24 Jan 2019

Hello long weekend! Break out the lamingtons, this is your last-minute guide to Aussie Day activities on the Gold Coast.

With over 400 free BBQ sites to choose from along the Coast, you’re guaranteed to find the perfect place to sizzle a sausage, even if you have to take it in turns with the picnic next to you. If you’re up for something a little different this year though check out the green and gold list below. Go on, be young and freeeeeee.


  1. So shall we kick things off with a pool party in an Olympic sized pool?! Yep, the Gold Coast Aquatic Centre – the very same that saw Emma McKeon win 4 gold medals in the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games – is hosting an Aussie Day pool party with fun family activities between 11am – 2pm. Thong throwing, dive bomb comps, inflatables and sausage sizzle?! Sold.
  2. Step out of the pool and into the Broadwater Parklands for food trucks, kids’ games and live music, and don’t miss the grand finale: a fireworks display over the water from 4 – 8pm.
  3. What’s more Aussie than koala mascots (and real koala cuddles), Aboriginal culture, roos, bushrangers, sheep shearing, crocs and a splash in the pool? Nothing that’s what. Head to Australia’s biggest theme park Dreamworld for the goods.
  4. Now this one is a must do because sadly days are limited to experience the epic goods provided by the Gold Coast’s beloved NightQuarter. Celebrate all things Aussie with Australian rock cover band Prime Ministers of Australia, and indulge in traditional Aussie desserts and activities.
  5. Amazing food and air-con more your thing? Harbour Town Eats is the brand new and delicious precinct at the best outlet shopping destination on the Coast. Enjoy the DJ and illuminated entertainment, relax with a cold one at Crafty’s and digest the rest over a movie.
  6. Toss (but don’t wear) your pluggers at The Star under our southern stars, and dance into the night with DJ Brooke Evers from 5pm at the Garden Kitchen & Bar.
  7. Wine not head to O’Reilly’s Canungra Valley Vineyards for a tipple in God’s country and a crack at some backyard cricket? Alpaca my bags! (There’s an alpaca farm there too).
  8. Get amongst the super yachts of the Gold Coast on a pontoon on the water at the Southport Yacht Club’s Australia Day BBQ with live music from The Australian Ukulele Band.
  9. Celebrate our massive island with An Island Hideaway Cruise to South Straddie. With a BBQ lunch, live music and games… how’s the serenity.
  10. Take on the Australia Day weekend at uber-cool Komune at Coolangatta. The pool party starts each day from 2pm, and the DJs play till late.



  1. What can be more Australian than a game of beach cricket? We’ve been playing it since before The Ashes, and with 57 kilometres of beaches, there’s no better venue in Australia.
  2. You won’t find a more quintessential Aussie gathering on Australia Day than lunch and arvo beers at one of the Gold Coast’s iconic surf clubs (are there any better-located surf clubs anywhere on Earth?). Sit right beside the water and enjoy the vibe at Vikings Surf Club in Currumbin or the Palm Beach Surf Club.
  3. Why stay in one spot when you can take a boat cruise along the Broadwater? If you time it right you’ll be sailing past the fireworks display along the foreshore at the Broadwater Parklands.
  4. Play a game of barefoot bowls at Burleigh Heads, Tugun, Southport or Broadbeach Bowls Clubs.
  5. Escape the heat of mid-summer in the Gold Coast hinterland. You only have to drive an hour west beyond Mudgeeraba and Nerang – you’ll climb a kilometre where it can be 10 degrees cooler.
  6. Try some sly shopping while everyone’s at the beach – all the best stores are open at Queensland’s largest shopping centre, Pacific Fair.
  7. In mid-summer, the water off the Gold Coast can warm up to as much as 28 degrees. It’s a heck of a lot cooler in the water at the Currumbin Rock Pools, 15 minutes west of the coast in Currumbin Valley.
  8. Get in early for a guaranteed big Australia Day by watching the sun rise high above the beach on Kirra Point, or on top of Burleigh Point.
  9. Granted this one’s on the day after Aus Day, but well worth a mention. The rooftop of Miami’s iconic Shark Bar plays host to Hotter than Hell – a line-up of Aussie acts including Spiderbait and Killing Heidi.
  10. Soak up the sun on your Monday public holiday by watching the fittest bronzed Aussies go for glory at the Burleigh Swim Run Challenge at the Burleigh Heads Surf Club.
Destination Gold Coast
Destination Gold Coast

Welcome to the Gold Coast. As a city that boasts 300 days of beautiful sunshine, unmatched stretches of white sandy beaches, breath-taking landscapes and skylines, as well as the local’s best-kept secret, the Hinterland, it’s not surprising why many flock to experience The Gold Coast - Australia’s favourite playground.


Destination Gold Coast acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we are situated, the Kombumerri families of the Yugambeh Language Region. 
We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging, and recognise their continuing connections to the lands, waters and their extended communities throughout Southeast Queensland.