Things To Do

11 Of The Best Places To Kayak On The Gold Coast And Nearby

By Kian Lavender
21st Apr 2023

kayaking gold coast

Kayaking used to be one of the few ways to spend leisurely outings sliding across your favourite stretch of h2o. And due to its many advantages over other forms of watercraft (no risk of falling and being able to pack some snacks) it has thankfully stood the test of time.

To help you get out and about on the water, we’ve compiled 11 places to kayak on and around the Gold Coast. Whether you live northern, central or southern Gold Coast, there’s a spot not too far from you. These are the best kayaking spots on the Gold Coast.

Tallebudgera Creek

Tallebudgera

Tallebudgera Creek is the one-size-fits-all when it comes to kayaking. Catch a glimpse of Burleigh Headland from the water by paddling along the creek towards the river mouth and take the opportunity for a quick dip while you’re there. Or paddle upstream among the mangroves towards Schuster Park, where there are plenty of facilities for the family, including picnic shelters, barbeques and playgrounds. Check out Smoothwaters Kayak to hire some gear.

South Stradbroke

Moreton Bay

South Stradbroke is the most popular place to kayak on the Gold Coast. Start your journey from the Paradise Point beach or the Esplanade Boat Ramp to make your way over to this island. After the journey, take a well-earned rest at South Currigee Campground, where there’s a sandy, gentle beach to have a relaxing picnic or a refreshing swim. And if you’re interested in Australian wildlife, take a walk inland (if you’re lucky, you might see some wallabies). If you’re interested in South Stradbroke, Seaway Kayaking Tours is perfect for the job.

Elanora Wetlands Reserve

Elanora

Glide through the 20-hectare reserve which borders the upper reaches of Tallebudgera Creek and forms part of the Burleigh to Springbrook wildlife corridor. This beautiful waterway plays a vital role in supporting the native flora and fauna in the area (including over 60 species of birds, sugar gliders and common tree snakes), making it a perfect place to kayak and become one with nature on the Gold Coast. Take a look at Action Outdoor Hire to hire a kayak (they have delivery).

The Broadwater

Southport

Make sure to strap in tight while you cruise the Broadwater, as you’ll be sharing it with every other avid water fan on the Gold Coast (us included). Take yourself on an exciting snorkelling trip at Wavebreak Island, or lose track of time as you explore the nooks and crannies of South Stradbroke Island. Seaway Kayaking Tours provides kayak hire and expeditions. 

kayaking on the broadwater

Currumbin Creek

Palm Beach

Head downstream along Currumbin Creek to Currumbin Parklands and give your kids a fun-filled day to remember. Or take the upstream route to Coastal Meadows Park, Currumbin Valley to get yourself in touch with nature. As one of the Gold Coast’s more popular locations for water sports, you won’t be far from fellow paddlers. Currumbin Boatshed has got you covered for kayaks and anything else you need to create memories to smile back on.

Colman Road Reserve

East Coomera

The Colman Road Reserve is a natural conservation area. It’s home to many native birds, so be prepared for a beautiful Australian adventure filled with friendly chirps and basking in the warm sun. And if you’re lucky, you might even catch the koalas foraging in the eucalypts as you explore Pimpama River, McCoy’s Creek and Southern Moreton Bay Islands. And if you’re feeling peckish, head over to Couran Cove Island Resort or Tippler’s Licensed Cafe for lunch and an afternoon drink. Action Outdoor Hire has everything you need to enjoy the luscious nature of Colman Road research.

Cudgen Creek

Kingscliff

One way to see the tranquil waters of Cudgen Creek is with the Watersports Guru. Take your pick from a number of kayaking tours, including self-guided, 90-minute and half-day options (rest assured, you’ll love it no matter what). Cudgen Creek is known for its breathtakingly transparent water and birdlife, but if you’re lucky, you may get greeted by the occasional dolphin. 

Jabiru Island

Paradise Point

For the northern Gold Coasters trying to join in on the fun, try Coombabah Creek (which extends into Coombabah Lake). Coombabah Creek is well-known as a meeting area for Eastern Curlews, Brahminy Kites and Osprey birds. If you’re not fond of feathered friends, paddle along Saltwater Creek to join the Coomera River, then slide south towards Paradise Point for a swim, rest, and something to eat if you’re feeling peckish. Visit Seaway Kayaking Tours to hire yourself a kayak for the day.

Jacobs Well Conservation Area

Jacobs Well

Paddle south into the Woogoompah Everglades to see mangrove-lined channels that join the Pimpama River, The Broadwater and South Stradbroke Island. If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to paddle side-by-side with the White-bellied Sea Eagles and Pelicans that patrol the area. Give Action Outdoor Hire a call if you’re not interested in missing out.

Mooball Creek

Pottsville

Start your trip in town and move south along the crystal clear waters of Mooball Creek, which runs parallel to the surf. If you’ve got the bug for nature this is the kayaking spot for you. Head towards Wooyung Nature Reserve, where nature does best. You’ve got the best chance of spotting natural wildlife (both under and above you) here at the nature reserve. If you’re a nature lover, call Action Outdoor Hire and get a kayak, conveniently delivered to you.

Simpsons Creek

Brunswick Heads

Head under the South Beach Road bridge (followed by the footbridge) and paddle south towards Byron Bay. After about 5km the water turns dark brown, which is from the surrounding Tea Tree (Melaleuca) forests that line the banks. Australia’s largest dragon lizard, the Eastern water dragon is a common visitor of the area, and occasionally large monitors can be seen moving along the shore. If this sounds like the kayaking trip for you, take a look at Brunswick Buccaneers and grab all the equipment you need.

Loving nature so far? You won’t find better than this handy little list of the best bushwalking areas the Gold Coast has to offer.

Image Credit: Tourism & Events Queensland

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