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10 yummy açai bowls on the Coast

Oakberry Acai smoothie bowl (Image: © 2020 Inside Gold Coast)
Oakberry Acai smoothie bowl (Image: © 2020 Inside Gold Coast)

When this little magic berry from the Amazon began to appear in our lives around five years ago, who was to know how much we’d fall for this little antioxidant-packed gem?

It’s safe to say, superfoods have taken off in a big way and are the perfect ingredient to mitigate the strains of a fast-paced twenty-first-century lifestyle – and all those cocktails, naturally. Since we first began to see açai bowls appear in our cafes, they have been elevated to an adored status, with serious attention to detail and quality ingredients making them a stock standard staple on our breakfast menus across the Gold Coast.

Whether you choose to munch yours at the office as you read your emails or scoop your way through a bowl with a few friends on the weekend: the love is real. Handily for you, though, we have compiled the spots that dish up soe of the best of this South American treat — all in the name of good health!

The Shack Superfood Café
This OG of superfood and tasty treats is part of the very fabric that makes Nobby’s Beach so damn cool. If you haven’t been and experienced their taste-filled goods, then, where have you been?!
The pick: Choose your adventure between top-quality Amazonia Energiser and Pure Açai, then take a stroll down to the beach and enjoy your bowl with a fantastic view.
Where: 2221 Gold Coast Highway, Nobby Beach

Cardamom Pod (image supplied)
Cardamom Pod (image supplied)

Cardamon Pod
If all you can eat gorgeous vegetarian food sounds like music to your ears, then might we suggest you take a look at this insta-famous cafe? With some of the most eye-catching ‘extra’ food around, you won’t be disappointed with anything you order here.
The pick: The Pod Special Acai Bowl is nothing short of a piece of art, with blue spirulina crème making this a one-off colour sensation!
Where: 1/2685 Gold Coast Highway, Broadbeach & 3/3 Brolga Ave, Southport

Niche & Co
This Tugun-based delight is the epitome of what a Gold Coast cafe is all about. Great coffee, an incredible menu of hot and cold delights, laidback village vibes, and a place where all the cute dogs miraculously seem to converge. If you know, you know!
The pick: The selection of Acai at Niche & Co is nothing short of mind-blowing. Sideline your order of coffee and pick the Mocha Acai Bowl, with lashings of raw cacao protein and mocha coconut chia mousse – perfection, folks!
Where: 4/449 Golden Four Drive, Tugun

Acai Bowls with Coco Whip from Goji Granola Bar & Cafe (image supplied)
Acai Bowls with Coco Whip from Goji Granola Bar & Cafe (image supplied)

Goji Granola Bar & Café
When you see people pour nothing but devotion and passion into their work, it shows, right? Step inside Goji Granola Bar and Café, and you’ll feel this sentiment straight away with lavish-looking dishes aplenty and chirpy staff to guide you through their brimming menu.
The pick: Their acai bowl is already a marvellous thing; however, we suggest you add on their unique and rotating flavour Coco Fluffvegan coconut soft serve – to really up the ante. (You’ll thank us later).
Where: 7/60 Santa Cruz Boulevard, Clear Island Waters

BSKT
What this little Nobby Beach café doesn’t know about healthy eating isn’t worth knowing. Asides from epic eats for breakfast and lunch, this is one of the most prolific doggo hang-out spots in the city — just saying.
The pick: Their standard Acai bowl features whipped Brah acai and all of the trimmings you’d expect, like goji berries and shredded coconut for days. Perfect fuel as you pat ALL the dogs.
Where: 4 Lavarack Road, Nobby Beach

Acai Bowl, BSKT (image supplied)
Acai Bowl, BSKT (image supplied)

Little Mermaid
This corner-side hangout spot has long been the locals’ favourite place to grab a coffee and a bite post-swim/surf – and it’s easy to see why. Dreamy décor and fantastic breakfast and lunchtime menus mean this is the kind of place you want to visit on the regular with salty hair and sand between your toes.
The pick: Get the Beach Lover Acai Bowl and don’t look back! All of the bright and zesty additions you’d expect but with a healthy dollop of peanut butter as its crown of glory.
Where: 2557 Gold Coast Highway, Mermaid Beach

Oakberry
Should you find yourself gallivanting around town or just coming in after a morning on the beach, either way, Oakberry at Burleigh Heads, Surfers Paradise or Coolangatta, is a great option for some wholesome fuel. You’ll find this café spot perfectly positioned on James Street, Cavill Ave and Marine Parade – all prime people-watching territory!
The pick: Where do we begin! Your options are utterly limitless here, so let your imaginations go wild and customise a bowl to your heart’s content. What we do love here though, is that the bowls are tall, so they actually fit inside your car cupholders, oh the dilemma.
Where: Various locations (Burleigh Heads, Surfers Paradise & Coolangatta)

