Guide to Australia

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Gold Coast City is a city located in Australia, the second most populous city in the state of Queensland and the seventh most populous city in the country. Gold Coast City stretches from Beenleigh on the southern fringe of Logan City, for approximately 60km (38 miles) south to Coolangatta situated on the New South Wales border, and extends west to the foothills of the Great Dividing Range in World Heritage listed Lamington National Park. Tweed Heads and sections of Beaudesert are also commonly referred to as being a part of 'The Gold Coast' region. However, they do not fall into the statistical boundaries of Gold Coast City.
The city is renowned for its sunny subtropical climate, world-class beaches, waterfront properties, wide array of tourist attractions, popular entertainment, active nightlife and long, high-rise-dominated skyline.


The Gold Coast is situated in the southeast corner of Queensland, to the south of Brisbane, the state capital. Due to continuous development in south-east Queensland over the past 30 years, the Gold Coast/Beenleigh/Logan City/Brisbane region is now a conurbation. The Gold Coast officially stretches from the south end of Logan City and Russell Island to the border with New South Wales. The southernmost town is Coolangatta which includes Point Danger and its lighthouse. Coolangatta is a twin city with Tweed Heads located directly across the border. At 28.1667° S 153.55° E, this is the most easterly point on the Queensland mainland (Point Lookout on the offshore island of North Stradbroke is slightly further east).

From Coolangatta, approximately forty kilometres of holiday resorts and surfing beaches stretch north to the suburb of Main Beach, and then further on Stradbroke Island. The suburbs of Southport and Surfers Paradise form the Gold Coast's commercial centre (latitude about 27.7 degrees south). The administrative area of the Gold Coast City Council (Gold Coast City Council Website) continues north up to and including Beenleigh.


Looking north across Surfers Paradise on the Gold Coast in Australia


Looking over Broadwater to Surfers Paradise from Biggera Waters on the Gold Coast of Australia

The major river in the area is the Nerang River. Much of the land between the coastal strip and the hinterland was once wetlands drained by this river, but the swamps have been converted into manmade waterways (over 260 km, or over 9 times that of Venice, Italy) and artificial islands covered in upmarket homes. The heavily developed coastal strip sits on a narrow barrier sandbar between these waterways and the sea.

To the west, the city is bordered by a part of the Great Dividing Range commonly referred to as the 'Gold Coast hinterland'. A 206 km˛ section of the mountain range is protected by Lamington National Park and has been listed as a World Heritage area in recognition of its "outstanding geological features displayed around shield volcanic craters and the high number of rare and threatened rainforest species". The area is popular among bushwalkers and day-trippers.

Entrance to Surfer's Paradise Beach on the Gold Coast in Australia

The Gold Coast has a subtropical climate with warm, mild winters and hot, bright summers. Set out hereunder is a summary of the climatic data for the city: The city consists of 57 kilometres of coastline with some of the most famous beaches in Australia including, South Stradbroke Island, The Spit, Main Beach, Surfers Paradise, Broadbeach, Mermaid Beach, Nobby Beach, Miami, Burleigh Beach, Burleigh Heads, Tallebudgera Beach, Palm Beach, Curruminbin Beach, Tugun, Bilinga, Kirra, Coolangatta, Greenmount, Rainbow Bay, Snapper Rocks and Froggies Beach. Duranbah beach is one of the world's best known surfing beaches and is often thought of as being on the Gold Coast, but is actually just across the New South Wales state border in Tweed Shire.

There are also beaches along many of the Gold Coast's 860km of navigable tidal waterways. Popular inland beaches include Southport, Budds Beach, Marine Stadium, Currumbin Alley, Tallebudgera Estuary, Jacobs Well, Jabiru Island, Paradise Point, Harley Park Labrador and Evandale Lake.

While the beaches are beautiful and enticing, there are also inherent dangers, and the Gold Coast has Australia’s largest professional surf lifesaving service to protect people on the beaches and to promote surf safety throughout the community.

The Queensland Department of Primary Industries carries out the Queensland Shark Safety Program (SSP) to protect swimmers from sharks. For over 40 years no fatal shark attack has occurred on a protected beach on the Gold Coast. Sharks are caught by using nets and baited drumlines off the major swimming beaches. Even with the SSP, sharks do range within sight of the patrolled beaches, lifeguards will clear swimmers from the water if it is considered that there is safety risk.

Gold Coast City Council's beach cleaners sweep the mainland beaches every morning.

Queensland's Gold Coast taken from The Spit

In an attempt to minimise the inherent risks associated with swimming in the open coastal waters, the surf lifesaving movement actively promotes these "Golden Rules" for swimmers:


Always swim between the red & yellow flags on patrolled beaches.


Always read the Flags and Safety Signs located on the beach and understand what they mean before entering the water.


A single Red Flag indicates Dangerous conditions and you are not to enter the water. A single Yellow Flag indicates to swim with Caution.


Tourism is Gold Coast City's main industry, generating total revenue of $2.5 billion per annum. Gold Coast is the most popular Queensland tourism location with over 13,000 available guestrooms contributing over $335 million to the local economy each year. Accommodation options available range from backpacker hostels to five star resorts and hotels. The most common style of accommodation is three and four star self-contained apartments.

Major tourist attractions include internationally renowned surf beaches, World Heritage listed hinterland national parks, and theme parks including, Dreamworld, Sea World, Wet'n'Wild Water World, Warner Bros. Movie World, Currumbin Sanctuary, Fleays Wildlife Park, Australian Outback Spectacular and Paradise Country.

Since its opening in 2005 the Q1 building has been a popular destination for tourists and locals alike. The observation deck at level 77 is the highest of its kind in Queensland and offers expansive views in all directions.

Bikini-clad Meter Maids were introduced in Surfers Paraidse in 1965 in an attempt to put a positive spin on new parking regulations. Instead of issuing tickets for expired parking, the Meter Maids dispensed coins into the meter and left a calling card under the windscreen wiper of the vehicle. The Maids are still a popular part of the Surfers Paradise culture but the scheme is now run by private enterprise.