Best things to do on the Sunshine Coast and event guide for 2021

The hottest activities including whale watching cruises and theme parks to visit on your upcoming Sunshine Coast holiday.

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We've picked out the top experiences and activities you can enjoy while visiting the Sunshine Coast. Whether you're interested in horse riding along the shores of Rainbow Beach or enjoying a family day out at Aussie World, we'll let you know where to book experiences and activities for the best prices.

Top things to do on the Sunshine Coast

Rainbow Beach horse riding

Horse riding

Take in the beauty of the idyllic Rainbow Beach as you enjoy 5km of beach riding on a horse. No experience is required as you'll be assisted by a friendly and experienced guide before galloping off along the shore. Choose between a day or twilight session, both offering a unique and exciting experience that gets you into nature and enjoying the beauty that Queensland has to offer.

Whale watching,QLD

Whale watching and swimming with whales

Get up close to gentle giants in the ocean with this unforgettable experience. See the whales from the comfort of a boat as their sense of curiosity leads them to swim up close. For a more adventurous experience, take a whale-watching cruise that will stop around 100m away from spotted whales and you'll have the opportunity to get into the water and swim alongside them.

Glass House Mountains, Sunshine Coast

Visit the Sunshine Coast Hinterlands

The Sunshine Coast Hinterlands offers a different side to the Sunshine Coast. Expect crisp crisp air, a relaxed atmosphere and small town charm. Experience eateries with fresh food, art galleries, country markets and Glass House Mountains while visiting, whether you want to make the short journey to the Hinterlands from the centre of the Sunshine Coast or escape for a relaxing getaway.

Pilots in aircraft

Learn to fly

Get behind the controls of an aircraft and learn the basics of flying with this introductory flight session. An instructor will demonstrate how to fly the aircraft and you then get to decide whether you want to fly the aircraft for the remainder of your time in the air or if you want to sit back and enjoy the views as you fly over Moreton Island.

Fun things to do on the Sunshine Coast

Tandem skydive over the ocean


Take a leap of faith with this thrilling aerial experience. A tandem skydive is perfect for people who want to enjoy the excitement of jumping from unbelievable heights, but with the comfort of knowing you are not taking the journey down alone. Depending on your level of comfortability, there's the option to jump from 7,000 feet or 15,000 feet.

Golden Beach, Sunshine Coast

Beach adventure

The Sunshine Coast is known for its serene beaches so you definitely don't want to miss out on dipping your toes in the water. Thanks to an array of beaches to choose from, you can set your eyes on dog beaches, secluded beaches, beaches where you can fish and everything in between.

Our top picks: Mooloolaba Beach . Kings Beach and Golden Beach

Adventure flight, Sunshine Coast

Adventure flight

View the Sunshine Coast and surrounding areas from above with an adventure or aerobatic flight that will get your heart racing. An adventure flight will give you access to the controls with a qualified instructor as you fly over the Mary Valley and Noosa area. Turn it up a notch by getting into an aircraft with a fighter pilot where you'll experience loops, rolls and inverted flights against the backdrop of Airlie Beach and The Whitsundays.

Dolphin safari, Sunshine Coast

Dolphin experience

Embark on a scenic adventure to get up close and personal with curious creatures in the ocean. Cruise up the Noosa River and around Noosa Heads where you can interact with the dolphins as they swim up to the vessel. Alternatively, kayak in crystal clear waters at a gentle pace while taking in the surrounding scenery and spotting marine life including dolphins, whales and turtles along the way.

Things to do on the Sunshine Coast at night

Sunset over the ocean

Sunset cruise

Wind down the day with pristine sunset views in a boat cruise down the canal. See if you can spot marine life from the boat and enjoy the natural wonders that the Sunshine Coast has to offer.

Thai cooking class, Sunshine Coast

Cooking class

Don't let the rain dampen your fun. Head to a cooking class on the Sunshine Coast where you can improve your culinary skills, whip up a feast and best of all, eat it!

