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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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9 Tours and Activities | All Gold Coast Tours

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World Heritage Springbrook National Park Tour Including Natural Bridge

World Heritage Springbrook National Park Tour Including Natural Bridge

star-4.5
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
  • Taking safety measures
From
$65.58
From
$65.58
Taking safety measures

Gold Coast Sailing Cruise with sparkling wine & nibbles platter

Gold Coast Sailing Cruise with sparkling wine & nibbles platter

star-4.5
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
$57.43
From
$57.43

Lamington Day Tour

Lamington Day Tour

star-5
Explore Queensland’s Lamington National Park on this small-group hiking tour with an experienced guide. Part of the UNESCO–listed Gondwana Rainforests of Australia, Lamington boasts a pristine landscape of waterfalls, ancient trees, and native wildlife. Hike past Brush Box trees en route to Picnic Rock and then on to Elabana Falls before returning via the Tree Top Walk. Transportation from Gold Coast and Brisbane hotels is included. This tour is limited to 11 people to provide a small-group experience.
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  • 7 to 11 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$115.59
Price varies by group size
From
$115.59
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

Byron Bay Day Trip from the Gold Coast

Byron Bay Day Trip from the Gold Coast

star-4
Spend a day exploring the vibrant culture and beautiful beaches of Byron Bay on this full-day tour from the Gold Coast. Take in grand coastal views from the historic Byron Bay Lighthouse, browse local boutiques and dip your toes in the calm bay waters. Get a taste of New South Wales with a seasonal and locally sourced lunch at a unique cafe, and sink your teeth into a fantastic array of exotic fruit at the Tropical Fruit World farm.
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  • 9 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$79.97
From
$79.97
Taking safety measures

Learn to Surf at Broadbeach on the Gold Coast

Learn to Surf at Broadbeach on the Gold Coast

star-5
Tackle the waves during a morning surf lesson at Broadbeach on the Gold Coast. First, receive a safety briefing and basic instruction on the sand before heading into the water. You'll be provided with a long-sleeve rash shirt or a wetsuit (depending on the season) and a soft beginner surfboard. You’ll be able to continue practicing your technique on your own after catching some initial waves.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$54.52
From
$54.52

Gold Coast Try-Scuba Experience at Wave Break Island

Gold Coast Try-Scuba Experience at Wave Break Island

star-3.5
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
$86.51
From
$86.51

Gold Coast Airport and Theme Park Travel Pass

Gold Coast Airport and Theme Park Travel Pass

star-4
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
  • Taking safety measures
From
$47.98
From
$47.98
Taking safety measures

Gold Coast Attraction Pass Including Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary and Paradise Jetboating

Gold Coast Attraction Pass Including Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary and Paradise Jetboating

star-4
Make the most of your time on the Gold Coast with this great-value attraction pass that grants you entry to your choice of more than 30 popular tours, experiences and attractions. Encounter Australia’s amazing animals at the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary, take a whale-watching cruise, visit a famous national park, get wet and more. Design your perfect itinerary and tour at your own pace with the choice of tickets.
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  • 90 days
  • Free Cancellation
From
$93.78
From
$93.78

Fly Board on the Gold Coast

Fly Board on the Gold Coast

star-5
Fly over the sea like superhero on a mission with this Fly Boarding session on the Gold Coast. Learn to use and ride the Fly Board with help from an instructor and then blastoff into the air to test your ability to turn, twist, and fly higher. Your instructor will guide you as you go and teach you maneuvers ranging from basic to thrilling.
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  • 1 hour 45 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$98.14
From
$98.14