From kayaking to cabaret: 5 unique experiences you didn't know you could have on the Gold Coast.

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So, you’ve got some summer holidays on the horizon. 

Time off work is all locked in. Care for precious fur babies arranged. A break (at long last) from kids Saturday sports.  

Finally, you can see the light. That glorious, golden light. I think Madonna summed up this feeling best when she sang ‘Holiday. Celebrate. Holiday. Celebrate.’ Indeed, Madge.

All you have to do now is decide on... where to actually go.

If you’re anything like my chronically indecisive self, this part can be excruciating. Rainforest or beach? Chill or adventure? Culture or nightlife? And what about the 6-year-old, 8-year-old, my partner, my adult sister and the grandparents wanting to come along too? Thinking of holiday destinations that could possibly please all of them isn’t always an easy feat. 

I get it. Deep breaths. I have a (brilliant, tried and tested, objectively true) suggestion.   

The Gold Coast. 

This little piece of Queensland paradise really does have a lil’ something for everyone. Seriously. We’re talking rainforests, beaches, adventures, culture. The lot with all the toppings. The Gold Coast just keeps on levelling up with events and experiences.

Allow me to give you some insider tips.

First things first, where should you stay?

Again, given the sheer amount of accommodation options, you’re at risk of decision paralysis when looking for places to stay. Hot tip: you really can’t go wrong with an Accor stay on the Gold Coast. They’ve got the largest choice on the Gold Coast (27 in fact! A heckin’ lot!) of hotels, resorts, and apartments that stretch between Surfers Paradise, Broadbeach, Southport and Coolangatta.


However, if I can fabricate a prize for Best All-Rounder, it’d have to go to the Peppers properties at Broadbeach and Surfers Paradise. These classy standouts boast a stellar line-up of facilities: we’re talking heated pool, outdoor pool, spa, gym, indoor cinema, panoramic views of the glistening Pacific and walking distance to those glorious patrolled beaches.

Important mention of the teppanyaki BBQs too at Peppers, my family are obsessed with them. They’re super family-friendly spots to stay, have brilliant reviews if you love receipts like I do, and I can’t stop myself from sharing this in case you’re just as into them – they have those crisp white hotel sheets you spend your entire life trying to replicate at home, but never quite can. 

If your home base is Peppers Soul in Surfers Paradise, I recommend grabbing a meal at Hyde Paradiso. The views are beautiful, and very fun and family-friendly.


Now the practicalities have been checked off, onto the activities.

For the nature lovers...

Everyone knows about the Gold Coast’s pristine beaches and trio of theme parks. But did you know it’s also home to Springbrook National Park, which is on the *cue name drop* World Heritage Gondwana Rainforest list? And for good reason. It’s simply stunning. Think ancient rainforests and waterfalls that you’ve only ever seen in National Geographic magazines. 

If you’re keen for little walk, check out The Natural Bridge trail. It’s accessible, breath-taking, and the perfect length for any combination of little and/or tired legs. And, if you’re keen to see some actual magic – book in for the Glow Worm tour at night. Yeah, you read that right. It’ll surprisingly blow your mind.


If you’re keen to chase more waterfalls, check out Twins Falls Circuit. The payoff for this walk is a splash in the rock pools when you reach the end. Absolute heaven.

For the adventurers...

Kayaking on the ocean is one of those adventure activities that looks like it takes a bunch of skill but is actually super accessible and fun. Seaway Kayaking Tours is continually rated the best kayaking and snorkelling tour company on the Gold Coast. These guys really know their stuff and are passionate about sharing the magnificence of the Gold Coast with you and your kids 4 and up. 

You have a couple of options depending on the kind of experience you’re after. Your first is to hire the gear and go it alone. Or, if you’ve got no prior experience with navigating the ocean in a small sized vessel, and your kids demand to be accompanied by a professional (may or may not be talking from personal experience here), check out their tours. 

The group meets at the Broadwater and paddles through crystal clear waters to Dolphin Bay and if the stars align, you’ll even paddle alongside some. From here, you’ll cruise to heavenly Wave Break Island where it will be time for a snorkel, a bush walk and then a bite to eat. Everything is included at incredibly reasonable prices. 

If you’re keen for the kind of family bonding experience your kids will be talking about for years to come, you cannot go past TreeTop Challenge for kids 8 and over. The one located inside Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary is particularly special. Even the most ‘eye-rolly’ teen will have a tricky time not being thrilled by zip lining over crocodiles, emus and dingoes. 


For the artsy folks... 

Love nothing more than the thrill of live theatre? I’m definitely one with having a boogie to a cracking band. Home of the Arts (HOTA) is going to blow your mind. HOTA is next level incredible and is quickly becoming one of Queensland’s most popular and dynamic cultural hubs due to its range of quality events and experiences. 


They have children’s art exhibitions, comedy, cabaret, world famous bands, fine dining, unique bars, and a buzzing vibe. The highlights tours are a brilliant way to get your head around just how cool this place is. 

If you’re chasing that authentic and electric community vibe, head to Fridays on the Lawn and enjoy the live tunes as the sun sets. This is the perfect opportunity to make a night of it by checking out the latest exhibition followed by dinner and drinks at the much-loved Palette Restaurant. 

Love yourself a market? Hang with the locals on Sunday mornings as HOTA hosts Farmers and Artisan markets. Stock up on locally sourced organic produce, artisan treats and divine boutique fashion pieces.

For the foodies...


If you fancy taking your family of any and all ages around the world for dinner, head to the Miami Marketta, held every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday night from 5pm. 

The laneway in Miami is brought to life with street food, art and free live music. This family-friendly multicultural party hums with heart, connection and amazing food from every corner of the globe. Oh, and it’s licensed so the grown-ups can even sample a boutique local beer and wine, if that’s a bit of you. 

Have any other gems to recommend when visiting the Gold Coast? Tell us in the comments below.

There’s something for all on the Gold Coast this summer. Book your summer escape with an Accor apartment or hotel today, and when you stay 5 nights, you’ll save 20 per cent.

Feature Image: Supplied/Instagram/

Accor Live Limitless
There's something for ALL on the Gold Coast.

From the world-famous theme parks and beaches, to delicious gastronomic and cultural experiences there is plenty to go out and discover. If a relaxing break is more your style, then stay in and unwind with ALL of the comforts our apartments and hotels have to offer.

Book your escape to the Gold Coast now.