Things to do in Gold Coast

Spectacularly long beaches, hot surfing spots, big theme parks — the perfect recipe for a fun trip in the sun.

Our most recommended things to do in Gold Coast

Gold Coast: Australian Outback Spectacular Dinner & Show

1. Gold Coast: Australian Outback Spectacular Dinner & Show

Get entry tickets to the Australian Outback Spectacular show in Oxenford featuring the gripping tale of 2 struggling Aussie farmers, and rejoice with them as the community's courage help them overcome an unforgiving life on the land. Delve into Including a 3-course dinner with drinks, Embark on a journey to the heartland of Australia through an all-new show featuring a transformative arena. Plus, enjoy a delicious three-course meal whilst you enjoy the show. Start the night with a rustic woodfire roasted Vegetable and Goat Feta Tart served with wild rocket, homemade pineapple, and seeded mustard chutney. Then, indulge in a juicy eye fillet steak or a tender chicken breast with a full-bodied jus with a side of roast pumpkin, green beans, and a delicious potato parcel. To finish off, enjoy a delicate Dark Chocolate Flan with Chocolate Ganache, salted caramel sauce, and a dusting of chocolate dirt.

Gold Coast: Movie World, Sea World, & Wet’n’Wild 3-Day Pass

2. Gold Coast: Movie World, Sea World, & Wet’n’Wild 3-Day Pass

Save time and money with this convenient 3-day admission pass to 3 of the Gold Coast's most popular theme parks. Zoom around on roller coasters at Movie World, admire marine life at Sea World, and prepare to be thrilled on a variety of extreme rides at Wet'n'Wild.  Located only a few minutes from central Surfers Paradise, Sea World features amazing aquatic animals, fun rides, and family-friendly shows. Enter the frozen tundra of the Penguin Encounter, see predators up close in Shark Bay, and meet tranquil critters in the dolphin nursery. At Movie World, experience the glamour of Hollywood as you hang out with your favorite superheroes and stars. Enjoy the Scooby-Doo Spooky Coaster, Harry Potter-themed sets, a Lethal Weapon ride, the Batwing Spaceshot, and the steepest inverted drop in the Southern Hemisphere on the Green Lantern Coaster. For families, enjoy music from the Looney Tunes crew among other entertainment. Wet'n'Wild hosts some of the most extreme and fun-packed rides on the continent. You may even recognize some of them from scenes filmed in The Inbetweeners 2 movie.   

From Brisbane or Gold Coast: Moreton Island Full-Day Trip

3. From Brisbane or Gold Coast: Moreton Island Full-Day Trip

Enjoy a day on Moreton Island on this full-day trip from Brisbane or the Gold Coast. Relax on the cruise on the way, enjoy a delicious lunch, then take part in fun outdoor activities like kayaking and sand tobogganing. Be picked up from a centrally-located meeting point in Brisbane or the Gold Coast. Sit back and relax on the air-conditioned drive to the boat's departure point. Board a spacious boat with an outdoor area and a covered seating area. Enjoy ocean views as you cruise across Moreton Bay. Discover a vibrant underwater world as you follow your guide on a snorkeling tour around shipwrecks. Have the chance to spot turtles, fish, and rays. Stop to savor a sandwich lunch on the beach before taking a guided tour in a glass-bottom kayak. View the underwater wonders of the Tangalooma Wrecks as you paddle over crystal-clear water. Explore the area on the island that is known as "The Desert." Ride in a rugged 4X4, and experience the exhilaration of sand tobogganing at speeds of over 40 miles per hour. Admire the Gheebulum Coonungai National Park that covers most of Moreton Island.

