Gold Coast Beaches

The Gold Coast's diverse range of beaches
Gold Coast BeachesMain Beach & Surfers ParadiseBroadbeach to Miami BeachSouthern BeachesLifeguards & Beach Safety

Gold Coast Beaches

Gold Coast Beaches

The Gold Coast boasts a diverse range of beaches, from the bustling Surfers Paradise to the tranquil Coolangatta, offering clear waters and golden sands. Facilities across these beaches include patrolled swimming areas, surf clubs, playgrounds, and picnic spots, ensuring a comfortable visit. For safety, lifeguard towers operate year-round, with flags indicating safe swimming zones. Whether you're looking for surfing hotspots or family-friendly shores, the Gold Coast caters to all holidaymakers seeking sun, surf, and sand.

Family Friendly Beaches
Broadbeach and Coolangatta stand out as family-friendly options, offering lifeguard patrols, and amenities like playgrounds and picnic areas. Surfers Paradise, while known for its lively atmosphere, also provides patrolled swimming areas ensuring safety for all.

Equipment Hire
Many of the popular beaches on the Gold Coast, such as Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach, offer hire services where you can rent bodyboards, umbrellas, beach chairs, and other equipment. These services are typically located near the main beach areas or within close proximity to the surf clubs.

Main Beach & Surfers Paradise

Surfers Paradise

Main Beach
Main Beach, located near Surfers Paradise, is celebrated for its broad, pristine sands and lively vibe, attracting surfers and visitors to its open shore breaks. This area is adorned with high-end apartments, elegant eateries, and chic shops, especially along Tedder Avenue. Close to the tranquil Broadwater and vibrant Southport Spit, it offers a mix of serene swimming spots, upscale marina life, luxury accommodations, and Sea World's adventures. The Spit extends north, featuring exclusive dining, shopping, and parklands for picnics and outdoor fun, blending coastal charm with sophisticated city life.

Narrowneck Beach
Narrowneck is a unique coastal area, acting as a natural divide between the Nerang River and the ocean, featuring two lifeguard-patrolled areas for safe swimming. The spot is also known for its surf-friendly Narrowneck Reef. Facilities like toilets, benches, and showers enhance the visitor experience, with accessibility through public transport, active travel, and parking options.

South Stradbroke Island
South Stradbroke Island is a serene escape for surfers, offering a contrast to the Gold Coast's Main Beach. Known for its exceptional open beach breaks near the island's southern tip, it caters to skilled surfers.
South Stradbroke Island is 1–2km across The Broadwater from the northern Gold Coast and is accessible by water taxi & boat charter

Surfers Paradise Beach
Surfers is the most popular beach with its famous stretch from Northcliffe to Narrowneck. It's a bustling hub for tourists drawn by its golden sands and surf-ready waves. Surfers Paradise beach offers beachfront markets and a vibrant foreshore. Nearby, Northcliffe Beach provides a quieter escape with amenities like a surf club known for competitive lifesaving and a beachfront dining experience.

The Spit
The Spit, located at the northern tip of the Gold Coast features four lifeguard-patrolled areas ensuring safe swimming conditions. This spot is also favored by surfers for its manageable waves, especially suitable under northerly winds. The Spit is well-equipped with public facilities and accessible by public transport, walking, or biking, with ample parking available. It's a unique blend of natural beauty and recreational activities, surrounded by parklands and close to notable attractions like Sea World and Marina Mirage.

Broadbeach To Miami Beach


Broadbeach is a dynamic area known for its family-friendly atmosphere and bustling business district. It boasts beautiful beaches lined with native vegetation and offers a variety of outdoor activities, including beach volleyball at Kurrawa events terrace and dining options at Kurrawa Surf Club. The area is enriched with beachside parks featuring playgrounds, fitness classes, and spaces for events. It's a short walk from cafes and alfresco dining in Broadbeach mall. With four lifeguard-patrolled areas, safety is a priority for beachgoers.

Burleigh Heads
Burleigh Heads is renowned for its sheltered swimming areas and famous headland surfing spots. It features a lifeguard tower at Mowbray Park, ensuring swimmer safety. Recognized as part of the World Surfing Reserve, it caters to surfers of all levels, with conditions best suited for experienced surfers near the headland. The beach is supported by public facilities for a comfortable visit and is accessible by public transport, biking, or walking. Burleigh stands out for its natural beauty, bordered by parklands and close to dining and shopping areas.

Miami Beach
Miami Beach, known for its beach break, is patrolled year-round at two lifeguard towers, ensuring swimmer safety. Surfers frequent Miami Beach for its varying wave conditions, influenced by swell, wind, and tides. Facilities include accessible amenities and parking, with public transport options available. Miami Beach offers a blend of café culture, market nights, and classic beach shacks, alongside a beachfront park and oceanway.

Southern Beaches

Coolangatta Beach

Coolangatta boasts a beautiful, sheltered beach ideal for swimming thanks to its north-facing position. It features a lifeguard-patrolled area ensuring safety for swimmers. As part of the World Surfing Reserve, it offers waves suitable mainly for beginner and intermediate surfers. Facilities and accessibility details can be found via an interactive map. Public transport, walking, and cycling are encouraged for getting there, with limited parking available. Coolangatta is a serene getaway, rich in natural beauty and wildlife, contrasting with the busier parts of the Gold Coast.

Palm Beach
Palm Beach offers a vast sandy stretch with designated swimming areas under lifeguard patrol. The beach's southern tip welcomes dogs, and adjacent parklands are family favorites. Known for diverse surf conditions, Palm Beach caters to various water sports, with an artificial reef for the more experienced. Facilities and parking are accessible, enhancing the beachgoing experience. Palm Beach, affectionately known as 'Palmy,' is a community where relaxed lifestyle, beachfront dining, and a vibrant dining scene merge, making it a unique spot on the Gold Coast.

Rainbow Bay
Rainbow Bay is beloved by families and vacationers for its sheltered beach, shielded from southerly winds. It features a patrolled swimming area, renowned as part of the World Surfing Reserve for its famous point break, offering extended rides for surfers due to southeast swells. Facilities are accessible for beachgoers, with limited parking available. Rainbow Bay, adjacent to Snapper Rocks, boasts parklands and an oceanway for scenic walks, making it a great spot for families.

Lifeguards & Beach Safety

Gold Coast Lifeguard Tower at the Beach

Lifeguards play a crucial role in ensuring beach safety, representing the largest professional service in Australia. They've pioneered rescue techniques, including the use of rescue boards and jet skis. Since 1989, they've utilized a formal surveillance tower strategy to monitor the coasts. It's essential to swim between red and yellow flags, understand the meanings of different beach flags for safety, and follow guidelines to stay safe, such as swimming at patrolled beaches and avoiding swimming under hazardous conditions.

Swim between the red and yellow flags.

Dangerous conditions. Do not enter the water.

Swim with caution.

All surfcraft prohibited between signs and flags.