If you have arrived for your long-awaited family holiday to Coolum you will want to read this. Here you can find some suggestions for the most fun things to do in Coolum Beach and the local area of Mt Coolum too.
We are long time locals of the beautiful Sunshine Coast. And with young kids of our own, can definitely appreciate that you don’t want to be driving all over the coast on your well-deserved break. That’s why we have put together these guides for your local area so you can have an easy holiday!
We rate Coolum Beach as one of the Best Places to stay on the Sunshine Coast. Find out why here:
Hit the Beach at Coolum
Coolum Beach has patrolled areas in front of the surf club, with nice surf and open beach. There are a series of beautiful bays to the south with an elevated walkway boasting amazing coastal views. The sand and the surf are super clean here and there are great facilities to enjoy.
Plenty for the kids to do here too with a great adventure playground and skate park just at the top of the beach. Awesome clean amenities block including showers, and there are BBQs too.
There is heaps of parking, but during school holidays you do need to arrive early.
Surf Lessons Coolum Beach
From beginners to groms and advanced, individuals or groups the excellent team at Coolum Surfing School will have you standing up and carving the waves in no time.
Find them at the big blue truck in Tickle Park. Book a lesson here.
Check out the Shops along the Esplanade
Coolum Beach Parade is part of the David Low Way which covers a big section of the coastal road from Mudjimba up to Noosa. Along the esplanade here you can find some great boutique shops, surf shops and varied dining options too.
Stroll along the paths to find regulars such as McDonald’s, Coffee Club, Raw Energy and Dominos interspersed with Thai, Sushi, Gelato, Fish and Chips and Kebabs.
Red Zoo and Freetime Surf will have you covered for trendy beachwear and the pharmacy can provide everything else you need. Don’t forget to Slip, Slop, Slap.
Climb Mount Coolum
Just a short drive from Coolum Beach you come to the carpark at the bottom of the hill here. From the carpark, there is a challenging and rewarding well-signposted path straight up Mt Coolum. It takes us (with 4 kids) about 40 mins to get all the way to the top and the spectacular 360-degree views from the 208 m summit are totally worth it. The track consists of a lot of straight cut stairs, with some rocky paths in between. You can even wear thongs if you are careful. We take our 2-year-old up with no trouble, just a lot of encouragement.
Try to avoid the heat of the day – the sunset/sunrise are the best! Take plenty of water and avoid cliff edges. Supervise your children.
Emu Mountain Climb
If Mt Coolum is a tad overwhelming, you could start off smaller and simpler with a trek up Emu Mountain (AKA Mt Peregian) instead. This is only a 3 km drive north of Coolum Beach. It is a super relaxing 10-minute walk through shrubby bush to reach the summit which is about 75 m above sea level. The path is friendly and gradual, and there are some rocky outcrops at the top which the kids love to climb over.
Stumer Creek Boardwalk and Dog Beach
Just opposite Emu Mountain on the beachside, there is a hidden carpark (find it here). You can enjoy a lazy stroll along a board walk across the creek to the beach, or stroll all the way down to the mouth of Stumer’s Creek. This is a lovely quiet walk through the breathtaking ti-tree forest, tall creek reeds and tannin flowing water.
Dog lovers can find solace at Stumer’s Creek first carpark where there is an awesome off-leash area, washdown facilities and heaps of creek frontage and beach to run around.
The Coolum Beach Bowls Club offers individuals and groups barefoot bowls every day! This is a fun social way to learn the art of bowls with a qualified instructor on hand to make sure you know your ends from your
For $5 a head including your bowls, this is a great afternoon out for the family. Kids welcome too. They also have a tidy bar and bistro with regular meat trays and prize draws for members.
Call Bowls Manager Tim Phillips on 0419 277 203 for bookings and enquiries.
Coolum Beach Hotel
You could easily spend a day in this excellent establishment. An old favourite, the Coolum Beach Hotel underwent a massive renovation in recent years and has become a new favourite watering hole for locals and visitors alike. They have an affordable menu, kids indoor play area with free face painting and live music on weekends.
Coolum Surf Club
With live music on Friday and Saturday nights, weekly Trivia and Bingo comps and a prime beachfront location, the Surf Club is one of the best places to visit while in Coolum. Enjoy uninterrupted 180-degree views of the sparkling beach while enjoying a meal in the award-winning bistro.
Remember you will need to be a member, reciprocal club member or visitor to enter.
The Coolum Junior Motocross club races here, not far from the beach. It is a great place for spectators to watch the sport. Check out their race calendar for 2020 here. Keep an eye out for MX Nationals in August!
Coolum Blast Aqua Park
This place is a real blast for sure. Your kids will love jumping through this inflatable park over the water. Great for a hot day! The Aqua Park is open from Thursday to Sunday. Find it here.
Buy your tickets in advance here.
Mount Coolum Golf Course
A lovely 18-hole golf course with the picturesque Mount Coolum as your backdrop, this is a pleasing place to while away a few hours. The club shop provides hire clubs and carts are also available.
Picnic with View
At the top of Point Arkwright, the sweeping views up and down the beautiful coast will make a perfect backdrop for your picnic. Grab some sundowners from Dan Murphy’s and some dinner from Coles and relax with one of our favourite vistas on the Sunshine Coast.
Point Perry is a little closer to town and an easy walk from your hotel in central Coolum Beach.
For the best views in town, drive up to the top of the hill and enjoy the vista from Low’s Lookout. Ray Martin used to own the top house up there! It’s a piece of television history to add to your tour.
Coolum Public Pool and Coolum Tennis Club
Side by side along the David Low Way north of Coolum you can find a 25m lap pool, a smaller heated pool and tennis courts for hire.
The Coolum Aquatic Centre is open 7 days a week and even features a small splash park for your little ones to enjoy.
Four plexipave and 2 artificial grass courts are available for hire at the Tennis club. Court bookings are $15 per hour phone Andrew Ash at the courts by phoning 54462482 or 0421391505.
Where to Stay in Coolum
There are a lot of great apartments and holiday units for hire in Coolum Beach. Family-friendly and couple friendly and single friendly too. Here are some of our absolute favourites. These are the places that book out first thanks to their longevity and location.
- Coolum Caprice – A Coolum classic right across the road from the main beach
- The Retreat – epic ocean views and perfect location
- Elements – super classy in the heart of Coolum central
- Coolum Beach Holiday Park – beachfront fun
Where to Eat in Coolum
You are spoilt for choice when it comes to getting takeaway or dining out. Here are some of the best:
- Raw Energy
- The Caf Coolum
- Ma Boulange Cafe Patisserie
- Coffee Club
- Freddy Fuddpukka’s
- New Earth Cafe
- Coolum Beach Hotel
- Mexicola Cantina
- Coolum Surf Club
- Hot Chilli Bean Thai
- Coolum Thai Spice
- My Place
- Si Suphan
- Bombay Bliss
- Coolum Beach Bowls Club
Other Places to Visit on the Sunshine Coast
We love a good brewery, and the Sunshine Coast has tons of them. And we are on the quest to find the best! Check out some of our favourites here, with detailed reviews and ratings.