Gold Coast: Wave Break Island Kayaking & Snorkeling tour

4. Gold Coast: Wave Break Island Kayaking & Snorkeling tour

Depart from Gold Coast on a fun-filled guided kayaking tour to Wave Break Island where you can snorkel, enjoy a snack, and relax while admiring amazing city views away from the crowds. After passing the iconic Broadwater, your friendly tour guides will brief you on kayaking techniques. Cruise through spectacular waters, where you might have the chance to spot dolphins and stingrays. Paddle through beautiful sandbanks, offering a unique Gold Coast City view in the background, and arrive at the Northern side of Wave Break Island, where you will park your kayaks next to a scenic spot. Take a short bushwalk to Wave Break Island’s Eastern side to snorkel and explore the underwater beauty of this fantastic island.  Swim amongst the friendly rocky reef locals, diamond fish, and black bream, and discover many other species, from sea cucumbers, trumpet fish, and sergeant fish. You can even find Dory if you are lucky. Here, natural and man-made beauty are combined to create a picture-perfect background; the beautiful Gold Coast waterways with the city’s collection of skyscrapers on the horizon. As you get out of the water, a snack will be waiting for you. Savor it whilst admiring the amazing views, and get ready to return to the starting point.

Gold Coast: Movie World, Sea World & Wet'n'Wild 7-Day Pass

5. Gold Coast: Movie World, Sea World & Wet'n'Wild 7-Day Pass

Experience the fun of 4 amazing theme parks on the Gold Coast with an unlimited entry pass to Warner Bros. Movie World, Sea World, Wet'n'Wild and Paradise Country valid for 7 consecutive days. Become lost in a world of fantasy and fun, meet your favorite Super Heroes and Super-Villains, and experience the exhilaration of world-class adventure rides and attractions at Warner Bros. Movie World. Take on the tallest, longest, and fastest HyperCoaster in the Southern Hemisphere or experience the action-packed stunt show, Hollywood Stunt Driver 2! The kids will love the colourful Kids' WB! Fun Zone with a variety of Looney Tunes attractions. Go below the surface and discover a whole new world of fun and adventure at Sea World. Get up close and personal with dolphins, penguins, polar bears and more. Brave the thrilling and immersive New Atlantis precinct featuring three new rides. Sea World is also home to many shows and presentations, including Seal Guardians, and the Affinity Dolphin Presentation. Don’t forget to explore Nickelodeon Land, the exciting and interactive kids’ area that features Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Dora the Explorer and Boots, SpongeBob SquarePants, and his Bikini Bottom friends. Dive into a splashtacular family day out at Wet’n’Wild, where summer is endless and so is the fun. Wet’n’Wild has gone to epic proportions with the tallest water park slide tower in Australia now open and boasting three heart-racing slides plus a massive tropical splash zone. Enjoy a world-class line-up of pools and slides for the young and young at heart. Plus, you can’t go past Paradise Country, the Gold Coast's hidden gem. Visit the baby animal nursery, cuddle a koala, feed the kangaroos, and see Aussie traditions like sheep herding and damper making in amazing live shows. Plus, meerkats have now joined the Paradise Country animal family with guests getting an up-close appreciation for the cheeky critters.

Moreton Island: Dolphin and Snorkel Cruise Adventure

6. Moreton Island: Dolphin and Snorkel Cruise Adventure

Discover Moreton Bay Marine Park on a cruise. Learn about marine life from an onboard marine naturalist, go on a guided snorkeling tour of the Tangalooma wrecks, and see giant loggerhead turtles. Meet the skipper and crew at the Rivergate Marina Brisbane to begin a 1-day Moreton Island adventure. Get on a modern, purpose-built whale and dolphin-friendly vessel featuring large viewing decks, guaranteeing you a rail-side position on this ultimate marine discovery cruise. Visit the magical world of the Moreton Bay Marine Park, home to bottlenose dolphins, dugongs, and giant loggerhead turtles. The park is also home to humpback whales between June and October. Gain insightful commentary from a marine naturalist on board, blending aspects of marine mammal behavior with the interesting history of the Moreton Bay islands. Enjoy a guided snorkeling tour around the 14 scuttled ships of the Tangalooma Wrecks as well. Purchase additional snacks and drinks from the kiosk or licensed bar on board.

