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Are you planning your dream Gold Coast family holiday? Perhaps the hardest part of planning a trip is working out the best family accommodation on the Gold Coast.
Fortunately, The Gold Coast is well equipped with places to stay for families, with a plethora of hotel and holiday rental options to choose from. In fact, the hardest part about finding a place to stay is narrowing down your options.
And that’s where I come in. We used to live on the Gold Coast in Australia, but now go back from time to time to visit friends and family.
As a family of four, we’ve been fortunate to stay in some of the best family-friendly accommodation options on the Gold Coast, and so I’ve decided to share those accommodation options with you because I understand the headache it can give you.
In this guide, I’ve shared my picks for the best Gold Coast accommodation based on our personal experience staying at all of these Gold Coast apartments, best family hotels, hostels, and campgrounds, as well as from our extensive research and recommendations from friends and family.
For each recommendation, I’ve included a link to the story related to our stay at the Gold Coast apartments and hotels with more information for you. I’ve also included booking links from Booking.com where you can check prices and availability.
- Where Is The Best Place to Stay on the Gold Coast, Queensland?
- Best Budget Family Accommodation on the Gold Coast
- Mid-Range Family Friendly Accommodation on the Gold Coast
- 6. Mediterranean, Burleigh Heads
- 7. Mantra, Coolangatta
- 8. Couran Cove Island Resort, South Stradbroke Island
- 9. Binna Burra Mountain Lodge, Lamington National Park
- 10. O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat, Lamington National Park
- 11. QT, Surfers Paradise
- 12. Kirra Surf Apartments, Kirra Beach
- 13. Bujerum Apartments, Burleigh Heads
- 14. Mouse House Rainforest Retreat, Springbrook National Park
- Luxury Accommodation on the Gold Coast
- Final Thoughts on The Best Gold Coast Accommodation
Where Is The Best Place to Stay on the Gold Coast, Queensland?
But first, let’s talk about the neighborhoods and districts you can stay in. For first-time visitors, I recommend you stay in Surfers Paradise.
The Gold Coast is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Australia and Surfers Paradise was featured on TripAdvisor’s destinations on the rise list for 2016.
We’ve visited the Goldy many times and also lived on the Gold Coast, and found that this is one of the most popular areas for family tourists because it’s close to the theme parks, that is Movie World, DreamWorld, and Sea World, and all the thrilling activities the Gold Coast is famous for.
Plus, it has a Hard Rock Cafe (which, we’ll admit is good) a couple of great water tours, and the usual touristy tacky things like Ripley’s Believe It or Not.
If you’re looking for an up-and-coming place to stay and you have older kids, we’d like to replace Surfers with Burleigh Heads as a destination on the rise.
It would be the perfect location for your Gold Coast family holiday as it’s quieter, has more space, and allows you to get out and enjoy the beaches and nature without the need for a car.
I like Burleigh as it is the midpoint of the Gold Coast so closer to Surfers Paradise.
But if it’s natural beauty and relaxed vibes you’re after, take it from us, frequent visitors to the Gold Coast and former locals – from Burleigh south to the border at Coolangatta, and the Hinterland is the best part of the Gold Coast.
But don’t tell too many people as we don’t want the local, low-key vibe to be destroyed. This is the region you want to stay if you want to lap up that Gold Coast local beach life.
Aside from the areas mentioned above, some other great places to stay for families in the Hinterland area would be Currumbin (for the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary), Kirra and Coolangatta.
Best Budget Family Accommodation on the Gold Coast
Now you know a little bit about where to base yourself, it’s time to take a look at the best accommodation options.
I’ve compiled a list of the best family accommodation on the Gold Coast ranging from budget hostels to apartments, hotel stays, and luxury homes.
I begin this list with the best budget options. Although these are on the lower end of the price scale, remember prices for the Gold Coast accommodation will vary depending on the time of the year you visit.
1. Paradise Resort Gold Coast
When it comes to choosing a place to stay that the whole family will enjoy, there will be few families who won’t enjoy the facilities at Paradise Resort Gold Coast.
It’s the mother of all family resorts and has everything you could ever want or need. In fact, you don’t even need to leave the resort there’s so much to do (though I highly suggest you do, there’s so much to do on the Gold Coast).
