The best of both worlds in the form of a pristine coast and lush hinterland
The Sunshine Coast is like no other Queensland coastal region in that it’s many destinations in one. Whether you’re keen to immerse yourself in the galleries of Noosa, Maleny and Montville, sample the local cuisine at one or more of the region’s many restaurants, markets and wineries, experience unforgettable subtropical forests and freshwater lakes and rivers, or treat yourself to a bit of sun, surf and sand, you won’t be disappointed. The laid-back cities of Caloundra and Coolum are home to pristine beaches, the Sunshine Coast’s majestic hinterland features natural landmarks like the Glass House Mountains, the national parks of Mapleton Falls, Great Sandy and Kondalilla, the quaint shops and cafés of Noosa and the multi-coloured sand of Rainbow Beach.
Things to do
Crikey! It's a croc!
There’s really no other zoo like Steve Irwin’s Australia Zoo opens in new window. Enjoy daily shows with plenty of cuddly animals and not-so-cuddly reptiles to learn about and, if you choose, interact with face to face.
Small, good things
Venture beyond the beach-and-surf scene to explore the Blackall Range, Glass House Mountains and Mary Valley. The townships of Maleny, Mapleton and Montville offer stunning views, arts and crafts, fresh produce, locally made wines and cheeses and the opportunity to go for rainforest walks. Accommodation options include cosy cottages and quaint bed-and-breakfast spots.
The Original Eumundi Markets have been a Sunshine Coast institution since 1980, attracting about 1.6 million visitors annually. Over 550 merchants display their wares every Wednesday and Saturday. Offerings include artisan furniture, handmade clothes, homewares, gifts, jewellery, trinkets, original art and delicious, homegrown produce. Set aside a few hours to visit one of Australia’s most popular and thriving marketplaces.
The Sunshine Coast’s sub-tropical climate allows hackers and professionals alike to play a round at any time of the year. There are a total of 17 courses, with five rated at championship level.
The Sunshine Coast is home to 100km of beaches bordered by crystal-clear waters. It’s the perfect place to learn or pursue a passion for diving, fishing,sailing, kayaking, jet-skiing, water-skiing, kite-boarding, paddle-boarding, snorkelling, surfing or swimming.
Travel time 40 minutes
Taxi Approx AUD $80
Bus Henry’s Airporter to Noosa meets all flights. One-way AUD $25 (adult), AUD $15 (child), takes 45 minutes
Travel time 15 minutes
Taxi Approx AUD $30
TransLink Bus 622 One-way AUD $6.10 (adult); journey takes one hourBack to top
When to go
The Sunshine Coast is perfect for an action-packed holiday any time of the year. Temperatures average 28°C in summer in the coastal region; it’s slightly cooler in the hinterland. During the winter months, the average daytime temperature is 20°C and evening brings a cooler 10°C.
If you’re into literature, music and the arts, July is the best time to visit when the Noosa Longweekend Festival takes place. The year-end Woodford Folk Festival has been attracting crowds annually with its offering of music and cultural programmes. The Sunshine Coast Council runs free school holiday programmes to keep the kids entertained.Back to top
Travellers can hire cars at the airport but it’s just as easy (and less expensive) to take a train or bus. Sunbus provides frequent services throughout the Coast. Hinterland Connect Bus Service is a new route servicing the Sunshine Coast hinterland. Many tour operators are based in the region so you can sit back and enjoy the views without having to navigate unfamiliar territory.Back to top