Pet Vacation: Top Spots To Take Your Dog On The Gold Coast

Pet Vacation: Top Spots To Take Your Dog On The Gold Coast

18 Oct 2019

With an unmatched collection of award-winning beaches, world-heritage listed rainforests and many top-notch attractions and experiences for all, the Gold Coast is undoubtedly an incredible place to explore. But with so much fun to be had, why should your four-legged friend(s) miss out on all the adventure? Fortunately, they don’t have to.

There are a number of off-leash dog beaches, parks, accommodation providers and even cafés that cater to both humans and our beloved canines, right here on the Gold Coast. So with over 300 days of sunshine on the cards, plan your next pooch-friendly family holiday (or weekend escapade) with these tips in mind…


There are six main off-leash dog exercise areas covering almost five kilometres of the Gold Coast’s pristine beaches and foreshores. Better still, most locations are equipped with BBQs, toilets and even a café or two. Check out:

Currumbin Dog Beach Gold Coast
For doggos that love to swim, head to Currumbin Creek. Image Credit: @maddogsgoldcoast


Some of the other key areas around the region with off-leash parks include:

  • Helensvale – Discovery Park, Discovery Drive 
  • Runaway Bay – O’Connell Park, corner Morala Avenue and Ocean Street
  • Tallebudgera – Schuster Park, Heather Street, Schuster Road
  • Currumbin Waters – Palmer Family Park, Noojee Street
  • Coolangatta – Goodwin Park, Jarvis Lane (East of the path)

A full list of the off-leash dog exercise areas and also the prohibited areas are available (courtesy of the Gold Coast City Council) below for Northern, Central and Southern suburbs of the Gold Coast:

The off-leash dog areas brochure also provides more information about these leash-free areas.

Off-leash dog parks Gold Coast
Settle in for a great time at the dog park. Image Credit: @maddogsgoldcoast


If Palm Beach or Currumbin Creek is on your itinerary, be sure to head to Dune Café located right opposite the kids Pirate Park. Open 7 days from 6.30am to 3pm, sit and enjoy your morning breakfast or grab a coffee to go before your morning or afternoon beach walk – just a few metres away at the popular (off-leash) Currumbin Creek.

Alternatively, if you’re heading towards the Northern end of the Coast drop into Café Catalina in Southport. With a VIP (a.k.a) ‘Very Important Pooches’ entrance and outdoor bean bags to boot, it’s the perfect start (or end) to a day at the Broadwater or Gold Coast Aquatic Centre.

Pet-friendly waterfront dining at Café Catalina on the Gold Coast
Pet-friendly waterfront dining at Café Catalina. Image Credit: @cafe.catalina


On the hunt for pet-friendly accommodation? At Big4 Holiday Parks you can choose from a range of camping, caravan, and self-contained holiday destinations that are well equipped to house the whole family. Dog washes, leash-free areas, dog boarding and even outdoor agility courses are also part of the park’s offering to make for an all-round stress-free and enjoyable holiday with your furry friends. Check into Big4 Holiday Park and Motel at Helensvale.

Pet-friendly cabins at Helensvale on the Gold Coast
Pet-friendly cabins at Helensvale. Image Credit: Big4 Holiday Parks

Another affordable accommodation option is the Jadran Motel and El Jays Holiday Lodge. Situated just a stone’s throw away from the beautiful Broadwater Parklands, choose from studio suites, one-bedroom apartments with kitchenettes or fully self-contained two-bedroom apartments. With the whole family in tow, enjoy a stroll along the boardwalk into Main Beach or make a day of it near the water’s edge at the Broadwater, or a short 10 minutes away at the Spit.

The Spit Off Leash Dog Beach
The Spit off-leash dog beach. Image Credit: @ourdogoscar

So pack your bags and enjoy a holiday to remember on the Gold Coast – four-legged friends and family members included.

We’ll see you soon!

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Ashleigh Bailey
Ashleigh Bailey

As a newcomer to the Gold Coast tourism scene, Ashleigh is a lover of exploring and sharing all things the beautiful Gold Coast landscape has to offer. You’ll find her a regular amongst the local café scene and the scenic beach breaks. And when’s she’s not writing and practising her craft as an avid Digital Marketing Professional, she enjoys relaxing at her home in the GC’s southern neighbour of Tweed Heads.


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.