Tugun Fruit and Flowers
Your one-stop-shop for all the significant essentials you need, and of course, some pretty darn good acai bowls! Whilst you wait for the bowl of your dreams, you can grab yourself some super fresh fruit, a candle or two, or even an epic-looking dried flower arrangement to spruce up a space at home.
The pick: The Choc Acai Bowl for us – this overflowing bowl is blended with raw cacao and almond milk and is topped with ALL of the seasonal fruit imaginable.
Where: 4/467 Golden Four Drive, Tugun

Acai Bowl from Tugun Fruit & Flowers (image supplied)
Acai Bowl from Tugun Fruit & Flowers (image supplied)

Blendlove
For vegans, this Southport café is a dream come true – and a whole lot more. When it comes to good plant-based eats that taste just as good as they look, these guys nail everything and will leave the everyday carnivore scratching their heads.
The pick: With ten smoothies you can have served as a bowl, but we can’t go past the standard acai with a spruce up of additional chocolate buckinis: delicious and nutritious.
Where: 1/253 Ferry Road, Southport

The Salt Mill
Acai bowls need to be consumed with an incredible backdrop: it’s a fact, and we’re sticking with it. So, what better distraction do you have than the gorgeous Currumbin beach? The Salt Mill is a complete haven of tasty treats and is hands down one of the Coast’s best beachside cafes.
The pick: If you go with their standard acai bowl, you’ll struggle not to spill anything as they come overloaded with mulberries, cacao nibs, passionfruit and the works. Insider tip: you can ask for a dollop of peanut butter on any of their bowls as an extra #justsaying.
Where: 785 Pacific Parade, Currumbin

Words by Alex Mitcheson.

Acai bowl, The Salt Mill (image supplied)
Acai bowl, The Salt Mill (image supplied)

11 of the sweetest Gold Coast bakeries

The Pastry Emporium

Oh baked goods, why do you taunt us so. Taste sensations, tick. Better with butter, tick. Comforting when cold, tick, tick, tick. They’re almost too good to be true but, as demonstrated below, they are true and there are Gold Coast bakeries galore which is just fine by us.

Here’s a list of the top 11 bakeries within which you’ll find said exceptional baked treats and happy carb loading Coasties.

Custard Canteen
By the insanely talented team also behind Bam Bam Bakehouse, Custard Canteen is the newest of the bunch, serving up absolutely next-level Portuguese custard tarts, almond croissant tarts, the gooiest of cookies and various breakfast and lunch goods. Find them down Talle Creek way and good luck floating gracefully once you’ve sampled a few (thousand) of those.
Where: Tallebudgera Recreation Centre, Gold Coast Hwy, Palm Beach

The Pastry Emporium
While it may be a slightly fancier version of the good old fashioned bakery, it is still in fact, a place where goods are baked and some of the most incredible goods you’ve ever tasted at that. Now with two convenient locations, The Pastry Emporium creates magical, almost other worldly cakes and desserts while also whipping up a croissant you would probably die for. They also do the breads and the coffees and if you moved in there, we wouldn’t judge you. Please invite us over.
Where: Shop 2, 90 Markeri St, Mermaid Waters and 4/28 Campbell St, Bundall

Bam Bam Bakehouse
Needing no introduction is Mermaid’s Bam Bam Bakehouse – creators of the most original baked treats the Gold Coast has ever seen and the absolute love of our lives if we’re honest. Known for creations such as Gaytime Eclairs and Ink Gin Choux Bomb, it’s another level of baked treat magic and everything tastes more delicious than you could possibly imagine.
Where: 2519 – 2521 Gold Coast Hwy, Mermaid Beach

Paddock Bakery
Hidden amidst a little garden oasis is Paddock Bakery, a café/garden wonderland in Miami also cranking out insane baked goods. How about a Milo Milkshake donut? Yah. Wagon Wheel donuts are also a thing and baby Nutella bots are the real deal. The donut selection changes all the time but there is always something available to blow your dessert loving mind. And your other minds.
Where: 20 Hibiscus Haven, Miami

