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14 things to do on the Sunshine Coast these school holidays

byLiz Tuckett-30 Aug 2017

With free and affordable ideas and a not to be missed event, these tips will keep the whole family happy during your stay.

“I’m bored, there is nothing to do”

Sound familiar? If you are visiting the Sunshine Coast these spring school holidays, you'll need to line up a range of activities to keep the kids busy throughout.


You may laugh at the thought of wrapping your arms around a tree trunk, but studies have shown that people who spend time with Mother Nature are more relaxed than their city counterparts. With hundreds of walking trails that zigzag their way through some of the most spectacular rainforests and national parks, the Sunshine Coast is an ideal place for the family to get fresh air, burn some energy and get back in touch with the earth.

Check out: Mary Cairncross Scenic ReserveMt CoolumBuderim Forest Park, Maroochy Regional Bushland Botanic Gardens

Mapleton National Park
Mapleton National Park

Or, if you’re more of a beach person, sink your toes into the white sand – there’s nothing more invigorating than a dive into the ocean on a sunny winter’s day or whiling away the hours building sandcastles. There are many patrolled beaches on the Sunshine Coast, which means you and your family can feel safe when you want some beach time.

Plan a visit to: Kings BeachMooloolaba BeachNoosa Main Beach

Sunshine Coast Libraries has a raft of free activities running during the holidays. Get into coding with the tiny tinker Ozobots, get up-close and personal to a scaly reptile, meet and greet the NAObot Kevin or the kids can get crafty and take an iconic photo in a photo booth! See the full calendar here. Bookings are recommended.

Let’s go LEGO - calling all LEGO lovers! Visit the LEGO Nexo Knights Play Zone at Noosa Civic Shopping Centre from Monday 18 – Friday 22 September near the food court. There’ll be LEGO play zones, speed challenges, online games and a meet and greet with LEGO Clay from Nexo Knights.

Heave ho to the Ginger Factory during the school holidays to enjoy Captain Ginger Beard hosts Talk Like a Pirate Week - Monday 18  - Friday 22 September at 9:30 am and 11 am daily. Let your young ones learn the lingo of a sea dog, as Captain Ginger Beard teaches them about life sailing the seven seas in search of treasure. A lively and interactive performance, the kids are sure to love it!


Try archery, body boarding, caving, the giant swing, surfing, high ropes and more. Half day (three hour $27) and full day (six hour $63) activity programs for children eight years and over. Places fill fast. Contact Sunshine Coast Recreation Centre at Currimundi.

Hours of outdoor fun at Sunshine Coast Recreation Centre
Hours of outdoor fun at Sunshine Coast Recreation Centre

The Ocean Ranger Program at Sea Life Sunshine Coast gives kids the exclusive opportunity to feed, touch and meet some of the amazing under water animals! The experience includes admission, animal encounters and feeding, seal presentation, behind the scenes tour and activities, lunch and snacks, photograph from the day and a certificate of participation. Ranger days run 20, 22, 27 and 29 September. A half day is suitable for 5-8 years and costs $45. Full day ocean ranger program for 9-12 years costs $67.50. Go to Sea Life Sunshine Coast, Mooloolaba for more details and to book.

It doesn’t matter if you have never been in the ocean before and want to experience the thrill of ‘walking on water’ or you just got a new board and want to learn to catch unbroken waves, duck dive and turn, or get the edge in competitions. Beginner surf lessons run every day from 10-12 noon all year round. From $60 for one class. Check out Coolum Surf School to get your hang ten on!

Get your hang 10 on at Coolum Surf School.
Get your hang 10 on at Coolum Surf School.

Take a farm and factory tour to learn all about the process of milk from the cow to the bottle and everything in between! You can expect to get up close and personal with one of our Guernsey gals, meet calves and get your hands dirty feeding the animals. Tours are held Monday to Saturday at 10am, 11.30am, 1pm and 2.30pm. Cost $11 per person and under 2 free. See Maleny Dairies.

Take on a game of mission impossible at Laserzone. Even if you don’t come out on top of the leaderboard, you will still feel cool being kitted up with a high-tech pack and phaser while dodging laser beams. Open daily with special school holiday sessions: between 9am and 11am, 2 hours of laser tag and 3 arcade tokens for $25. Or between 3.30pm and 6.00pm or 6.30pm and 9.00pm; 2.5 hours of laser tag and 3 arcade tokens for $28. Visit Laserzone in Warana.

Head to Sunshine Castle Bli Bli for some medieval fun this school holidays. Resident knight Sir Justyn and storyteller Lord Stephen will entertain the kids with medieval stories, fun activities and creative recreation. Kids will love the hands-on, craft activities in the courtyard, the castle treasure hunt, dressing up to take part in the medieval 'big games', or making and decorating their own crown. Every admission buys you two days of entry you'll have plenty of time to explore and try all the activities. Adults $15, children three - 15 years $12, two adults and two children $48. Two adults and four children $64.

A little more $, but great value

Robert’s Treasure Hunt will take you on a mission to discover Australia Zoo's new meerkats! Explore the Zoo while you learn some interesting facts about the new arrivals to unlock your treasure! In their incredible Wildlife Warriors show, Robert and Terri will get up close with their favourite ancient animals, feeding the crocs from September 20-23. Visit Australia Zoo, Beerwah. Family pass from $172. 

Meet the Meercats at Australia Zoo.
Meet the Meerkats at Australia Zoo.

Family favourite Aussie World will be open right through the school holidays. Enjoy roving entertainment from the Aussie World Kids, lock in some time for thrills and fun on the dodgem cars, Ferris wheel and the Ballroom Blitz. Roll up to Side Show Alley where everyone wins a prize and prepare to be boggled in Professor Bogglesworth's Illusionarium. Kids will love the "The Wasp" - Aussie World's latest ride will have you flinging in the air, but grab the joystick and YOU take control, shooting yourself sideways into the air! Book online and save. Family of four people $136, single admission (adult or child) $38, senior/pensioner $30, kids under three years are free!

The whole family will love a day at Aussie World.

Not to be missed event

Rock out together as a family at the laid-back Caloundra Music Festival. This fun event is held towards the end of the Queensland school holidays from 29 September to 2 October at Kings Beach. Soul, surf, sun and sand venues will come alive featuring the best of the Australian music industry as well as incredible international artists including British India, Xavier Rudd, Ronan Keating, Daryl Braithwaite, Thundamentals and more. This not for profit family-friendly community event celebrating the environment, cultural achievements and community pride of the Caloundra area.

Caloundra Music Festival.
Caloundra Music Festival.


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