10 cheap Gold Coast workouts worth getting out of bed for.
10 cheap Gold Coast workouts worth getting out of bed for.
Living on the Gold Coast makes it all the more enticing to get out and keep active – there’s no limit to the options available to help keep your workouts fresh and fun. If you’re looking for some alternatives to the more obvious usual suspects – beach, bush walks, stair runs & bike tracks – we’ve rounded up some great free and (super) low-cost options to get that heart rate up without breaking the budget!
With five free options in the mix, you’ll even have enough change left over for a sneaky oat milk latte for your efforts #thankuslater
Zen Soul Life
If you’re yet to join the cult following behind the all-over body workout that is Pilates, don’t let the appearance of the low-impact movements fool you, this deceptively challenging workout will have you building strength, improving flexibility and – our personal fave – relieving back pain (a must for all the desk workers among us!)
When: Monday and Wednesday 6pm, Thursday 9am
Where: Zen Soul Life, Check their insta for locations all over the GC – Hope Island and Labrador are both free!
Move Strong – on the Mat
A hybrid program with a Pilates feel, Move Strong – on the Mat is based around complementary resistance training and cardio techniques, designed and led by an accredited exercise scientist. Created to enhance your balance, coordination, cardiovascular health and muscular strength – sign us up! And at only $3 entry, this f-ab class is really not a stretch either.
When: Move Thursday 9am and 10.30am, Friday 9.15am
Where: In Motion Health and Fitness, Benowa, Paradise Point & Labrador
With a time slot that makes it ideal to squeeze in before work, and a fun and interactive group based environment designed for all fitness levels, the only thing standing in your way to live, laugh, lunge will be your ability to ignore the seductive calls of the snooze button. Go get your fix of strength, cardio, boxing and functional fitness movements all in one!
When: Monday 6am
Where: HOTA, Surfers Paradise.
Lights Out and Dance
Now if mornings just aren’t your thing, cha-cha-change it up with this night time free-movement dance fitness session at two convenient GC locations. What’s not to love about having an abs-olute blast while you dance your heart out in the dark!
When: Tuesday and Thursday at 7pm
Where: Broadbeach Cultural Precinct, Broadbeach and Runaway Bay Youth Centre, Runaway Bay
Cost: $10 – bookings required
This class is geared towards beginners, so the gentle movements will leave you feeling pose-itively rejuvenated and ready to take on the day! A combination of stretching, light isometric strength training and long holds at a restorative, slower pace.
When: Wednesday and Saturday at 6am
Where: Palm Beach Parklands, Palm Beach
If you live a little further north, maybe this Broadbeach option is a little more convenient for you. Geared for beginners through to those wanting more of a challenge, these outdoor classes go with the flow while well as improving your flexibility and strength.
When: Thursday 6am
Where: Kurrawa Park, Old Burleigh Road, Broadbeach
Deep Water Running
Get carried away with the benefits of deep water running! This low-impact workout option is ideal for people with injuries or limitations (but also, a great way to escape the humidity!) With beginner classes geared towards introducing you to the joy of combining cardio and for a full body workout and improving mobility without any worries about strain or injury.
When: Tuesday 12pm
Where: Gold Coast Aquatic Centre, Southport
Be moved by the healing martial art techniques that Tai Chi has to offer. A qualified instructor will guide you through a series of breathing and stretching techniques to help promote harmony, improve mobility, and increase alertness. The beach-side proximity is an added bonus that makes this class a martial-ous way to start your day.
When: Thursday 8am
Where: Kurrawa, Broadbeach
Spot of power walking, anyone? Start your weekend on the right foot with this fun (and free!) option, the friendly weekly 5k community park run event! Great for people of all fitness levels to get those steps up at your own pace – walk, jog, run, volunteer or spectate – it’s up to you!
When: Saturday 7am
Where: There are 5 parkrun locations across the Gold Coast. Hollingdale Park, Main Beach, HOTA, Surfers Paradise, Monaco St, Broadbeach Waters, Varsity Lakes, Varsity Lakes and Darcy Doyle Park, Mudgeeraba.
Cost: Free – registration required
Unfit Run Club
If you’re the kind of person that exercises just because you know you probably should – behold! Your new favourite running club. Unfit run club was founded by a group of mates who wanted to keep moving and laughing while supporting their fave local haunts #winwin Join in at your own pace and with your bevvy of choice – Thursday’s routes include a cheeky brewery stop to finish, while Saturday mornings finish up at a local cafe for your essential weekend caffeine fix.
When: Thursdays and Saturdays
Where: Check the insta for deets as routes change weekly
Cost: Free – registration required
Words by Kellie Leader.
There have been about 53 public holidays of late, meaning more time for activities and more money going out of your wallet. Meanwhile, the sun is shining (most of the time) and it’s almost summer, so there are still plenty of good times to be had.
Thankfully we have the answer, FREE THINGS TO DO on the Gold Coast. They do say the best things in life are free!
