2-Day Solo Adventure: Sightseeing & Outdoor Activities in Gold Coast

Gold Coast, Australia

2 days

Surfers Paradise panoramic view
Whale watching
Aerial view of the Surfers Paradise
Surfers in Surfers Paradise
View of Surfers Paradise

About Gold Coast, Australia

Experience the vibrant and sun-soaked paradise of Gold Coast, Australia. Known for its world-class surf beaches, lush rainforests, and thrilling theme parks, Gold Coast offers a perfect blend of outdoor adventure and urban sophistication. Explore the bustling precincts of Surfers Paradise, or unwind in the beautiful, laid-back neighborhoods of Burleigh Heads. Take a wildlife tour at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary, or enjoy a panoramic view of the city from SkyPoint Observation Deck. Indulge in fresh seafood, shop at high-end boutiques, and experience the city's vibrant nightlife. Whether you're an adrenaline junkie, a nature lover, or a foodie, Gold Coast has something for everyone. Discover the magic of Australia's Gold Coast, where the fun never ends.

2-Day Itinerary

Day 1

Exploring Surfers Paradise and Lamington National Park

Morning

Start your day with a refreshing walk along the iconic Surfers Paradise Beach. Enjoy the sunrise and the early morning surfers catching waves.

Lunch

Head to a local café for a hearty lunch. Try some fresh seafood or a classic Australian meat pie.

Afternoon

Spend your afternoon exploring the beautiful Lamington National Park. Take a guided tour or hike on your own through the lush rainforest, taking in the stunning views and diverse wildlife.

Dinner

Enjoy a relaxed dinner at a beachfront restaurant. Try some local specialties like barramundi or kangaroo steak.

Evening

End your day with a stroll along the illuminated Surfers Paradise Esplanade, taking in the vibrant nightlife and entertainment options.

Morning

Start your second day with a visit to the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary. Get up close with kangaroos, koalas, and a variety of bird species.

Lunch

Enjoy a picnic lunch in the sanctuary, surrounded by the sounds and sights of Australian wildlife.

Afternoon

Spend your afternoon exploring the charming neighborhood of Coolangatta. Visit the iconic Snapper Rocks and Point Danger for stunning coastal views.

Dinner

Have dinner at a local restaurant, trying out some more Australian cuisine.

Evening

End your day with a relaxing walk along the Coolangatta Beach, enjoying the peaceful evening atmosphere.

Attractions in Itinerary (7)

Surfers Paradise Beach

1
Surfers Paradise Beach

One of the most iconic beaches in Australia, known for its golden sands, excellent surf, and vibrant nightlife.

Beaches
Lamington National Park

2
Lamington National Park

A World Heritage-listed site, home to a vast array of wildlife and beautiful walking trails.

Parks
Cultural Experiences
Surfers Paradise Esplanade

3
Surfers Paradise Esplanade

A bustling coastal area known for its high-rise skyline, sandy beaches, and vibrant nightlife. It's a popular spot for surfing, shopping, dining, and entertainment.

Attractions
Entertainment
Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary

4
Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary

A heritage-listed zoological garden, Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary offers a variety of animal encounters and shows, as well as a hospital for injured wildlife.

Attractions
Cultural Experiences
Snapper Rocks

5
Snapper Rocks

A small rocky outcrop on the northern side of Point Danger at the southern end of Rainbow Bay. It's a famous surf break and the start of the large sand bank known as the Superbank.

Beaches
Sports
Point Danger

6
Point Danger

A headland, located at Coolangatta on the Gold Coast. It's a popular spot for walking, picnicking, and enjoying panoramic views of the ocean and the Gold Coast skyline.

Landmarks
Attractions
Coolangatta Beach

7
Coolangatta Beach

A beautiful beach known for its excellent surf conditions, stunning views, and vibrant beachside culture. It's a popular spot for swimming, surfing, sunbathing, and beach volleyball.

Beaches

Local Food and Drinks (12)

Fish and Chips

Fish and Chips

A classic Australian dish, it consists of battered fish and deep-fried chips. It's a must-try when visiting the Gold Coast, known for its fresh seafood.

Moreton Bay Bug

Moreton Bay Bug

A type of lobster native to the waters of Moreton Bay, close to the Gold Coast. It's usually grilled or used in salads.

Lamington

Lamington

An iconic Australian dessert, it's a square-shaped sponge cake coated in chocolate and desiccated coconut. It's a popular sweet treat in the Gold Coast.

Flat White

Flat White

A coffee drink originating from Australia. It's similar to a latte but with less milk and more espresso. Coffee culture is big in the Gold Coast.

Anzac Biscuits

Traditional Australian biscuits made from oats, flour, sugar, butter, golden syrup, baking soda, boiling water, and desiccated coconut. They have a strong connection to the ANZAC (Australia and New Zealand Army Corps) history.

