Pristine beaches and tropical rainforests make up the long stretches of coastline just waiting to be explored. Here is our shortlist of the best places to get out and about to enjoy the Sunshine Coast.

  1. Noosa National Park – 30 minutes’ drive

Loved by locals and tourists alike, Noosa National Park is an unmissable destination. The magnificent coastal backdrop is framed by beautiful pandanus palms and banksia trees. There are a number of walking tracks varying in levels of difficulty:

Alexandria Bay Walk: follow the Coastal Path, starting at the Parkedge Road entrance, the walk is 4.2km so allow an hour to reach Alexandria Bay.

Hell’s Gates Lookout: This 2.7km trail starts at the main car park and is a peaceful walk that gets you out of the sun on a hot day. Follow the Tanglewood Track back through the forest.

  1. Maleny Botanical Gardens & Bird World – 1-hour drive

Take the scenic route and enjoy the drive from the resort to Maleny Botanical Gardens. When you arrive pick up a map and take a leisurely stroll through the easy walking paths.

Pack up a picnic and enjoy lunch at the picnic tables — or don’t ­— and enjoy a pot Devonshire tea and scrumptious scones with jam and cream in one of the gazebos.

  1. Hervey Bay Whale Watch – 2.5-hour drive

Hop onboard between 14 July ­– 31 October and join Australia’s original Whale Watch operators for an experience of a lifetime! Because Hervey Bay’s waters are protected by World Heritage Listed Fraser Island, it makes the perfect place to see the humpback whales play.

  1. Glass House Mountains – 1-hour drive

The magnificent Glass House Mountains are made up of the remnants of volcanic activities millions of years ago. As a result the ancient peaks offer incredible views of the Sunshine Coast. This makes it a popular place for bushwalking, rock climbing and abseiling. The mountains have a unique Dreamtime story which tells of their formation. 

  1. Ginger Factory Yandina – 40 minutes’ drive

Sunshine Coast’s iconic Ginger Factory in Yandina offers a unique retail precinct, cafe, tours and fun rides. Visitors will also enjoy the live bee show, the Ginger Train or a stroll through the tropical gardens. Don’t forget to pick up a ginger plant for your garden!


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