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Things to do on Australia Day on the Gold Coast with Kids

This article will give you a detailed list of things to do on Australia Day on the Gold Coast with kids.

Australia Day is nearly here, and what better part of the world to celebrate how lucky we are in this country than our own gorgeous backyard here on the Gold Coast?!

We’re spoiled for choice when it comes to beaches, picnic areas and pools, and our communities sure know how to throw a party. We’ve complied a list of fun, family friendly events that would love to welcome you to celebrate Australia Day with them. Read on for more details.

‘What’s On’- Australia Day – Gold Coast 2024 

In this guide, we’ll explore exciting and active things to do on Australia Day with kids on the Gold Coast, ensuring an unforgettable celebration for the whole family.

Australia Day, Surfers Paradise

  • Where: HOTA Outdoor Stage, 135 Bundall Road, Surfers Paradise, 4217
  • When: Friday 26 January 2024 – 4pm – 8pm
  • Cost: FREE

Australia Day is a time for all Australians to reflect, respect and celebrate and the best way to do this is to do something Australian – get together with family and friends or go to a local Australia Day event.

This year, the Gold Coast Australia Day celebrations will be held at the HOTA Outdoor Stage. This alcohol-free, family friendly, free event kicks off at 4pm and finishes at 8pm. It follows the invitation-only citizenship ceremony.

From 4pm, enjoy the live and local music line-up on the HOTA Outdoor Stage (limited space available). There’ll also be plenty of free kids’ activities, and an assortment of delicious food trucks. This will be followed by a fireworks finale at approximately 7:50pm.

Seaworld’s Australia Day Fireworks Cruise

Australia Day fireworks cruise
Seaworld Australia Day fireworks cruise
  • Where: Sea World Cruises Terminal, Seaworld Drive, Main Beach, 4217
  • When: Friday 26 January 2024, 6pm – 9pm
  • Cost: $79 adults, $59 kids (3-13 years)

Step aboard modern and spacious vessels, the Spirit of Elston or Kaiala, for a 3-hour night cruise featuring all things Australiana. Feast on a traditional Aussie barbecue, including the much-loved sausage sizzle (with onions, of course!). Sip on ice-cold beverages from our fully-stocked, onboard bar featuring local craft breweries as you tap your toes to live entertainment performing covers of classic Australian bands such as INXS and Powderfinger.

Enjoy the comfortable, air-conditioned bottom deck or make your way upstairs to the spacious, open-air viewing deck, offering stunning 360-degree views of the city. Top the night off with a dazzling display of fireworks from HOTA, Home of the Arts.

The Big Wedgie | Southport

The Big Wedgie
Big Wedgie – Gold Coast
  • Where: Fishermans Lawn, Broadwater Parklands, Marine Parade, Southport
  • When: from 19 Dec 2023 – 28 Jan 2024
  • Cost: from $16 per person

The Big Wedgie is back for Summer at Broadwater Parklands on the Gold Coast from 19 Dec 2023 – 28 Jan 2024 if you fancy some slippery and slidey fun. This year, there will be four epic waterslides to experience, perfect for families looking to get out and enjoy some fun in the sun this Australia Day!

Australia Day at Benowa Tavern, Benowa

  • Where: Benowa Tavern
  • When: Over the three day long weekend, from 10am on each day
  • Cost: FREE entry (meal purchases per their menu)

Join the Benowa Tavern on Australia Day in the sports bar for a range of fun, food, games, prizes and entertainment over the three-day long weekend. There is so much to look forward to including sausage sizzles, face painters, Aussie music and more.

Australia Day at Southport Sharks

  • Where: Corner Olsen and Musgrave Ave, Southport QLD 4215
  • When: Over the three day long weekend
  • Cost: Entry is free

Sharks has an exciting long weekend filled with fun in store for you! From Friday January 26, to Sunday January 28 their menu boasts Aussie favorites like steaks, sausages, roasts, and delightful treats such as pavlova and lamingtons for those with a sweet tooth.

Enjoy performances by Aussie Rock tribute bands on Friday & Saturday from 8:30pm, a captivating live reptile show on Friday at 5pm, and family-friendly activities like face painting and balloons on Friday & Sunday from 6pm.

Surfers Paradise Beachfront Markets, Surfers

  • Where: Surfers Paradise Beachfront Markets, The Esplanade, Surfers Paradise
  • When: 26 January, 4pm – 9pm
  • Cost: FREE

The Surfers Paradise Beachfront Markets have been providing a unique shopping and cultural experience since 1995, featuring 100-plus stalls, local artisans and live music performances.

  • Take in the gentle ocean breeze as you walk along the foreshore of the popular tourist precinct.
  • Discover market stalls and witness local talented artisans-at-work.
  • Take home homemade desserts, hand-made fashion and accessories or even personalised treasures.

It’s the perfect way to celebrate Australia Day on the Gold Coast!

More Australia Day events on the Gold Coast

Also See >> ‘What’s On’- Australia Day – Tweed Shire

Things to do on the Gold Coast for Australia Day

Even if you are not attending a specific Australia Day event, the gorgeous Gold Coast offers families a range of great, fun activities all year round. Choose any of the below and you’re guaranteed to have an excellent day out making the most of great weather and greater company.

Try Snorkelling at Tallebudgera Creek

Gold coast picnic spots Tallebudgera Creek
Snorkelling at Tallebudgera Creek

Our Things to Do on the Gold Coast with Kids guide is chock full of heaps of cost-free (or low cost) options for Aussie Day. Whether it’s snorkelling at Tallebudgera Creek, exploring the Glow Worm caves or making the most of the gorgeous bushwalks and swimming holes – the Gold Coast is pumped full with everything that makes Australia the most beautiful place on earth.

Hit the theme parks!

australia day with kids dreamworld

We love the Gold Coast theme parks and Australia Day can be an awesome opportunity to explore all they have to offer as a family.

We’ve put together a rundown of which of the theme parks are best if you’ve got small children. It’s a great way to have a hell of a day out that’s got something for everyone – even mum and dad!

Whether you enjoy roller coasters and thrill rides, movie characters, wildlife, giant water slides or shows, there is a theme park on the Gold Coast that you will love! 

More Australia Day tips

Whatever you do, we wish you a safe happy and healthy day celebrating all the good things about this beautiful country where we live. Happy Australia Day!

Photo of author

Janine Mergler

Janine Mergler is a veteran Queensland teacher, graduating from QUT with a BEd majoring in Social Sciences. After many years in the classroom, Janine moved on to academia. She has proudly trained new generations of teachers in her role as a lecturer at Queensland University of Technology Faculty of Education. She has also worked in the Queensland Government as an education specialist, developing education resources and delivering community awareness programs to help families conserve water. Currently she is the owner and editor of Families Magazine, a publication specifically targeted at parents who value a quality education for children.  Janine leads a team of professionals who write about family lifestyle, early childhood, schools and education information and family-friendly events.

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