Renowned as the tourist mecca of the Gold Coast, if not Australia, since the 1920’s Australians have been flocking to the beach at Surfers Paradise for relaxation, recreation and holidays. Over time ‘Surfers’ has grown from beach shacks and a hotel, into a tourist destination known around the world.
The suburb is located at the heart of the city of the Gold Coast, in the state of Queensland Australia. It’s just over one hours drive from Brisbane, the capital of Queensland and 30 mins drive from the NSW border. The suburb is bordered to the east by the long stretching sandy beach with its pure ocean waters, to the north is the suburb of Main Beach, to it’s south the suburb of Broadbeach and to the west you’ll find the Nerang River.
A Video Intro to Surfers Paradise
Things to do in Surfers Paradise
The area is packed with things to do ranging from shopping, attractions, an array of dining options, it’s well-known nightclubs through to the beautiful beachfront.
At night Cavill Avenue and Orchid Avenue come alive with music and festivity as the many bars and clubs kick into life, during the day, they’re quite laid back streets where you can enjoy the many cafes, restaurants, and shopping.
There are several amusements and attractions within Surfers, a major one is the Adrenalin Park located in between Cypress Ave and Palm Ave featuring loads of exciting rides such as the Sling Shot and Vomatron amusement rides.
On Surfers Paradise Blvd. Draculas Haunted House (website) offers a five-level maze of spooky fun for all the family, on Ferny Ave you’ll find The Wax Museum (website) which has been and attraction of the area for over 40 years.
Over at the Paradise Centre on Cavill Mall you’ll find Timezone (website) which offers a huge floor of video games, mini golf and other fun stuff that will be popular with the kids plus there’s a bowling alley in there and ‘old time photos’ store. Across the road in the Soul Broadwalk you’ll find the ever-popular Ripley’s Beleive it or Not (website)
At Circle on Cavill there’s another bowling alley, Strike Bowling Bar (website), which also has a bar and karaoke.
On Beach Road you’ll find the Wheel of Surfers Paradise (website) which is the giant Ferris wheel featuring enclosed air conditioned cabins.
There is always something happening in Cavill Mall with a variety of council sponsored entertainment, check out the official local government tourism website which showcases the latest events, see SurfersParadise.com.
And, of course, don’t forget to relax and enjoy the #1 attraction: the beach! Surfers Paradise beach is a long stretching sandy piece of pure wonder where you can enjoy relaxing in the sun, swimming (between the flags only), beach volleyball or take the family and a bat and ball for a hit of beach cricket. And, absolutely don’t miss an early morning stroll and watch the sunrise over the ocean.
For more attractions on the Gold Coast visit our things to do on the Gold Coast page.
Shopping in Surfers Paradise
Heading along Cavill Avenue you’ll find Circle on Cavill Shopping Mall which features a Billabong surf fashion store, Surf Dive n Ski, and a Woolworths supermarket.
Head north up Surfers Paradise Bvld. and you’ll find Chevron Renaissance Shopping Centre which features fashion and casual dining. Stores include Beauty Stop, Boho Fashion Collection, BooDeluxe, Beseduced, Endota Spa, Max Brenner Chocolatier, Starbucks, Ticketmaster and much more.
On the opposite side of the road you’ll see Ugg Boot stores and T-Shirt stores.
At the eastern beach end of Cavill Avenue, it becomes a pedestrian only walking street where you’ll find loads of cafes and touristy shops. At Soul Boardwalk you’ll find fashion stores such as Footlocker, Hype, Quicksilver, Rip Curl, Rush, Roxy and Sunburn. On the opposite side, you’ll see the Paradise Centre which features cafes, restaurants, attractions and shopping. Stores include Ally Fashion, Cotton On Body, Factorie, Surf Dive n Ski, Tarocash, and more.
Surfers Paradise Markets run each Wednesday, Friday and Sunday night offering over 100 stalls featuring local handicrafts and local produce. It opens at 4PMpm and closes around 9PM, and is located on The Foreshore (in front of Soul building, beach end of Cavill Ave and turn left).
For more check out our shopping on the Gold Coast page.
Surfers Paradise accommodation
The area is packed with places to stay, prices vary depending on the season, peak holiday times are during the school holidays, Easter, Schoolies Week, GC600 and Christmas Holidays.
Other factors that influence rates are the age of the building, level of service and luxury, plus location. There are several amazing new developments in the central area but if you are looking for cheap accom scope out the fringes of the Surfers near to Main Beach, and south near to Broadbeach.
