Visitor Info for the Gold Coast

For all those people visiting this site from other parts of Australia and around the World we have gathered Gold Coast Visitor information that may assist you to get more out of the site.

Few places in Australia capture as much national and international interest as the Gold Coast. The city is configured in a linear nature following the beaches from Paradise Point in the North to Coolangatta in the South which is nearly 100km long.

This strip is very thin with most of the population condensed within minutes to the fantastic Gold Coast Beaches. Nerang is one of the western suburbs of the Gold Coast and is located only 12 minutes drive from the beach and acts as a gateway to the cool and lush hinterland ranges of Mount Tamborine, Beechmont and Springbrook.

According to historians, aboriginals from as far north as Marlborough trekked to the Gold Coast to attend tribal ceremonies, fish and collect subtropical fruit. Captain Cook discovered Point Danger on the Gold Coast/Tweed border in 1770. Early settlers on the Gold Coast included timber getters, farmers and holiday makers. In 1933, the pioneer, Jim Cavill, changed the name of Elston to Surfers Paradise and Australia’s most famous beach resort was born.

Expansion of the Gold Coast has been nothing short of phenomenal since it came to national exposure as a holiday resort in the 50′s. The majority of the homes having been built in the last 10 to 15 years, the Gold Coast property primarily consists of modern brick and tile homes.

The Gold Coast is currently the sixth largest urban centre in Australia, second only to the 5 mainland state capitals. Strong population growth between 1990/1994 led to an increase in construction and housing sales. Since 1994 activity has levelled off, although still accounting for a large proportion of residential construction in South East Queensland.

It was only about 10 years ago that a drive between Brisbane to the Gold Coast would bring very very few glimpses of man made buildings. Nowadays it is a challenge to find any greenery at all with the Expressway being the main focus along with the newly completed railway.


Because of its location right on the sea the Gold Coast climate is generally cooler in winter and warmer in summer than that of the state capital. The Gold Coast is a sunbelt region with temperatures ranging between 17°c and 27°c at 3:00 PM, 360 days of the year.

Interesting to note that around the world “sunbelt” regions include many of the worlds top holiday destinations including Miami Florida, Hawaii, French Riviera, and the Italian Riviera.

Regions and Boundaries

The Gold Coast City stretches from Beenleigh in the north through to the Tweed River in the south with the greatest area of development being the “Pacific Coastal Strip” which incorporates the Gold Coast beaches.

The majority of suburbs, schools and smaller shopping districts are located between the coast and the Pacific Highway which is 7 kilometres inland. Rural areas dominate west of the Pacific Highway.

Quality of life has always been the key factor in attracting people to the Gold Coast. The area offers world class beaches, pristine state forests and national parks, clean rivers, clean air, a subtropical climate, golf courses, and entertainment facilities including Jupiters Casino and three major theme parks. There are also a number of annual cultural and sporting events which attract a large number of visitors to the region.

The Gold Coast can be divided into 4 main regions. The central region comprises the suburbs from Burleigh Heads to Main Beach and out to Carrara and includes the township of Robina. The northern region stretches from Southport to Beenleigh and includes Arundel, Runaway Bay and Sanctuary Cove. The southern section incorporates the area from Palm Beach to Coolangatta. The Hinterland region comprises the area west of a north/south line through Nerang.

In addition, key regional centres at Beenleigh, Robina and Southport are being designed for a population of 200,000/250,000. These centres will offer a multitude of community facilities, hospitals, shopping centres and cultural and civic centres and will act as a permanent base for residents who work within the Gold Coast City.

Gold Coast History

Despite being a very modern city the early Gold Coast History is based around the mid 1800′s when the Gold Coast Hinterland’s supply of Red Cedar resulted in the township of Nerang.

The Gold Coast area was primarily a thriving timber industry areas as loggers sort after the prized cedar wood. The wood was tied into rafts and floated down the rivers to meet the ocean going sailing ships.

These ships were able to berth as far up the rivers as Nerang and Oxenford in those days. Loggers Edmund Harper and William Duncan are credited as being the first home owners in Surfers Paradise in their hut opposite what is now Wharf Road.

As time went on areas of the Gold Coast became sugar cane fields and farms. A by-product of the sugar was the rum industry. Oyster farming and fishing were developed in the Broadwater area.

James Cavill built the Surfers Paradise Hotel in an area that in 1933 was named Surfers Paradise. Since these times the Gold Coast has retained it’s position as a tourist venue. The major growth in population has occurred since the 1950′s.

During the 1960′s and 70′s large canal developments and residential sub-divisions have spread the Coast’s boundaries. In 1995 the Gold Coast City area has become the seventh largest city in Australia. It is considered to be the fastest growing region in Australia