The short journey takes just over an hour when driven directly, which is perfect for those wanting to drive back and forth to catch certain events. Alternatively, you could make the most of the many sights and stop-offs and road trip at a relaxed pace .
Our three day road trip schedule enables you to experience much of what this stunning region has to offer, and with SIXT offering car rental locations in both the Gold Coast and Brisbane (and along the way), we’ve got your vehicle needs covered for a cruisey journey.
Surfers Paradise to Helensvale
Drive time: 25 minutes
Once you have your rental car on the Gold Coast sorted, head out to the northern reaches of the city.
Southport, although technically a suburb of the Gold Coast itself, is worth a look as you pass by, with Australia Fair Shopping Centre offering serious retail therapy potential, while the nearby Rockpools Water Playground will be a hit with the kids on a warm southern Queensland day. The Gold Coast Aquatic Centre in Southport is also where a lot of the Commonwealth Games aquatic action will take place.
From Southport, head north through the centre of Helensvale. Helensvale is the perfect crossroads to veer off west to visit Tamborine Mountain, a pristine peak immersed in the local hinterland, and ideal for peaceful walking or hiking.
Prefer coastal scenery? Then head east at Helensvale and enjoy the short ferry journey to South Stradbroke Island, affectionately referred to by locals as “South Straddie”. Here, you can visit the hundreds of wild wallabies the island is known for, as well as rainforest and sandy terrain – the best of both worlds.
Helensvale to Beenleigh
Drive time: 26 minutes
From Helensvale, take your car rental through Coomera, or theme park heaven as it’s commonly known due to its proximity to all the big parks including Dreamworld, White Water World, Wet’n’Wild and Warner Bros Movie World.
If you’ve got the time, why not spend a night or two to enjoy a unique holiday experience on a houseboat, with spectacular, serene views across the nearby waterways? Fishing enthusiasts take note: Coomera is a fine spot to perch the rod and catch some mangrove jack, trevally, bream or flathead.
Gymnastics and netball events during the 2018 Commonwealth Games took place at Coomera Indoor Sports Centre, so cheer on the green and gold here!
A short drive further north, and you’ll find yourself in Beenleigh, part of the city of Logan. Beenleigh is a firm favourite with weary travellers, thanks to its locally produced Beenleigh Rum, and the heritage listed distillery where it’s produced.
Whilst here, be sure to check out The Yugambeh Museum – the perfect place to learn more about the important indigenous history of the area.
Beenleigh to Brisbane
Drive time: 28 minutes
The final leg of your journey sees you entering the Greater Brisbane region. Staying on the central M1 freeway, you’ll soon pass through Mount Gravatt – don’t miss out on the views of the surrounding areas from Mount Gravatt Lookout, with nearby walking trails and a cave complex making for popular stop-off points. Hit the road north again, and you’ll be well and truly in the Brisbane city limits.
There is so much to do in the Queensland capital. Must-sees include the exceptional vistas from Mount Coot-tha, wandering through the City Botanic Gardens, and a cuddle with some furry friends at Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary.