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Gold Coast Beaches Safe for Swimming

Home > Gold Coast > Outdoor | Lists | Free | Family | Beaches
by Roy Chambers (subscribe)
Lover of all things interesting and new
Published April 13th 2017
Best Gold Coast beaches for families to swim safely
Gold Coast Beaches Safe for Swimming

While the Gold Coast is famous for its beaches the reality is that most of them are not great for swimming, especially for little kids. This is because most of the beaches, including the famous Surfer's Paradise, have beach breaks, which means you are pounded continually by waves.

Family at the Gold Coast
Family at the Gold Coast


In the light of the fact that hundreds of people are being pulled out of the water over holiday weekends, it is time to look at the safest places to swim on the Gold Coast. Remember, no matter where you swim, if there are surf lifesavers, swim between the flags.

Gold Coast is a popular family and tourist destination
Gold Coast is a popular family and tourist destination


Rainbow Bay

Rainbow Bay is one of my favourite beaches on the Gold Coast. This lovely little sheltered beach in the Coolangatta area is its own little world. There is a nice surf break here that creates a long run for surfers and plenty of protection for swimmers.

Rainbow Bay
Rainbow Bay


Other than the Rainbow Bay surf club, there is nowhere else on the beach to eat. However, it is a short stroll down the shops and restaurants at Coolangatta.

Surfers at Rainbow Bay
Surfers at Rainbow Bay


The other downside of Rainbow Bay is that the beach is not suitable for swimming at low tide. But then you can pop over to Coolangatta if you need a dip.

Enjoying drinks at the Rainbow Bay Surf Lifesaving Club
Enjoying drinks at the Rainbow Bay Surf Lifesaving Club


Coolangatta

Coolangatta lies at the very southern end of the Gold Coast. The area provides a bit of everything and is my preferred spot to stay on the Gold Coast because you are not lacking in anything, but at the same time, you don't have to deal with the crowds at Surfer's Paradise.

Boardwalk at Coolangatta
Boardwalk at Coolangatta


This reasonably sheltered beach attracts swimmers of all levels. Early in the morning, before the surf lifesavers start patrolling, people head to the southern end near the rocks. This is the safest and most sheltered spot to swim.

Coolangatta Beach
Coolangatta Beach


If there is any danger at Coolangatta it has to be skydivers landing on your head. Just keep away from the clearly marked landing sites. Or better yet, sign up to do a tandem jump down to the beach. Overall Coolangatta is favourite among locals and regular visitors to the Gold Coast.

Currumbin Creek

Currumbin Creek is the place that families head to on the Gold Coast. This sheltered creek has calm water great for little kids and less confident swimmers.

Currumbin Creek
Currumbin Creek


The creek is also a popular location for water activities such as kayaking and standup paddling boarding. There are also several cafes and takeaway restaurants in the area.

Kayaking up Currumbin Creek
Kayaking up Currumbin Creek


Even better, if you are looking for some waves, you can just walk over the sand hill to palm beach. Also on the southern side, there is also Currumbin Beach itself.

Palm Beach provides an option for people who want to swim in the waves
Palm Beach provides an option for people who want to swim in the waves


The creek is also a popular fishing spot. Most people fish in areas near the Mangroves away from swimmers. Others head up the creek to various locally known fishing spots.

Fishing at Currumbin Creek
Fishing at Currumbin Creek


Tallebedgera Creek

The alternative place to go to is Tallebedgera Creek just south of Burleigh Heads. These quiet waters are usually accessed from the southern side and is popular with families.

Tallebudgera Creek seen from Burleigh Heads
Tallebudgera Creek seen from Burleigh Heads


You can also access Tallebedgera Creek by walking through the Burleigh Heads National Park. You will arrive at a small beach this way which attracts people looking for a quick dip.

Burleigh Beach

Burleigh Beach appears to be a fairly exposed beach, but Burleigh Heads gives some protection from the surf. While not always suitable for kids, you can expect to get slightly lower waves here than at the more exposed beaches. So it is a great intermediate beach.

Burleigh Beach
Burleigh Beach


Burleigh also attracts people looking to do a range of other activities. At sunset you find many people walking on the beach or along the beachside walkway. Burleigh is also the destination for people looking to do a lazy Sunday cycle from somewhere like Broadbeach.

Burleigh Beach is a popular place for walking or cycling
Burleigh Beach is a popular place for walking or cycling


Of course, there is also Burleigh Heads National Park. This wonderful little section of bushland is popular with people exercising or going for a casual stroll. A circuit around the National Park is only 3.5 kms.

Walking in Burleigh Heads National Park
Walking in Burleigh Heads National Park


What also makes Burleigh is one of my favourite areas in the Gold Coast are the shops, cafes and restaurants. While the cafes attract a more upmarket crowd, there are a wide range of food options that cater to everyone.

There are lots of shops, cafes, restaurants and laneways at Burleigh Beach
There are lots of shops, cafes, restaurants and laneways at Burleigh Beach
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Why? Be safe at the beach
When: Beaches are patrolled 8 am to 5 pm
Where: Gold Coast
Cost: free
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