The Gold Coast has everything you need to enjoy a perfect holiday. From world-class beaches, infamous surf breaks, great restaurants & cafes, miles, and miles of walkable coastline, and so much more. Our East Coast Car Rentals Gold Coast staff know all the ins and outs and what it’s like to live like a local in the area. We hope you are ready for some of their insider secrets so you too can live like a local when you visit the Gold Coast.

Gold Coast Branch Manager, Anthony.

What is your favourite thing to do on our day off on the Gold Coast?

Jump on my boat and go for a sail! If you do not have a boat, there is plenty of day cruises to choose from at Marina Mirage. Go watch the whales splashing around and up close with the view of the Gold Coast on the background!

How do you enjoy a 3 day weekend on the Gold Coast?

Getting out for a scenic drive on the Gold Coast is the best around here. I take my favourite tourist route down to Byron Bay, going through Kingscliff, Casuarina, and Pottsville. There are plenty of great camping spots all the way down to Yamba. On my way back to Gold Coast, I take the hinterland route veering off the Coast and through the hinterland for some astonishing views.

If you were short on time and wanted to soak up the Gold Coast before your flight what would you do?

Hard question to answer! I’d go straight to the beach in Bilinga and enjoy the sunshine and the ocean before returning my car and catching my flight.

What are some of your favourite Gold Coast local spots to visit?

An old classic and money saver (depends on if you go bonanza!) Harbor Town Center has the best selections of factory outlets, perfect if you’ve forgotten your swimmers at home. The Spit, in Main Beach, is a great location to just chill, swim, walk around and watch sunrises and sunsets and it’s typically not as busy as popular beaches. Lastly, spending a day in the Nerang National Park might just be my favorite with over 100km of bush tracks there are great hikes only a 10km drive inland from the Coast. People can forget that the Gold Coast is so much more than just pretty beaches, the national parks here are just as amazing too.

Rental Sales Agent, Julie.

How do you show your friends the best eats in the Gold Coast area?

Firstly, I would take them to my favourite café, Bambi. Located in Coolangatta it’s a regular spot for me, the coffee is always perfect, and the staff are always super friendly. The coffee is always perfect, and the staff are so friendly. Plus, afterwards, you can walk right down to Coolangatta beach.

Second, I would take them to my new favourite spot. Recently I went to a new restaurant right on Kirra Beach called ‘Siblings’. The food was amazing and so were the cocktails. Great location with great food, you can’t go wrong.

How do you spend your days off on the Gold Coast?

My favourite thing to do on my day off is watching the sunrise on top of Duranbah Hill and then walk around the headland and through Rainbow Bay Beach. This is a great way to start my day.

It is time for a holiday, what is the best thing to do on a 3-Day Gold Coast Road Trip?

On my three-day weekend, I would drive to Byron Bay for lunch at the Beach Hotel then make my way to Evans Head for a few nights. It is a small town and has a beautiful beach with great cabins to stay in which are at a reasonable price – my favourite little hidden gem along the coast.

What is the best thing to do before a Gold Coast Flight?

If someone had a day free before a flight, I would recommend checking out the Q1 it has spectacular views at the top with a great restaurant and bar as well. It’s the perfect, the tip-of-the-hat to a great weekend on the Gold Coast.

What are some of your favourite local shops to visit?

My favourite shops are Robina Town Centre and Pacific Fair between the two there are so many different shops to choose from with a lot of food choices as well. You can’t go wrong here.

What is your favourite Gold Coast tourist destination to recommend to customers?

O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat in the Lamington National Park it is a perfect tourist destination with beautiful bushwalks, great accommodation, and day trips. It is a great place to go if you want to relax.

Rental Sales Agent, Caitlin.

What are your favourite Gold Coast local café(s) and restaurant(s)?

By far, Next Door Espresso on Dry Dock Road, Tweed Heads – they have a signature blend coffee roast that tastes fantastic and the food they create is amazing. The staff are all super inviting, it’s a great café to enjoy any day of the week.

