Quintessential Sunshine Coast
Located in Queensland and beginning just 100km North of Brisbane, the wonderful Sunshine Coast lives up to its name and offers a whole lot to see and do - including some surprises to uncover! With five distinct regions, the Sunshine Coast has lush hinterland, freshwater rivers and lakes, subtropical forests, farmland and stunning national parks, as well as it's famous, pristine beaches and coastline brimming with opportunities for adventure.
The Sunshine Coast is well known for its 'laid back' vibe and stylish towns, attracting visitors from around the world, as well as a proud, local population. Here, towns are dotted throughout the region to explore, good food is abundant and locally grown. People have a relaxed, friendly attitude and there are endless ways to fill the sunny days in this all-year-around, great climate part of Australia.
Whilst on the Sunshine Coast, definitely spend time in Noosa, the region's best known and very stylish town - but don't miss the chance to explore Coolum, Maroochydore, Mooloolaba and Caloundra, and the artistic and creative hinterland villages of Maleny, Montville and Mapleton.
Explore Hastings Street - Noosa's main street. It's full of restaurants, bars, boutique shops and galleries. By day, you will see surfers with their boards alongside smartly dressed shoppers - the contrast being part of the charm. By night, the street is lit with fairy lights hanging from the trees and the atmosphere feels very Mediterranean with people strolling from open-air bars to the beachside restaurants.
An elegant option for dining in Noosa is Sails Restaurant. Modern Australian cuisine, beach views, great for a special lunch or dinner.
A relaxed option is the popular Miss Moneypenny's. Enjoy the lovely outside decking area. Serves cocktails and very tasty pizzas.
Noosa Main Beach is right by Hastings Street and is patrolled all year round for swimming safety. This is a great location to learn how to surf or just to relax on the beach.
For a romantic evening, bring your own bottle of wine and catch a sunset cruise. Ice bucket and glasses provided, you'll be taken along the river & canals at a leisurely pace. Perfect for taking in the evening light and unique scenery - some of the places you'll see are in fact only accessible by water.
A surprising contrast to the golden beaches the Sunshine Coast is so famous for, are the charming inland and Hinterland towns of the region. A great example being, Gympie. The 19th century gold mining town is wonderful step back in time. Colonial buildings line the streets and remnants of times gone by are well preserved in the heritage walks and museums. There is plenty more around Gympie, including its own nearby bit of coastline where you can visit Rainbow Beach and Tin Can Bay - famous for dolphin feeding and a great place for sailing.
Of course, in such an abundant region, markets are the place to go for local food and artisan goods. Here are two to get started with!
Only a 20 minute drive away from Noosa, Eumundi Markets are open every Wednesday & Saturday and definitely worth a visit. Their ethos is “we make it, bake it, grow it, sew it”. You'll find individual stalls selling paintings, jewellery, furniture and also great food and local produce.
Caloundra Street Fair, from 8am - 1pm every Sunday, are known as the best street market on the Sunshine Coast. With over 200 stalls to browse and shop from, you won't be short inspiration.
It's easy! Sunshine Coast Airport is a 30 minute drive from Noosa and similar distances to other key centres in the region. Regular direct flights from Sydney/Melbourne are available OR you can arrive via Brisbane Airport and enjoy the drive up the coast or inland. There are also plenty of shuttle buses available if you don't wish to drive.
Here is a useful page of information about travel times from the Sunshine Coast Airport, plus good information about flights and connected destinations.
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