Noosa Heads

The Sunshine Coast is where Australians flock for their holidays to take in the stunning beaches and atmosphere of the area, and Noosa Heads is the capital of this coast. Noosa has managed to avoid the high-rise developments that have taken over the Gold Coast, a rule has been made that no building can be higher than a palm tree, and the town has a sense of exclusivity about it. More mature surfers take advantage of its breaks while beautiful, bronzed people spread over its outstanding golden sands. Noosa is busiest during the days and is not renowned for its nightlife, unlike its neighbours on the Gold Coast, but this has not stopped it from attracting hundreds of homegrown and international visitors throughout the year. The term ‘Noosa’ covers a group of districts which surround the mouth of the Noosa River, of which Noosa Heads is the central town and the main focus. The lush vegetation that covers the area creates a tropical feel, and the river caters for those wishing to partake in some activities rather than just soaking up the beauty of the area.


Noosa National Park has to be one of the highlights of the area. Although it is one of the most visited national parks in Queensland, the Noosa Parks Association has made sure that its vegetation and wildlife is undisturbed and is protected. Koalas perch in many of the trees, and a sighting of one of the national creatures is almost guaranteed. The entrance to the park is only a small walk from the town centre, and the tracks which run around the park take in the rainforest, scrub and grasslands, as well as the rocky headlands which take you right to the seafront. The rainforest can also provide a cool haven on the scorching hot days that Noosa is often subject to. Maps of the park are available from the rangers at their station located at the entrance of the park.

Surfing is very popular with both the residents and visitors of Noosa, and surfing lessons are widely available. Many surfing shacks line Noosa’s main beach which will offer you lessons, or you can enquire in many of the surf retail shops who will be able to accommodate your needs. For the experienced, Hell’s Gate is one of the best places to surf and this can be reached by a coastal path which also offers spectacular views of the ocean. Most beginners will start at the breaks at Noosa Spit, located off the far end of Hastings Street, which are gentler.[ Kite-surfing] is also popular in Noosa, and the conditions are often best for this between October and January between the river mouth and Lake Weyba.

Kayaking and canoeing is excellent on Noosa River and its subsidiary lakes. These journeys will take you through contrasts of dense vegetation to the open expanse of the beach. Boat trips are also available up the river for those who do not wish to exert themselves. Most of these run from Noosa Harbour into the ‘Everglades’ area, which is where Noosa River cuts into the Great Sandy National Park. This park is the largest intact sand dune system in the world, which is surrounded by coloured sand cliffs, rainforest, lakes and stretches of beach.

Fishing is also very popular in Noosa. You can either fish from the mouth of the river, known as the Frying Pan, or from selected areas at Noosa Sound. Dusk and dawn boat trips are also available off the gutters and beaches, which is known as surf fishing, alternatively deep Sea Fishing charters can also be organised. There are dozens of fishing operators in Noosa, details of these can be found in the Tourist Information Centre.

The vineyards belonging to the Sunshine Coast are starting to increase in their popularity, and many of the wineries which surround Noosa are starting to offer tours and wine tastings. Again for details of these visit the Tourist Information Centre.

The nearby Noosa North Shore Retreat also offers opportunities for canoeing. You can visit the area, which has to be reached by boat, for the day or if you wish to have total relaxation you can stay in the bungalow styles accommodation available. Kangaroos often hop around the retreat and the surrounding vegetation and beaches provide ample opportunities for further wildlife spotting.


Noosa does not have a particularly active nightlife, and Noosa Heads is mainly filled with cafés which provide daytime and evening specials for families and beach lovers. Hastings Street houses the majority of the restaurants, which offer anything from surf grub to pricey European food.

Most of the hostels have the busiest bars in town but there is a splattering of bars and pubs, again mainly situated along Hastings Street, which are filled into the small hours of the morning. Many of these take on a surf theme to echo the feel of the town, or chicer venues are available which cater for the wealthier tourists that the area often attracts.


Hastings Street is the main shopping area in Noosa Heads, which is home to many surf shops and Bay Village Shopping Centre. Noosa Junction has the majority of standard shops and banks, as well as supermarkets for those engaging in the self-catering option.

Tourist Information

Visitor Information CentrePO BOX 581Hastings StreetNoosa HeadsQueensland 4567Australia

Outside Australia Tel: 0061 7 5430 5000Inside Australia Tel: 13000 666 72Email:


The airport nearest to Noosa is the Sunshine Coast Airport. This is located just north of Maroochydore in Marcoola which is around twenty five minutes drive from Noosa. Internal flights are available to and form the airport, but if you wish to travel to an international destination then you need to fly from Brisbane Airport which is around ninety minutes drive from Noosa. Shuttle buses are available from The Sunshine Coat Airport to Noosa Heads through a bus company called [ Henry’s] and journeys cost around $20 for an adult and $10 for a child.

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