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Your guide to Sunshine Coast
All About the Sunshine Coast
Less than 90 minutes north of Brisbane, Australia’s Sunshine Coast is a 40-miles stretch of sparkling beaches, majestic mountains, and lush rainforest interspersed with some of Queensland’s most charming towns and villages. Start in Caloundra, where you can spend your day swimming in one of the golden beaches or roaming dozens of vendor stalls at the Caloundra Street Fair. Mooloolaba's protected beach is perfect for fishing while the busy wharf draws revelers to its lively restaurants and bars. Surfers come from all over to explore the region’s legendary breaks, from the easy-riding sets off of Coolum Beach to the gnarly cyclone swells at Noosa Heads.
And not all of the excitement on the Sunshine Coast happens on the water. Hiking the volcanic hills of the Glass House Mountains, gallery hopping in the town of Eumundi, and spying macaws and parrots in Maleny are just some of the highlights of the hinterlands.
When is the best time to stay in a vacation rental in Sunshine Coast?
Queensland's climate is subtropical, so most of the year experiences temperate weather, with hot summers and mild, wet winters. Since Australia is in the southern hemisphere, summers run from December to February and winters from May to August. The summers are great for enjoying the beach and other water-based activities. Winters require a jacket and a waterproof layer, but this time of year is great for exploring the hinterlands of the Sunshine Coast. It's a climate that favors a year-round outdoor lifestyle, so anytime is a good time to book a Sunshine Coast cabin rental.
There are a variety of events that occur here throughout the year, like the Mooloolaba Sunset Markets, which take place on the first and third Saturdays of July and August, and Caloundra’s Christmas market, known as Twilight Markets.
What are the top things to do in Sunshine Coast?
Noosa National Park
This national park lies just over a mile east of the town of Noosa Heads. Follow the six-mile coastal walk for outstanding views of the headlands jutting into the ocean. The path is wheelchair accessible as far as Dolphin Point, where you may catch a glimpse of dolphins leaping out of the water. Continue on to Hell's Gate, the pinnacle of the trail and you’ll be rewarded with 270-degree coastal views of steep cliffs that rise from the deep blue water. Keep your eyes open and try to spot koalas in the eucalyptus trees here.
There are dozens of beautiful beaches on the Sunshine Coast, but Mooloolaba Beach might just take the cake. The white-sand-meets-impossibly-blue-water aesthetic is enhanced by its versatility. There are sections for swimming, surfing, and fishing — and should you have a hankering for a snack, the adjacent esplanade is full of restaurants, cafes, and bars. In winter, post up at one of the many seaside patios to watch humpback whales.
This hinterland village lies about 15 miles west of Noosa Heads and boasts some of the best artisan markets in Australia. Held every Wednesday and Saturday, you’ll find homemade arts and crafts, clothing, homewares, skincare, produce, and street food from over 100 vendors.