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11 immersive encounters to jump right into

Well beyond the Sunshine Coast’s stellar beaches is a host of immersive encounters that should be on your bucket list. Here are 11 experiences to round out an excellent Sunshine Coast itinerary.

11 immersive encounters to jump right into

1. Swim with rescued seals at SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast. While you’re here, you can also dive or snorkel with sharks and the other marine creatures that call this beachside aquarium home.

Learn, explore and interact with marine life (include these very cute rescue seals) over 16 amazing and unique zones

2. Feed a giraffe, cuddle a koala, and be a zookeeper for a day, while contributing to conservation every step of the way. In fact, for a gold coin donation take a peek behind the scenes at the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital, which has treated almost 65,000 animals.

3. Spot an elusive platypus on a Mary River kayak tour. These little monotremes (egg-laying mammals) are very shy so make sure to keep your eyes peeled! Imbil, the largest village in the lower Mary Valley, is a floral paradise at this time of year with beautiful jacaranda trees in full bloom.

Discover the tranquility of the Mary Valley on an early morning kayak tour

4. Take a 4WD along Australia’s Great Beach Drive, or swap the four wheels for four legs and experience it on horseback. Riding a horse along Noosa North Shore or Rainbow Beach will be an adventure full of memorable, jaw-dropping moments

5. Get out and explore the Sunshine Coast’s whale highway on the brand new Wild One – a high-speed whale-watching vessel. And, of course, it doesn’t get any better than the humpback whale swim that thrills nature lovers from July to October.

See the magnificent humpback whales on a Whale One cruise

6. Lock your eyes on birds from around the world. Noosa Everglades is home to 44 per cent of Australia’s bird life (yes, that’s more than Kakadu). Kanu KapersThe Discovery Group and Noosa Ferry Cruise Company can get you right among the birding action.

Just add water!

7. Sample the flavours, sights and sounds of the Sunshine Coast at Australia’s largest artisanal markets, The Original Eumundi Markets. Explore more than 500 stallholders every Wednesday and Saturday.

8. Go behind the scenes at The Ginger Factory – the world’s largest producer of confectionery ginger! The bee demonstrations inspired by flowering ginger are fascinating, as is the new ginger beer range.

9. Hike among ancient mountains and sub-tropical rainforests with trickling waterfalls. Tropical Treks lead small group tours around the plentiful and naturally beautiful pockets of the Sunshine Coast.

The sun sets at Mount Ngungun, Glass House Mountains

10. Release your inner kid at Sunshine Coast’s amusement parks. At Aussie World there’s even a pub to squeeze in a brew and some Mooloolaba prawns between mini golf, dodgem cars and retro rides. Big Boing, Top Shots and Bellingham Maze also hit the fun-ometer.

11. For something a little more ‘racy’, don a helmet and grip the steering wheel on Australia’s largest commercial go-kart track, Big Kart Track.

Experience adrenalin-fuelled fun at Go Kart Track!