Long weekends provide the perfect opportunity for a getaway but I’m usually slack at planning trips to coincide with them. I pay no attention to my calendar and then next thing I know I’ve got three days to fill and nowhere to go. Luckily the other weekend my friends and I got our butts into gear and booked a trip to Coolum on the Sunshine Coast. Now, I haven’t been to Coolum since Year 6 school camp and all I really remember from that trip is a candle making class where we kept dipping our hands into the hot wax while the teacher wasn’t looking. I’m usually impatient whenever I head up to the coast and take the first exits to Caloundra and Mooloolooba because GET ME TO A BEACH ASAP. However, if you spend a little bit of extra time on the road towards Coolum, Peregian and Noosa you’re rewarded with some pretty stunning coastline. I’d forgotten how beautiful this neck of the woods (coastline) is. If you hate blue skies and crystal clear turquoise waters, look away now.
We stayed in a self-contained apartment at Element on Coolum which was centrally located and clean, spacious, and fairly modern.
There are plenty of dining and takeaway options along the main strip of David Low Way, adjacent to Coolum Beach. There’s also a shopping complex a few streets back with a supermarket and various other shops. While we were there we alternated between making meals in our apartment and dining out.
During our stay we ate at the Coolum Surf Club which provided the best beach-front setting as well as Canteen Kitchen + Bar for lunch and afternoon cocktails.
Other places that we didn’t get to try out included Compound Secondhand Surf & Espresso (it was closed on the Sunday) and Raw Energy (it was packed out on the public holiday Monday so we headed to Stellarossa instead where I waited way too long for my breakfast and the waitress couldn’t tell the difference between a latte/cappucino/flat white).
Spend all your time at the beach, duh (but also, be sun safe). If you can, however, manage to peel yourself away from the sand and surf these are some other things you could do:
The coastal walk from Coolum Beach to Point Arkwright is pretty worthwhile. It’s a leisurely walk and takes about half an hour each way. Unless, of course, you’re like me and stop at various points along the way to gawp at the scenery and take photos. It’s on this walk that you’ll also find your way to little coves like First Bay and Second Bay.
If you’re lucky (we were) and it’s the right time of year you might be able to spot some whales splashing off the coastline. Point Perry is a pretty good vantage point but any spot high on the coastline will do.
If you’re feeling particularly active, hike up Mt Coolum for an even better view of the coastline.
Staying at Coolum also puts you in a pretty good position to make the quick trip up to Noosa
. While we had initially planned one such outing, once we got to Coolum we decided it was too good to leave.
What’s your favourite local getaway spot?