The suburb offers a mix of hotels, apartments and holiday resort style accommodation. Here are my top picks for places to stay in Surfers Paradise.
The Top Luxury Picks:
Hilton Hotel – 5 Star hotel in a very new building. You can find fantastic rates during the off-peak season and live it up in style.
Marriot – 5 Star Hotel – Has been an icon of the Gold Coast for a long time and it has one of the best pools on the GC.
Surfers Paradise Q1 – An epically tall building offering superb views and luxury 1, 2 & 3 bedroom apartment accommodation.
Peppers Soul Surfers Paradise – a new development right on the beachfront offering and luxury 1, 2 & 3 bedroom apartment accommodation.
QT Gold Coast – It features an outdoor swimming pool, tennis courts, restaurant and bar, plus rooms with stunning ocean views.
Great value and high rated holiday apartments and resorts
Located on the beachfront, boasting a balcony with sea views. It offers an outdoor swimming pool and BBQ facilities.
Narrowneck Court Holiday Apartments 3.5-star hotel – Located across from Main Beach. It offers self-contained accommodations with private balconies and magnificent ocean views.
Berkeley on the Beach 4-star hotel – A 3 minutes walk from Cavill Mall where a large variety of shops, cafe and restaurants can be found. It offers accommodation with a private balcony and stunning beach and sea views. Guests enjoy a heated swimming pool, an indoor spa, a sauna and half-size tennis court. All apartments include limited free WiFi.
Hi Surf Beachfront Resort Apartments 4-star hotel – Located directly opposite Surfers Paradise Beach. It feature self-contained accommodation with a private balcony. Guests have access to 2 swimming pools, a tennis court and a hot tub.
Dorchester On The Beach 4.5-star hotel – Located alongside Surfers Paradise Beach. It features apartments with a private balcony offering lovely ocean views.
Artique Surfers Paradise 4.5-star hotel – Centrally located in Surfers Paradise, just a short walk from the beach, the Artique Resort offers a range of apartments. Each apartment features bedrooms with en-suite bathrooms, a separate living/dining area and a well-equipped kitchen with a range of modern appliances.
Zenith Ocean Front Apartments 3.5-star hotel – Located across the road from the world-famous Surfers Paradise Beach. It features fully self-contained holiday apartments in the heart of Surfers Paradise. Each apartment includes cable TV and a large balcony with beach and ocean views.
Genesis Apartments 4-star hotel – Located in the heart of Surfers Paradise, boasts self-contained accommodation with a large private balcony. Many apartments also have beach views. There is free underground parking, 2 outdoor swimming pools, sauna facilities and a half-sized tennis court.
Our Picks – Accommodation Map
Also see our top 10 Surfers Paradise accommodation list (ranked by visitor reviews) and for a full list of available accommodation options and the latest deals see:
For a detailed guide and the top choices for where to stay on the Gold Coast see our accommodation page.
Surfers Paradise Nightlife
Head down Cavill Avenue and Orchid Avenue of a night and your entertainment options are endless. The options include bars, nightclubs, and pubs. Some of the most popular include:
Bars & Lounge Bars
Central Lounge Bar & Dining – Sunday-Wednesday 8:00am-12:00am, Thursday-Saturday 8:00am-1:00am – 27 Orchid Avenue – http://centrallounge.com.au
Fix Cocktail Bar – 6 Orchid Ave – http://hiltonsurfersparadise.com.au/restaurants/fix-cocktail-bar/
Howl At The Moon – Thursday- 4:00pm-late, Friday 12:00pm-12:00am, Saturday 8:00am-12:00am, 8:00am-late – 58 Cavill Avenue – https://www.howlatthemoon.com.au
Melbas On The Park – 12pm to late – 46 Cavill Avenue – http://www.melbas.com.au
Stingray – Monday-Friday 4:00pm-12:00am, Saturday-Sunday 12:00pm-12:00am – 7 Staghorn Avenue – http://www.qtgoldcoast.com.au/food-drink/stingray/
