We sit down with awesome Instagrammer Courtney McCarty for a run-down on her family’s recent stay at Wyndham Surfers Paradise.

About a month ago, we packed our bags and drove ten minutes up the road to Surfers Paradise to enjoy our first holiday as a family of four. We were in desperate need of a getaway. We were in the depths of the four-month sleep regression, and figured a change of scenery would be just what the doctor ordered!

Yes, it was just down the road, but it was the perfect stepping-stone for us, because we’re still navigating this whole family-of-four thing!

We stayed at Wyndham Surfers Paradise in a self-contained 2-bedroom apartment. It was fantastic. We used the room to its fullest potential, utilising the laundry, the 2 bathrooms and the fully functional kitchen. We were able to prepare and eat our own food, but were also surrounded by so many yummy and easy-to-access restaurants and cafes. It was the best of both worlds!

We didn’t bring a single toy with us. Our surroundings were enough to keep both the kids mesmerised and entertained over our three-night stay. We had so much fun just looking down into the streets from 22 levels up. Our young Max loved watching the traffic and people walking around. The view of the Pacific Ocean during the day and the sparkly lights at night was so lovely to see.

Our ideal holiday would normally include a lot of beach action, but being winter (tops of 25 degrees!) with a few spots of rain, we decided to do some urban exploring instead. If you grew up on the Gold Coast, like I did, you’ve probably spent many weekends and late nights in Surfers! It was actually really fun being able to take a trip down memory lane with the two kids in tow.

So here’s a bit of ‘How to do Surfers Paradise/Gold Coast in 3 days’. Please keep in mind that there is so much to do on the Gold Coast – what you do totally depends on what floats your boat!

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Top Things To Do In Surfers Paradise

Sky Point Observation Deck

Head up to the top of the tallest building on the Gold Coast at sunset to enjoy the breathtaking view in all its glory. From 77 floors up, you get a spectacular view of the Gold Coast. Max absolutely loved this experience. Q1 is just across the road from Wyndham Surfers Paradise, so grab yourself a cocktail and some bar snacks to enjoy the sun setting over the hinterland.

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Hit the beach

The Gold Coast is home to some of the best beaches in the country. I feel pretty lucky to have these awesome waves on our doorstep! Make sure you slip, slop, slap and always stay between the flags!

Walk along the beach front

Over the last few years, the Gold Coast City Council has spent a lot of money on the beachfront walkways. Pack up the pram, put on your walking shoes and pound the pavement for some fresh air and epic views.

Hit the strip

We found it quite entertaining to walk the infamous Cavill Av. in the early morning with the kids as we reminisced about our nightclubbing days! There are stacks of shops you can have a sticky-beak in – tourist outlets to buy your typical Surfers Paradise tack, and more surf shops than you can poke a stick at


Want to feel like a kid again? Take a trip through Timezone! All the crazy sounds and lights mesmerised Max. We spent some time here when it was a bit wet outside.


This was another activity we did when it was raining.

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Top Things To Do on the Gold Coast:

The Gold Coast has loads of easily-accessible, family-friendly walks, which are pram-, bike- and scooter-friendly. Head to The Spit and walk along the rock wall or get lost among the pathways in the dunes. Head south to Burleigh Heads and breathe in the sea air while exploring the headland’s bush and rainforest tracks. You feel like you’re in an enchanted forest miles away from the hustle and bustle. For an easy, scenic walk, start at Burleigh Beach and head north to the Miami Headland for a spectacular view north and south of the oceanfront landscape.

Hinterland Walks

Between half an hour and an hour from Wyndham Surfers Paradise, all of these walks are well worth the extra minutes in the car. Put on your walking shoes and immerse your family in nature; start off by heading out to the Natural Bridge Circuit to spot glow worms. A little further out is O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat, where the options for rainforest walks are endless. Tamborine Mountain has plenty of options for sedate bush hiking, and also boasts fantastic weekend markets and cutesy European eateries.

There are plenty of kid friendly beaches/water spots all within a 30-minute drive of Wyndham Surfers Paradise. One of my tops picks is Ian Dipple Lagoon in the Broadwater; it has plenty of shade and looks out to the beautiful Marina. The Broadwater Parklands man-made rock pools in Southport are tons of fun for the little ones. Tallebudgera Creek Inlet is picturesque and a must-see if you haven’t been there before! Alternatively, take a drive along Sea World Drive where you can find lots of calm ocean conditions.

Shop up a storm: The newly-renovated Pacific Fair has every store you could imagine. If that’s too overwhelming, visit Harbour Town Outlet Shopping Centre to grab a bargain for the whole family!

Parks and Play Grounds:

  1. McIntosh Island in Surfers Paradise
  2. Pirate Park in Palm Beach
  3. Kurrawa Park in Broadbeach
  4. Justins Park in Burleigh
  5. Broadwater Parklands in Southport
  6. Harley Park in Labrador

All of these parks are pram-, scooter- and bike-friendly; many of them are also close to the water, so make sure you pack your swimmers!

Other: All the theme parks. Our favourites include Sea World, Paradise Country and Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary.  For something slightly off the beaten track, try Thunderbird Park on Mount Tamborine.

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Whether you are a beach-lover, nature-seeker, shopaholic, or chasing the thrill of a roller coaster, the Gold Coast has something for every type of family.

My main tip before arriving would be to sit down and put together a bit of a itinerary together for your family. There is so much to see and do – you don’t want to miss out! Oh, and don’t forget to schedule in some relaxing time around the Wyndham Surfers Paradise pool!





With two and a half -year-old Max and 5-month old Elle in tow, CC (as she is affectionately known) shares her day-to-day musings with her online community in the hopes that she inspires others to live a happy and creative life. Defying the standard definition of a stay-at-home mum, CC is known on Instagram for her wicked sense of humour, honesty and practical advice; from home organisation hacks to family-friendly recipes and activities for toddlers. CC is passionate about helping other busy mamas find ways to make their life easier, offering down-to-earth commentary from parenting to life hacks and baby-related reviews via her Instagram (@life.of.mama.cc ) and blog.



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