Top 3 day trips from the Gold Coast

Written by: Cameron Ward

Published: December 27, 2023

Reading time: 3 mins

Sunny Gold Coast is known for its beaches, surfing, and theme parks.

So, you’re staying in the Gold Coast for a couple of days and want some day trip ideas for yourself, family or friends? You’ve come to the right place! There are many different places you can visit from the Gold Coast, whether driving yourself there or booking a one-day tour.

1. Mount Tamborine

Escape the surf and busy life of the Gold Coast and escape to Mount Tamborine. You only need to drive for 40 minutes to feel like you’re in a completely different world. Mount Tamborine is a volcanic plateau and is known for its lush rainforest and amazing views.
• Take a short walk through the eucalypt forest and be welcomed by a breathtaking waterfall called Curtis Falls. The best time to see Curtis Falls is during the wet season when there is a lot of rain. But you can still see its beauty all year round.
• Tamborine Rainforest Skywalk takes you on a journey to walk 30 meters high into the rainforest! You will need about 45 minutes to an hour to walk the 300-metre bridge and take in all the scenic views from up above.
• Mount Tamborine has these marvellous Glow Worm Caves to see the fascinating creatures. It’s always recommended to book in advance for the Glow Worm Caves. You can book an evening Glow Worm Caves tour and see for yourself the majestic glow worms.

2. Springbrook National Park

Springbrook National Park is another day trip destination for those who want a walk through the rainforest to see waterfalls and wildlife.
• Purling Brook Falls is a scenic waterfall that you can see as you walk through the Gondwana rainforest. In total, the Purling Brook Falls Circuit is about four kilometres return, which will take around two hours to complete.
• Springbrook has Australia’s largest population of glow worms! You’ll be able to see these fascinating glow worms at Natural Bridge, a breathtaking rock formation. It’s best to come in the evening to see the glow worms at their best. It’s worth visiting Natural Bridge during the day and seeing the waterfall through the arch hole into the cave.
• To see the best parts of Springbrook you can book a day tour to see the incredible scenery.

3. North Stradbroke Island

North Stradbroke Island is a nature lovers paradise with beaches, 4WD adventures, and a whole lot of wildlife. The island is perfect for a day trip or even just a short getaway over the weekend.
• Main Beach is the most popular beach to visit for everything to do with swimming and surfing. However, if you do plan to surf at Main Beach, you should be an experienced surfer! If you’d like to learn how to surf, North Stradbroke Island Learn to Surf School can help you out!
• If you do visit during winter, you’ll be in luck and may get the chance to do some whale watching! Just head over to Point Lookout and see if you can spot the humpbacks, southern right whales, and even sometimes blue whales.

Let us know your favourite day trip and tag us in your posts!

Cameron Ward
Cameron Ward
Managing Director at Sightseeing Tours Australia

Cameron Ward turned his travel passion into a thriving Australian tourism business. Before he co-founded his own business, Sightseeing Tours Australia, he was enjoying being a Melbourne tour guide. Even now, Cameron delights in helping visitors from all around the world get the most out of their incredible Australian trip. You’ll see Cameron leading tours or writing about his favourite Australian places where he shares his local insights.

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