Local’s Guide To Coolangatta

Local’s Guide To Coolangatta

07 Sep 2021

With a world famous point break, sprawling sandy beaches, amazing restaurants and a slightly slower pace of life, Coolangatta is renowned for its casual coastal culture. Join the laid back vibes with pursuits such as leisurely walks along the shoreline, alfresco dining and sundowners at the end of the day. We’ve curated a collection of Coolangatta experiences that shows off the best of what Gold Coast’s southernmost suburb has to offer.


The Gold Coast is renowned for its incredible coastal views but arguably the best way to take in the scenic vista is free falling from 12,000 feet. Whether the thought excites, inspires or terrifies you, all skydivers feel the same sensation when they drift gently down to earth in their parachute; pure thrill! Gold Coast Skydive boasts an excellent safety record, fun and professional tandem masters to jump with and state of the art equipment. The crew here have a rep for being the best in the biz. They make it fun and make you feel instantly at ease, despite the fact you’re about to jump out of a plane and plummet earthwards. You’ll enjoy (or maybe endure) 40 seconds of free fall before deploying the parachute and coming in for a soft landing on the white sands of Kirra Beach. The most common reaction after landing is, “Can we do it again?!”
Where: 18 Coyne St, Coolangatta


Painted an eye-catching shade of pink and oozing retro charm, The Pink Hotel serves up some serious VIP vibes. The 1950s boutique hotel has been restored to retro heaven with a rock ‘n’ roll edge and a sense of playfulness throughout the refurbished rooms. This local landmark is mere meters away from the white sands and world-class waves of Coolangatta Beach. There’s an LA-style dive bar and burger joint called Eddie’s Grub House underneath The Pink Hotel, a breezy rooftop bar with coastal views on top and even a concealed speakeasy, which hotel guests have exclusive access to. Book a night here to tap into the ‘cool’ in Coolangatta.
Where: 171 Griffith Street, Coolangatta


Step straight off the sand and into Coolangatta Surf Club for casual dining with a 5-star view of the sparkling ocean. You can hear the waves crashing as you enjoy an alfresco meal on the balcony. Open for lunch and dinner, their menu features a range of steaks, seafood and salads and as a supremely family-friendly venue, the kids are well catered for too. The generous portions are well priced and if you become a member you’ll score discounts on food and drink too. With 16 beers on tap and an impressive wine list, it’s the perfect spot for a sundowner.
Where: Marine Parade, Coolangatta


The Strand is your one-stop shop for beachside dining, shopping and entertainment in Coolangatta. With a dynamic mix of fashion, surf wear, supermarkets, gifts and homewares, it’s ripe for some retail therapy and when you’re done catch a movie at BCC Cinemas or play some games at Timezone. The Strand delivers an amazing array of dining options with award-winning restaurants, international cuisine, cool bars and casual eateries all in one idyllic oceanfront setting. Browse boutiques, refuel at a café, treat yourself to some new swimwear and stock up the pantry in one rather lovely location.
Where: 72 Marine Pde, Coolangatta


Inspired by the south of Italy, Baskk Italian’s menu features authentic flavours and simple, traditional Italian food made with quality all-local produce. The stylish, rustic interior oozes ambiance and the bar staff sling some superb concoctions to accompany your meal. Think relaxing cocktail-filled lunches, aperitivos and snacks in the afternoon sun, and long-table dinner feasts (with all of the vino) at night. Neapolitan pizza and soul-warming pasta dominate the menu, alongside smaller share plates and Italian salads. Bon appetit!
Where: 52/58 Marine Parade, Coolangatta


Make life easy with a stay at Mantra Coolangatta Beach. If you’re looking for convenient holiday accommodation this hotel offers a range of holiday stays with studio, 1, 2 and 3 bedroom apartments complete with all mod cons and a fully equipped kitchen. Located on Marine Parade it’s a stone’s throw from the shore so beach walks and ocean swims come with the territory. You can even catch sunrise from your balcony as you enjoy a morning cuppa. Dive into the pool, soak in the spa and sauna or relax in the BBQ area. Walk along the Esplanade, cruise the shops, dine at a beachside café, or get active on the tennis court.
Where: 88 Marine Pde, Coolangatta


If comfort, cleanliness, convenience and an amazing pool to splash in rate highly on your hotel wish list, Oaks Gold Coast Calypso Plaza Suites delivers everything you could want in holiday accommodation. This family friendly hotel features spacious 1 and 2 bedroom self-contained apartments with sheltered balconies and pool, ocean or hinterland views. The pool is perfect for little people who want to spend every waking hour in the water – parents will appreciate the sun lounges for some relaxation time. Simply step out the front gate and there’s a smorgasbord of dining, drinking and entertainment options quite literally on your doorstep.
Where: 99 Griffith St, Coolangatta


The team at Little Cooly are all about slinging pasta, pinot and playful vibes with impressive coastal views. Spend the day surfing or on the beach then swap the sand for a seat in the buzzing pizza pasta bar for seriously delicious dining. Whether it’s date night, catching up with mates or mustering the family for that long-overdue lunch, their friendly, laidback staff will make you feel at home. From their prime spot at Level 1, The Strand at Coolangatta, the kitchen pumps out house-made pizza and pasta, seven days a week, with a distinctive southern GC twist.
Where: Level 1, The Strand, Marine Parade, Coolangatta

If you enjoyed this story you might also like Local’s Guide to Tugun.

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Kate Veling
Kate Veling

Travel writer, Kate Veling, came to the Gold Coast for six months and loved it so much she’s still here 20 years later. The laidback lifestyle suits her to a tee and as a mum of three, she knows all the best parks, swimming spots and kid-friendly fun to be had in her ‘hood. She’s often found getting amongst the thriving local arts and culture scene, dancing to live music or kicking back on the beach, but rest assured it’s all in the name of research.


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.