Are you looking for a memorable family vacation that won’t break the bank? Look no further than the beautiful Gold Coast in Australia. Known for its golden sandy beaches, vibrant culture, and thrilling attractions, the Gold Coast offers a plethora of free activities for the whole family to enjoy. In this article, we’ll explore the top five free family activities on the Gold Coast, ensuring you have a fantastic time without spending a fortune.

Exploring Burleigh Heads National Park

One of the most picturesque spots on the Gold Coast, Burleigh Heads National Park offers a perfect blend of stunning ocean views and lush greenery. Take a leisurely stroll along the walking trails that wind through the park, allowing you to soak in the natural beauty of the coastline. Don’t forget to bring your camera, as you’ll encounter breathtaking panoramic vistas at every turn. The park also features picnic areas, so pack a delicious lunch and enjoy a family picnic while admiring the stunning scenery.

Enjoying a Day at Surfers Paradise Beach

Surfers Paradise Beach is a must-visit destination for families visiting the Gold Coast. With its pristine white sand and turquoise waters, this iconic beach is perfect for a fun-filled day in the sun. Build sandcastles with your children, take a refreshing swim, or simply relax on the beach while basking in the glorious Australian sunshine. Surfers Paradise Beach is also known for its vibrant atmosphere, bustling with street performers, markets, and entertainment. Take a stroll along the famous Esplanade and immerse yourself in the lively ambiance of this popular tourist spot.

Discovering the Natural Beauty of Tamborine Mountain

Escape the hustle and bustle of the city and venture into the enchanting world of Tamborine Mountain. Located just a short drive from the Gold Coast, this mountain paradise offers a range of free family-friendly activities. Embark on a scenic rainforest walk and marvel at the lush flora and fauna surrounding you. Visit Curtis Falls, a stunning waterfall nestled within the rainforest, and capture some memorable family photos. Tamborine Mountain also features charming local markets where you can browse for unique souvenirs or indulge in delicious homemade treats.

Wildlife Encounters at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary

For an unforgettable wildlife experience, head to Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary. This sanctuary is home to a wide array of native Australian animals, including kangaroos, koalas, and crocodiles. Take advantage of the sanctuary’s free entry option and explore the various wildlife exhibits and interactive shows. Get up close and personal with kangaroos as you hand-feed them, or cuddle a koala for a memorable photo opportunity. Don’t miss the opportunity to witness the sanctuary’s famous lorikeet feeding frenzy, where hundreds of colorful birds gather for a daily feeding session.

Exploring the Cultural Hub of Broadbeach

Broadbeach is a vibrant cultural hub that offers an array of free family activities. Start your day by exploring the stunning Kurrawa Park, featuring expansive green spaces, children’s playgrounds, and picnic areas. Take a leisurely stroll along the Broadbeach Art and Craft Markets, held on the first and third Sunday of every month, where you can discover unique handmade treasures and indulge in delicious street food. If you’re visiting during the summer months, don’t miss the Broadbeach Christmas Carols, a free community event featuring live music, entertainment, and fireworks.


Q: Are there any parking facilities available at Burleigh Heads National Park?

A: Yes, there are parking spaces available near the entrance of Burleigh Heads National Park. However, it can get quite busy during peak times, so it’s advisable to arrive early to secure a spot.

Q: Can I swim at Surfers Paradise Beach?

A: Absolutely! Surfers Paradise Beach is renowned for its excellent swimming conditions. However, please ensure you swim between the red and yellow flags, as these areas are patrolled by lifeguards for your safety.

Q: How long does it take to drive from the Gold Coast to Tamborine Mountain?

A: The drive from the Gold Coast to Tamborine Mountain takes approximately 40 minutes, depending on traffic conditions. It’s a scenic journey, so take your time and enjoy the beautiful surroundings.

Q: Are there any age restrictions for visiting Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary?

A: No, Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary welcomes visitors of all ages. It’s a fantastic experience for the whole family, allowing everyone to learn about and interact with Australia’s unique wildlife.

Q: What is the best way to get to Broadbeach from the Gold Coast?

A: Broadbeach is easily accessible from the Gold Coast via public transportation, including buses and the G:link light rail. If you’re driving, there are ample parking options available in and around Broadbeach.

Q: Are the Broadbeach Christmas Carols suitable for young children?

A: Yes, the Broadbeach Christmas Carols are a family-friendly event that caters to audiences of all ages. There are various activities and performances specifically designed for young children, making it an enjoyable experience for the whole family.


The Gold Coast, Australia, is a treasure trove of free family activities, offering something for everyone to enjoy. Whether you’re exploring the natural beauty of Burleigh Heads National Park, soaking up the sun at Surfers Paradise Beach, immersing yourself in the charm of Tamborine Mountain, discovering native wildlife at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary, or indulging in the cultural delights of Broadbeach, this vibrant coastal city has it all. So, pack your bags, bring your loved ones, and get ready for an unforgettable family adventure on the Gold Coast.

Alright, so you want to go to the Gold Coast, but keep a tight budget while your there. Despite the abundance of great paid attractions like theme parks, restaurants and night life; the Gold Coast has a bunch of family activities that I would personally recommend.

1. Hitting the Beaches

Don’t let the over-hype about ‘Surfers Paradise’ fool you, the best beaches are along Burleigh Heads, The Spit and Broadbeach. A free trip to the beach is an easy way to relax for a day in the hot sun with the tranquil waters. Not to mention the invaluable service life guards supply that is reliable, safe and free. An all new experience is to try a sunrise or sunset walk on the beach, believe me when I say the morning air is crisp, the water is flat, the wind is dead, and it’s worth the wake up for sunrise.

Gold Coast Australia
Flickr photo by 36821100@N04

2. O’Reilly’s Tree Top Walk

Tree Top Walk
Flickr photo by 1234abcd

It might be hard to believe, but the O’Reilly range offers a free nature walk through the tree tops of this illustrious and beautiful rainforest. Visitors sometimes choose the closer and more accessible Tambourine Mountain for it’s rainforests, but nine suspension bridges later through 180 meters of forest, and the O’Reilly range triumphs over all. Taking the Booyong Walk for about 300 meters from the guesthouse will show the way to this magnificent walk.

3. The Broadwater

Just a step back from the Spit is the Broadwater, which Sea World faces onto. But the real treasure is the Broadwater beach which has the Coast’s biggest playground; so you may have to tear your kids away from it. But while they’re playing, you can relax on the beach with plenty of chairs and shade, or take a dip in the fully netted swimming area. Next to this beach is the Gold Coast’s public swimming pool which is also free. It accommodates younger swimmers with children’s pools and slides, as well as a three stage diving board for Dad who wants to show off. So find your cheap flights to Gold Coast airport and give the family a treat.

4. Exercise Tracks

If eating all those buffet breakfasts while on holiday gets your guilt (and gut) going like it does mine, then you might want a good fitness routine. There’s a good ‘Foundation Walk’ through The Spit if you are staying on Broadbeach, and it’s usually less crowded. A walk in the other direction along Broadbeach will also offer you a whole range of free exercise equipment. If Surfers Paradises’ broad walk gets too crowded, try Monaco or Kurrawa Park for a more tranquil and quite time.

5. The Currumbin Rock Pools

Currumbin’s rock pools are a great picnic area with large and safe rock pools boasting flowing waterfalls and lush rainforest. It’s safe for all kids, but parents might not be safe from complaining children because the water is usually very chilly. Try to pick the last Sunday of any month to go as the Currumbin Community Farm Campus hosts a small market for the whole family to enjoy.

Tom Wilson – Loved spending the majority of his life on the Gold Coast, discovering the best places to spend the day.

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