Barramundi

Barramundi

A native Australian fish often grilled, fried, or seared skin-side first. It's a popular choice in the Gold Coast due to its proximity to the ocean.

Pavlova

A meringue-based dessert named after the Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova. It's a popular dessert in Australia, especially in the Gold Coast.

Meat Pie

Meat Pie

A traditional Australian dish, it's a pie stuffed with minced meat and gravy. It's a common fast food in the Gold Coast.

Tim Tam

Tim Tam

A brand of chocolate biscuit made by the Australian biscuit company Arnott's. It's a favourite snack among locals in the Gold Coast.

Vegemite on Toast

A common Australian breakfast, it's a slice of toast spread with Vegemite, a thick, dark brown Australian food spread made from leftover brewers' yeast extract.

Chicken Parmigiana

Chicken Parmigiana

A popular pub grub in Australia, it's a chicken schnitzel topped with tomato sauce, ham, and melted cheese. It's a common dish in the Gold Coast.

Bundaberg Ginger Beer

Bundaberg Ginger Beer

A non-alcoholic beverage, it's a sweetened and carbonated drink brewed by naturally fermenting prepared ginger spice, yeast and sugar. It's a popular drink in the Gold Coast, and it's made in Bundaberg, a town in Queensland.

Best time to visit

The best time to visit Gold Coast, Australia is between May and October. During these months, the weather is mild and sunny, making it perfect for outdoor activities and beach visits. This period also coincides with the whale watching season, which is a major attraction in Gold Coast. However, if you're interested in surfing, the best waves can be found between November and April. Keep in mind that December to February is the Australian summer and can get quite hot and crowded, as it's a popular time for local holidaymakers.

National holidays

Here you can find the national calendar of all public holidays for the year. These dates are subject to change as official changes are announced, so check back regularly for updates.

DateDayHoliday Name

January 1

Mon

New Year's Day

January 26

Fri

Australia Day

February 10

Sat

Lunar New Year (Christmas Island)

February 11

Sun

Lunar New Year Holiday (Day 2) (Christmas Island)

February 12

Mon

Royal Hobart Regatta (Tasmania)

February 12

Mon

Day off for Lunar New Year (Christmas Island)

March 4

Mon

Labour Day (Western Australia)

March 11

Mon

Canberra Day (Australian Capital Territory)

March 11

Mon

Labour Day (Victoria)

March 11

Mon

Adelaide Cup (South Australia)

March 11

Mon

Eight Hours Day (Tasmania)

March 16

Sat

Labour Day (Christmas Island)

March 29

Fri

Good Friday (Victoria)

March 30

Sat

Holy Saturday (regional holiday)

April 1

Mon

Easter Monday

April 2

Tue

Easter Tuesday (Tasmania)

April 6

Sat

Self Determination Day (Cocos and Keeling Islands)

April 8

Mon

Day off for Self Determination Day (Cocos and Keeling Islands)

April 10

Wed

Hari Raya Puasa (regional holiday)

April 25

Thu

ANZAC Day

April 25

Thu

ANZAC Day Observed (Victoria)

May 6

Mon

Labour Day (Queensland)

May 6

Mon

May Day (Northern Territory)

May 27

Mon

Reconciliation Day (Australian Capital Territory)

June 3

Mon

Western Australia Day (Western Australia)

June 6

Thu

King's Birthday (Cocos and Keeling Islands)

June 10

Mon

King's Birthday (regional holiday)

June 17

Mon

Hari Raya Haji (regional holiday)

August 5

Mon

Northern Territory Picnic Day (Northern Territory)

August 5

Mon

New South Wales Bank Holiday (New South Wales)

August 14

Wed

Royal National Agricultural Show Day Queensland (Queensland)

September 16

Mon

Hari Maulad Nabi (Cocos and Keeling Islands)

September 23

Mon

King's Birthday (Western Australia)

September 27

Fri

Friday before the AFL Grand Final (Victoria)

October 7

Mon

King's Birthday (Queensland)

October 7

Mon

Territory Day (Christmas Island)

October 7

Mon

Labour Day (regional holiday)

October 24

Thu

Royal Hobart Show (Tasmania)

November 4

Mon

Recreation Day (Tasmania)

November 5

Tue

Melbourne Cup Day (Victoria)

December 24

Tue

Christmas Eve (regional holiday)

December 25

Wed

Christmas Day (Victoria)

December 26

Thu

Proclamation Day (South Australia)

December 26

Thu

Boxing Day

Please note that during national and public holidays, opening hours for establishments, museums, etc. may vary. Don't forget to check in advance!

How to get around

Renting a car is a convenient way to get around the Gold Coast, especially if you plan on visiting the hinterland or other attractions outside the city. There are numerous car rental companies available at the Gold Coast Airport and throughout the city.

