Mouth-watering meals devoured to the sound of waves crashing on to the shore? That's world-famous Gold Coast dining for you. But if it's a local's life you're keen to explore, epic spreads are also found alongside our scenic creeks, lakes, lagoons, and rivers. From Tallebudgera Creek’s flaky Portuguese tarts to legendary all-day breakfasts on the Coomera River, picture-perfect pitstops to drool over are dotted throughout the region.
Edgewater Dining & Lounge Bar
Crack the bubbles because a table at Edgewater is worth getting excited about. One of the Gold Coast’s most celebrated long lunch spots, this elegant venue offers modern Australian delights with an Italian twist by head chef Jarrod Waring. Think succulent Bangalow pork cutlets with home-made apple sauce and Tasmanian salmon with roasted artichoke, cooked to perfection in the same kitchen as confit duck gnocchi and seafood marinara linguine. Edgewater is perfectly positioned to make the most of the views across the Nerang River to Surfers Paradise beyone, and once the sun sets and the city lights start to twinkle, you'll be hard pressed to find a prettier dinner location. Open 11.30am - late daily.
Where: Shop 3, G7 Capri on Via Roma, Isle of Capri, Surfers Paradise
Visions of 1980s carpets and chipped glassware coming to mind? Banish them because there’s nothing outdated about the wonderful Currumbin RSL situated on the banks of Currumbin Creek. Offering modern takes on menu classics like a smoky BBQ jackfruit burger and buckets of Mooloolaba ‘peel your own’ prawns, this neighbourhood hot spot regularly attracts family gatherings to its mammoth open deck. Even better, there’s La Bocca, a separate on-site pizza kitchen, slicing up 16 inspired creations including ‘La Burt Reynolds’ topped with pork belly and grilled pineapple. Delicious. Dine on the deck during a weekend and watch stand up paddle boarders cruising the calm creek. Open 11am - 2.30pm and 5pm - late, Monday to Friday. Open 11am - 3pm 5pm - late, Saturday and Sunday.
Where: 165 Duringan Street, Currumbin
It might be your first visit, but you’ll be chatting to cheerful locals in no time. Serving plentiful brunch and lunch options including organic spelt pancakes dripping with berry compote, Karaage chicken bowls and a Flatty Burger crammed with Flathead fillets and herby mayo slaw, Dune Café overlooks the dazzling Currumbin Lagoon. Its tranquil waters are home to one of the city's most popular dog beaches, so expect beach-tousled dogs lazing at the foot of every other table. Got boredom-prone little ones in tow? The recently jazzed-up Pirate Park playground next door will entertain mini mes of all ages. Open 7am - 2pm daily.
Where: 945 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
Forget Dreamworld – this stunning venue set on the Nerang River is the adult theme park of our dreams. At Surfers Pavilion, you can Frosé every day with its three-flavour strong Frosé Bar and when your appetite kicks in, there’s a dedicated oyster bar, quality pub favourites and seafood superstars calling. Sizzling bugs and a chicken Sea-schnitzel dressed in king prawns are highlights - but sunsets are this eatery’s speciality. River views bejewelled with million-dollar yachts are best enjoyed from the sprawling alfresco deck. Open 11am - late daily.
Where: 30-34 Ferny Avenue, Surfers Paradise
While it started as a little sister venue to cult Mermaid Beach bakery Bam Bam Bakehouse and NSW Northern Rivers’ Cubby Bakehouse, Custard Canteen has blossomed and then some. Now a must-drop by for every southern Gold Coaster every weekend, this sun-kissed patch of al fresco dining heaven, just a short walk from Tallebudgera Creek, is the ultimate scene for lazy post-dip hangs. Just add melt-in-your-mouth Portuguese custard tarts, an array of gooey cookies, Bam Bam croissants, chubby sausage rolls blistered to perfection and a breakfast and lunch menu packed with quality burgers and eggs whichever way, and you’ll be perched on one of their comfy picnic tables long after they call last lattes. Open 6am - 2.30pm daily.
Where: 1525 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
If being voted the best pub on the Gold Coast by the Gold Coast Bulletin isn’t enticing enough, how does slurping cocktails lakeside on a Robina Pavilion day bed sound? Giant yellow and white umbrellas set an ultra-chic scene on Robina’s West Lake waters, where dishes like hand-rolled duck spring rolls, fish tacos and super-cheesy woodfire pizzas are done with total finesse. Pastel-hued cocktails dressed to the nines with fancy fruity garnishes will keep the good times flowing. Open 10am - late daily.
Where: 229 Ron Penhaligon Way, Robina
Quarterdeck Kitchen + Bar
With its waterfront views speckled by superyachts, Quarterdeck Kitchen + Bar oozes sophistication – and that’s before you’ve seen the menu. Committed to showcasing the Gold Coast’s most glorious produce, the team blends seasonable treasures with Middle Eastern flavours to create non-stop flavour bombs. Currently for lunch, sardines on toast are draped in smoked labneh while harissa tartare accompanies Moreton Bay squid. For dinner, angus rump cap (the fatty top of the cow’s rump) is presented with camel feta while a roast vegetable ragout is dusted with olives and labneh. Once your meal’s wrapped, keep living the high life with sundowners on Quarterdeck’s comfy lounges out front. Open 7am - 3pm daily, and then 3pm - late Friday and Saturday.
Where: 76/84 Waterway Drive, Coomera
The Historic Rivermill
Be transported to another time at this fairytale-esque property tucked away in lush hinterland. On the banks of the Coomera River, The Historic Rivermill was first built in 1932 and you’ll spy rural artifacts and old machinery around the place when you and the kids tire of the petting zoo and turtles begging to be fed in the river. What of the food? Towering burgers, pudgy scones with jam and cream, frothy milkshakes, and other decadent café treats are just the ticket to replenishment once you’re done exploring the gorgeous grounds. Open 9am - 3.30pm Wednesday to Friday and 8am - 3.30pm Saturday and Sunday.
Where: 950 Beaudesert Nerang Road, Mount Nathan
If you love sharing food in picturesque places check out this blog: Top 10 Picnic Spots on the Gold Coast.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF COUNTRY
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.