From Caloundra to Noosa Heads, this coastal region in Queensland features 60 km-long coastal ribbon of beaches with some of the best tourism infrastructures in Australia, including eco, sports, and marine. The ‘azure’ splendour is amplified by all hues of green at the spectacular backdrop of the Glasshouse Mountains and the sub-tropical hinterland in the Mapleton National Park, set against the famous beachfront of Noosa.

Point Cartwright, Buddina, Sunshine Coast


Maroochydore is a commercial centre of the Sunshine Coast. It is the only town that is not exclusively dependent on tourism, with lovely residential areas and suburbs, out of which many are stretching along the Paynter River.

The seaside town still offers excellent tourism, river attractions, and sensational beaches, of course. The highlight is the Sunshine Plaza built over the river with lovely restaurants, cafes, outlets, cinemas, and playgrounds.

The south harbour of Mooloolaba hosts a fleet of fishing boats, safe swimming beaches and a river reserve known for seasonal wildflowers while Mudjimba in the north provides a long surf beach, airport, splendid marina and luxurious homes along the Esplanade.

The Sunshine Plaza, Maroochydore


  • Purpose-built attractions – Top Shots Fun Park, Sunshine Plaza,  Rotary Park, Nostalgia Town, Underwater World Sea Life Aquarium
  • Water Sports – water-skiing, jet-skiing, stand-up paddle-boarding, surfing, windsurfing, kite-surfing, kayaking, canoeing, golfing
  • Mooloolaba (the southern end) – Cotton Tree (protected beach, safe swimming),  Mooloolaba Beach (great surfing beach), Esplanade (good entertainment), Marina
  • Mudjimba (the northern end) – long unbroken surfing beach, Twin Waters Marina, Esplanade (good facilities),  the Sunshine Coast Airport
  • Sunshine Plaza to Cotton Tree Walk – a gorgeous walking track through Alexandra Headland to Mooloolaba with brilliant ocean views
  • Mooloolaba River National Park – birdlife and coastal eco-system, wildflowers, nature walks
  • Blackall Range Scenic Drive – one of the most spectacular scenic drives in Queensland (60 km), start in Mooloolaba via Sunshine Motorway, Bruce Highway, and Steve Irwin Highway to Landsborough to join the tourist drive. The major points of interest are lookouts at Montville, Mapleton, Cooloolabin, Maleny 
Mooloolaba is a popular tourist hotspot and just another beach paradise


Don`t skip The Big Pineapple – a heritage-listed monument in Woombye (near Mooloolaba) and the Big Pineapple Music Festival held each May.  Known as the’ Sunshine Plantation’, the structure features 16-metre fibreglass pineapple. Tree Top Challenge, Waterpark and Wildlife HQ are additional attractions, and there is organic, home-made food & artisan drinks as well as wonderful ‘glamping’ options.

The iconic Big Pineapple, Woombye


At the southern end of the Sunshine Coast, Caloundra will be the first seaside resort visited by those driving from Brisbane. The coastal town is a popular family holiday location with plenty of purpose-built attractions, gorgeous swimming beaches, estuaries, rivers and Bribie Island only a stone`s throw away.

Kings Beach, Caloundra


  • Purpose-built attractions – Aussie World Theme Park, Air Museum, botanic gardens
  • Water Sports – water-skiing, jet-skiing, stand-up paddle-boarding, surfing, windsurfing, kite-surfing, kayaking, canoeing, golfing
  • Golden Beach – protected by Bribie Island, swimming
  • Bulcock Beach – still waters, safe swimming, boardwalks, restaurants, good facilities
  • Kings Beach – Caloundra Lighthouse, BBQ and picnic facilities, playgrounds, swimming pool – ideal for young families, the main beach is perfect for surfing
  • Shelley Beach – the rough ocean does not allow safe swimming, but it is a gorgeous walking and dogs beach
  • Moffat Beach/Dicky Beach – nice cafes, restaurants and parkland, good surfing
  • Currimundi Lake – ideal for families with small children (rowing boats, swimming, paddle-boarding, kayaking) 
  • Bribie Island  – a fantastic day trip (abundant marine life, e.g., dolphins, dugongs and sea turtles, good boating, fishing, and recreation)
Currimundi Lake is one of the favourite weekend hubs for the locals


If you drive to the Caloundra`s hinterland, you will pass through the verdant Beerwurruh and Beerwah Forests that are home to the impressive Glasshouse Mountains.

Three volcanic plugs are majestically towering over the woodlands: Mt Beerwah, Mt Tibrogargan, and Mt Coonowrin.  All of them can be climbed, but it requires a decent level of fitness. Those who like easy trekking can try the alternative hikes Tibrogargan Circuit or Trachyte Circuit.

Glasshouse Mountains, Sunshine Coast


  • Glasshouse Mountains Lookout – a day trip through Beerwurruh and Beerwah Forests to the Lookout with some jaw-dropping views, stunning scenic drive  
  • Tibrogargan Circuit/Trachyte Circuit – walk the  3-5 km long loop track around the granite peaks
  • Steve Irwin`s Australia Zoo – a must-visit, especially with kids, If you don’t know who Steve Irwin, or ‘The Croc Hunter’ was it is time to look it up – one of the Aussie legends!
Self-driving in the Glasshouse Mountains provides plenty of scenic views


The surfing and golfing mecca of the Sunny Coast not only boasts breathtaking beaches but also it takes pride in a majestic granite dome overlooking the town – Mt Coolum. The volcanic peak can be climbed, and the views from its lookout truly are impressive.

Yaroomba is a popular beachfront resort with stylish apartments and holiday homes but also coastal parklands, lookouts, and a shipwreck.

The hinterland Mapleton National Park teems with greenery and natural attractions such as sub-tropical rainforest, waterfalls, creeks and exotic wildlife.

Mt Coolum makes a perfect morning hike


  • Mt Coolum Boardwalk – a short walk offers a beautiful view of the granite peak  (starting at Boardwalk Belvedere)
  • Mt Coolum National Park – a popular one hr climb up to the summit of Mt Coolum
  • Coolum Beach – long stretch ideal for walking and water sports, Point Arkwright & Point Perry lookouts, nice picnic spots along
  • Mapleton National Park – Mapleton Falls & rainforest walks, on the way pop in the Ginger Factory (Yandina), walk through the tranquil gardens and taste some of the finest ginger products, fun rides, tours, stylish café and shop (20-30 min drive from Coolum)
The Mapleton National Park, Mapleton Falls


Situated at the most exclusive end of the Sunshine Coast, within a beautiful headland with the mouth of the Noosa River, this small but pretty town with superb marinas is home to many celebrities. Noosa is Australia`s leading holiday destination, especially amongst families and couples, but also it has been popular with the surfing fraternity for years.

Read more about Noosa.

Noosa is the most exclusive portion of the Sunny Coast


The Sunshine Coast is a much-adored vacation spot for both Australians and foreigners, and the prices reflect that especially the peak season is pretty busy. Therefore, try to avoid the summer school holiday (Dec-Feb).

The region enjoys pleasant weather all year round, and even if you travel outside the summer season, you will not miss out on anything. The whale watching season is between May and November.


Fly to Brisbane, hire a vehicle (4WD recommended) and drive to the Sunshine Coast via the Scenic Ocean Drive (1.5 hrs)

Otherwise, fly directly to the Sunshine Coast.

For all flights visit or

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Eva Bodova

Saturday 26 September 2020

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