6 awesome beaches to visit on a day trip from Brisbane 1

6 awesome beaches to visit on a day trip from Brisbane

Every Australian knows, when it comes to Queensland, there’s an old advertising slogan that still holds true: ‘Beautiful one day, perfect the next.’ From our Brisbane base, we go in search of beauty and perfection in the form of Queensland’s superb and plentiful natural wonders – glorious waves, warm, crystal blue water and beaches of fine, white sand.



1. Surfers Paradise

Once an exotic honeymoon destination for boomers and now a playground for millennials and Gen Y’s, Surfers Paradise continues to attracts people from all over Australia and the world because it is simply one of the world’s best beaches. A magnet for cheerleaders, body builders, retirees escaping the winters endured in the southern states and anyone seeking that postcard image of Australia they grew up dreaming about, Surfers Paradise (or ‘Surfers as it’s known) is three kilometres of golden sand that’s been wowing visitors for a century. Some 80km south of Brisbane on the iconic Gold Coast, Surfers also boasts one of the busiest shopping precincts in Australia, with all the restaurants, bars and clubs you need for unwinding (read looking fabulous and hoping others appreciate that) – only a few metres from beach. In keeping with its high-octane reputation, Surfers is also a stepping off point for major theme parks including Sea World and Movie World.  


2. Noosa Heads

If gaudy and glitzy isn’t your thing, then Noosa probably is. A couple of hours’ drive north of Brisbane right at the northern tip of the Sunshine Coast lies what even Australians describe as coastal nirvana. Noosa has grown from a seventies surfie hang out with a hippie vibe to a town on the international- visitors-in-the-know hit list. In addition to high-end accommodation is high-end boutiques and a restaurant scene that impresses even the hard-to-please foodie snobs from Melbourne. And what is most amazing, despite all this restrained fabulousness, it still retains a laid back charm. The beach at Noosa Heads has some of the purest white sand in the world – it’s like walking on talcum powder and is home to some of the best long boarding breaks in Australia. Locals actually paddle board on the Noosa River to run errands! Added bonus of the stunning nearby Noosa National Park means rainforest walks are a relaxing alternative to the beach.



3. Coolum

Coolum Beach lies like a slice of rockmelon an hour and a half north of Brisbane. A once famous surf spot (long before other famous surf spots came along), Coolum still feels like that coastal town you visited on family holidays way back when. Despite the inevitable spread of development. Coolum’s proud history as a leader in surf life saving and surf club activity is one reason why it continues to be a drawcard for so many families, with the beaches well patrolled from September to April each year. Less commercial than either Surfers or Noosa Heads, Coolum has an ‘old school’ appeal increasingly appealing to hipsters in search of authentic cultural nostalgia.  


4. Alexandra Headland

My favourite beach, Alexandra Headland (Alex) proves that good things come in small packages. The rocky headland delivers some of the best surf in Queensland, while the beach is intimate enough to make you feel that you’ve discovered your own special spot. The vibe is laid back and the views of Mount Coolum just add to the appeal of this quieter (read secret) beach location.



5. Mooloolaba

Just south of Alex is Mooloolaba, the most southerly town on the Sunshine Coast and home to the Subaru Triathlon Festival. The north-facing beach is protected from southerly winds so it provides some of the safest and most pleasant bathing conditions all year round. Mooloolaba is also port to a large trawling fleet, so when you go for the traditional fish n chips so popular in coastal towns, expect Mooloolaba, where the fish is sourced straight from the trawler, to take it to another level on the taste front.  


6. Woorim, Bribie Island

More ‘out of the way’ than the others on our list (read as rugged as it gets along the Queensland coast), Woorim is on the ocean side of Bribie Island, north of Brisbane, and Queensland’s only island connected to the mainland by bridge. It only takes an hour to get there from Brisbane, and it’s worth it for the wilder, less commercial experience the island offers. For all the shipwreck romantics out there – this is the beach for you. However, with its tidal currents and the occasional rips, it can be more hazardous than the other beaches for swimmers, so definitely heed the beach warnings before jumping into Queensland’s most southerly swell. If fishing, rather than swimming, is your thing – then welcome to paradise found.

Do you have an awesome beach break close to Brisbane we haven’t included? If so we’d love it if you shared it here!

(Feature image: Adam Campbell; Slider image: texaus1; Surfers Paradise image: gags9999)

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