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The Best Gold Coast Beaches For Sun-Soaked Days

By Urban List Gold Coast

You could be forgiven for thinking the Gold Coast is just one long stretch of sand, with nothing but the rugged good looks of lifeguards to mix things up along the way. Though, once you get acquainted with the real roundup of the best beaches on the Gold Coast, you will see that fact is only partially true. 

Coffee shops nestled just off the golden beaches, dog-friendly stretches of sand and lookout points for soaking up panoramic views are scattered from North to South. We know everyone has their own favourite, but here are eleven incredible Gold Coast beaches worth a sun-soaked visit in 2023.

Northern Gold Coast Beaches 

The Spit 

Gold Coast's most northern beach is none other than “The Spit”—and yes, it's a great name. The Spit extends into the Seaway and is the gateway between the Gold Coast Broadwater and the open ocean, so it’s perfect for all those Insta-worthy pics from dawn to dusk. 

This little nook of wonders has it all; picnic, snorkelling, diving and fishing spots, boating access, dog walking and of course, relaxing vibes. The Spit is the perfect spot for a stroll down the long jetty to enjoy the picturesque Surfers Paradise coastline or if you’ve got your furry little friend why not take them to the ‘off leash’ portion of the beach to let loose.

Budds Beach

Found on the exclusive and quaint strip of canal behind the manic streets of Surfers Paradise, this is a hidden nook for calm sea seekers of the northern Gold Coast—the adorable Budds Beach.

You can spend many an hour laying here and soaking up the sunshine, completely uninterrupted. After you've basked in the glorious sun, head to the adorable Bumbles for a post-swim feed. 

Central Gold Coast Beaches 

South Stradbroke

This popular surf break is about 200 metres from The Spit, and has the unique allure of wallaby watching and no crowds. Paddle over to South Stradbroke on your board or hire a boat for the day; either way, you're in for a truly stunning day at one of the Gold Coast's best beaches.

Southern Gold Coast Beaches 

Mermaid Beach 

Tucked away between its fashionable neighbours, Broadbeach and Miami, Mermaid Beach is a relaxed stretch of golden coastline popular with swimmers and surfers wanting to escape the hustle and bustle of busy beaches. 

With its reputation of cruisy and laid-back locals, this breathtaking beach radiates a seaside village vibe, perfect to grab a bite to eat and relax under the sun—and no one’s going to judge if you play mermaids in the waves. We know you want to. 

Nobbys BeachThe Gold Coast skyline from North Burleigh Headland

It may officially be called 'Nobby Beach', but FYI non-locals, nobody’s actually calling it that. Because nobody wants to sound ridiculous. The affectionately named 'Nobby's' is a great little patch of sand playing front yard to the numerous bars, eat haunts, and surf vibes of its namesake suburb.

Unlike other popular Gold Coast beaches such as Mermaid Beach and Broadbeach, Nobby's is edged by North Burleigh headland, which makes for some truly gorgeous views if you're willing to make the trek up it.

Burleigh BeachBurleigh Beach, one of the Gold Coast's best beaches

Queensland’s answer to Bondi, Burleigh Beach is a place where kids make memories diving into the waves and riding pastel beach cruisers with baskets full of fruit. It can get very busy, particularly on a Sunday afternoon, when sunset-loving hordes climb the Burleigh Hill and watch the sun dip below the horizon, but trust us, it's worth it.

There's family picnics in the park, birthday parties galore and oceanside markets. No one is exempt from loving Burleigh Beach

Currumbin CreekCurrumbin Creek, one of the Gold Coast's best beaches

The word creek might not send you tripping over your feet with excitement, but rest assured the mouth of Currumbin Creek is a dream scene. As it sucks in and spits out the South Pacific Ocean, pods of dolphins are invited in for lazy afternoons gliding past stand-up paddle boarders and watching Gold Coasters act all Weiss Bar happy.

Bonus: there are dog-friendly stretches nearby so even your furry friend won't have to miss out. Hands down, one of the best and most child-friendly beaches on the Gold Coast.

Currumbin To KirraThe view of Currumbin beach, one of the Gold Coast's best beaches

Choosing a favourite beach between Currumbin and Kirra is like choosing your favourite child. And while only the locals truly know where one beach ends and the next one begins, the immaculate squeak-between-your-toes sand of Currumbin, Tugun, Bilinga and Kirra make up seven kilometers of uninterrupted strolling magic.

The goodness continues south around the corner to Coolangatta, too. We’re going to be bold and say it’s one of the finest suburban stretches of beach in the whole country. And the best part? It’s one of the much quieter Gold Coast beaches so you won't be fighting for a spot to lay down your towel.

Rainbow BayRainbow Bay, one of the Gold Coast's best beaches

One of our all-time favourite beaches to throw down the towel is Rainbow Bay. Groms, pros and barrels galore, this is about as far as you can distance yourself from the hazy cluster of high rise on the horizon. Made perfect when chased with a frosty Balter on the deck of the legendary Rainbow Bay Surf Club.

Snapper Rocks 

Want to snap up the best waves on the Gold Coast? Then Snapper Rocks is the place to be. Tucked away between Point Danger and Rainbow Bay this small rocky outcrop is a point break that forms the start of the man-made Superbank. 

The Superbank is renowned as one of the most consistent breaks in Queensland and is home to the annual World Surf League Quicksilver and Roxy Pros.  So, if you’re ready to tear up the waves and show off those gnarly ticks then grab your board and wetsuit and head to Snapper for some of the Gold Coast’s best waves.

Greenmount beach 

Look no further if you’re after the perfect mix of golden sand and lush landscapes—Greenmount Beach has it all. This charming and heavenly beach has been blessed with a breathtaking ecosystem that wraps around the white sand and deep blue waters. 

Located right on the border, Greenmount Beach marks the end of Gold Coast beaches, leaving you on the edge of Queensland and New South Wales. This little slice of heaven is relaxing and the perfect green hills are the spot to watch dolphins and whales frolic in the sea. 

Made your way around the best beaches on the Gold Coast? Head inland for Gold Coast's best national parks and breathe in that fresh mountain air. 

Image credit: Brooke Darling Photography

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