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Our 12 Favourite Beaches from Gold Coast to Byron Bay

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A string of picture-perfect sandy stretches lies peppered between the Gold Coast and Byron Bay. From bustling holiday hotspots to secluded little coves, this majestic coastal slice is a paradise for beach bums.

Whether you’re a sun tanning towel toter or a seasoned wave rider, you’ll find something amazing on this list of our absolute favourite beaches.

Burleigh Heads

A classic Gold Coast beach, Burleigh Heads offers big breaks and calm lapping waves, making it a popular spot for swimmers, paddlers, and surfers. Some of the Gold Coast’s best bars lie a leisurely stumble away—perfect for a post-beach aperitif.

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Tallebudgera Beach

Opposite Burleigh lies the tranquil Tallebudgera Beach, one of the Gold Coast’s best family-friendly stretches. Most little ones frolic in the deep green Tallebudgera Creek, which packs out with paddlers on weekends. Be sure to swim across the creek to explore the Burleigh Heads National Park.

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Currumbin Beach

Crystal clear Currumbin is frequently voted as Queensland’s cleanest beach. If the swell looks a little gnarly, meander west to the estuary and rock pools of Currumbin Alley. Turquoise-tinged waters and blindingly white sand make the river a scenic spot to swim and paddle.

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Rainbow Bay

The most southerly stretch of sand in Queensland, Rainbow Bay is all about rolling breaks and rugged rock formations. Like most Coolangatta beaches, it’s got consistently curvaceous waves. Expect to spot a flock of bobbing wet suit-clad surfies on any given day.   

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Little Cove Beach – Cabarita

Framed by rugged headlands and fringed by pandanis palms, the delightful Little Cove Beach in Cabarita is a quaint place to kick back. You’ll need to clamber over a boardwalk and trudge down some stairs to get there. But it’s totally worth it.  

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Dreamtime Beach – Fingal Head

Separated by a petite lighthouse-studded peninsula, these two gorgeous Tweed Coast beaches evoke a pleasant setting to escape the crowds. Both long, windswept stretches attract only a smattering of visitors, even in summer.  

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Kingscliff Beach

For laidback coastal village living, Kingscliff is hard to beat. Its main stretch, Kingscliff Beach, is a stunner, and you’ll see similar scenes below at South Kingscliff Beach. Hungry? A row of unpretentious eateries (try the local bowlo) line the shore.

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Torakina Beach

This cracker gives you the best of both worlds: the ocean and a river in one. Snorkelers will spot curious marine life in the shallows, while longboard riders can wander down to Brunswick Heads’ Main Beach.

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Wategos Beach

A Byron Bay superstar, Wategos straddles the protected Cape Byron Peninsula. The sheltered stretch is superb for swimming and paddling, and you’ll see solid surf breaks not far offshore. Don’t pass on the Cape Byron walking track—it’s a beauty.

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Clarkes Beach

South of Wategos, this sandy Cape Byron spot is popular among surf schools for its calm, gentle waves. Keep a keen eye out for Humpback whales who breach offshore during the migrating season (May to Nov).

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The Pass

In between Wategos and Clarkes, The Pass is one of Byron’s most beautiful beaches. Calm conditions lure throngs of beginner surfers while families come to waddle in the shallow waves. Spectacular views abound from the nearby Fisherman’s Point lookout.

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Belongil Beach

Keen to avoid the ever-present hubbub of Byron Bay’s most bustling beaches? Mosey on over to this secluded stretch. Despite its relative remoteness, lifeguards patrol during the season, making it a family-friendly choice. Just steer clear of the clothes-optional section on the northern end.

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Discover this Magical Region with Kiff & Culture

You’ll likely work up quite the appetite with all that beach bumming.

So why not explore the region on our Brisbane to Byron Food Trail?

We’ll guide you through its top restaurants, cafes, and artisanal booze producers on a decadent three-day epicurean adventure.

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