Blessed with over 65 kilometres (40 miles) of pearly white sandy beaches and a year ’round subtropical climate, Queensland’s Sunshine Coast is one of Australia’s favourite holiday destinations. It stands to reason, then, that Maroochydore, in the very heart of the Sunshine Coast, would be the centre of activity on the Sunshine Coast.
Maroochydore is not actually a single town. Rather, it is a collection of interconnected suburbs, including Alexandra Headland, Maroochy, Mooloolaba and Coolum. Each of these names is well known to visitors to the region because each of them has its own special flavour. Together, they form the vibrant hub of the Sunshine Coast. With a total population of around 50,000, these communities form the commercial centre of the entire region.
If you asked the question, “What is there to do in Maroochydore?” you would probably be asked in return: “What’s not to do?” Aside from snow skiing and other winter activities, Maroochydore lacks nothing except perhaps the fast-paced life of other larger coastal resorts south of the Sunshine Coast. There’s all the shopping, dining and entertainment you can find in southern Queensland, but it’s all presented to you in the relaxed, hospitable Sunshine Coast spirit.
The Gold Coast is famous for its theme parks. In fact, many families go to the Gold Coast just to visit Sea World or one of the other large theme works in the area. If you’ve “been there, done that” or want to enjoy the more relaxed pace of the Sunshine Coast but not deprive the kids of a theme park adventure, Maroochydore is the perfect compromise. Aussie World, conveniently located just off the Bruce Highway, is not as large (or expensive) as its Gold Coast rivals, but it is equally fun for the whole family. Hint: the teenagers and brave adults will love the Giant Redback!
Another great Maroochydore family attraction is the Sunshine Castle. Located in nearby Bli Bli, the re-creation of a medieval castle is great fun for everyone and is just a ten minute drive from Maroochydore. Be sure and climb to the top of the 24 metre (about 20 yard) high lookout and take in the breathtaking view of the entire Sunshine Coast and hinterland.
If you like surfing, no one needs to convince you to take the time to drive past the classic, but overcrowded breaks of southern Queensland to the beaches and points around Maroochydore. Alexandra Headland and Noosa Heads are two of the Sunshine Coast’s classic surf spots and there are many more. When you add the great beachbreaks into the mix, there are dozens of great spots for surfing. For consistent waves, check out Coolum: for some reason, it attracts waves like a magnet.
Whether you’re a family, a couple or travelling alone, you’ll love the Sunshine Coast and will find a Sunshine Coast accommodation to suit you. There’s everything from budget backpacker lodges to romantic retreats for couples. If you’re not driving, don’t worry. There are plenty of transportation services available in Maroochydore, so you won’t need to miss a thing.