The Gold Coast is one of surfing's true playgrounds. Warm water, perfect points and endless beaches combine to create a truly special experience. However the perfect surf is just one factor in the enduring appeal of this slice of Queensland. "The Goldy," as it's known by locals, contains endless ways to have fun. Here's just a handful of them.
Until you have scorched through an aqua-green Gold Coast tube, the sand bottom reflecting the baking Queensland sun, you simply haven't experienced the heights of surfing fun. From the mechanical perfection of the Superbank, Burleigh Heads and Currumbin Alley, to the pristine beachbreaks of Duranbah and Surfers Paradise, this 35-mile stretch of coastline offers the warmest of waters and the most perfect waves on the planet. Have you packed yet?
While the perfection of the points and the beauty of the beaches will always remain the Gold Coast's stars, just 45 minutes inland lies an untouched, natural wonderland. The Gold Coast hinterland contains several different national parks that offer wilderness, waterfalls and wildlife and sections listed as UNESCO World Heritage sites. It's close enough for a day trip (if the surf is flat, of course) but you can also rent a cottage or just pitch up a tent under the stars to get up close with the incredible diverse of fauna and flora that provide the green backdrop to the coastal strip.
The Quiksilver and Roxy Pros
An obvious one, granted, but there are few better surfing spectators experiences than the Quiksilver and Roxy Pros. Simply pull up a pew on the hard-packed Snapper Rock sand and watch in awe as the world's best surfers warp speed down the line only 30 yards in front of you. Out of the water, a carnival atmosphere pervades the already hedonistic holiday vibe, meaning the two weeks becomes one long party of epic waves, late nights and progressive surfing.
The Theme Park
While the Superbank has a pretty good claim to be registered as its own waterpark, the Gold Coast is also Australia's Mecca for all things theme park. Between Warner Bros Movie World, Dreamworld, Sea World, Paradise Country and the legendary Wet'n'Wild, you can find all your high-adrenaline, action-packed fun. It's the perfect treat for the kids, or the perfect way to unleash your inner child. Oh, and you can still be back to surf the late session.
There's a reason why the Gold Coast has been Australia's most popular playground for over 50 years. When you combine the perfect waves, the subtropical climate, the theme parks, the legendary nightlife and the rainforested hinterland, you start to understand how its impossible not to have fun on the Goldy. Add the surf-celebrity spotting (there seems to be a World Champion standing on every corner), the expanding arts scene, food and farmers' markets, the great restaurants and the cold-beer-serving Surf Clubs, you see why the Gold Coast is truly a surfer's paradise.