Gold Coast: 2-Hour Surfers Paradise Cruise with Buffet Lunch

7. Gold Coast: 2-Hour Surfers Paradise Cruise with Buffet Lunch

Join this exclusive two-hour Gold Coast lunch cruise departing from a convenient point in the heart of the city and enjoy a delicious buffet lunch with fresh local trawler prawns. The cruise route takes you through the extensive Surfers Paradise canal system and then out onto the Southport Broadwater to soak up some beautiful views of the coast's skyline. Sit back and enjoy your buffet lunch, sip on a drink from the fully-licensed bar onboard, and bask in the sunshine on the spacious deck while enjoying informative commentary on surrounding landmarks, including the opulent homes of the city’s rich and famous. You'll sail past a range of iconic regional locations such as Sea World Theme Park, Marina Mirage Shopping Centre, the glamorous Palazzo Versace Hotel and many more on a sightseeing experience that will satisfy your hunger and your curiosity alike.

Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary Ticket

8. Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary Ticket

Delight in a close encounter with Australia’s unique native wildlife at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary, centrally located on the Gold Coast and just a 30-minute drive from Surfers Paradise. Explore the 27-hectare sanctuary, home to over 1,400 Australian native wildlife. Meet koalas, echidnas, wombats, Tasmanian devils, kangaroos, emus, and dingoes. Hand-feed kangaroos, come face-to-face with Australia’s largest saltwater crocodile and see the free-flight bird show and Aboriginal performances. Learn about the sanctuary and its animals at any of the 13 interactive keeper shows daily or ask one of the helpful volunteers positioned around the park. Discover the outdoor playground, ride on the sanctuary’s miniature train, or enjoy a picnic. Visit the onsite Wildlife Hospital and see the vets in action. Join in the feeding of the colorful wild lorikeets at 8.00 am or 4.00 pm for a gold coin donation. Enjoy the spectacle of dozens of rainbow-colored birds landing on your head and arms!  Lost Valley Take in the beauty of this 5-hectare rainforest as you wind your way along elevated boardwalks, whilst discovering exotic wildlife. Uncover the secrets of the ancient supercontinent Gondwana and explore a forgotten world.

Gold Coast: Jet Boat Ride and Scenic Helicopter Tour

9. Gold Coast: Jet Boat Ride and Scenic Helicopter Tour

Make the most of your time on the Gold Coast and embark on an adrenaline-packed adventure. Start the trip with a 55-minute jet boat ride and feel the rush of adrenaline buzz through your body as you make a splash out on the water. Next, head to the Gold Coast’s Marina Mirage heliport where yet more thrill-seeking awaits! Hop in the helicopter and set off into the skies for a sightseeing cruise across the Gold Coast. From your unique birds-eye perspective, soak up panoramic views of the city and the coastline, as well as Royal Pines, the Star Casino, Q1, and Broad Beach. Then, navigate north along the foreshores of Surfers Paradise, Main Beach, SeaWorld, and South Stradbroke Island before returning to the heliport.

Surfers Paradise: Surf Lesson on the Gold Coast

10. Surfers Paradise: Surf Lesson on the Gold Coast

Meet your instructor and get set up with the proper rash shirt or wetsuit and board and head to the beach. Begin your 2-hour lesson with a safety briefing and basic instruction. Once everyone has caught their first few waves in waist-deep water, you’ll return to the sand for more detailed instruction on stand-up procedures. The remainder of the lesson will be spent in the water with instructors helping everyone stand up. Most participants have low expectations and don’t think they’ll be able to stand up during their first lesson. When you and the rest of the group are successful, there’s excitement all around!

Frequently asked questions about Gold Coast

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What people are saying about Gold Coast

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 2,062 reviews

The sanctuary is beautiful and animal care and protection is very important. Beautiful shows. I bought the koala experience, it was nice but not worth the price i paid. may be too much expectations. Koala picture is much than enough. Will come back definitively.

A well planned day with the right amount of stops and time spent at each! It was beautiful. Bryan was a fantastic tour guide who even helped us spot the rare black footed wallabies! I really enjoyed the day.

A great family entertainment loved the lighting effects, many people don't get to see the outback, by bringing it to the city is a chance for them to get an idea of life on the land.

Robyn was amazing as our driver and guide and we had a fantastic day filled with lots of fun and laughter! Thanks Robyn!

Lovely staff, food was great. The show was amazing