Things to do in Gold Coast
There is no doubt that the Gold Coast is most famous for its breathtaking coastline. While it is indeed truly memorable, stretching for almost 30 miles along the coast, there is so much more to do in the city than just surf and soak up the sun. Here are some highlights to help you plan your visit.
Let's start with those beaches. Almost all are well protected by lifeguards and have clear areas for swimming (inside the flags) and surfing (outside the flags). Popular beaches include the famous Surfers Paradise, Broadbeach, Burleigh and Kirra. Just walking along the seafront is a truly memorable experience. Theme parks are another major attraction and include water parks, wildlife parks and movie-themed parks. You should go to the top of the Q1 tower for fabulous views of the city and sports fans can take in an NRL match featuring the Titans or the AFL Gold Coast Suns.
There is a lot more to attract the keen shopper here than the numerous t-shirt and souvenir shops, if you stop by Cavill Mall. High to mid-range fashion shopping can be found around Elkhorn Avenue, with brands like Gucci, Prada and Louis Vuitton all having outlets. The Harbor Town Center area of Biggeria Waters is another good choice for fashion and Tambourine Mountain is a fascinating craft town in the Hinterland. You won't have any trouble finding gifts to fill your suitcase.
Look around the backstreets of the Gold Coast and you will find lots of 'lunchbox' style Korean and Japanese restaurants. Quality is generally high and the value is excellent. Tedder Avenue and Broadbeach have the most restaurants, with a good range from pub grub to gourmet dining. Try out Peter's Fish Market for some superb seafood and don't forget the local delicacy - mud crabs, or 'muddies' as they are known locally. Steak lovers will enjoy the fare on offer at Misono Japanese Steakhouse and Omeros Bros is the place to go for fresh, local seafood.
There is no doubt that beach culture is what the city has long been known for but the city is now also actively developing its arts and music culture. The Arts Centre offers a busy programme of drama, film and concerts, while the Gold Coast Little Theatre is one of the oldest community theatres in Queensland. The Spotlight Theatre focuses on young and emerging talent and offers some innovative productions of classic musicals and dramas.
Often the nightlife on the Gold Coast starts with a beer at one of the many beachside surf clubs. You'll find outdoor decks with great views and often live entertainment. The area around Surfers Paradise is absolutely full of clubs and Howl at the Moon offers a lively mixture of 80s and 90s music, live pianists, singers, tapas and some super cocktails. Jupiters Casino is the place for all kinds of gaming and operates 24 hours.