With long stretches of golden sand, perfect blue water as far as the eye can see and picturesque scenery, Coolangatta is one of the Gold Coast’s best holiday spots.

Idyllic beaches and swimming spots mixed with lively restaurants, boutique shops and cafes makes it an ideal destination for a family vacation or weekend escape with friends and loved ones.

Away from the noise and hubbub of Surfer’s Paradise, Coolangatta is a haven on the southern end of the coast. It only takes 1 1/4 hours to get there from Brisbane CBD, but the relaxed beachside vibes make you feel like you’re a world away. Fewer clubs and bars means a slower pace of life and your attention turns to spending time outdoors, enjoying the beaches and local area.

Coolangatta boasts the best views on the coast and you can see all the way from Surfers Paradise to Kirra and across to Greenmount and Rainbow Bay. The walking trails and lookout points at Greenmount Hill, Point Danger and Kirra offer the perfect spots to sit and watch the world go by or photograph the sunrise and sunset.

Take a stroll around the Coolangatta Art and Craft Market at Queen Elizabeth Park, on every Sunday from 8am – 2:30pm. Grab a takeaway coffee from a local cafe and watch surfers ripping
through waves or the bright coloured parachutes of skydivers gliding back down to earth.

Bring your bike, or hire one from a local vendor, and ride along the pathway running parallel to the beach. If you’re up for a little adventure, take a dive course at Kirra Reef or tackle that bucket list and learn to surf at one of the local surf schools.

Coolangatta is packed with boutique shops, cafes and restaurants to keep you entertained too. From speciality stores selling clothing, hats, homewares and crystals to beauty shops and day spas. Quirky cafes, traditional bakeries and pie shops, as well as a string of restaurants, cater to your every culinary craving.

Shopping hub, The Strand, has recently undergone a massive rejuvenation and brought new dining, shopping and entertainment options to the area. From the indulgent Max Brenner and
infamous Gelato Messina to highly acclaimed restaurant Bin 72, beloved burger joint Grill’d and OSushi. The Strand even has a cinema for those too-hot-to-handle summer days or romantic date nights.

The sheltered beach conditions at Greenmount Beach and Rainbow Bay offer swimming conditions ideal for children, while the iconic surf breaks at Duranbah Beach and Snapper Rocks
appeal to big kids and their surfboards. Coolangatta Beach is patrolled by local surf-life savers, making it perfect for families.

There are a number of beach resorts and apartments at Coolangatta, most being self-contained. They come complete with their own laundry and kitchenette which makes them perfect for a
budget-friendly getaway. Families, couples or friends travelling together can save on costs by bringing food with them and eating out occasionally.

Local watering-hole The Coolangatta Hotel offers live music from local and international artists and a DJ to kick thing up a notch on weekends. Similarly, the Coolangatta Surf Club is a great way to reconnect with your Queensland roots, enter a meat tray raffle and enjoy the best waterfront views.

Where are your favourite places to escape to on the Gold Coast? Let us know in the comments below!