The Sunshine Coast has year-round mild weather, natural wonders, and spectacular attractions. There are restaurants, microbreweries, bars, and fresh seafood. The Sunshine Coast is also home to beautiful beaches and interesting beachside culture.
You do not have to be a beach buff to appreciate the exquisiteness of the beaches in the Sunshine Coast. In fact, they have been dubbed as some of the best in the world. With clean, white sands surrounding the sparkling blue waters, this pen-urban area in the Australian state of Queensland is a true destination for an action-packed holiday.
From water sports to riding boats to swimming or simply lazing around under the sun, here are the top water activities to discover in the Sunshine Coast:
Go Adventure Rafting in Mooloolaba Beach
Adventure Rafting is for those looking for an adrenaline-filled experience in the Sunshine Coast. It consists of a boat tour, but do not let it fool you. It is not as dull as you think. With 350-horsepower of speed, the boat will engage in high-speed turns, offering you with intense action.
Of course, you get to see the stunning blue ocean. If you are lucky, you have a high chance of seeing marine animals, including whales in the area. There is a breathtaking coastal environment, and you get to witness the allure of Mooloolaba Beach. The tour will also take you towards the headland of Point Cartwright.
Other hotspots included in this journey are Kawana Beach and Mudjimba Island. Do not forget to learn about the history of Mudjimba, which will surely enthral you.
Mooloolaba is a coastal area that has become quite popular over the years. Many tourists and locals visit this place because of its wildlife and natural scenery.
Adventure Rafting is certainly not for everyone – especially those with a faint heart. It is action-packed from start to finish.
Watch whales while relishing the scenery
There are several options if you wish to watch whales while you are spending time on the Sunshine Coast. One is from the same group that offers Adventure Rafting. Whale Watching is incredibly fun and memorable.
A professional skipper will guide the tour, so you and all the other participants know what to do. All safety measures will be explained – don’t be shy in asking questions!
Once the briefing is complete, you get on a boat for a cruise that will take you to the Mooloolaba Marina and its beach. It is an experience of a lifetime as you witness the migration of sea creatures into the oceans of the Sunshine Coast.
The coastline of the Marina is the best place for you to watch humpback whales as they migrate during wintertime. The whale watching experience lets you observe the marine creatures while enjoying the beauty of Mooloolaba Beach, Mudjimba Island, and Point Cartwright.
Another option is through Whale One, which is a vessel where you get to watch whales on a cruise. Whale One is a 65-foot catamaran that can accommodate up to 120 passengers. It has plenty of features that will make you feel comfortable and luxurious during the adventure. It comes with a licenced bar, undercover seating, and six LCD screens with surround sound. It is the boat that is made for cosy watching and other water activities.
You can also book the vessel for private and corporate gatherings. For whale watching, Whale One offers two-hour cruises starting from May to September. These months are the best for witnessing the magnificent mammals underwater.
Swim with the whales
If whale watching is not enough, how about improving the experience even more? You can, by swimming with the aquatic mammals! From the same people who offer the Whale One tour, here is one way for you to swim with humpback whales. Book Wild One and you get the opportunity to frolic with the whales in the waters.
The chance to be near these water giants is one-of-a-kind. It is not surprising why some people who have had the opportunity to talk about how life-changing it was. The adventure can take more than four hours. Therefore, you have plenty of time to enjoy this rare moment. Meeting point is in Sunreef at The Wharf in Mooloolaba.
Go on a water cruise for an exquisite experience
Whale One is one of the top options if you wish to go on a cruise while watching the whales in the Sunshine Coast waters. Another is with Cruise Maroochy, which is designed for nature lovers. The trip involves cruising along the Maroochy River while on the MV Blue Laguna.
With the help of the accredited tour guide, you will not miss any sights, including azure kingfishers, tuckeroo seeds, and jumping fish.
Another option is the Noosa Ferry Cruise, which operates daily. It has seven stops between Hastings Street and Tewantin, giving the passengers a complete Noosa River experience.
Go scuba diving and see the underwater world
Wolf Rock Dive offers a guided scuba diving tour for those who wish to see the marine wonders of Wolf Rock itself. This particular site is famous for being the best option for shark and ray diving. It is only three hours from north of Brisbane.
Wolf Rock Dive gives dive tours and courses every day for those interested in exploring more of the site. There are four volcanic peaks in the area, which you can explore as well. They are just near Double Island Point, a neighbour of Rainbow Beach.
One fact about this place is that it is where the Grey Nurse Shark resides. It is an endangered species that can be found in this northern part of Sunshine Coast. Aside from Grey Nurse, you will also see eagle rays, leopard sharks, bull rays, and green sea turtles, among many others.
Another option is with Sunreef Mooloolaba, which is a dive centre located in South East Queensland. From July to October, you can swim with humpback whales or just watch them aboard Whale One from June to November. However, if you want a close encounter with these aquatic mammals, going scuba diving is your best bet.
