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Over the years l’ve spent a lot of weekends visiting the Sunshine Coast attending surf carnivals, when our kids were Nippers, and having the occasional weekend getaway with my husband or with my girlfriends. For me it is a relatively easy two and a half hour drive north of the Gold Coast, but it’s like a world away. The Sunshine Coast is more spread out, is less crowded and touristy, and you can still find a beach that is virtually unpopulated and pristine. My favourite Sunshine Coast Places are:
What’s not to love about Coolum Beach and Yaroomba? There are plenty of great surf beaches for the surfers, a long stretch of beach to walk along at both Coolum Main Beach and Yaroomba, a fabulous coastal walking path with gorgeous views from Point Arkwright and Point Perry and the added bonus of a challenging mountain to scale at Mount Coolum.
Plus the small village of Coolum Beach has great facilities with shops, supermarket, plenty of cafes and good restaurants. Coolum Surf Club is also a spectacular spot for an afternoon coldie!
One of the best highlights of a stay in Noosa or Noosaville are the breathtaking sunsets over the Noosa River and mountains to the west. You can perch yourself anywhere along the river to take in this amazing sight. The Noosa National Park is another gem with fabulous walking paths around the headland, where you are rewarded with stunning views along the way.
A stroll down the ever-popular Hastings Street is a must do with cafes, boutiques and galleries galore lining the shady street. Noosa Beach has one of the best point breaks for surfing in the world, particularly for long boards. The Noosa River at Noosaville is a water lover’s paradise with kayaking, standup paddle boarding, jet skiing, boating and fishing all very popular.
Nearby is the small village of Sunshine Beach which I absolutely adore with it’s very relaxed and laid-back vibe. The wide, open beach is great for an uncrowded surfing session or a swim. A must do is a coldie at the Sunshine Beach Surf Club for spectacular ocean views or a coffee at one of the cafes in town.
My favourite things to do when I drive in my Toyota to Alexandra Headland is to park my car and walk along the coastal walkway taking in the gorgeous views from the headland. I also enjoy eating a meal at Alexandra Headland Surf Club and poking around the rocky shoreline of Alexandra Headland beach.
In Mooloolaba I love to sit along the beachfront with the “coffee set” to people watch, browse some of the trendy boutiques, enjoy a coldie at the Mooloolaba Surf Club, walk down to The Wharf and Yacht Club to check out the boats and enjoy a swim in the usually smooth waters at the beach.
For a change of scenery, I jump into my Toyota for Buderim, only a short driving distance inland from Mooloolaba. The gorgeous mountain air, fertile lands and the State Forest Park here make for a cooler change.
I’ve spent many a weekend at the caravan park at Cotton Tree and have to say it’s one of the best I’ve ever stayed in with it’s location on the sandy banks of the Maroochy River and close proximity to Maroochydore Beach. Parklands fringe the river and there is a good walking path that follows the river and then the beachfront, where you can walk all the way to Mooloolaba if you like.
Ocean Street in Maroochydore comes to life of an evening with hundreds of restaurants and bars offering all types of cuisine from around the world and live musical entertainment. Nearby Sunshine Plaza is the largest shopping centre on the Sunshine Coast and is a great place to shop and then hang at one of the cafes or eateries on the timber deck on Cornmeal Creek.
Caloundra has really come a long way since I started visiting here 10 to 15 years ago. Protected by Bribie Island on the Pumicestone Passage, the calm waters are a great place for families with small children. However if you want surf, there are a couple of beaches further north that offer good surfing waves.
Moffat Beach is my pick of the beaches in Caloundra, with a headland offering magical views over the beach and lovely grassy parks lining the foreshore. Across the road from the beach there are a selection of good cafes to grab a coffee and chill. Caloundra also boasts a very good coastal walkway that starts at Golden Beach and goes all the way to Dicky Beach.
Do you have any particular favourite places on the Sunshine Coast or area near where you live for a weekend escape?
This post is part of the Lovin’ Life Linky with a Lovin’ Life Team of the “ageing positively” kind who are as keen as I am to promote the Lovin’ Life mindset.
The Lovin’ Life Team includes:
Kathy was a 50 something year old when she started up this blog 6 years ago, but has since turned over another decade and is now in her early 60s. She is married with two adult children and lives on the Tweed Coast of New South Wales, Australia. Kathy enjoys living life to the fullest and loves to keep fit and active by maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly. Some of her interests include reading, photography, travelling, cooking and blogging! Kathy works part-time as a freelance writer but her real passion is travelling and photographing brilliant destinations both within Australia and overseas and writing about it.
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