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Bally Mountain Conservation Area

Hidden gems on the Gold Coast

Dominica Czaczka | March 2019

Think you’ve seen everything there is to see on the Gold Coast? Think again.

With a wealth of natural beauty at its fingertips, the Gold Coast is bursting with hidden gems waiting to be discovered. If you’re looking for some lesser-known locations to explore on the Gold Coast, get off the beaten track and check out the below spots next time you’re out and about.

Echo Beach

Burleigh Heads National Park, Burleigh Heads

Iconic Tallebudgera Creek is a favourite amongst locals – it’s not hard to see why. With white sand and clear water, the swimming spot is often packed with beachgoers enjoying the picturesque location. If you’re looking to escape the crowds, adjacent Echo beach will give you the tropical escape you’re craving without the bustle. Nestled across the shore from Tallebudgera Creek, this sheltered cove is accessible from the walking track in Burleigh National Park. Follow the headland until you come across a designated stairway onto Echo beach and voila!

Rosins Lookout

1473 – 1479 Beechmont Road, Lower Beechmont

Prepare to have your breath taken away; Rosins Lookout has one of the most scenic views of Numinbah Valley. You’d be forgiven for thinking you’re in the Swiss Alps – minus the frosty conditions. Popular with paragliders, this tranquil spot is the perfect pit stop on the way home from a day trip to the hinterland. Equipped with BBQ facilities, toilets and undercover seating area, you’ll have everything at your fingertips to enjoy a lazy afternoon. Pack a picnic and lap up the views as the sun sets.

David Fleay Wildlife Park

Loman Lane, Burleigh Heads

While Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary holds fond memories for most, David Fleay Wildlife Park is likely to have flown under the radar for non-locals. For the unacquainted, the heritage-listed park is a haven for Australian wildlife and natural habitat, with winding paths and boardwalks through wetlands, rainforest and open eucalypt forest. Explore at your own pace or drop in for a ranger-led presentation.

Araluen Swimming Hole

Corner of Araluen Road and Tallebudgera Creek Road, Tallebudgera Valley

The lesser known cousin of Cougal Cascades, Araluen Park is a swimming destination to pop on your bucket list. A favourite amongst the valley locals, this lush watering hole is nestled in the foothills of Springbrook National Park. One of the Gold Coast’s best kept secrets, this hinterland gem comes with a rope swing and plenty of shade to enjoy a cool dip in the freshwater.

Safety tip – Freshwater swimming holes can have unpredictable conditions. Be mindful of your surroundings and heed any advice given. From submerged rocks to unexpected depth, there can be unexpected hazards present. Heavy rainfall can also affect water quality, so avoid swimming in freshwater for up to three days after rainfall as a precaution.

Bally Mountain Conservation Area

Bonogin Road, Bonogin

Chances are if you’re planning a hinterland hike, Springbrook and Lamington National Park will come to mind. If you’re searching for a dose of nature without the lengthy drive, why not check out Bally Mountain Conservation Area? Enjoy a short 4km return walk from the end of Bonogin Road to the Rosegum section along a sealed trail through wet sclerophyll forests within the National Park and Rosegum section, or appreciate the dry eucalypt forest by horseback along the designated trail. Please note that the area leading up to Bally Mountain itself is private property with no trail access and is not part of the conservation estate.. You can find out more here

Froggies Beach

Tweed Terrace, Coolangatta

Tucked between Snapper Rocks and Point Danger, this sheltered cove is flanked by rocky headland and Pandanus palms. While many Southern Gold Coasters are familiar with the seaside locale, chances are if you’re from out of town it hasn’t crossed your radar. Infamous for its green, frog-shaped rock, this secluded spot will make you feel like you’re worlds away from civilisation. Psst – follow the path around the rocks and you’ll be greeted by picturesque tidal rock pools.

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