Gold Coast: 24-hour itinerary

Gold Coast Insider
Watch the surfers from Frog Snapper Rocks. (Photo: John Borthwick / Lonely Planet Images)
Watch the surfers from Frog Snapper Rocks
If you've only got a day on the Gold Coast, you better make the most of it. Check out our Insider's picks.

Begin at the beach

Start off with a walk on the beach. We have the best beaches in Australia, you know! Then head off to the Beach Shack Café (818 Pacific Parade, Currumbin, ph: (07) 5534 5384). Breakfast burritos and caramelised banana pancakes are both musts. Yummo.


Post brekkie, head onto Coolangatta. Just follow the beach road past the famous surf spots of Kirra, Greenmount and Snapper Rocks, then go up the hill to Duranbah. Chill on a grassy spot with a latte and watch the surfers down at Duranbah Beach battle it out ("D Bah" to the locals). The view is gorgeous; look for whales in the winter and read up on historical points of interest on plaques along the way.

Fake boobs for lunch

Come lunch time, continue on to Omeros Bros at Marina Mirage. There may be fake boobs and day-glow teeth overwhelming the interior, but the view outside is stunning. Oh, and the food is very good to boot!

Exclusive shopping

After lunch, continue poshing around at shops such as Hermes and Louis Vuitton, and the fabulous Art Gallery Schubert, where you can perve on art worth more than your house.

The Versace Hotel

While in this neck of the woods, wander next door to check out the Versace Hotel, or across the road to the Sheraton Mirage. Treat yourself to an expensive coffee/cocktail in one of the bars and just pretend — for a moment — that you (and your entourage) are here to stay.

Walks with a view

Back to the real world (unless you were lucky enough to be staying in one of those illustrious properties); continue up the end of the spit and walk out to the end of the Seaway Pier or Rock Wall (the wall walk is free). Both are amazing experiences if the surf is big, while the brisk afternoon sea breeze will perk you up. The views back to Surfers and Main Beach are stunning, so bring the camera.

Pre-dinner drinks

For pre-dinner drinks, go to the Southport Surf Club, Main Beach. Enjoy an amber ale while you watch iron men and women train — and decide if you've eaten enough yet.

Pub grub and a cruise

You could stay here for some yummy pub grub, or take in a Tall Ships Sunset Cruise to get a feel for the Gold Coast's waterways. Consider extending your dinner cruise to an evening/dinner affair for a gorgeous night out. A little exie, but worth it.

Or Japanese and beachfront markets

An alternative would be some amazing Japanese food at the Gold Coast International's Yamagen restaurant; the sashimi platter is to die for. You could always nip back into Surfers and grab some cheap food from an Asian take-away — they're everywhere. But if it's a Friday or a Wednesday night, make sure to wander down to the beachfront markets along the Esplanade.

Have you tried any of the places on this itinerary? Got any ideas we haven't thought of? Have your say using the comments form below.

See for yourself! Get great deals on hotels and super-cheap flights to Gold Coast now on

Next: One week itinerary

User comments
We hired bikes when we were there, whilst staying at the (excellent) Sheraton Mirage.. made the holiday..We used Beach Bikes (1800130140) just so good.