There is nothing better than rolling down the coast with the windows down and your favourite tunes on. The vibes laid backed, easy-going but adventurous all at the same time. Pack your runners, your favourite pair of thongs, swimmers, surf boards, and of course something nice to wear for a night out in Noosa. Join East Coast Car Rentals as we journey up the coast from our car hire Maroochydore Airport location for a fun-filled road trip up the Sunshine Coast.
Drive Time: 1 hour
Starting at the sunny Sunshine Coast car hire branch, let us head north up the coast to the fan favourite Noosa Heads. Stay off the freeway and follow the coastal route up Highway 6. On the way, you will pass a number of great beaches from Alexandra Headland, Marcoola, Yaroomba, and our favourite Coolum Beach! Coolum is a great spot to stop as you venture to Noosa. The quant beach and friendly beach side town are teeming with activities. Grab lunch at the Coolum Beach Surf Club after a session with the team at Coolum Surfing school. Then hit the boardwalk and esplanade to hit the shops for a little holiday TLC.
Looking for something a little more adventurous? Mount Coolum provides 360-degree views of Coolum Beach and the Sunshine Coast Hinterland and Double Island Point to Caloundra. Coolum’s a perfect spot to jump into the Sunshine Coast fun, and it’s conveniently located halfway between Sunshine Coast Airport and Noosa Heads.
Now let’s continue up Highway 6 and head to the Noosa National Park. Essentially a giant outdoor playground and spa the dreamy destination has everything you need to reset and relax for a day or two. Depending on how adventurous you feel like getting, lace up those runners you packed and hit the trails. Ranging in distance from 1 to 10 km the national park’s walking trails venture throughout the pristine forests and coastline; are home to the endangered black cockatoo, ground parrot, and koalas. Hiking isn’t your thing? Head down the Noosa Headland, rent a surfboard and paddle out to one of the world’s most iconic longboard surf breaks.
After a day full of exploring, you are going to need somewhere to refuel. Not only is Noosa a tropical haven, but there is also no shortage of great dining experiences here along the esplanade. Our East Coast Car Rental favourite must be ‘Bang Bang’, their spin on Aussie classics and Asian fusion combined with their eclectic interior design make for a perfect night out.
Drive Time: 50 Minutes
After all the coastal adventure we are heading inland to explore the hidden beauty of the Sunshine Coast Hinterlands. Taking Tourist Route 23 may be the road less travelled by and that is exactly what we are looking for. The Blackall Range Tourist drive is a 60 km stretch that passes through rural towns of the Sunshine Coast to give you a true QLD holiday experience.
Only 50 Minutes away is the small rural town of Flaxton, the Kondalila National Park, and the first stop on our tourist route road trip. Being a bit off the beaten path you can expect fewer crowds here than in other National Parks. Only a few minutes from the carpark at Kondalila is a hidden waterfall and swimming – perfect for a quick little dip surrounded by the glorious Sunshine Coast rainforest.
Up next on the Blackall Range Tourist route is the Maleny Botanic Gardens. Just a quick 25-minute cruise down the road is a spectacular garden with a wide variety of plants and birds! With over seven hundred exotic Australian birds, you could spend a week here and still be looking to spot them all. At the top of the gardens is a view that overlooks the Sunshine Coast Hinterlands that you’ve spent the day driving through. You never understand a destination fully until you see it from a different perspective.
Drive Time: 30 minutes
As the tourist route comes to an end there is the perfect activity waiting for you at the end of the line, The Steve Irwin Australia Zoo! Now we all know a Sunshine Coast Road Trip wouldn’t be complete without a trip to the iconic venue, so let the fun times begin. Home to Australia’s very own Crocodile hunter this Zoo is fittingly Australia’s largest. From heart stopping animal encounters, daily knowledgeable conservation shows, and interactive zoo experiences make the Steve Irwin Zoo a must do for all ages when your road tripping. East Coast Car Rentals would like to make note that the Australia Zoo has rehabilitation programs in place through their very own Australia Zoo Wildlife Warriors Hospital, with over 100,000 patients flying, crawling, swimming, and climbing their way through the hospital doors and back into their wild natural habitat.
Drive Time: 35 minutes
After a few days on the road chasing the Sunshine Coast beauty it is always nice to end a holiday on a slower note. So, for the last day of our road trip we’re heading back to where it all started to enjoy the laid back, easy going, holiday vibe we came here for. Surrounding the Sunshine Coast Airport are great beaches, cafes, restaurants, and everything you need to enjoy during the last day of your holiday.
To start, let’s take off to one of our favourite cafes on the Sunshine Coast for a coffee to start the day. The ‘Milk Bar Coffee Company’ is an Aussie classic café with all the favourites you know and love; Avo on toast, eggs your way, toasties, and even wagyu cheeseburgers. Now let’s not forget the great coffee, sunny coast atmosphere and friendly staff. Once seated you’ll find it hard to leave this fun beachside café.
Once our stomachs are full and hearts are happy, we will head to the Alex Bluff Lookout. The historic Sunshine Coast lookout is great for an afternoon for a coastal walk down to Alexandra Headland Beach to sneak in a little extra beach time.
Head out on the road to explore the beauty of nature and give yourself an unforgettable experience. Start by talking to our Sunshine Coast car rental team to start your adventure right. Book online or call our friendly team member on 1800 028 881 today.
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