These school holidays, the Gold Coast is definitely the place to be. Along with the excitement of the 2018 Commonwealth Games, there will be a huge variety of family-friendly things to do.
Whether you’re training it to a sporting event or enjoying a scenic bike ride along the beach, you’re sure to have an awesome time with your kids during the Games. Here are my top things to do around the Gold Coast this April.
1. Enjoy a bike ride along the beach.
The Gold Coast has over 1000 kilometres of on-road and off-road bikeways, making it easy to cycle through neighbourhoods and along foreshores while discovering parks and stunning scenery. If you love the beach, grab/hire some bicycles and go for a ride along the Main Beach pathway. You can stop off and enjoy a coffee/babycino or pack your bathers and head in for a swim to cool off.
2. Catch a free ride to sporting events.
With the GC2018 Spectator Journey Planner plus free public transport for all event ticket holders, it’ll be easy to watch one or more of the 18 sports showcased at the games. From basketball, cycling and swimming to weightlifting, lawn bowls and table tennis, there really is something for everyone. Children’s tickets start from just $10, with adult tickets starting at $20. There are even four free gold medal events – the road race cycling, time trial cycling, marathon and race walk – where you and the kids can line the streets and cheer on our Aussie competitors.
3. Find the fun at Festival 2018.
Adults and kids alike will love Festival 2018 – a multi-arts program packed with 160 free cultural events over 12 days. Operating day and night, the festival will span the full length of the coast and feature dance and circus performances, live music, unique activities and art installations. At Surfers Paradise, you’ll be able to boogie to Yothu Yindi and The Treaty Project and The Cat Empire or watch The Owl and the Pussycat theatre show. If you’re closer to Broadbeach, you can grab a bus to the inflatable maze or catch Rite, an exhilarating display of acrobatics. There’s even a seven-metre wide moon sculpture as part of the visual arts program and a field of microphones where your kids can participate in group karaoke.
4. Carpool to your culture fix.
The Bleach Festival is partnering with Festival 2018 to showcase local artists and collaborate with international theatre companies and artists. Kicking off with an opening party in Robina on March 29, the festival includes a moonlit kayak tour exploring the Currumbin Estuary that features dancers, circus performers and musicians. There’s also a String Symphony performing under the trees at Paradise Point Esplanade Park accompanied by a giant illuminated puppet.
If you’re keen for a dance, grab some friends and car pool to the Street Party at Palm Beach where the kids’ stage will feature The Crackup Sisters and Proud Foots Book Show. When you’ve worked up an appetite, the Gold Coast’s best food trucks will be on hand with a yummy meal.
5. Go for a nature walk.
If communing with nature is more your style, the Federation Walk Coastal Reserve is a network of paths and tracks that starts at Sea World and leads all the way to the Gold Coast Seaway. The walks feature natural vegetation, dunes, open space and stunning ocean views. If you get tired while out and about, you can stop and do some birdwatching because the route is popular with brushturkeys, brown quails, cormorants, pelicans and egrets.
6. Train or bus it to the theme parks.
Along with spectacular weather and amazing beaches, the Gold Coast is also known for its fun theme parks. The roads are bound to be a tad busier than usual during the Games so hop on a train and/or bus and you’ll be able to explore the delights of Wet ‘n’ Wild, Warner Bros. Movie World, Paradise Country, Sea World and Dreamworld. If you’re planning on visiting the theme parks a few times over the school holidays, look into getting a Super Pass or a Mega Pass that will give you unlimited entry to three or four of the parks for one or two weeks. Prep your transport journey at GetSetForTheGames.com.
Excited yet? I am! I was lucky enough to perform in the 2006 Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony in Melbourne and there is a special kind of magic that takes over a city during this global sporting event. Whatever you end up doing with the kids, I’m sure you’ll create wonderful school holiday memories.
What's your tip for making the most of the Gold Coast during school holidays?
Get set, the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games is here from 4 – 15 April. It’s an exciting time! To make the most of it, get prepared and plan ahead. Use our interactive travel impacts map and other detailed information to find out how your travel might be affected. There’s plenty of ways to change up your travel routine like leaving the car at home and taking the bus, walking or cycling shorter trips or if you have to drive, avoiding the busiest times and locations. It’s all about being flexible, remember even small changes make a big difference. Visit Getsetforthegames.com