For dinner, we’d head to ‘The Crafty Cow Bar and Smokehouse’ in Casuarina – the food here is amazing; the atmosphere is just what you want for a smokehouse and bar and the drinks are the best to wash down all the delicious smoked food.

If you’re on a budget and looking for something a bit cheaper head to ‘Danosi Kitchen’ in Tweed Mall for some fantastic sushi on the train and delicious Japanese meals.

Now if you’re really wanting to ‘wow’ your guests head over to, ‘Gallura’ in Tweed Heads. For an immersive fine dining experience, granted it is a bit expensive; however, a delicious Italian meal is always worth it. Not the mention the service is top-notch, and the cocktails are divine.

How do you make the most of your day off on the Gold Coast?

I head down to my favourite spot the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary. Here you can enjoy a fully immersive experience amongst all the wonderful Australian wildlife. The sanctuary has several conservation projects that rehabilitate wildlife back into the wild and each entry paid entry helps keep those projects aloft.

It’s time for a Gold Coast Long Weekend Road Trip – where are you headed?

When I get a chance, I love to make my way up to Brisbane to visit the museum as they always have a fun or exciting exhibit. Maybe go to one of the theme parks or hit up Top Golf. Alternatively, head south to Yamba or Iluka and relax on the beach for a few days. Whatever direction you decide to go there fun is bound to be had.

If someone has a day free before catching their flight, what should they do?  

Take it slow and soak up the last bit of the Gold Coast on the beach at Kirra. If you need any last minute souvenirs the shops at Robina are great. Lastly, depending on how much time you have you can always head to Byron or Ocean Shores for a nice meal and some beach time.

What is your favourite hidden gem on the Gold Coast?

Some of my favourites are Ray Pascoe Park on Kennedy DR in Tweed Heads is one of my favourite places to go to relax. Has a boat ramp so can be quite busy however I can swim in the little canal and take my dog there for a little swim and a run as many people walk their dogs there.  After enjoying the park you can head across the road and grab some fish and chips at ‘Scales’ bear in mind you might have a fight on your hands with the local seagulls for your chips.

Rental Sales Agent, Em.

Where are the best places on the Gold Coast to eat?

For breakfast, we are going to head to my favourite café, The Milkman’s Daughter. I’m not veggie but they do have the best breakfast on GC! Located in Mermaid Beach the café is small, super cute, mid-century style boots, great location just a quick stroll to the beach after overeating!

Okay – now for lunch! It must be Light Years in Burleigh (or Byron Bay). When you go make sure you try the Crispy Sticky pork & Pineapple or Miso Corn with a Tiki Tiki Cocktail. Great location easy, chilled & super casual!

Last stop on the Gold Coast Foodie tour, Gemillini at Nobbys beach for dinner! Amazing, staff, delicious Italian.  Cute small quaint restaurant! Make sure you book ahead. Nobbys has loads of bars to kick onto after your meal.

What is your favourite thing tourist thing to do on your day off?

I grab my bike and ride from Currumbin to Point Danger. It is a beautiful way to spend an afternoon the oceanside tracks make for a perfect view as you cruise along side the beach. There are even a few great surf clubs to stop at along the way for a drink or a quick bite to eat. Don’t have a bike? That is okay there are several bike hire shops in the area!

You’ve got a long weekend coming up where are you headed?

On a long weekend I’m heading south to Northern NSE and stopping in at all the little towns on the way. Tyalgum has a great little general store with a huge outdoor smoker, typically with all local meats smoking. Next up, Byron everyone is favorite and great for an overnight stay and a quick shop and snack at the local markets. Then off to Nimbin, they say ‘laughter is good for the soul’ Nimbin is always a fun eye-opening place to visit. Lastly, Tumbulgum make sure to stop off at Husk Distillers, great farm vibe with awesome Gin! Grab a blanket and have a nice antipasto on the grass as you enjoy the rest of your holiday.

If someone has a day before their Gold Coast flight, what would you recommend doing?

Head over to HOTA, (Home of the Arts) have a stroll through the art works and finish up on the roof top at the Exhibitionist Bar. You will believe me when I say it is the best sunset view on the Gold Coast once you see it for yourself.