Bike crawl to Burleigh
There are many sweet spots to cruise along on the Gold Coast. Start at Kurrawa Park in Broadbeach and head south to the hill at Burleigh Heads. You’ll mostly be on the Esplanades but there are bike lanes on the roads for max safety. Wear your helmet.
Sunset at Burleigh Hill
Everybody’s favourite picnic spot. Roll out a blanket and kick up your heels for one of the best sunset views on the Gold Coast. People watching is at an all-time high here too if that’s your thing. Take some sport-related things to throw/kick and join in with the rest of the revelers.
Cruise through the markets
The Coast is home to lots of epic markets including beachside ones at Surfers Paradise, Coolangatta and Broadbeach, the ever-popular Village Markets at Burleigh Heads State School every second Sunday and the HOTA markets every Sunday. So many goodies.
Stroll through the national park
We are lucky enough to boast some of the most beautiful natural landscapes in the world (if we do say so ourselves). Take a stroll over Burleigh Hill through the national park and around to Tallebudgera Creek and then return on the Oceanview path. Make sure to keep an eye out for breaching whales.
Paddle in Tallebudgera Creek
The water in Talle Creek is all of the absolutely stunning shades of blue and green and it’s truly a sight to behold. Swim out into the middle, float around on your back and think about how lucky you are to experience it.
Check out The Spit
Main Beach is home to a spot called The Spit which is home to a dog beach and a sweet pier-style situation so you can both make lots of hairy new friends and take some sweet snaps to remember it all.
Feed the birds
Okay, so this one is almost free but well worth the gold coin donation. Head to Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary and feed the hundreds of lorikeets who gather there twice a day (8am and 4pm). They’re beautiful and loud and it’s an amazing experience.
Splash at Currumbin Rock Pools
Just a short drive from Currumbin are the Currumbin Rock Pools, complete with a jumping rock and little waterfalls to splash around in. It can get busy but it’s a relaxing spot to spend an afternoon.
Take a hike
Actually. There are TONS of hikes you can take around the Gold Coast from short little easy ones (yes please) to more challenging, mountainous ones and all with absolutely stunning views and lots of natural goodness to soak up.
Swim in a waterfall
Also just a short drive from Currumbin are Cougal Cascades, a collection of beautiful waterfalls you can swim under and take pretty pics of. You can also laze about in the rock pools and slide down the rocks themselves. It’s a delight. There are plenty more around too.
Slide into a playground
The Gold Coast is home to many epic playgrounds for kids. Most of them have tables and BBQ facilities, so pack an esky and make a day of it. The perennially popular Pirate Park in Palm Beach has just had an upgrade and it’s now bigger than ever. Other unmissable parks include Bim’bimba Park, Pimpama, named the 2020 Best New Park in Queensland and the new Broadwater Parklands North with a 5 storey slide!
Find the frog
Down south a little further, there’s a stunning walk around the ocean from Coolangatta to Snapper Rocks. Go in search of the big green frog on your way, he’s overlooking a secluded little beach called Froggies (for obvious reasons).
Gaze at local art
The Gold Coast is home to several art galleries showcasing our talented local artists plus, of course, some from further afield. Find 19 Karen in Mermaid Beach, Dust Temple in Currumbin and the impressive contemporary HOTA Gallery in Bundall. Grab your Nikes, a LIME bike, skateboard, scooter, or your choice of wheels and hit the trail of the Gold Coast’s best street art with Art Roll. Their easy-to-navigate maps will have you rolling to the best street art by suburb.
Frolic on the beach
We’re lucky enough to be home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. From Surfers Paradise to Snapper Rocks, the options are endless and each one more beautiful than the last. Don’t forget water and sunscreen of course, that Gold Coast sun is unrelenting.
Make your way up the mountain
Mt Tamborine is only a 40 minute drive from the Coast and the views from up there are next-level. Not only that, there are more beautiful walks than you can poke a stick at, waterfalls and the main street is a sight to behold in itself. Plenty of shops to scope out if you’ve got some spare change too.
Enjoy, friends, those should keep you going for awhile.
Words by Kirra Smith
Okay so the vegan eats movement has totally blown up on the Gold Coast, and we’re loving the ever-increasing variety of restaurants proving that plant-based fare is anything but bland-as-bruh.
If you’re looking for a list of local nosheries that can convert even the most passionate meat and meat by-product enthusiast into a bona fide vegan fare fan, read on friends….
Kuan Yin Tea House
If you’re one of those peeps who thinks eating vegan is all about tasteless rubbery tofu, get yourself down to Kuan Yin Tea House immediately! The ultimate IYKYK, this place is fast becoming a local institution with some of the best vegan eats in our ‘hood. Serving the most insanely delicious Thai inspired vegan food, do yourself a flavour (not a typo) and order the BBQ Pork Fried Rice. Now open Monday to Sunday, see you there every day and twice on Sundays!