It’s located in the center of Surfers Paradise and has its own water park with a lagoon pool, kids club and games room, ice-skating rink, and a spa for mum and dad to chill in.
It also has daily activities such as a magician performance and a trivia night.
It has a convenience store and bistro on site, and all rooms are simple but have the necessities such as air-con.
But what makes this the best family accommodation in the Gold Coast is that under 12s get to stay FOR FREE. The only downside is the wifi signal is poor, but who needs it with all this stuff to do!
2. NRMA Treasure Island Holiday Resort
Another great holiday park for families that’s packed with amenities and things to do is the NRMA Treasure Island Holiday Resort.
It’s located in Biggera Waters, which isn’t our favorite location, but it is within a 20-minute drive from the theme parks.
Besides, it has an outdoor cinema, games room, giant jumping pillow, tennis court, outdoor gym, four giant swimming pools, spas for mom and dad, and a pirate-themed mini golf course.
It also offers self-contained villas for rent, so you have the luxury of your own space.
3. Turtle Beach Resort
Mermaid Beach is a great location as it sits right in the middle of Burleigh Heads and Surfers Paradise, offering the best of both worlds – quiet and relaxed beach vibe, but close to the main attractions.
Turtle Beach Resort offers self-contained accommodation in a resort-like setting that’s ideal for families.
It has four huge swimming pools, one of which is a lagoon pool and one has a water slide. There’s also a spa pool for mom and dad.
The Splash Zone Water Park is the highlight of the resort and is where you will find water activities, water cannons, and slides for toddlers.
It also has a mini gold course, and a games room with video games.
4. Sea World Resort
Located on the Southport spit is the Sea World Resort, which is just a 15-minute drive from Surfers Paradise.
It has a huge 50 meter lagoon pool and aquatic playground for kids. It also has an award-winning restaurant, Hatsuhana, which serves Japanese cuisine.
And of course, the best part of the resort is you get to sleep near the tropical fish of Sea World.
5. Burleigh Beach Tourist Park
We’ve stayed at the Burleigh Beach Tourist Park twice. Once on the first lap of our Australian road trip, and then when we returned for a few weeks while we were searching for more permanent accommodation.
It’s grown a lot since we last visited. Before it was just a campsite, but now you can rent little 2-bedroom cabins and even a vintage camper!
The powered campsite is the more affordable option and it’s smallish and doesn’t have many facilities. It has an amenity block with toilets and showers, but that’s it.
However, its position is premium, which makes this the perfect accommodation for families on the Gold Coast.
Who needs facilities, when the beach is just across the road?
Turn right and you enter another of our favorite Gold Coast walks – through the Burleigh National Park and the headland. Come join me for 6 am boot camp as we run up the hill and die.
Mid-Range Family Friendly Accommodation on the Gold Coast
If you have a bit more budget to spare, it’s worth putting it into your accommodation. Below I’ve listed my mid-range options for places to stay on the Gold Coast.
6. Mediterranean, Burleigh Heads
When we arrived in Burleigh, we moved out of the caravan park after three weeks, because the holidays finished and it ticked over into shoulder season.
That meant we could rent an apartment in Burleigh for only $20 extra a night than stay in our tiny camper trailer we were sick of!
The Burleigh Mediterranean Resort is across the road from North Burleigh beach and within walking distance of the bus stop, supermarket, North Burleigh Surf Club (our fave), and awesome cafes. They have a great swimming pool area the kids will love.
7. Mantra, Coolangatta
The Mantra Coolangatta has some of the best views that I’ve ever experienced in an apartment stay. It’s right on the Esplanade at Coolangatta and within walking distance of everything you need including our favourite sunset spot on the East Coast of Australia – Snapper Rocks.
The Self-contained apartments are small but comfortable. The good news is the private balcony is big and I can guarantee you won’t want to leave it.
In fact, I even said that I could live at Mantra Coolangatta if I could! It’s the ideal accommodation option for families who need more space and the comforts of home, such as a full kitchen, gym with sauna, and laundry facilities.
Plus there’s an on-site pool as well. Coolangatta is the closest Gold Coast town to the Gold Coast Airport. Cross over the main street in town and you’ll be in NSW.