Fosters Bakery
A Nobby’s institution, Fosters has been serving up the baked goods dreams are made of, for many a year. Their pies are some of the best around and we may have been known to indulge for breakfast, lunch and dinner many days running. Classic pastries from Fosters are also always a good idea, there’s vanilla slice, custard tarts and donuts and you should absolutely get one of everything.
Where: 1/2227 Gold Coast Hwy, Mermaid Beach

Burleigh Baker
For the love of sourdough, this place is the goods. We are quite partial to the olive sourdough, because olives are life but there are many varieties, all of which are the perfect addition to a warming soup and/or lathered with butter. Oh and all their sourdough is of the organic and artisan varieties AND they do incredible cakes like a Raspberry and Pistachio with honey frosting and honey caramel drizzle. Two please.
Where: 13/50 James Street, Burleigh Heads

Custard Canteen

Fuel Bakehouse
So many delicious things come out of this delightful place you guys. Some of the best doughnuts around, tasty delicious pies that are quite large and very filling, croissants, danishes, all of the very best things. There are two Fuel Bakehouse locations so you need not worry about missing out. And you absolutely don’t want to miss out.
Where: 44 Currumbin Creek Rd, Currumbin Waters and 39-45 Tweest Coast Rd, Cabarita 

Coolangatta Pie Shop
Pies are one of Gods greatest gifts to all of us, particularly at 3am after a night of tearing up the dance floor. Conveniently, the iconic Coolangatta Pie Shop is open 24 hours a day on the weekend for literally all of your late night/early morning baked good needs. It’s one of lifes greatest luxuries right on our doorstep. There’s also tasty sweet treats and we recommend the Macadamia Slice thingo because caramel.
Where: 50 Griffith St, Coolangatta

Gumnut Café/Bakery
Oh god there are donuts and they are A M A Z I N G. Cream filled and caramel topped, we have died and gone to donut heaven. Nothing else matters. Except there are also pies and they are so good and everything is made fresh on the premises and by people who care that you are happy with their baked goods. Which you will be. Did you know Mudgeeraba is also a heavenly, away-from-the-city paradise you should definitely visit ASAP? Yep.
Where: 25 Swan Lane, Mudgeeraba

Horner’s of Sorrento
Horner’s was born from a passion for the smell of freshly baked bread and that is something we can get behind. Their particular type of baked magic comes in the form of artisan breads, from pull aparts to French sticks, and some of the very best sweet treats around. We’re particularly partial to the Melting Moments and the Lemon Meringue Pie, oh yes. We could eat all of these things all of the days.
Where: Sorrento Shopping Centre, 20 Bundall Road, Bundall 

Flour of Life
People of the plants rejoice, these amazing folks make all the baked goods without all the gluten, meat, dairy and egg bits. That’s right friends, it’s a vegan bakery with all the incredible treats you’ve come to know and love. Think donuts, cakes, slices, pies, all the most delicious things. We have it on good authority (ours) that the donuts are absolutely next level and pretty as an Insta picture too.
Where: 22-32 Siganto Drive, Helensvale

Words by Kirra Smith

Fuel Bakehouse

9 Insta-worthy brunch spots on the Gold Coast

Eggs Benedict, Dill Ocean Trout, Poached Eggs, Brown Butter Hollandaise at Nineteen at The Star Gold Coast (image supplied)
Eggs Benedict, Dill Ocean Trout, Poached Eggs, Brown Butter Hollandaise at Nineteen at The Star Gold Coast (image supplied)

Let’s face it, keeping one’s Instagram ahead of the pack is often a full-time job. And when you live in one of the best cities, with a coastline that is nothing short of captivating (literally every day), then making sure you have the pictures that will make everyone envious is a priority. Whether your Instagram account has masses of die-hard fans eyeing up everything you do, or you simply like taking photos just for the sake of taking photos, what’s important here, is that you get THE shot!

Seeing as we are blessed with awesome places to eat and while away our best lives, then taking pictures whilst out and about is a smart move. We’re talking cafes, restaurants and bars where the aesthetics — and you combined — are a match made in heaven. So many to choose from though, right? Our research has taken the load off your shoulders as we have the most Insta-worthy brunch spots on the Gold Coast for you. Happy snapping!

