A warm welcome for iso escapees

Been missing the sand between your toes? Escape winter with a holiday on the Sunshine Coast. Picture: Supplied
Been missing the sand between your toes? Escape winter with a holiday on the Sunshine Coast. Picture: Supplied

With Queensland preparing to open up for more extensive travel, it's time to pack away the jigsaw puzzles, crafts and baking gear, get out of the house and escape to the wide open spaces of the Sunshine Coast.

Most of the region's major attractions have re-opened, and with the area's endless beaches and rich hinterland, there is a vast range of activities to entertain and revitalise couples and families.

Now more than ever, travellers could do with a dose of good old Mother Nature.

For impressive views, lace up the sneakers and get some fresh air with a hike up Mount Coolum or Mount Ngungun, spot a pademelon at Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve or marvel at Serenity Falls in Buderim.

Interested in the aquatic, but don't have your own boat? You're covered with tube and banana boat rides at Oz Ski Resort, learn to hang ten at Coolum Surf School, dive into the Cotton Tree pool or find your own stretch of sand to dip your toes in the ocean at any one of the pristine beaches lining the coast from Golden Beach in the south to Rainbow Beach in the north.

Take to the Mary Valley trails on a mountain bike with Ride on Mary, get in the saddle with a guided horse trail ride around beautiful Ewen Maddock Dam with Tunnel Ridge Ranch, shoot across the water with Caloundra Jet Ski or you can even take to the skies with Paradise Seaplanes.

If you'd like to see wildlife up close, meet the adorable little blue penguins at Sea Life Sunshine Coast or get up close and personal with more than 700 native and exotic birds from around the world at Maleny Botanic Gardens.

Crocodiles are back at Australia Zoo or head out on a whale-watching cruise with Sunshine Coast Afloat to see the majestic gentle giants of the waters as they migrate north.

A hidden treasure on the Sunshine Coast, The Caloundra Street Fair, features more than 120 unique stalls and is open every Sunday from 8am to 1pm.

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The Caloundra Twilight Markets re-opened on June 26. With a large range of both food and artisan stalls, this market runs along the Bulcock Beach Esplanade on the last Friday of each month from 5pm-9pm.

Little ones can be amazed at Bellingham Maze, while older kids and adults can get the adrenaline racing around the chicanes at the Big Kart Track.

For the ultimate encounter to push your limits, why not visit Australia's highest and most thrilling Adventure Park designed for the entire family aged eight-plus. Located at the iconic Big Pineapple, the Tree Top Challenge will take participants seemingly sky-high at 25 metres above the ground with 100 challenges and 12 ziplines suspended across five courses amongst sub-tropical rainforest.

With many parks and playgrounds re-opening, savour the fresh air and sunshine with a picnic of fresh seafood straight from the trawlers at Mooloolaba Spit, indulge in a sweet treat from Fior Di Latte Gelateria at The Wharf Mooloolaba, pick your own berries fresh from the vines at Strawberry Fields or sample a taste of goodness at the Ginger Factory.

Or set out on a private tour with a small group of family and friends for a 'Taste of the Hinterland' tour to the vineyards, cheese factory and lunch at a selection of amazing local restaurants with Mystic Mountain Tours.

Choose from a Coastal Hop, Noosa Brewing Trail or Hinterland ExBeerience to sample some local ales on a frothy Sunshine Coast craft-beer tour.

In need of some pampering? Then you can't go past the Teman for Two Package for $360 at Ikatan Day Spa. The treatment includes a Balinese Foot Ritual, 60-minute Balinese Massage, complimentary glass of champagne or pot of tea in the gardens before or after treatments.

  • Visit www.visitsunshinecoast.com
  • Note: Potential travellers should check the status of individual events and establishments with regard to the coronavirus outbreak.