8. Couran Cove Island Resort, South Stradbroke Island
If you’re looking for a much quieter and more natural Gold Coast family holiday, stay at Couran Cove on South Stradbroke Island.
Leave your car on the mainland and cruise around the resort and island on your bike. It’s located on the water’s edge and is surrounded by a natural forest and beaches.
All apartments and villas at Couran have water views and the resort has outdoor pools and other facilities like beach volleyball, tennis, bike hire, and mini golf.
This is the tranquil family Gold Coast accommodation that would suit families who want to escape the bustle of city and enjoy the beauty of nature.
9. Binna Burra Mountain Lodge, Lamington National Park
Far too many people ignore the Gold Coast Hinterland for those stunning Gold Coast beaches! Don’t!!
The Hinterland is one of my favourite spots in Qld, it’s only an hour from the coast, but full of adventure and serenity in ancient rainforests. It’s magical.
Binna Burra Mountain Lodge has family accommodations ranging from campsites to cabins, to a bit more lux apartments. It’s a great relaxing getaway for families who want to kick off from the digital life an unwind with nature.
Plus there’s no better sunset than the one by the BBQ area. Oh yes, it has BBQ facilities too!
Because of its lush mountainside location, you can find many hiking trails, waterfalls, bushwalks, and lookouts nearby. We also enjoyed the guided bush walk with a ranger when we visited.
Another thing that makes Binna Burra unique is that it has eco-friendly cabins, which are perfect for those environmentally conscious travellers.
10. O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat, Lamington National Park
While Binna Burra was quiet and all about being in nature, another Gold Coast hinterland accommodation known for being family-friendly is O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat.
Like, Binna Burra, it is situated within a different section of the Lamington National Park, but unlike Binna Burra, it has more onsite attractions, such as the Flying Fox zip line, a bird of prey show, and several bush walks.
There’s an inexpensive National Park campground just outside the retreat, and inside it ranges from a lodge to cabins to lux villas with spa baths on the deck overlooking the rainforest.
It is one of the best family accommodations on the Gold Coast for your hinterland retreat.
11. QT, Surfers Paradise
Uptown funk you up. Uptown funk you up! That’s the QT in Surfers Paradise on the Gold Coast!
Full of funk and quirkiness.
From the tropical shirt-clad concierge waiting to greet you with an iced lemonade, to the chic custom design of each room, your head will be turning and conversation will be flowing about the QT during your stay on the Gold Coast. Tell me you don’t feel like you’re in Miami.
Plus, the QT has an amazing buffet style with a QT twist dinner and breakfast at the Bazaar plus the Stingray is one of Surfers hottest bars. Not sure you’ll be going there with kids in tow though!!
Instead, you might want to check out the Spa.
The QT on the Gold Coast is accommodation that tells a story.
12. Kirra Surf Apartments, Kirra Beach
Again, another great family accommodation on the Gold Coast with an epic ocean view is Kirra Surf Apartments.
They are edging into that luxury accommodation market with its divine views and stylish beach decor, but the price tag is still reasonable and affordable for families.
It’s in a quiet location, but within easy walking distance to cafes and restaurants, and go a little further around the point and you’ll be in Coolangatta. There’s also a pool in case the beach doesn’t tickle your toes enough.
13. Bujerum Apartments, Burleigh Heads
I rate Bujerum Apartments as my favourite places to stay on the Gold Coast. I even hesitated about putting it in the luxury accommodation bucket, and the price is way more affordable than you think for the value and experience you’ll receive.
It, without a doubt, has the perfect position of any other family accommodation on the Gold Coast I’ve mentioned in this post or seen.
Sit on the balcony from sunrise to sunset and you will not be disappointed. There are no high-rises blocking your view, you’re right on the surfer’s point watching them catch the waves in.
There’s an easy-going vibe and pace here perfect for your Gold Coast family holiday. Burleigh Hill is my favourite spot on the Gold Coast. It’s where we usually walk daily to chill and watch the surfers.
14. Mouse House Rainforest Retreat, Springbrook National Park
This is where I want to plan our work retreat for next year. The Mouse House Rainforest Retreat in Springbrook on the Gold Coast is the most enchanting place I’ve stayed.
