With 2023 underway and summer in full swing, it's the perfect time of year to get amongst all that's happening on the Gold Coast. Pop these events on your social calendar and get the year off to a cracking start. Catch some sizzling turf and surf sports action, join the crowd at a waterfront music festival and infuse your summer season with a mix of culture, sun and fun on the Gold Coast.
Magic Millions: January 4th - 17th
One of the most sought-after events on the Gold Coast’s social and sporting calendar jumps out of the gates in January when The Star Gold Coast Magic Millions Racing Carnival gallops into town. And whether you’re a filly or fella frocking up for fashions on the field, a punter placing a few bets and having a few beers or bubbles trackside or plan to sweep the Magic Millions Yearling Sales for a champion - it’s an occasion where everyone can win. With a whopping $11.75 million prize purse up for grabs across ten fast-paced races, the energy, excitement and eclectic mix of racing professionals, celebrities, fashionistas and party-goers make this the must-attend event of the year.
San Cisco at Dreamworld
Dreamworld is throwing its theme park gates open for a first-ever for an after-dark jam session featuring acclaimed Australian independent rockers San Cisco. The three-piece indy pop sensation herald from Fremantle, Western Australia and have headlined Splendour in the Grass, Lollapalooza and Reading Festival, earning them glowing accolades, millions of live streams and a huge fan base. Supporting San Cisco, local home-grown groovers, Peach Fur, Chutney & Big Wheels will keep the entertainment coming and while this event is a first for Dreamworld, more gigs are expected to follow. Watch this space.
Shaw and Partners Shannon Eckstein Ironman Classic: February 10th - 11th
Named in honour of local surf lifesaving champion, Shannon Eckstein, an eight-time Australian Ironman title winner with six world titles and nine Nutri-Grain series wins under his belt, this event returns to Northcliffe for its fourth consecutive year in February. Cheer on some of the best open and age ocean athletes in the world competing for a slice of a prize pool worth $130,000. With sizzling action in the sea and on the sand and following a surf carnival format, elimination heats will span swim, board, ski, and running events, culminating in a thrilling final race. With prizes for spectators and athletes alike, find yourself a shady spot on the sidelines to be part of the hottest summer of surf action there is.
Summersalt: February 12th
Making its sun-kissed summer return, and with headline acts including Angus & Julia Stone, Ben Harper, City and Colour, The Reubens, Middle Kids and Alex and the Astronaut, SummerSalt is set to vibe the GC on February 12th. In a new home at Broadwater Parklands, the festival brings together some of Australia’s favourite artists alongside exciting international acts across some of the country's most exquisite beachside locations. Expect a sun-soaked day segueing into a night under the stars dancing to live music, fuelling up at food trucks and joining in family-friendly festivities underpinned by cultural attractions that merge the series with local community and sustainability initiatives. A true Aussie summer feast for the senses, so round up the kids, invite the neighbours, bring some chairs and an eski (if you’ve booked seated tickets) and pop on your dancing shoes - this is one summer soiree you will not want to miss.
Gold Coast Open: February 17th - 19th
The coolest place to watch the waves will be sitting on the grassy knoll of Burleigh Hill when the world's best international and Australian surfers roll into town to duel it out on Burleigh’s famous right-hand break at the Gold Coast Open. In a thrilling three-day event that forms part of the WSL QS 1000, both men and women will vie for prize money and points in open surf events. But it’s not all about surfing. Feel the energy, immerse in a mesh of surf and coastal culture including live music, night cinema, skateboarding and sunrise yoga in between sessions of world-class surfing and hopping between food trucks and Burleigh’s smorgasbord of local cafes.
HOTA - Pop Masters: Art from the Mugrabi Collection, New York: February 18th - June 4th
A world-exclusive exhibition brought to you by HOTA as the gallery hosts its first-ever international exhibition. Featuring works from luminaries Andy Warhol, Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat, art lovers are expected to swarm to see the showcase spanning three generations from a trilogy of masters that have inspired and defined the pop-art genre. Other artists influenced by their legacies over the past six decades will also feature with bold, thought-provoking works from Katherine Bernhardt, Kwesi Botchway, George Condo, Damien Hirst, Kaws, Barbara Kruger, Joel Mesler, Richard Prince, Tom Sachs, Julian Schnabel, Mickalene Thomas and Tom Wesselmann. Direct from New York to the Gold Coast and exclusive to HOTA from February 18th - June 4th only. A must-see for the creatively inclined.
Need more inspo for your Gold Coast summer? Check out these fresh new venues to eat, drink and be merry.
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.