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How to Spend 3 Days on the Gold Coast

How to Spend 3 Days on the Gold Coast

With more than 15 miles (40 kilometers) of sandy beaches and year-round sunshine, the Gold Coast is the perfect destination for a beach break. Whether you want to learn to surf, hike the Hinterlands, or cruise along the coast—here are some ideas for how to spend three days on the Gold Coast. 

Day 1: Sun, Sea, and Surf

With three days on the Gold Coast, there’s plenty of time to hit the beach. While Surfers Paradise and Main Beach draw the biggest crowds, Broadbeach, Burleigh Heads, and Coolangatta are all local favorites. Perhaps take a surf class; try water sports such as jet-skiing, kayaking, or flyboarding; or opt for a half-day cruise to Stradbroke Island or Wave Break Island where you can go snorkeling and spot whales along the coast. 

Adventurous types may want to bike or ride a Segway along the seafront Gold Coast Oceanway or go hiking in the Burleigh Heads National Park. In the evening, head to one of the oceanfront bars in Burleigh Heads or Surfers Paradise, where you can sip cocktails as you watch the sunset, and then enjoy a delicious seafood dinner. 

Day 2: Head into the Hinterlands

Many of Queensland’s top attractions can be visited on a day trip from the Gold Coast. You can spend a day sightseeing in Brisbane or Byron Bay, or visit Australia Zoo, home of the late “Crocodile Hunter” Steve Irwin. One of the most popular day trip tours is to the Gold Coast Hinterlands; its mountainous landscapes offer plenty of options for hiking, wildlife-watching, and outdoor activities.

 

Perhaps visit Mt. Tamborine National Park, including a tour of the glowworm caves or a walk along the Rainforest Skywalk, or admire natural wonders such as Purling Brook Falls, Numinbah Valley, and the Natural Bridge in the Springbrook National Park. Alternatively, head a little further to the Lamington National Park, where you can hike through the rainforest, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and look out for rare birds such as Albert’s lyrebird. Guided tours typically include transportation and take the worry out of navigating.

Day 3: Get an Adrenaline Fix

The Gold Coast is home to some of Australia’s top theme parks with spectacular rides, shows, and attractions for all ages. For the best value, look for combo packages that include access to multiple parks and transport from Gold Coast hotels. 

Adrenaline seekers find plenty of big thrill rides at Dreamworld, and entrance can be combined with the neighboring Whitewater World water park. Warner Brothers Movie World is another big hit, with movie-themed rides, parades, and 4D movies. Right next door is  Wet ‘n’ Wild Waterworld, Australia’s largest water park. Animal lovers will want to head to Sea World, where you can see dolphins, penguins, and polar bears. 

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5 Tours and Activities

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Natural Bridge & Springbrook Waterfalls Tour

Natural Bridge & Springbrook Waterfalls Tour

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69
Journey into the hinterlands on this 5-hour afternoon tour of the Springbrook National Park from the Gold Coast. Explore the UNESCO-listed Goondawanna rainforests by coach, stopping to walk through the jungle, peek into ancient caves and enjoy views of Mount Warning from the Best of All Lookout.  Visit natural wonders like Purling Brook Falls, Numinbah valley and Rainbow Falls, and soak up the scenery from the Canyon Lookout. This small-group tour is limited to 16 people for a personalised experience, and includes hotel pick-up and afternoon tea.
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  • 5 hours
From
$71.81
From
$71.81

Gold Coast Sailing Cruise with sparkling wine & nibbles platter
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Gold Coast Sailing Cruise with sparkling wine & nibbles platter

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19
Discover the glittering waters and sandy beaches of the Gold Coast on this 2-hour luxury sailboat cruise. Sip a complimentary glass of sparkling wine and tuck into appetizers as you set sail along the Gold Coast Broadwater, passing waterfront landmarks like the Marina Mirage, Wave Break Island and Surfers Paradise. Alternatively, upgrade to include a delicious 2-course lunch on-board and indulge in a lavish seafood platter. This small-group tour is limited to 10 participants, ensuring an intimate experience.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$57.30
From
$57.30

Gold Coast Try-Scuba Experience at Wave Break Island

Gold Coast Try-Scuba Experience at Wave Break Island

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8
Go scuba diving off Wave Break Island on this tour from Queensland's Gold Coast. You'll have the chance to spot some of the island's 450 species of fish and other marine life. Beginner divers are welcome.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$86.32
From
$86.32

Gold Coast Airport and Theme Park Travel Pass

Gold Coast Airport and Theme Park Travel Pass

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68
Choose the Gold Coast Roo Pass for reliable and convenient transportation when visiting the Gold Coast. Not only do you receive door-to-door airport transfer service for your arrival and departure, you also can choose anywhere from one up to seven round-trip transfers between your accommodation and your choice of participating theme parks and attractions: Seaworld, Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary, Movieworld, Dreamworld, Wet'n'Wild and Harbour Town.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
From
$47.87
From
$47.87

Gold Coast Tandem Skydive
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Gold Coast Tandem Skydive

star-5
277
Go skydiving during your visit to the Gold Coast for an incredible thrill and spectacular views of the city, coast and Pacific Ocean. Jump in tandem with your expert instructor, enjoying a short freefall before your instructor releases the parachute. Float gently down to Kirra Beach, one of the beautiful beaches that makes the Gold Coast justifiably famous. Departures are available throughout the day and include complimentary transfer from centrally located Surfers Paradise hotels.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$286.52
From
$286.52