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3 Days on the Gold Coast: Itinerary for Family Fun   

When you’re coming to the Gold Coast for a long weekend or three-day getaway, you’re going to want to make the most of every moment. It’s easy to see why the Glitter Strip is Australia’s favourite short break destination: it’s perfect all year round!  

A family at Surfers Paradise on the Gold Coast. Image Destination Gold Coast
A family at Surfers Paradise on the Gold Coast. Image Destination Gold Coast

Summer is a great time to enjoy the Gold Coast’s beaches, with temperatures from 20°C to 28°C. Looking for a winter getaway? Escape the chill of Australia’s southern states with some Gold Coast sunshine, with average temperatures in the teens and low twenties.  

Any time is a good time to experience the Gold Coast’s family attractions, and if you’re planning your next holiday with the kids, we have all the information you need.  

Read on as we reveal the best way to spend 72 hours in Queensland’s holiday playground. 

Tips for a Short Break on the Gold Coast 

A family in the pool at Paradise Resort Gold Coast
A family in the pool at Paradise Resort Gold Coast

There’s one secret to making the most of a long weekend on the Gold Coast: staying at a fantastic family resort.  Positioned in the heart of Surfers Paradise, Paradise Resort provides the perfect base camp for your coastal getaway. 

A stay at Paradise Resort Gold Coast doesn’t just give you access to the Gold Coast’s top travel experiences – it’s an entire experience in itself!  

Perfect for a long weekend (or even mid-week) getaway, three days at Paradise Resort lets you enjoy some much-needed family time with minimal stress. 

 Read on to discover a fun-filled itinerary for three days on the Gold Coast.  

Day 1

Characters in front of the water park at Paradise Resort Gold Coast
Characters in front of the water park at Paradise Resort Gold Coast

Morning 

It’s time to set off on your Gold Coast adventure! Bonza, Jetstar, Virgin Australia and Qantas fly to the Gold Coast from airports throughout Australia. Once there, you can hire a car or pre-book an airport shuttle or limousine to your hotel. Surfers Paradise North tram station is only 300 metres from Paradise Resort, and taxis and Uber are readily available. 

Afternoon

Arrive at family-friendly Paradise Resort Gold Coast, which lies in the heart of Surfers Paradise. While you’re checking in, the kids can hit Dusty’s Jungle Gym in the hotel lobby.  

If you arrive early, don’t stress! While you can’t check into Paradise Resort until 2 pm, you can store your luggage at the 24-hour reception desk and enjoy the on-site facilities. 

The jungle gym in the lobby at Paradise Resort (1)
The jungle gym in the lobby at Paradise Resort

The Resort has four wings which are named after the gecko mascots that make regular appearances around the property – adventure-loving Dusty, princess Cleopatra, swashbuckling pirate Captain Dane and Astro the spaceman. 

After you’ve settled into your room, there’s no doubt the kids will want to head straight to the pool and water parks! The resort has a large, lagoon-style pool with a gently sloping beach entry and two water parks catering to different ages. They include the three-level Z4K water park, which has a tipping bucket, water cannons and several waterslides. 

Evening

Enjoy dinner at Penguins Restaurant, which is open from 5pm and has a play area in the corner filled with toys which keeps the little ones happy while you’re waiting for your order to arrive. 

A family dining at Penguins restaurant at Paradise Resort Gold Coast
A family dining at Penguins restaurant at Paradise Resort Gold Coast

The broad menu offers something for everyone. There are the favourites like chicken parmigiana and fish and chips, an expansive kids’ menu (hello, mac and cheese croquettes!) and delicious entrees like sticky chicken wings and garlic prawns. 

Afterwards, join in whatever activity is scheduled for the night. It might be an outdoor movie you can watch while munching on popcorn, a circus show, or something more interactive, like musical bingo, a game show or karaoke. 

Day 2

An aerial view of Paradise Resort Gold Coast
An aerial view of Paradise Resort Gold Coast

Morning 

After filling up on such delights as pancake stacks and eggs benedict at breakfast, begin the day with a walk along the beach at Surfers Paradise, which is just two blocks away, stopping for a swim or to check out the various playgrounds along the way. 

Walk along the famous Surfers Paradise boardwalk, check out bustling Cavill Avenue, or for a longer outing, take the light rail to Pacific Fair Shopping Centre in nearby Broadbeach. 