Where: 152 Scarborough Street, Southport
One of the OG vegan restaurants on the Gold Coast, Greenhouse Canteen’s menu is as good as it gets. They’ve got a botanical bar so that you can order a selection of vegan cocktails, wine or beer and the space is always packed with good vibes. To eat, we’d go for the Jackfruit and Sour Cream Enchiladas or the Sweet n Sour Tofu Larb. Also, if you feel like eating at home, Greenhouse does takeaway and for a gastronomic gift, they even sell vouchers. Hint hint….
Where: 1916 Gold Coast Highway, Miami
It’s vegan. It’s Mexican. And ‘nuff said #BetterTogether. An all-time vegan fave on the Gold Coast for many moons, Goodness Gracias serves up plant-based Mexican food in a vibrant Palm Beach space with mexcellent service to boot. Eat-in or takeaway and choose from delicious eats like burritos, tacos, nachos and plenty of tasty sides and salads. We’re regulars here, and it’s always top-notch nosh (say that after a few margis).
Where: 1114-1116 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
Blendlove started with two gals just trying to make a difference to people’s health through plant-based food. Created with love, they blend only the finest ingredients to produce a collection of whole, nutritious treats that are vegan, and free from gluten, dairy, preservatives, artificial colours, and refined sugar. Basically free from everything….except flavour! A local fave, educating the GC that raw and whole foods can be a party in your mouth. An Insta-worthy one at that!
Where: 253 Ferry Road, Southport
Lord of the Fries
If there’s one thing we can get behind, it’s a fast-food venue made up primarily of potatoes. Well colour us happy because Lord of the Fries is precisely that. Finally fries that aren’t drowned in beef tallow and juiced up with gluten, aren’t cooked in cheap’n’nasty oil or smothered in watered down tomato sauce, and haven’t been sitting in a bain-marie since the beginning of time. Praise be! Slinging vegan fries a-plenty, Lord of the Fries is also serving up Veggie Burgers, Onion Rings, Vegetarian Nuggets and Vegetarian Hot Dogs. Plus, everything is kosher and Halal. Hallelujah!
Where: Paradise Centre, 8 Cavill Avenue, Surfers Paradise
The Hidden Cherub
Tucked away in our much-loved Miami, you’ll find laneway bar/plant-based eats venue: The Hidden Cherub. Decked out with a sleek, industrial-esque look and greenery dripping from the walls, this warehouse style restaurant is a Vegan Vibe! While the drinks here are the main event (as they should be!), the 100% vegan packed food menu is filled with delicious share plates, burgers, tacos, salads and sides. In terms of burgers, get stuck into The Californian (just trust us) and sharesies some Sticky Buffalo Wings and Beef Tacos. Mouth-watering goodness at its best.
Where: 2/29 Lemana Lane, Miami
Cardamon Pod at Southport Is a favourite amongst Gold Coasters (and influencers), offering both mouth-wateringly yum vegetarian and vegan choices. All about clean eating, the menu is lit with Insta-friendly, tastebud titillating nosh so good it’ll knock the socks off even the most discerning vegan diner. We recommend the Mumbai Wrap, Life is a Berry Peach Pancake, and the Snicker Acai Bowl because duh – Snickers. There’s also plenty of raw treats, organic coffee and gluten-free options too. All dishes are almost too pretty to eat….emphasis on ‘almost’.
Where: 3/3 Brolga Avenue, Southport
Easy House Vegetarian Restaurant
Okay it’s vegetarian, it’s vegan….and it’s YUM CHA! Nothing pleases our palette more, and the fact that this place has been around for yonks it a testament to its deliciousness. Whether you dine in or takeaway, Easy House will send your tastebuds into a tizz with the likes of Deep Fried Wontons, Steamed BBQ Pork Buns, and Pan Fried Shanghai Dumplings. Not a yum cha fan? No probs, there is also a vast array of traditional (but vegan/vego) fresh, flavour-packed Asian dishes and banquet options.
Where: 90 Markeri Street, Mermaid Beach
Doko Demo V
The Bali-vibing Doko Demo V 2.0 is even more amazing than the OG, and we are here for it! Offering an entirely vegan wholefoods-based menu, Doko Demo V is the work of Head Chef Jared Peck. Whether you’re seeking an uber tasty plant-based breakfast, lunch or dinner, this little gem is bursting with beautifully prepared dishes that are both healthy and of the eyes-are-bigger-than-your-belly variety. The Spicy Pepperoni Pizza goes down a treat, as does the No Beef Lasagne with garden salad, and the Unreal Scallopini. Wash your feed down with the Dokodemo cocktail because one must stay hydrated….
Where: 2 Sunlight Drive, Burleigh Waters
Umm with ‘Midori’ in the title, this place immediately had our attention. A Reedy Creek based trove of plant-based Japanese food, Izakaya Midori is a winner winner vegan dinner. There are dishes like Spicy Lime Karagee, Japanese Curry Rice, Midori Ramen (not the booze just to clarify), and Smoked Edamame to name a few. You can also grab things to takeaway and the service is next level. Sold? Of course you are!
Where: 50 Woodland Drive, Reedy Creek
Words by Bianca Trathen.