Our cabin was Doc, and as we walked through the misty rainforest, to uncover Doc hidden behind the twisted vines, I felt like I was Snow White discovering the Seven Dwarfs Cabin.
It’s located only 40 mins from the coast in the Springbrook National Park, which is a magical ancient rainforest area filled with walks and waterfalls. I can’t wait for a sunny day so we can explore it more.
Luxury Accommodation on the Gold Coast
Now we have the 5* hotels, luxurious apartments, and spangly deluxe options. If you’re looking to push the boat out, here are some of the top luxury places to stay on the Gold Coast.
15. The Star Grand at The Star Gold Coast
I stayed at The Star Grand, formerly the Star Gold Coast Hotel and Casino, formerly Jupiter’s Casino, during my participation in the mock Commonwealth Games event.
I really enjoyed it. The rooms had just been refurbished.
I had gorgeous views out over Broad Beach, and my favourite feature was walking into the room and having the blinds and curtains automatically open so I could see the views – extraordinary. I’ve never seen that before ever.
What also makes Star’s a great place to stay on the Gold Coast is the entertainment on offer right at the bottom of the lifts. You have plenty of restaurants and bars and the casino (be careful!)
The Garden Kitchen and Bar is one of our favourite places to eat on the Gold Coast. It’s also right across the road from the Pacific Fair Shopping Centre.
You can check out the crazy Commonwealth Games event I was part of by clicking play below:
16. Marriott Resort & Spa, Surfers Paradise
We stayed at the JW Marriott Gold Coast Resort and Spa, Gold Coast when Savannah was a baby. It’s considered one of the best family resorts because of its lagoon pool with lazy river and waterslide, but we found it to be a great family accommodation on the Gold Coast purely for its location.
We didn’t stick around in the hotel much, not when everything we wanted to see and do in Surfers Paradise was right on the doorstep.
We loved the location as it was within walking distance of everything in Surfers and close enough to the Theme Parks, including Sea World, which we were in town to explore.
The views over the ocean were brilliant, and we loved the pool area which is a gorgeous saltwater lagoon pool. They have buffet breakfast and Citrique was a worthy restaurant to eat in.
17. Hilton Hotel and Apartments, Surfers Paradise
Rising high above Surfers Paradise, with epic views of Surfers Paradise beach or canal/hinterland, are the twin towers of Hilton apartments in one and hotel suites in the other.
We stayed in one of the two-bedroom apartments and loved it for Gold Coast family accommodation. Its located in the heart of Surfers Paradise, right in the middle of the Cavill Avenue action, so it’s easy to walk around, but also easy for you to escape the madness if you want a quiet night in.
Hilton Hotel and Apartments is the home to another of Surfers hottest bars, the Fix Bar, and the Salt by Luke Mangan is a popular place to dine or enjoy a buffet breakfast. The Deck Pool Bar is also a great place for a swim and a cocktail.
18. Palazzo Versace, Main Beach
No, we haven’t stayed at the Palazzo Versace yet, but I’m putting this hotel on the list because you’ve got to dream right.
I mean, who wouldn’t want to stay at a Versace property, the ultimate in style and luxury, and feel like a rock star at least once in your life?
We dined at the property though at the Vie Bar + Restaurant and the food was superb, so I can only imagine the rooms would be just as elegant as the restaurant was.
Final Thoughts on The Best Gold Coast Accommodation
So there you have it, those are the best places to stay on the Gold Coast for families, and I think you’ll find a lot of diverse options from my list.
Each of these hotels and apartments has been picked based on personal experience or recommendations, and while they each offer something different, they all offer a great base for a family.
I hope this guide helped you plan your trip to Goldie. andgave you some inspiration for where to stay,
For more places to stay on the Gold Coast choose from the largest range of hotels, apartments, and hostels with our partner Booking.com. You get free cancelation on most rooms, and in most cases, you only pay when you stay.
One of our favourite ways to find accommodation, especially with kids, is to rent an apartment or home. You can find some amazing deals and interesting properties, which would be a great option for your Gold Coast family accommodation! See all holiday rentals here.
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What’s your favourite family accommodation on the Gold Coast? Can you recommend any places to stay on the Gold Coast? Let us know in the comments.