Once you’ve seen the sights, head back for a fun-filled day at the resort. 

A family on Surfers Paradise Beach
A family on Surfers Paradise Beach

Lunch

When tummies start to rumble, there are several on-site restaurants to satisfy those pangs. Choose between favourites like spaghetti Bolognese, chicken parmigiana and fish and chips at the Poolside Café & Bar, tacos, nachos and burritos at the on-site Mexican eatery, or Italian at Deb’s Pizza Shack. There’s also Jerry’s Burger Bar, where the menu includes souvlaki wraps, pulled beef burgers and crumbed calamari. 

Afternoon

After lunch, head back to your room and rug up, because this afternoon you’re going ice-skating! Paradise Resort has its very own rink, Planet Chill, on the second floor above Penguins restaurant. Children as young as three can try it out, with the help of fibreglass penguins to help them balance. Each session runs for up to two hours.

Planet Chill at Paradise Resort Gold Coast
Planet Chill at Paradise Resort Gold Coast

Kids will probably want more time playing in the pool or water park, but there are loads more things to keep them entertained at the Kids’ Club and Teens Club. The schedule changes regularly but is likely to include such activities as slime making or candle-making workshops, muffin decorating, line dancing classes, scavenger hunts, dunk tank sessions, trivia, jelly eating contests and belly flop competitions.  

Little girls will also love getting their hair braided and make-up done at the Pamper Parlour. Be sure to hop aboard Dusty’s Safari Train to take a trip around the resort on the miniature railway and enjoy a ride on Cleo’s Carousel. 

Evening

Give the littlies an early dinner before dropping them off at the kids’ club, where you know they will be kept busy with such activities as discos and pyjama parties. 

A performer at Dracula's Cabaret on the Gold Coast
A performer at Dracula's Cabaret on the Gold Coast

Grown-ups, you’re heading out to enjoy a three-course dinner at the hilarious Dracula’s Cabaret at Broadbeach, which is filled with aerial acrobatics, singing, dancing and a bit of burlesque. The kids’ club is open until 11.30pm on Saturday nights, so you have plenty of time to enjoy the show before picking them up. 

The kids will have a blast in the Kids Zone, with themed rooms including a Space Room, Captain’s Underwater World, Leonardo’s Painting Room, an Egyptian Room, Astro’s Space Station, Dusty’s Safari, Krazy 4 Kraft, Magic Garden and Junior Adventure Park.  

Day 3

It’s not a Gold Coast getaway without a trip to one of the iconic theme parks – which one will you choose?  

Meet Batman at Warner Bros. Movie World
Meet Batman at Warner Bros. Movie World

Breakfast

Start the day by ordering breakfast in bed. You can collect meals from the on-site dining options thanks to Paradise Resort’s partnership with the app Order Up. Your family will want to have plenty of fuel to take on the day. 

Morning and Afternoon

It’s time to head to one of the Gold Coast’s famous theme parks for the day!  

Sea World, which offers everything from educational talks about the marine animals on exhibit to family rides, thrilling rollercoasters and an epic water park, is the closest option at just seven minutes’ drive away.

Battle boats at Castaway Bay at Sea World on the Gold Coast
Battle boats at Castaway Bay at Sea World on the Gold Coast

It’s around 25 minutes’ drive to Warner Bros. Movie World, where the kids can meet superheroes like Batman, Wonder Woman and Superman, see a Hollywood stunt driver show and wave at their favourite characters as they march by in the daily parade. 

At Dreamworld, which is around half an hour’s drive away, see the jungle’s most fearsome predator at Tiger Island, ride the Dreamworld Express train and lots of other fun rides or spend the afternoon splashing about in the WhiteWater World water park. 

Evening

The whole family will no doubt be pooped after a big day out. If you like you can order take-away from one of the Resort’s in-house restaurants and take it to your room for a quiet night in. But as this is your last night at Paradise Resort, you may want to make the most of all the awesome activities on offer!

A Deluxe Resort Room at Paradise Resort Gold Coast
A Deluxe Resort Room at Paradise Resort Gold Coast

You can continue to use the Paradise Resort facilities after you check out, so savour the last moments of your family holiday with a trip to Planet Chill ice-skating rink, a rock climbing or laser tag session, or a splash in one of the water parks. 

Your Gold Coast holiday is officially over, and it’s time to hit the road – taking a bevy of special family memories back home with you. 

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