Tweed, glorious Tweed! From the mountains to the river mouths, the sand dunes to the red earth hills, this little slice of paradise really does have it all. The Tweed Coast and hinterland provide the freshest produce and the warmest smiles, so take a little weekend drive and discover our top picks peppered throughout this fertile and fabulous area.
Prepare to hit the road, these are the best things to do on the Tweed Coast.
Baked At Ancora
Parisian bakery meets riverside picnic spot, say hello to Baked at Ancora. Watch yachts bobbing in crystal clear water while you devour a fresh croissant or work off their famous Hawaiian bread French Toast by taking a swing in their Insta-worthy hanging chairs.
Hymn is where you take your out-of-town friends to show off the Tweed cafe scene. In our opinion, they have the best breakfast menu in town (try the Hawker Roll). Owners KC and Kelly have perfectly curated every detail of this inner suburb cafe from the beats to the brews and the brekkie.
The Bread Social
Do not come here with that one friend who likes to share things because, trust us, you’ll want to keep all of the treats from this modern-day bakery to yourself. The Bread Social can lay claim to making Bay Street cool again and is the ideal post-surf pitstop to pick up a pork and fennel sausage roll or a poached pear and pistachio danish.
Next Door Espresso
Great brews with great views, this little Tweed gem is right on the river so grab a takeaway and stroll across the road to admire one of Australia’s most beautiful waterways. Breakfast at Next Door Espresso is a must-visit when you’re hunting for things to do on the Tweed Coast.
A touch of country farm life and rural fresh air, Verandah Cafe is best enjoyed over a homemade cake or slice as you watch baby ducklings waddle past. Verandah Cafe is a great escape from the concrete jungle and is right on our doorstep.
Farm & Co.
If you’re searching for a sweet country drive from the Tweed Coast, we highly recommend Farm & Co. Not only does this working farm produce fresh organic produce, it also has a farm-to-plate cafe, Insta-famous sunflower fields and friendly farm animals to keep the kids entertained. Keep your eyes peeled for Schmokey, the resident farmhouse cat often found lazing on a hay bale.
If you’re a fan of Gold Coast institution Bam Bam Bakehouse then you will love its southern sister, Cubby. Some things are just better on a fresh baguette and Cubby Bakehouse has all of those things and more; the standout being its eggs benny with delicious house made hollandaise.
The Salt Mill
Allpress Coffee. THE END. Seriously though, what more do you need? Okay, we will throw in a beautiful beach and creek views across the road served with The Salt Mill's divine acai bowls—happy now?
With the owners of Blackboard Coffee Roasters backing the cafe component of The Commons at Casuarina, you know you’re in for a treat. With relaxed yet attentive service in a sun-drenched and texture-filled setting, Tucker has your all-day weekend brunching nosh covered.
It’s not unheard of that people will drive past five cafes to get to one that serves Allpress Coffee. Kartel Espresso is making a trip to the seaside town of Cabarita all the more worthwhile with their cute-as-a-button, hole-in-the-wall espresso bar, located just a sandy-footed walk from the beach.
Keith’s Shop Of Really Really Really Good Things
Really? Yes, really. Keith and his shop of really good things consists of all manner of delights, from cookbooks to preserves, pickled delights and sauces galore. Grab a coffee, smash a bacon and egg roll or settle in for a sneaky glass of natural wine—indeed all the really, really good things are here at Keith’s.
Hands down the most exciting restaurant opening of 2019, Gallura Italian co-owners Maki and Mike have over 40 years combined restaurant experience and it totally shows with this Sardinian-inspired breath of fresh air to the Tweed Coast dining scene. A must-try is the Tweed king prawn lemon and butter risotto with candied lemon, enjoyed with stunning Italian wines and Sardinian beers you can’t get anywhere else…other than, well, Sardinia.
A restaurant that truly celebrates local produce, Pipit has a modern seaside vibe that embraces local farmers and suppliers. We recommend pulling up a seat at the bar to take in the dynamic atmosphere of the open-plan kitchen and to watch head chef Ben Devlin in action. If you’re hunting for one of the best restaurants on the Tweed Coast, stop the search.
The Inky Squid
Sitting pretty in the refurbished Pavilions Market Place, The Inky Squid is a modern day take on the Australian classic fish and chip shop. The lemon pepper squid with crisp salty seaweed will have you finding excuses to drive out to Terranora.
Potager is a rustic garden-to-table restaurant sitting in Carool on the edge of the Tweed Valley and is a scenic 25-minute drive from the Gold Coast Airport. Both grown onsite and locally sourced produce makes for a fresh and authentic Tweed Coast dining experience.
