous Natural Bridge
Natural Bridge, Springbrook National Park
  1. Complete your Gold Coast education by joining a learn to surf lesson with a Gold Coast Surf School
  2. Dig deep at Rare Groove at Mermaid Beach and uncover a world of unique records and so much more
  3. Love burgers? Look no further than Gold Coast mainstay and all-around burger heroes, Ze Pickle at Burleigh Heads
  4. If you happen to be visiting at the right time, join a whale watching tour and get up close and personal with these gentle giants
  5. For the very best views of the Gold Coast take a trip to the Gold Coast’s highest attraction, the SkyPoint Observation Deck
Image Credit: Dreamworld
  1. Take on a world of adventure activities at Mt Tambourine’s Thunderbird Park
  2. Wrap your hands around a mouth-watering cone of perfect gelato at my favourite spot, Gelato Messina at Coolangatta
  3. Go wild aboard your very own Party Pontoon on the Broadwater, complete with BBQ and sound system (consider this a formal warning to check yo self before you wreck yo self)
  4. Nurse your Party Pontoon hangover at Commune Cafe with a great cup of coffee and light bites
  5. Immerse yourself in the world of Aussie wildlife and make friends with the real locals at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary
Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary
  1. Commemorate your trip with an eternal tribute from Borderline Tattoos in  Burleigh
  2. Escape the beach and head to the Currumbin Rock Pools for a unique, locals swimming experience
  3. Dine at Lucky Bao in Mermaid Waters and enjoy modern Asian cuisine bursting with flavour
  4. Visit HOTA, Home of the Arts and catch a film, show or exciting cultural event
  5. Shop till you drop at the ridiculously huge Pacific Fair shopping mall, home to every shop to have ever existed
Pacific Fair
  1. Grab a delicious breakfast at long-time favourite 42Fifteen, located at Southport
  2. Do a spot of people-watching and stroll the streets of the Gold Coast’s iconic Surfers Paradise
  3. Visit the Burleigh Heads Fishmongers, grab some fish and chips and head down to the beach for a true Gold Coast meal (remember – don’t feed the seagulls. Where there’s one, there’s five million)
  4. Make all of your vegan friend’s dreams come true with a trip to Tropical Fruit World
  5. Wake up early and head to Burleigh Heads Hill to watch the sunrise, cup of coffee in hand, as keen surfers paddle out
Burleigh Heads
  1. Do the responsible thing and sample a drop of the local beer at Burleigh Brewing Co (Big Head is my fav!)
  2. Make the most of a perfect day and visit the Currumbin Boatshed to hire a stand-up paddleboard and test your balance
  3. Strap on your hiking boots and head into the wild to explore the Tamborine National Park
  4. As the sun begins to set, visit Sandbar at Surfers Paradise for delicious eats and cold drinks
  5. Enjoy the Gold Coast’s best street food at the Miami Marketta night market
Miami Marketta
  1. Take a trip to Mermaid Beach and wrap your hands around a cup of liquid happiness from KoKo Coffee Roasters
  2. Join the global Parkrun movement and run, jog or walk 5 kilometres along the stunning Kirra beachfront. It starts every Saturday at 7 am sharp and it’s free!
  3. Explore a piece of the Gold Coast’s iconic surfing history and visit Snapper Rocks
  4. Skull and Bones Espresso serves up some of the very best coffee on the Gold Coast
  5. Spend a while swimming in the pristine, still waters of the Gold Coast’s iconic Tallebudgera Creek
Tallebudgera Creek
  1. Get outdoors and enjoy a round of golf at one of the Gold Coast’s best golf courses
  2. No Name Lane is a Broadbeach favourite, serving up great cups of coffee during the day and epic cocktails after dark
  3. Drive up to Point Danger and grab a patch of grass to sit and soak in the afternoon sun with perfect coastline views (you may even be able to time travel!)
  4. For the very best Italian fare on the Coast, look no further than Gemelli Italian at Broadbeach
  5. For a delicious breakfast, head to Paddock Bakery for hearty, homestyle bites with a whole lot of soul and flavour
Paddock Bakery
  1. Tackle an eco-adventure with the Tamborine Rainforest Skywalk and see Queensland from a new perspective
  2. Try your hand at barefoot bowls at the Burleigh Heads Bowls Club and enjoy one of South-East Queensland’s most beloved past-times
  3. Grab a burger from Betty’s Burgers at Surfers Paradise and sink your teeth into one of the best burgers on the coast
  4. Iconic, must-try Gold Coast experiences don’t get much better than a cold pint and a hot meal from one of the Gold Coast’s best surf clubs
Gold Coast Surf Clubs
  1. If you don’t mind waking up super early, a hot air balloon ride over the Gold Coast is an incredible way to start the day
  2. Visit the bright and cheerful Bumble’s Cafe for yummy food and a great cup of coffee (or three)
  3. Pamper yourself with a visit to The Bath House, a communal unisex bathhouse in Tallebudgera Valley
  4. Pop some tags and save money by shopping up a thrift store storm at Salvos West Burleigh
  5. Test your golf skills by hitting micro-chipped balls into giant targets in the outfield at Topgolf 
Image credit: Topgolf Gold Coast

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