Skookumchuck Narrows, which is at the gates of Sechelt Inlet, has always been applauded by diving magazines. If you wish to have a fantastic adventure, it is a must-visit. It is one of the best diving sites in the entire country, particularly because it is where the WWII Royal Canadian Navy escort destroyer can be found. Named HMCS Chaudière, this vessel sunk in 1992 because of the Artificial Reef Society of British Columbia. This escort destroyer measures 112 metres or 366 feet.
Learn to surf like a pro
There are many ways to learn how to surf, including the surfing lessons with Go Ride a Wave. The lessons take place in Noosa where you can discover the basics of this water sport with professionals. If you are an absolute beginner, you should enrol in surfing lessons where you can learn how to stand up and ride the waves. Noosa is a great place to lean the activity because of the perfect weather and warm waters.
Coolum Surfing School is also where you can learn how to surf. It is just 90 minutes north of Brisbane. If you are by the Sunshine Coast airport, the surfing school is only 10 minutes north. You will have a local and expert surf instructor who will teach you how to surf, along with a maximum of eight students.
Coolum Surfing School caters to all groups, whether you are an individual or with a group of people. Even kids can join. All equipment will be provided, including wetsuits. You only have to bring your towels and swimmers.
Go fishing for a relaxing yet educating experience
Since the Sunshine Coast has several natural bodies of water, it is easy to find a fishing site. You do not have to be an experienced angler to understand why many have become fishing enthusiasts. You can be a beginner or even be with your kids. Fishing is an activity that you will not forget.
Some options include Sunshine Coast Afloat and Caloundra and Bribie House Boats. Hiring any of these boats will allow you to have some fun even without going in the water.
Sunshine Coast Afloat lets you explore Mooloolaba’s canal systems and the ocean as well. Just an hour north of Brisbane, you can enjoy a wide variety of activities involving water, such as deep-sea fishing, whale watching, and cruises.
Another is through Bribie House Boats. Hire a boat and wander through the beauty of Sunshine Coast’s waters. Bribie Island is a remote area, which gives you peace and quiet as you travel. Caloundra City, on the other hand, is much busier but still offers calmness. Fishing will never be this comfortable and relaxing while on a boat.
The waters of Noosa River are quite inviting, so do not miss the chance to experience Noosa Fishing and Crab Adventures. You get to go fishing, crabbing, and marvelling the beauty of the river. Plus, there are many sightseeing opportunities because of the abundant native birdlife in the area.
There is a professional skipper while you go on a fishing tour. You do not have to bring fishing gear because everything will be provided. Bait and even weather jackets are free for your trip as well.
Go kayaking for a heart-pumping adventure
If fishing or even swimming is not exciting for you, why not go kayaking instead? In the Sunshine Coast, you get to choose several kayaking locations, such as the Mary River and Yabba Creek. It will surely be a fun-filled event, complete with breathtaking scenery.
Kayaking through the Ride on Mary adventure takes you to rainforest patches and all the way to open farmland. If you kayak at dawn, you could even get a glimpse of the elusive platypus.
Another exciting encounter is right in the mountains and hills of the Mary Valley. You have the chance to spot the endangered Queensland Lungfish, which has been around since the dinosaur era. While kayaking in this area, you may even see another endangered species, the Mary River turtle. It is dubbed the “bum breathing punk.”
One more option for kayaking is the family-owned Kanu Kapers. The owners provide sustainable kayak experiences where you get to ride locally-handcrafted kayaks. The adventure starts in the Noosa Everglades, which is one of the two everglades on Earth. Noosa Everglades offers unique sights of Mother Nature’s beauty with rare birds and plants as you paddle.
Go water skiing
While in the Sunshine Coast, do not miss going skiing at the Oz Ski Resort. It is a freshwater ski facility with two human-made lakes. Whether it is your first time to go skiing or you are a pro, there is a place here for you. You can go water skiing with your family and friends. You can also choose other water activities, such as wakeboarding, banana boat riding, and kneeboarding.
For new skiers, they can have a wakeboard or ski lesson onsite. It already includes a boat, coach, and driver. You do not have to bring anything with you because Oz Ski Resort will provide the latest equipment for the mentioned sports.
Swim and explore the Noosa beaches
Noosa Beach offers excellent waters for swimming. They are usually warm throughout the year, so it is comfortable to go swimming no matter what time it is. The area is also packed with several things to do. For instance, just a few steps from the beach, you can find Hastings Street. When you are tired of swimming, or you want to eat, you will find trendy restaurants here.
Kings Beach is also worth your time. After all, it was once voted the best beach in Queensland, along with Mooloolaba Beach and Noosa Main Beach. You can take your pets with you or just make sandcastles with your kids. Of course, you can just swim or lay under the sun.
With all these activities and hotspots in the Sunshine Coast, you will truly never run out of choices for an epic water adventure all-year-round.
If you’re looking for a place to stay then we have a range of listings available so you can enjoy your stay on the Sunshine Coast.