Inside the gorgeous boutique hotel Halcyon House and practically sitting on the coastal sand dunes, is Paper Daisy restaurant. Award-winning chef Jason Barratt has seen Paper Daisy win two chefs hats so far and with creations such as macaroni with king prawn, bush tomato and crab butter, we can easily see why.
Long Greek lunches under breezy white umbrellas, Taverna is the best spot for a sneaky midday Aperol Spritz or a crispy slice of Byron Bay haloumi drizzled with bush honey and rosemary. Be sure to snap a photo in front of their adorable peppermint door and let those wafting Greek flavours draw you inside.
Sitting in the footprint of Mount Warning, this stunning farmhouse restaurant boasts beautiful lush gardens where you can see fresh produce being grown, before making its way to your plate. Fully licenced and with plenty of spots from which to admire the surrounding countryside, stop at Mavis’s Kitchen to complete a magical day exploring the pristine landscapes of the Tweed Coast and hinterland.
If you haven’t sampled Husk’s famous Ink Gin or Spiced Bam Bam rum then you’d best book yourself a distillery tour, pronto. Sitting amongst the sugar cane fields, Husk Distillery really is the best place to spend a lazy Sunday afternoon on the grass accompanied by one of their generous grazing boards complete with Ink Gin and tonic in hand. One of the best things to do on the Tweed Coast, no trip across the border is complete without a visit here.
Red Earth Brewery
New kid on the block, Red Earth Brewery is answering your thirsty ale prayers. With views to Mount Warning and frothy cold ones poured straight from the vat, you could easily make Red Earth your new local.
Kingscliff Farmers Market
Open on Saturdays from 7am to 11am, at the Kingscliff Farmers Market you can purchase direct from the growers and creators that call this fertile farming region home. Our pick is the super fresh cheese made by Deb from Cheesus Loves You.
Water Sports Guru
When you need a break from all that eating and drinking, one of the best things to do on the Tweed Coast is dive into the pristine waterways with Water Sports Guru. Think: kayaking, SUPíng, learning to surf, whale watching, snorkelling with turtles and much more.
Enjoy cocktails by the pool, a relaxing holistic spa treatment or a long lunch at their in-house restaurant, Paper Daisy. One of the best places to stay on the Tweed Coast and with Cabarita Beach only meters away, Halcyon House has it all and is the perfect little getaway that’s not too far from home.
The Hideaway Glamping
A new boutique glamping experience on the Tweed Coast, set next door to the idyllic Cudgen Nature Reserve and moments from Cabarita Beach, book into The Hideaway’s swish bell tents and enjoy the outdoors with a touch of class.
Grounds Of Cabarita
Grounds of Cabarita is a beautifully renovated beach shack in the middle of seaside Cabarita. Book this cutie through Airbnb (though it’s popular, so must plan ahead) and enjoy a private sanctuary perfect for those summer holidays with its giant backyard and stunning white concrete pool. Bathrooms feature Jatana tiles and the walls are adorned with artworks by Jai Vasicek.
The Old Tweed Dairy
Located seven minutes from Pottsville and 25 minutes from Byron Bay, this original farm building has been lovingly restored with open bi-fold doors taking in the peaceful rural setting. At The Old Tweed Dairy, explore the farm, feed the animals or simply spend the whole day in the four-poster bed, you choose.
Crystal Creek Rainforest Retreat
A little bit of romance in the rainforest, Crystal Creek Rainforest Retreat is ideal for couples seeking a tranquil escape in the Tweed Hinterland. Pick from five uniquely designed bungalows or cabins and explore walking tracks on the property before retreating to your bath complete with dreamy rainforest views.
Endeavor Tweed Heads
Endeavour Tweed Heads comprise two charmingly curated holiday villas called Muriel and Mrs Ollie. Book one or both and enjoy being in the heart of Tweed Heads close to cafes, beaches and the river.
The Pink Hotel
Chíc rock n roll vibes are what The Pink Hotel is all about. Each room is individually styled with striking artworks by local tattooing legend Coco Loberg (whose studio is also downstairs). Enjoy exclusive access to both their rooftop and piano bars or cruise downstairs to the Coolangatta burger institution that is Eddie’s Grub House.
On the hunt for more things to do on the Tweed Coast? The Commons is a neighbourhood hangout worth hunting down.
Image credit: Hayley Williamson, Kaitlin Maree and Brooke Darling for Urban List