Guide to Spring School Holidays on the Gold Coast
What to do these spring school holidays
From beaches, boat rides, theme parks, arts and crafts, cooking classes, playgrounds, creeks and sporting events, there’s something for every age on the Gold Coast. Kids (and big kids) can never get bored during the holidays (21 September - 7 October) with events, activities and lots of free fun.
Tamborine Mountain Scarecrow Festival
The Tamborine Mountain Scarecrow Festival is an annual event that encourages the community to make a scarecrow and display it over one weekend in September. Follow the 17km trail and spot hundreds of scarecrows and take the family to the Festival Spring Fair at the Tamborine Mountain Showgrounds on the 15th September.
SWELL Sculpture Festival
For two weeks Currumbin Beach transforms into a vibrant outdoor gallery with Queensland’s largest free outdoor exhibition SWELL Sculpture Festival. Families can enjoy informative artist talks, wander through the SWELLS Smalls Gallery, or participate in a masterclass or kid’s workshop. Visit at twilight and get a totally different perspective - the artworks are all lit up at night.
If you have older kids wondering what to do with themselves these holidays, why not encourage them to volunteer at the Unisport Nationals? The Nationals welcomes students from all over the country to compete in more than 30 sports, including basketball, athletics, baseball, golf, handball, football, distance running, hockey and tenpin bowling. The events provide a wide range of opportunities for volunteers, from helping the sport happen and bumping in equipment to supporting VIP functions and making sure the event as a whole runs smoothly. Volunteering is a great thing to add to a resume and being part of the fun will give your teens good insight into uni life!
Robbies Gran Fondo
This year’s Robbie McEwen Granfondo has something for everyone. There are three amazing cycling circuits to choose from ranging from 65 km to 155 km and each one takes you through some stunning Gold Coast hinterland scenery. Older kids might enjoy the Piccolo Ride (65 km) while younger kids can enjoy riding in the safety of the closed, traffic free circuit at Nerang Cycling Centre.
Surfers Paradise Kids Week
29 - 5 October
Surfers Paradise Kids Week is an annual family event celebrating all things kids. This year, Surfers Paradise will come alive with daily Jurassic creatures, workshops, arts and crafts and sporting events. You can meet the dinosaurs and their handlers, check out market stalls, and get funky at the daily dance party. Better yet, it’s completely free!
Southern Cross Four Wheel Drive Tours
Visit world heritage rainforests of Mt Tamborine, Springbrook National Park, Lamington National Park, Natural Bridge and O’Reilly’s with Southern Cross Four Wheel Drive Tours. Family-owned and operated, these tours promise a day away from the city where kids can search in waterfalls, embark on a guided rainforest walk, experience off roading and do a bit of animal spotting.
The Gold Coast whale watching season runs from May to November and offers families the chance to get up close and personal with majestic humpback whales. Boats go from Surfers Paradise, Seaworld or Coolangatta and modern vessels provide smooth sailing and usually a light feed too. We recommend Coolangatta Whale Watch, who departs daily at 8:30am for a three hour whale watching experience. Spaces are limited, so book early.
Fruit & veg picking
Spring is the perfect time to partake in some ‘pick your own’ fun and the Gold Coast has some fertile farms in which to do it. Buckle up your tractor belt, grab a barley sprig and make your way to The Freeman Organic Farm, who’s been providing commercial fruit and vegetables for more than a century. You know they must be doing something right! Budding growers can advance their knowledge with a guided farm tour and if you visit on a Sunday you’ll be treated to live music too.
Timezone at The Strand features full size ten pin bowling, laser skirmish, dodgem cars and more than 200 games and attractions. There are a ton of specials to be had, from combining a Timezone session with a trip to Mcdonalds to a family entertainment pack that gets you entry into the Birch, Carroll & Coyle Cinema too. There are so many ways to play at Timezone and the kids are guaranteed hours of fun.
If you’re looking for outdoor water-based adventure around Coolangatta then Watersports Guru has you covered. Sign the kids up to the Junior Adventure Guru program and let them enjoy three hours of waterways fun. Kids can switch it up between stand-up paddleboarding, kayaking, snorkelling, fishing, creek explorations, outdoor education and fun team challenges. Once the kids are signed in you are free to enjoy a coffee and leisurely breakfast at The Black Sheep Espresso Baa or one of our other beachfront cafes.
Free school holiday fun
Plan a seafood lunch at Charis Seafood in Labrador or pack your swimmers and take a picnic and BBQ supplies. Everyday from 1pm hundreds of pelicans arrive for their daily 1:30pm feeding and kids will love watching them snapback their beaks to guzzle down the leftover fishy scraps. The pelicans certainly aren’t intimidated by the sometimes large crowds that assemble on Ian Dipple Lagoon and they always put on a show.
There’s no shortage of playgrounds on the Gold Coast with almost every beach and green space offering one. A great place to burn off some energy and make some new friends, playgrounds are a free activity kids can’t get enough of. Among the best playgrounds on the Gold Coast are:
- Broadwater Parklands in Southport
Kurrawa Pratten Park in Broadbeach
Pirate Park in Palm Beach
Queen Elizabeth Park in Coolangatta
Currumbin rock pools
Currumbin rock pools really is a magical place and during the school holidays it’s a flashback to a time when kids leapt off ledges and hung from rope swings instead of playing computer games. Pool depths vary, making the rockpools a great place for families with children that vary in age and swimming ability. You can even take your furry friend for a swim.
The weather’s warming and so too is the ocean. Why not make the most of it with a day at Greenmount Beach and Rainbow Bay? The Gold Coast’s only northern-facing beaches, Greenmount and Rainbow Bay provide sheltered conditions that are perfect for kids and there’s surf patrol from 8am-5pm every day. For safe swimming on the Gold Coast, you can’t go past these beautiful beaches.
So there you have it. 14 things to do this school holidays - something for every day of the week. Want one more tip? The Strand Coolangatta has a ton of free fun these school holidays so why not bring the kids on your next shopping trip? Check out what’s happening this spring here.