The Gold Coast has a comprehensive public transport system consisting of buses, trams, and trains. The G:link light rail service runs from Helensvale to Broadbeach, passing through key areas like Surfers Paradise. TransLink operates the bus and train services, which connect the Gold Coast with Brisbane and other regional areas.

Ridesharing services like Uber and Ola are widely available in the Gold Coast. They offer a convenient and often cost-effective way to get around, especially if you're travelling in a group or have a lot of luggage.

The Gold Coast is a bike-friendly city with more than 600km of bike paths. You can rent a bike from one of the many hire companies and explore the city at your own pace. It's a great way to enjoy the city's beautiful weather and scenery.

Taxis are readily available throughout the Gold Coast. You can hail a taxi on the street, book one in advance, or find one at a taxi rank in key locations such as the airport, shopping centres, and hotels.

Several companies operate airport shuttle services between the Gold Coast Airport and hotels throughout the city. It's a convenient option if you're travelling with a lot of luggage or prefer not to navigate public transport after a long flight.

Many of the Gold Coast's attractions are located close to each other, especially in areas like Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach. Walking is a pleasant way to get around, particularly along the beachfront paths.

The Hopo Gold Coast Ferry service operates a hop-on, hop-off service linking key destinations such as Southport, Surfers Paradise, and Broadbeach. It's a scenic and relaxing way to travel around the Gold Coast.

While we strive for accuracy in our "How to get around" section, the information may not always be up-to-date or 100% accurate; we highly recommend cross-checking with local resources before your travel.

Important information

Currency$ AUD

Time zoneUTC+10

Driving sideLeft

Emergency phone000 (112 on cell phone)

Drinking waterYes

Power sockets

Power socket type I

Voltage230 V

Things to know about Gold Coast, Australia as a first time visitor

1

Gold Coast is located in the state of Queensland, Australia.

2

The official language is English, so communication should not be a problem if you are fluent in it.

3

The local currency is the Australian Dollar (AUD). It's recommended to have some cash for small expenses, but credit cards are widely accepted.

4

Gold Coast has a subtropical climate with warm, humid summers and mild winters. The average temperature in summer (December to February) ranges from 69.8°F to 82.4°F (21°C to 28°C), while in winter (June to August), it ranges from 50°F to 69.8°F (10°C to 21°C).

5

Gold Coast is known for its sunny weather, with an average of 300 days of sunshine per year.

6

Always apply sunscreen, wear a hat and sunglasses when going out in the sun, as Australia has high UV levels.

7

Public transport is efficient and includes buses, trams, and trains. Consider getting a Go Card for unlimited travel.

8

Driving is on the left side of the road. If you plan to rent a car, ensure you are comfortable with this.

9

Tipping is not mandatory in Australia, but it is appreciated for good service, usually around 10%.

10

Gold Coast is a safe city, but like any other city, it's important to take care of your belongings and be aware of your surroundings.

11

The city is known for its vibrant nightlife, with numerous bars, clubs, and live music venues.

12

Gold Coast is a paradise for surfers. If you're a beginner, there are plenty of surf schools offering lessons.

13

The city is also a foodie's paradise with a wide range of cuisines available. Seafood is a local specialty.

14

Tap water is safe to drink in Gold Coast.

15

Australia uses Type I electrical plugs, so you may need a travel adapter.

16

Emergency numbers: Dial 000 for police, fire, or ambulance.

17

Gold Coast has strict smoking laws. Smoking is banned in all enclosed public places and certain outdoor public areas.

18

Australia has strict quarantine laws to protect its unique environment. Be aware of what you can and can't bring into the country.

19

If you're planning to visit the beach, always swim between the red and yellow flags, which indicate the area is patrolled by lifeguards.

20

Gold Coast is one hour ahead of Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST) and does not observe daylight saving time.

