If you're looking for an action-packed adventure or a relaxing break getting back to nature, a week-long family holiday on the Sunshine Coast has all the ingredients for the escape you've been dreaming of.
Leave the pressures of work and chores behind as you embrace 'Sunshine Coast mode', where life is all about coastal relaxation, enjoyment, and reconnecting with your loved ones.
With world-class attractions, stunning national parks and natures reserves, some of the most pristine beaches you can find, the Sunshine Coast has something to suit every member of the family, from toddlers to teens, and even mum and dad.
Thrill-seekers will love the adrenalin-pumping rides at Aussie World, while younger members of the family will be equally enthralled with the more easy-going attractions tailored to them. Cuddle a koala or hand feed a kangaroo at Australia Zoo, where the vast array of animals also includes giraffes, meerkats, lemurs and tigers. The Ginger Factory is a delight for foodies, while young children will enjoy a ride on the Overboard boat ride or the historic cane train. Come face-to-face with sharks, turtles and stingrays as you walk through the overhead aquarium at Sea Life Sunshine Coast, or put the pedal to the metal at The Big Kart Track to see which family member will come out victorious.
Best Natural Adventures
The Sunshine Coast has an abudanceof natural wonderlands, many of which are easily accessible, even with a stroller. Take in the beautiful views, swim in crystal clear water, and spot local koalas and dolphins or whales as you walk the stroller-friendly Coastal Track of Noosa National Park. Explore the Arts and Ecology Centre at the Maroochy Regional Bushland Botanic Garden before letting the kids run free through the rolling eucalypt forest which includes creeks, lagoons, and an impressive sculpture garden. Or chase waterfalls with a short 20-mintues round-trip walk through Buderim Forest Park to discover the majestic Buderim Falls.
Buderim Forest Waterfalls (Serenity Falls), Buderim
You're spoilt for choice when it comes to pristine beaches on the Sunshine Coast, many of which boast award-winning local Surf Lifesaving Clubs, so you’re able to swim safely between the flags. Top picks for family-friendly swim spots include Kings Beach at Caloundra, which offers everything from rock pools and a beachside water fountain for the kids to play in, to a picturesque oceanfront saltwater swimming pool, and a gentle beach break. Nearby Golden Beach, which hugs the shores of the Pumicestone Passage also offers calm waters, while Noosa Main Beach is one of the few beaches along Australia's coastline that faces north and is another great option for families due to its gentle waves.
Best Places to Eat With Kids
Many restaurants on the Sunshine Coast cater for children and offer 'kids eat free' deals on various nights. Some also provide fully equipped kids’ rooms, children's entertainment or activity packs, enabling the adults to savour their delicious meals while the kids are happily occupied.
For more details on the offers available see:
- 5 Best restaurants for families in Mooloolaba
- Top family spots for a meal on the Sunshine Coast
Aussie World holds regular 'Ride The Night' events during school holidays that the whole family will enjoy. The Noosa Food & Wine Festival in May, which includes the family-friendly festival village. Experience the creative soul of the Sunshine Coast in a region-wide showcase of performance and art during the 10-day Horizon Festival in late August. While the Caloundra Music Festival brings some of the biggest musical acts to the Sunshine Coast and includes a dedicated children's zone. See the What's On page for more information.
Kenilworth Cheese and Wine Fest
Best Country Drives
Arguably the most scenic of the Sunshine Coast's country drives is the Blackall Range Hinterland drive which takes you through the sub-tropical rainforest of the mountains and quaint townships of Flaxton, Montville and Maleny which boast phenomenal views out to the coastline and Glass House Mountains. Equally scenic is the drive around the Glass House Mountains themselves, along Tourist Drive 24. Get up close and possibly even climb some of the iconic volcanic plugs that rise dramatically out of the surrounding bushland.
Glasshouse Mountains. Credit: Sunny Coast Kids
Best Places to Stay
Family resorts, self-contained apartments and family-friendly campgrounds abound on the Sunshine Coast. Your choice will likely come down to budget and location, as all offer the relaxed family-friendly feeling that is synonymous with the region. For more information, please see the ultimate guide to family-friendly accommodation on the Sunshine Coast.
Rumba resort, Caloundra