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The Gold Coast for Active Families

25th February 2014

Having a family holiday at the Gold Coast doesn’t always equate to lounging by the pool every single day. A lot of families are enjoying getting hands on with their little ones and engaging them in active pursuits while on holiday. So here are my top five family friendly activities for those who want to get their kids off the sofa and join in the fun!

Gold Coast

Putt Putt Mini Golf
If your little ones are aged four and over, you can take them for a round of mini golf at Mermaid Beach. There are 18 holes of themed greens for the kids to play on. And it’s the perfect way for little ones to work on hand eye coordination, and for the older kids to hone their precision skills. Kids of all ages will love the themed courses complete with giant statues of elephants and castles. The recently renovated waterways cove features shipwrecked pirates and neon dolphins. Parents can rest easy knowing the entire course is covered in shades and if you work up a sweat, there are refreshments on site.

Lamington National Park
For something a little more adventurous, take the family up to Lamington National Park in the Gold Coast Hinterland. This world heritage park offers plenty of scenic outlooks, with the main attraction being the stunning short walks you can do. O’Reilly’s have an amazing tree top walk called the Booyong Walk, an 800 metre long suspended track among the trees. The kids will love running along the bridges and spotting the birds nesting and flying around at eye level. There are King Parrots flying around too, so buy some bird food and take an iconic photo of the family covered in gorgeous multi coloured birds. For something a little more strenuous, there are longer walks out to Moran’s Falls and Elabana Falls.

Broadbeach Surf School
If you happen to be a parent to a water baby or two, take them down to the beach and get them a surfing lesson. A group lesson takes around two hours and starts with them learning the ropes of surfing while still on the beach. Then they get taken out into the surf to paddle until their hearts content. Perfect for tweens and teens and a great way to enjoy the sunny Gold Coast. Parents can join in and paddle out with their kids or cheer them on from the sidelines. Most surf schools operate year round and will provide a wetsuit to suit the water temperature, so travelling up in July school holidays is no excuse for the kids not to learn to surf!

Thunderbird Park
If your kids are after serious adventure, consider taking them up to Mt Tambourine Thunderbird Park to let off some steam. The park has horse riding treks for the animal lover in the family, and laser tag for the competitive kids. There’s a tree top challenge with eleven flying foxes for the kids (and adults) to whizz down and race each other. If you have a budding geologist in your family, they will love visiting the fossil park, where they can use hammers and picks to fossick for ancient thundereggs. You will be surprised how much of a sweat you will work up running around digging up rocks and waiting for them to be cut open.

Gold Coast Iceland
If the Gold Coast sun is starting to get a bit much for the kids, perhaps drive out to Bundall for a day of ice skating. With lessons available on site, even an ice queen can learn the basics. Staff will be happy to help you get your balance and offer casual half hour lessons throughout the day. Make sure to rug up well as it is chilly inside and bring socks. The experts will fit everyone with skates and give a quick safety briefing before letting the kids have free reign on the ice. For additional safety, you can request the helmet and knee pads options too. Your kids will be pirouetting around you in no time!

If you are seeking your own Gold Coast adventure, contact Rachel Cunningham on 03 8626 4500 or email rachel.cunningham@escapetravel.com.au. Rachel is a consultant at Escape Travel’s store on Collins Street, Melbourne.