Surfing & Family Fun: A Guide To Surfers Paradise With Kids

It’s no secret that Gold Coast exudes the glitz and glamour in Surfers Paradise, but it also ensures a delightful kid-friendly vacation. In fact, enjoying a fun-filled family getaway here is child’s play. Think infinite fun for the kids, a little luxury for you, and a whole load of activities to keep everyone entertained. From wholesome Surfers Paradise tours and interactive indoor experiences to quirky beachside dining and riverside retreats, the options are endless.

We’ve scoped out some of the best things to do in Surfers Paradise for toddlers, pre-teens, teens, and also for the big kids (us), to help you fill in the blanks in your holiday itinerary.  And the best part? Not only will you win the ‘cool mom/dad’ accolade, but you’ll also get a kick out of it!

Ride the waves with your kids

Man riding a wave in surfers paradise

If you’re looking to do justice to the name ‘Surfers Paradise’, we highly recommend some surfing action! You’re a newbie? Excellent! There can’t be a better introduction to surfing than catching a wave  on one of the best surfing beaches on the planet. Most beaches in Gold Coast have surf schools, where experts will give you the basic know-how, or beachfront surf shops where you can rent a board and catch a wave on your own.

Pro tip from us: Swim within the flagged region, no matter how pro you are. And always, ALWAYS have sunscreen; apply lots of it, even on a shady day.

Get up close with Humpback Whales

Humpback whale watching from surfers paradise

Well, if you're around between June to November, this Surfers Paradise tour should be number one on your family holiday itinerary in Surfers Paradise. This is the time when you can see the migrating Humpback Whales! Although you can see them from almost any shore, we suggest booking a whale watching tour that leaves from a jetty in the heart of Surfers Paradise. It’s a unique opportunity for your kids to see these ocean beauties up close, splashing and frolicking in the ocean. Plus, they’ll learn about unique whale behaviours, and the work that goes on to ensure their conservation.

Another top tip: Check your schedule and book a Surfers Paradise whale watching tour as early as you can to get the best deals.

See Surfers Paradise by land & water

Amphibious aquaduck river cruise

Stuck between wanting to explore Surfers Paradise by land and water? How about both? The fabulous and amphibious Aquaduck has been a fan-favourite among the kids mostly for its unique build, and also for the thrilling hands-on riding experience it offers. This Surfers Paradise river cruise and land ride combo will let you enjoy gorgeous views of Gold Coast from every angle. From the streets, to the beaches, then diving duck first into the Broadwater, it’s a fun family ride! The captain will even invite the young ones to have a go at the wheel!

Break from the madness at Surf Club

Holidays with children can suck out extra energy, so load up on those carbs at one of the many family-friendly dining options. The surf club in Surfers Paradise can be your go-to for ‘recharge and refuel’ with the diverse dining options, kids menus, and wallet-friendly prices they put on the table. The club is so close to the beach that you can hear the waves breaking while dining. You can enjoy a delicious lunch or dinner, indulge in some exclusive people-watching fun, while the kids wolf down theirs and run off to play.

Riverside fun at Budds Beach

Budds Beach is close enough to Surfers Paradise for an easy commute, yet far away from the city noise. With the Nerang River bordering it on one side, it is the perfect riverside retreat for families. You can find an idyllic family park here that leads into a small golden beach with a palm-tree bordered playground for kids.

An off-the-beaten track (or canal, if you please) activity here is sunset kayaking. Kids will love paddling along the tranquil river, past the homes of the rich and famous, to Macintosh Island, where they can get photos with the resident peacocks! And you’ll definitely love the sunset views of the Surfers Paradise skyline from the waters!

Skydiving but for all ages

iFly’s indoor skydiving centre is the perfect place for the whole family to get their blood boiling! It’s one of those awesome Gold Coast adventure activities where you can feel the sensation of freefalling from thousands of feets above the sky, without actually jumping out of an aeroplane! You’ll be in the safe hands of professional flight instructors and perform the adrenaline-rushing stunt within a glass-wind tunnel. It’s suitable for anyone over three, making it a crazy fun family activity!

Choose from four ‘worlds’ of theme parks

Theme parks in Gold Coast

It goes without saying that Gold Coast is Australia’s theme park capital, and these parks are some of the biggest attractions for visitors from all over the world. From the epic waterslides and massive wave pool at Wet'n'Wild, the amazing animal encounters and live shows at Seaworld, to the themed roller coasters at Dreamworld and the wandering movie stars of Movie World, each theme park tells a different story. Each of them guarantees the time of your lives, and the kids will be thrilled to visit any of them! Makes for a great Surfers Paradise day trip too!

PS: Seaworld is the nearest from Surfers Paradise.

Shop til’ you drop at the Beachfront Markets

Shopping at surfers paradise beachfront markets

What’s a fun family holiday without a top-notch shopping experience? Surfers Paradise is buzzing with all things extravagant, but there’s one joint in particular, you shouldn't miss out on – the Beachfront Markets. Set along the legendary esplanade, these iconic markets pop up every Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday evenings, offering everything from cool crafts to scrumptious Queensland street food. The wee ones can try their hand at treasure hunting and sample exotic treats, while you scour the stalls for some incredible souvenirs and trinkets!

Alternatively, if time’s not of the essence, then you can hop between Cavill Mall, Paradise Centre or Cavill Lane, which are some of the region’s renowned shopping paradises.

Surfer’s Paradise proves that it’s not just a haven for surfers, but a paradise for kids and families too. From building sandcastles with the littles ones, shredding waves at an iconic beach, to simply enjoying a sunset from the waters, Surfers Paradise is all about family fun.