Nineteen at The Star
Who hasn’t seen the pictures doing the rounds of people looking absolutely fabulous at Nineteen at The Star? If you haven’t, we suggest you Google some: stat! Besides the amazing views across Broadbeach at over 200 feet with unrestricted panoramas, the sophisticated setting both in the restaurant and bar provides ample opportunity to capture yourself with a sprinkling of luxury. While you’re at it, treat yo self ever to something decadent from Executive Chef Uday Huja‘s Sunday Brunch menu. May we suggest the Eggs Benedict with Dill Ocean Trout or Ham, Poached Eggs and Brown Butter Hollandaise matched with a Champagne Brunch 2 hour beverage package? Insta-game officially leveled up.
Where: The Darling at The Star, Casino Drive, Broadbeach

The Tropic Brunch (image supplied)
The Tropic Brunch (image supplied)

The Tropic
With arguably one of the best views of the Gold Coast coastline, The Tropic was a no-brainer for this list. But it’s not all about those unbelievable pastel hue sunsets, oh no. Inside, the restaurant gives off a luxe Miami yacht club vibe with an overall neutral theme vibrantly juxtaposed with colour from plants, chairs, and even the plates. Did we mention the food is next level? We suggest it’s time to round up the girls and clear your calendar for the last Saturday of every month for The Tropic’s Brunch – it’s one you won’t regret! (Not that anyone has ever regretted a Brunch!)
Where: 43 Goodwin Terrace, Burleigh Heads

Mavis’s Kitchen
The drive out here alone will have you pulling over several times to snap away. However, upon arrival you’ll be treated to one of the Northern River’s most scenic and tucked away dining gems. The cute whitewash colonial-style building is just adorable with grassy paddocks and a gurgling stream that lead your eyes to escarpments around Mount Warning. Do brunch your way when you pre order Mavis’s Kitchen Picnic Hamper filled with cheeses, a charcuterie selection, seasonal dips, cake of the day, freshly baked vegetable frittata and more. If you stay onsite, they’ll even throw in the picnic rug so you can cozy up by the nearby dam and enjoy the simple sound of nature…. Bliss!
Where: 64 Mount Warning Road, Mount Warning, NSW

Saltwater at Currumbin
Our creeks and waterways around the Gold Coast are often overlooked or even worse, completely forgotten as we go about our everyday lives. One stretch of water that deserves your attention any day of the week is Currumbin Creek. Saltwater at Currumbin entirely takes advantage of its waterside location and gives you endless dabbled light and beautiful colours of blue to play around with. It’s impossible to take a bad photo here. Couple that backdrop with a lazy Sunday spent enjoying a Berry Bircher Museli or Eggs Benedict and you’re onto a winner!
Where:2/4 Thrower Drive, Currumbin

Palm Springs Cafe (Image: © 2020 Inside Gold Coast)
Palm Springs Cafe (Image: © 2020 Inside Gold Coast)

Palm Springs
If clean white lines, cacti and Cali-vibes raise your heart rate, then we suggest you schedule a post with a pic from this North Burleigh newbie. Based on a unique southern Californian aesthetic mashed with our very own sub-tropical climate, the interior (and exterior) are full of epic chances for you to strike a pose. Also, doggos are most welcome to join you! So get a snap with your floof, grab your Salsa Scrambled Eggs and a margarita too (because yes they serve morning margis!).
Where: 1878 Gold Coast Highway, Burleigh Heads

South East Espresso
Way down in Coolangatta, this under-the-radar backstreet café is the perfect location after a beach swim or your ritual easy-Sunday-morning Ham Hock Smashed Avo. The warm saffron rendered walls are the perfect backdrop for your best linen attire with contrast minimalistic shades of grey. If you take a seat on their pavement side leather cushioned bench, prepare to make friends with a legion of four-legged friends. Don’t worry; they shouldn’t mind one bit making a guest appearance on your story.
Where: 229 Boundary Street, Coolangatta

Highline
When an uber-cool mid-century fit-out combines with incredible coffee art, the result is Highline in Palm Beach. A firm favourite with the locals and for good reason. All of the dishes here are put together with a strong ethos that you also eat with your eyes. Add in some polished concrete flooring and all the toasty coloured wood features, and your brunch-time snap is destined to be a crowd-pleaser. Because who wouldn’t want a 3 cheese, wild mushroom, chive Jaffle pictured in a more perfect setting?
Where: 5/10 Palm Beach Avenue, Palm Beach

Highline (Image: © 2019 Inside Gold Coast)
Highline (Image: © 2019 Inside Gold Coast)

Milkman’s Daughter
When the Gold Coast first laid eyes on this angelic Mermaid Beach all-vegetarian brunch spot, we’re sure there was a collective swoon moment. The textured white exterior walls alone would typically be enough to have our phones out and ready for a sneaky snap. However, the true treasure is inside when you lay eyes on the sweetest-looking backlit booths with arched ceilings and hanging plants. If you are lucky enough to secure the booth, do yourself a favour and cement it in the form of an insta-post accompanied with your Lemon Ricotta Fluffy Pancakes with house tumeric vanilla custard, passionfruit reduction, berries and herbs.
Where: 2/42 Alfred Street, Mermaid Beach

