15 of the best things to do in Noosa with kids
Noosa claims a place in many holiday hearts both big and small. A true Queensland beauty spot and keeper of favourite family holiday memories. So grab the ones you love, pack the picnic rug, beach bag, boogie boards (and even the boat), and throw on some swimmers – Noosa is calling your family’s name to make some holiday memories of your own.
Choose your side – beach, river, bush or lake
With hundreds of holiday homes, resorts, hotels, cabins and caravan parks, there are oodles of in Noosa to choose from. Self-driving – Noosa is easy to get to and just over 2 hours from Brisbane. Jetting in – transfers can easily be arranged and if you are towing a camper or a boat – no worries, however your tribe likes to holiday, Noosa has a place for you. The only preference you might like to consider is beachfront, beachside, riverside, bush or lake. Or mix it up and choose a few?
If plenty of beach time is on your holiday wish list – prepare to pay a little more to stay beachfront or beachside, but be rewarded with one of Australia’s best north facing beaches – dusting powdery sand right onto your doorstep.
A perfect place to swim on a patrolled beach, have a go at surfing or just soak up some sun. People watching is on point here – but expect it to be busy, as this is one little beach baby that everyone loves too.
Beach babies meets bush
is where you will find secluded bays, plenty of spots for the kids to rock hop and beachcomb, and the Insta-famous Fairy Pools, which are best visited safely with littles on low tide. Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for koalas and wallabies too, and expect to make plenty of new friends along the way, as wears the crown as Australia’s most visited.
With over 15 kilometres of walking tracks spanning 400 hectares and most easy to moderate to tackle with kids, why not pack a picnic and make a day of it? Your kids will love spotting dolphins, turtles and from July through to November, maybe even some whales.
Little Cove is great for families and if you do forget to pack provisions, The Kiosk not far from the entrance to the park serves great organic coffee and all sorts of delish things.
I know boats
Well if you do, you are in luck (and if you don’t have one, hire one), as Noosa is home to so many winding waterways, pristine lakes, rivers, estuaries and of course – the big blue Coral Sea.
You can reach many of the areas best beaches (including Noosa Main Beach) by boat and some say it’s even quicker than driving. With mostly sandy shores, you can pull in just about anywhere for a swim, picnic or a play. Throw in a line to catch your own lunch or moor the boat safely in calm waters and pop into one of the many waterside cafes or restaurants fringing the shores.
on the shores of Lake Cootharaba (25 minutes from Noosa central) is a great place to stay if you love the outdoors. A BCF (boating, camping, fishing) haven with plenty of shady campsites and you can even bring the dog.
Exciting fact – Noosa is one of only two places in the world to have everglades!
is a 65-acre wilderness camp where families can get their ‘wild’ on, and is only five minutes from . A range of camping, glamping, powered and self-sufficient sites along with cosy cabins as digs, and expect to see plenty of wildlife. 40% of Australia’s bird species are found here with native flora abundant too. Take a tour with Kanu Kapers to inspire your little conservationists who run guided or self-guided tours of the Everglades and upper reaches of the Noosa River. The half day tour is best suited to families, but there are also full day and two day adventures if you do really want to go wild.
Swing south for sunshine
Not far from Noosa and a perfect spot to take the family for a swim, a surf or to pick out the house you would live in if you won lotto is Sunshine Beach. The beautiful, shy little sister to Noosa, Sunshine Beach is a quiet haven where you will find a less crowded spot on the sand.
Pay the ferryman
For one of the easiest ways to see Noosa that little seafarers will adore, join the crew of Noosa Ferry & Cruise Company. As the name implies, the All Day Ferry Pass enables you to ride as much as you wish and hop on and off at seven stops from Tewantin to Noosaville, Noosa Sound and Noosa Heads.
Holiday hack: book the new Eco Cruise for a half day exploring Queensland’s first UNESCO biosphere. Kids will love their own binoculars to spy on the wildlife, there are nature books, expert commentary AND you get morning tea. PLUS eco cruisers get the All Day Ferry Pass to use for the rest of the day as a bonus. #winning
Play a little rough
For some off-road 4WD action, high tail it to Double Island Point from Noosa’s North Shore on low tide for a scenic drive along the beach highway to . Discover the scenic headland, home to bottlenose dolphins, turtles and whales in season, plus the surf is pretty epic too, if you are experienced. If not, there is a calm lagoon at the base of the lighthouse for a swim.
Be sure to get a permit to drive on the sand before you travel and know your tides times. Have plenty of fuel in the tank, pack water, food and lots of reef-safe sunscreen. There are no shops and it is rugged, but rewarding to see such an untouched natural paradise.
Noosa North Shore Beach Campground, is a great place to stay near-by with bush-meets-beach sites located right on the shores of the Noosa River. Kangaroos, kookaburras and koalas love to call this place home too – so keep your eyes peeled and your ears tuned.
On your bike
A great way to get around (in the nicest possible way of course) is by hiring a bike in Noosa and making use of the and paths to cut travel time and see/stop more too. Bike On has a range of adult and kids bikes with cruisers, hybrids and kiddie seats to hire or if you have the space, you can pack your own.
For the best floating fish and chips, check out at Noosaville. Kids will love boarding the boat to eat their lunch, or if they haven’t found their sea legs yet, order a serving of take-away and feast from the shores of the Noosa River, which must include a mandatory play at the playground after.
For an iconic family favourite that is pretty kind on the hip pocket, Noosa Bakery will please the tribe with pies, pastries, cakes and slices that can be eaten street-side, or spread out on the warm sands of Noosa’s Main Beach on a blanket.
Open every day from 7am to 4pm, is little haven of health on Hasting Street and is a local family favourite. With acai bowls, juices, smoothies and “nice cream” which is so healthy, kids can even eat it for breakfast! Be prepared to line up – but it will be worth the wait.
Sunday is market day and the perfect place to fill up on fresh fruit, breads, juices and treats (you are on holidays after-all) is . From seafood straight from the sea to all sorts of locally grown and made products, the markets are a feast for the senses and a great way for the kids to check out all the things that grow best in Noosa.
A Gelateria just steps from the sand is always going to be a dream way to end a family day out at the beach, so head to Massimo’s Gelataria to select your favourite flavour and just try to stop at one! For us, lychee, pineaple, passionfruit and creamy Queensland mango of course, but tag us with your favourites and maybe we can be swayed.