Surfers Sandbar – Monday-Saturday 7:00am-12:00am, Sunday 7:15am-12:00am – 52 The Esplanade Surfers Paradise – https://www.facebook.com/surferssandbar/
The Avenue – Monday-Sunday 8:00am-2:00am – 3-15 Orchid Avenue – http://theavenuesurfers.com
Ultra Lounge Bar & Cafe – 11am til late – 1/38 Cavill Ave – http://www.ultralounge.com.au
Cocktails Nightclub – Thursday-Saturday 9:00pm-5:00am – 3-15 Orchid Ave – http://www.cocktailsnightclub.com.au
Elsewhere Bar – Thursday-Sunday 9:00pm-3:00am – 1/23 Cavill Ave – http://www.elsewherebar.com.au
Shooters Nightclub – Friday-Sunday 8:00pm-3:00am – 15 Orchid Ave – http://www.shootersnc.com.au
Sincity Nightclub – Monday-Sunday 9:00pm-3:00am – 22 Orchid Ave – http://www.sincitynightclub.com.au
Clock Hotel – Sunday-Thursday 10:00am-12:00am, Friday-Saturday 10:00am-2:00am – 3282 Surfers Paradise Boulevard – http://theclockhotel.com.au
Fiddlers Green Irish Bar – 10 AM to 3 PM – 39 Cavil Avenue – http://www.fiddlers.com.au
Surfers Paradise Tavern – Monday-Sunday 12pm-3:00am – Corner Cavill Mall and Orchid Avenue – http://www.surfersbeergarden.com.au
Waxy’s Irish Pub – 10am-3am – 3206 Surfers Paradise Blvd – http://waxysirishpub.com.au
G-Clef Karaoke – Monday-Thursday 12:00pm-11:00pm, Friday-Sunday 12:00pm-9:00pm – Shop 3/RSL Centre, 9 Beach Rd – http://www.gclef.com.au/karaoke
Hollywood Showgirls – Monday- Sunday- 8:00pm- 3:00am Address: 19 Orchid Ave – http://www.hollywoodshowgirls.com.au
There’s a full list of Gold Coast clubs and bars here
There really are too many to mention, and you’ll be pleased that the standards are pretty high. So, what I will list here are my top ten restaurants in Surfers Paradise.
The Top Ten Restaurants in Surfers Paradise
Misono Japanese Steakhouse – Marriott Hotel – 158 Ferny Ave – http://www.marriott.com/../misono-japanese-steakhouse/..
Seascape Restaurant and Bar – Contemporary Australian & Seafood – 4 The Esplanade – http://seascape.com.au
Seaduction Restaurant + Bar – Amazing views and award-winning seasonal cuisine – Peppers Soul Surfers Paradise, 8 The Esplanade – http://www.seaduction.com.au
Elston Restaurant & Wine Bar – hip new restaurant with a classic and rustic menu – Soul Building, 8 The Esplanade – http://elstonbar.com.au/
Vapiano Gold Coast – Traditional Italian in an amazing location – Soul Boardwalk, Cavill Avenue – http://vapiano.com.au/restaurants/gold-coast/
Costa D’Oro Italian Restaurant – Medditeranian cuisine – 27 Orchid Ave – http://www.costadoro.com.au
Chiangmai Thai – Best Thai cuisine on the GC – 5 Palm Avenue (inside Mantra Crown Towers) – http://www.chiangmaithairestaurant.com.au
Bazaar – A unique food experience, a marketplace-style restaurant – https://www.qthotelsandresorts.com/gold-coast/eat-drink/bazaar/
Tandoori Palace – Indian cuisine – 30 Laycock street, Aegean Building – http://www.tandooriplace.menu
SIFU – Cantonese Schezuan dining experience – Crowne Plaza Surfers Paradise 2807 Gold Coast Highway – http://www.crowneplazasurfersparadise.com.au/dining/sifu-2
For more reviews, take a look at ‘Yelp’ which has a big list of Surfers restaurants and cafes with user reviews here
Where to find Amazing Coffee
Paradox Coffee Roasters – in-house fresh roasted beans, what more is there to say – The 4217, 7/10 Beach Rd – https://paradoxroasters.com
Stairwell Coffee – nifty little hole-in-the-wall shop serving up cold brew and good vibes – 3131 Surfers Paradise Blvd – http://www.stairwellcoffee.com.au
Surfers Paradise Tourist Map
Here it is, your essential tourist map for Surfers Paradise including attractions, hotels, restaurants, cafes, bars, nightclubs and all you ned for an amazing holiday in an amazing place, enjoy!
Police and Medical
The Surfers Paradise Police station is located at 23 Orchid Avenue.
The Surfers Paradise Day and Night Medical Centre is located at 16/3221 Surfers Paradise Blvd