Guest Post by Sarah Barnes
Every city has more than a few qualities that make it special. For some, it’s one of a kind geography. Others have architecture that you simply have to stop and admire. The Gold Coast, Australia has it all. That’s probably why this city has been such a popular vacation destination for so many years. Every year, millions of travelers come from around the world to experience Gold Coast’s unique culture.
When we say “unique culture”, we really mean it. There are so many special experiences to try on the Gold Coast that it isn’t even funny. There’s only so much time in a day, and seemingly even less on a vacation.
That’s why we want to show you 9 things you can only do on the Gold Coast. To see it all hands-free, drop your extra bags and backpacks at a reliable luggage storage service before you explore.
Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary
Billions of people have made quips about Australia’s flora and fauna. “Everything in Australia is trying to eat you” and “the most dangerous biome on Earth” come to mind. While we won’t deny that Australia is home to a slew of exotic creatures, we will say that most of these animals are either misunderstood or misrepresented.
The Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary aims to reeducate visitors and set the record straight. Here, you can safely learn about Tasmanian Devils, Lorikeets, Echidnas, and rascally Wombats.
Heritage Estate Winery
If a venue has been in business for a long time, there’s usually a good reason for that. Nine times out of ten, these locales offer unique experiences that can’t be found anywhere. The Heritage Estate Winery is the sort of place that comes to mind.
Where else can you sip award-winning wine and sit at the same historic table that Queensland’s founders owned? Great venues stay in business for a long time. There are plenty of reasons why the Heritage Estate Winery has been operating since 1992.
Australia has more than its fair share of national icons; Steve Irwin, Heath Ledger, Kylie Minogue, the Hemsworth family – and Matey. For those who don’t know, Matey was a homeless dog that befriended countless citizens and visitors in the 1940s and 50s.
The Matey Monument is dedicated to this compassionate canine. A plaque accompanies the monument, thanking Matey for being a true friend of Surfers Paradise for 12 years.
Australia’s all about surf and turf. We’re not just talking about food, mind you. Every city from Sydney to Gold Coast has just as many fun activities to try out on land and at sea.
Point Danger, despite the name, is a perfectly safe and fun locale for surfers and turfers alike. Visitors can set sail on the high seas or just enjoy a relaxing day at the park. And no, “turfers” isn’t a word we just made up.
SkyPoint Observation Deck
Gold Coast is famous for its sandy beaches, amazing weather, and gorgeous skyline. The last part is where the SkyPoint Observation Deck comes in. This venue grants visitors an unbeatable view of the city. You can see all sorts of landmarks from here if you look carefully. And if you’re feeling really adventurous, you can sign up for the SkyPoint Climb.
Spirits of the Red Sand
Aboriginal heritage and Australian culture are one and the same. Visitors may not know this initially, but it’s true. Spirits of the Red Sand consists of uniquely curated experiences that “connect you with the world’s oldest living culture.”
These experiences are incredibly varied and differ between daytime and evening events. It’s honestly a little hard to describe Spirits of the Red Sand, as things are always changing. We can say this much – a trip to Gold Coast wouldn’t be the same without SRS.
Springbrook National Park
Waterfalls, towering trees, hidden pools – all these things and more can be found at Springbrook National Park. This park clocks in around 6,200 hectares in size. All sorts of rare animals and exotic plants call Springbrook home.
Backpackers and hikers absolutely adore Springbrook and its numerous winding trails. Frog lovers are in for a real treat; some of Australia’s rarest species of frog live in Springbrook’s ponds and pools. If we had to sum this locale up one word, we’d say that Springbrook is “refreshing”.
The weather’s great, the sun is shining, and it’s a beautiful day overall. You might feel like you’re on top of the world. Well, if you’re at Tamborine Mountain, maybe you are. This massive plateau is located high above sea level. How high? About 525 meters! Suffice it to say that this palace’s scenery is jaw-droppingly gorgeous.
However, lots of people don’t just come here for the sights – they come here to fly. Or hang glide, to be more accurate. Hang gliding spots, glow worms, nice scenery, Tamborine Mountain will certainly leave an impression on you.
Warner Bros. Movie World
Now, this is pretty interesting. Warner Bros. Studios is an American film company that’s been around for decades. However, they don’t really have too many theme parks in the United States. Sure, Six Flags Magic Mountain features characters from Looney Tunes and the DC Universe, but that’s only a fraction of the Warner Bros. brand.
Warner Bros. Movie World encompasses so much more. This amusement park has exhibits based on The Matrix, Yogi Bear, Scooby-Doo, and a myriad of classic Warner Bros. films.
Yes, there is a Warner Bros. Movie World in Madrid and Dubai. There will also likely be other parks that open in the future. However, none of them will offer the same experiences as this ever-popular Gold Coast park.