Booloumba National Park, Sunshine Coast


Get your tent and marshmallows ready for a night of s'more making and telling stories around the fire. You can access prime camping spots on the Sunshine Coast that offer picturesque scenery and tranquility to enjoy nature and spend some time away from the hustle and bustle. There are camping grounds offering different level of comfortability, scenery and proximity back to the centre of the Sunshine Coast.

Our top picks: Teewah Beach Camping Area, Booloumba Creek Camping and Amamoor Creek Camping Area

Things to do on the Sunshine Coast with kids

Aussie World, Sunshine Coast

Aussie World

The Gold Coast might be the home of amusement and theme parks in the Sunshine State but the Sunshine Coast isn't without its thrills and spills. One of the best for heart-racing rides and family fun is Aussie World. Think rides for all ages, daily at attractions, entertainment shows and live music events.

Noosa Botanic Garden

Explore the Botanic Gardens

There's nothing quite like a relaxing day out in nature with the kids. There are multiple botanic gardens in the Sunshine Coast offering great views, wildlife and attractions that everyone will enjoy.

Jetboarding in Sunshine Coast

Jetpack or flyboard experience

Choose between a jetpack or flyboard experience, or choose both! You'll receive land-based training from professionals before you get geared up and head out to the water where you'll fly solo 10m in the air. If you master that, you can see how far your skills can get you by turning and maneuvering yourself in the air.

Things to do on the Sunshine Coast when it's raining

SEALIFE, Sunshine Coast

SEA LIFE experience

Located in the heart of the Sunshine Coast, SEA LIFE is the perfect place to spend a rainy day. With 16 themed zones, get up close to 10,000 creatures including seals, sharks, sting rays and sea dragons. Enjoy the interactive live animals talks and presentations or treat yourself to a one-on-one encounter with a seal and get a picture to take home as a reminder of this incredible experience.

Escape room, Sunshine Coast

Escape room

Completing an escape room is the ultimate experience for when you need to exert some energy on a rainy day. Search for hidden objects, solve riddles and crack clues before time runs out.

Seasonal events on the Sunshine Coast

Things to do on the Sunshine Coast in summer

  • Queensland Tri Series
  • Under the Southern Stars
  • Mooloolaba New Years Eve
  • Ginger Flower and Food Festival

Things to do on the Sunshine Coast in winter

  • Velothon
  • Horizon Festival
  • Noosa Jazz Party
  • Queensland Garden Expo
  • Sunshine Coast Agricultural Show

Things to do on the Sunshine Coast in autumn

  • Maleny Wood Expo
  • Gympie Garden Expo
  • Sunshine Coast Marathon
  • Mooloolaba Triathlon Festival
  • Noosa Food and Wine Festival

Things to do on the Sunshine Coast in spring

  • Ironman 70.3
  • Jungle Love Festival
  • Caloundra Film Festival
  • Noosa Triathlon Multi Sport Festival
  • Mitchell Creek Rock 'N' Blues Festival

Feeling inspired? Book your flights to Sunshine Coast below:

Top Sunshine Coast activity and experiences deals


Up to 70% off things to do in Brisbane

Expires 31 Dec 2021
Available for activities like wine tasting, tours, sightseeing cruises, scenic helicopter flights, hot air balloon flights, dining experiences and more.

Up to 50% off things to do in Brisbane

Available on select travel dates for activities like driving experiences, helicopter flights, jet boat rides, skydives, dinner cruises, cooking classes and more.

Up to 48% off things to do in Brisbane + an extra $5 off with code

Available on select dates when you buy 2 or more vouchers. Activities include bridge climbs, driving experiences, hot air balloon flights, high teas and more. T&Cs apply.

Get 10% off sitewide

Join the Viator newsletter and get 10% off your first purchase on attractions, food and drink experiences, sightseeing cruise, skydives, bus tours and more. Plus access to members-only sales, travel tips and more.

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