Paddock Bakery
We think we’re correct to state that Paddock is one of the Gold Coasts’ most tagged eats/drinks hotspots to date. Period. So, what makes it so unique? It could be the quaint English-style garden exterior, or the original vintage Queenslander converted main building, maybe it’s the iconic Dippy Eggs or their ridiculously good-looking baked goods (shout out to their Almond Croissants) which are often only just out the oven? But, you know what, we think it’s all of them!
Where: 20 Hibiscus Haven, Burleigh Heads

 

Want to see more insta-worthy spots? Follow Inside Gold Coast on Instagram here!

 

Words by Alex Mitcheson.

Paddock Bakery (image supplied)
Paddock Bakery (image supplied)

9 local Insta-worthy spots

Image by Art-work Agency

If your Insta game’s not strong, are you even a Gold Coaster? With a herd of Insta-worthy spots across our stunning city, there’s no excuse for not rocking an enviable Instagram account and we’ve got a bit more time on our hands these days so why not right?

To make life easier and ensure you’re the envy of all your mates, here are nine local Insta-worthy spots.

Surfers Paradise Sign
It’s on every Gold Coast tourists’ bucket list and makes the perfect background for a ‘look where I am’ pic. The Surfers Paradise sign is located right where bustling Cavill Ave meets the beach. Try to make it for sunrise (whether you get up, or stay up, we won’t judge!).
Where: The top of Cavill Avenue, Surfers Paradise

Natural Bridge
Springbrook National Park offers you a couple of great Insta pic locations, the most beautiful and unique being the Natural Bridge rock arch.  When you get the right angle and the light hits the water running through the cave, it’s a guaranteed winner! So make sure your battery is fully charged and get ready for a rainforest adventure (watch out for the cave dwelling bats!).
Where: Springbrook National Park, Numinbah Road (follow it for 28km)

The Borrowed Nursery
Never before has a plant nursery gained such a cult-like following so quickly (or perhaps ever). The Borrowed Nursery in Mermaid Beach draws plant lovers and photographers in droves due to its Instagram famous pastel purple wall and bespoke greenery. The stunning space also hosts workshops but if that’s not your jam at least pop in for some healthy retail therapy and an Insta-snap.
Where: 42-44 Cronulla Ave, Mermaid Beach

Miami Hill
It’s a fitness junkie’s kryptonite but the top of the hill also gives you great views of Surfers Paradise and Coolangatta. You may snap some great pics during the day, but we urge you to make the effort and go during sunrise or sunset – it’s mind blowing and no filter necessary.
Where: The southern end of Miami

Natural Bridge, Springbrook National Park (image supplied)
Natural Bridge, Springbrook National Park (image supplied)

Burleigh Hill
It’s safe to say that we’ve all snapped shots on Burleigh Hill at some point. A sweet location with balmy breezes and picture-perfect views of Surfers Paradise’ skyline. If you’re lucky enough, you might even spy a whale breaching!
Where: Goodwin Terrace, Burleigh Heads

Tallebudgera Creek
If taken from the right angle, a picture at Talle Creek can easily be mistaken for a beach in Thailand or the Caribbean (but it’s on the Coast and that’s even better). The calm waters and palm trees are nothing short of #paradise!
Where: Awoonga Avenue, Burleigh Heads (northside) and Murlong Crescent, Palm Beach (southside)

Elephant Rock
There is not just one but two huge rocks at Currumbin Beach and they’re the perfect natural objects for your next Instagram pic! Who doesn’t love a great scenic shot of the deep blue sea? Hot tip: Visit during Swell Sculpture Festival held in September and take pictures of the abstract outdoor sculpture gallery against the ocean.
Where: Currumbin Beach, Currumbin

Waterfalls
With so many waterfalls and rock pools to choose from, it’s not easy to decide which ones to visit. You should probably just go see them all but we’ve created a list of our faves right here.
Where: Various locations

Mexicali
No doubt you’ve noticed the prettiest wall on the Coast beneath Nobby’s fave Mexicali. It’s pink and blue and perfectly Insta-worthy and if you haven’t got a snap in front of it, you better hot foot it down there right now.
Where: Gold Coast Highway, Nobby Beach 

Don’t forget to tag us in your pics using #insidegoldcoast

Words by Kirra Smith

Mexicali
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