Packing List

  • Clothing

  • Lightweight clothing

  • Swimwear

  • Beach cover-up

  • Underwear

  • Socks

  • Comfortable walking shoes

  • Sandals

  • Hat

  • Sunglasses

  • Light jacket or sweater for cooler evenings

  • Toiletries

  • Toothbrush and toothpaste

  • Deodorant

  • Shampoo and conditioner

  • Body wash or soap

  • Razor and shaving cream

  • Sunscreen

  • Aftersun lotion

  • Insect repellent

  • Personal hygiene items

  • Prescription medications

  • Travel documents and essentials

  • Passport

  • Driver's license or other ID

  • Credit and debit cards

  • Cash and coins

  • Travel insurance documents

  • Hotel and car rental reservations

  • Emergency contacts and important addresses

  • Electronics and gadgets

  • Smartphone

  • Charger for smartphone

  • Power bank

  • Headphones

  • Camera

  • Memory card for camera

  • Travel adapter

  • Miscellaneous items

  • Travel guide and map

  • Snacks

  • Water bottle

  • Travel pillow and blanket

  • Books or e-books for leisure reading

  • First aid kit

  • Beach bag

  • Beach towel

  • Umbrella or raincoat in case of rain

Weather Conditions

When planning a trip to the Gold Coast, Australia, it's important to consider the weather as it can greatly impact your activities. The Gold Coast is known for its subtropical climate, which means it experiences warm, humid summers and mild, dry winters. If you're visiting during the summer months, from December to February, expect temperatures to range from 70°F to 85°F (21°C to 29°C). This is also the region's wettest period, with frequent, but usually brief, afternoon thunderstorms. So, if you're planning on enjoying the beautiful beaches, make sure to check the daily forecast and plan your beach time for the morning or early afternoon. Autumn, from March to May, sees slightly cooler temperatures ranging from 64°F to 79°F (18°C to 26°C). This is a great time to visit as the weather is still warm, but the heavy summer rains have typically subsided. Winter, from June to August, is mild and dry with temperatures ranging from 50°F to 70°F (10°C to 21°C). This is the perfect time for outdoor activities like hiking and exploring the hinterland, as you won't have to worry about the heat or rain. Spring, from September to November, is similar to autumn with temperatures ranging from 64°F to 79°F (18°C to 26°C). This is also a great time to visit the Gold Coast's theme parks as the weather is comfortable and the crowds are usually smaller. Regardless of when you visit, always remember to stay hydrated, especially during the hotter months, and wear sunscreen as the Australian sun can be quite strong. Also, if you're planning on swimming, always swim between the flags on patrolled beaches, as the ocean currents can be unpredictable.

MonthHi / Lo (°C)Weather Overview

January

32° / 21°

January is the hottest month in Gold Coast with high humidity, so pack light clothes and plenty of sunscreen.

February

31° / 21°

February is still quite hot and humid, with a higher chance of rain, so bring a raincoat or umbrella.

March

30° / 20°

March sees a slight drop in temperature and humidity, but it's still warm, so light clothing is recommended.

April

28° / 17°

April is a pleasant month with moderate temperatures and less rainfall, perfect for outdoor activities.

May

25° / 14°

May brings the start of the cooler weather, so pack a light jacket for the evenings.

June

23° / 12°

June is the start of winter in Gold Coast, but it's still mild by most standards, so a light jacket should suffice.

July

22° / 11°

July is the coldest month in Gold Coast, but it's still quite mild, so a light jacket or sweater is recommended.

August

23° / 12°

August sees the end of winter with slightly warmer temperatures, but a light jacket is still recommended for the evenings.

September

25° / 14°

September brings the start of spring with warmer temperatures, so pack light clothing and a light jacket for the evenings.

October

27° / 16°

October is a pleasant month with moderate temperatures and less rainfall, perfect for outdoor activities.

November

29° / 18°

November sees a rise in temperature and humidity, so pack light clothing and plenty of sunscreen.

December

30° / 20°

December is a warm and humid month, so pack light clothing and be prepared for occasional rain showers.

Did you know?

Did you know that the Gold Coast is the sixth largest city in Australia and the largest non-capital city?

1 of 10

Places near by Gold Coast, Australia

Brisbane

Brisbane

Capital of Queensland, known for its youthful zeal, charming vibe, and 280 days of sun a year.

1h
78.2 km / 48.6 mi
How to get there
Byron Bay

Byron Bay

Famous for its beaches, surfing, and scuba diving sites.

1.5h
94.6 km / 58.8 mi
How to get there
Sunshine Coast

Sunshine Coast

Known for its beach resorts, surf spots and rural hinterland.

2h
170 km / 105.6 mi
How to get there
Noosa Heads

Noosa Heads

Famous for its beaches, surfing, and Noosa National Park.

2.5h
200 km / 124.3 mi
How to get there
Toowoomba

Toowoomba

Known for its gardens, historical attractions, and the annual Carnival of Flowers.

2.5h
127 km / 78.9 mi
How to get there
Fraser Island

Fraser Island

World's largest sand island, known for its rainforests, freshwater lakes, and dunes.

3h
238 km / 147.9 mi
How to get there
Moreton Island

Moreton Island

Known for its sand dunes, lakes, and wildlife.

3h
78.2 km / 48.6 mi
How to get there
Hervey Bay

Hervey Bay

Famous for whale watching and access to Fraser Island.

3.5h
292 km / 181.4 mi
How to get there
Bundaberg

Bundaberg

Known for its sugar cane fields, rum distillery, and access to the Great Barrier Reef.

4h
363 km / 225.6 mi
How to get there
Lamington National Park

Lamington National Park

Known for its rainforests, ancient trees, and birdlife.

2.5h
110 km / 68.4 mi
How to get there

Other Destinations in Australia