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  • Writer's pictureNarelle Donnellan

Sunshine Coast and beyond...

Last time I talked about how we went to SeaWorld and had an amazing time. Well, if you want somewhere closer when staying here in Noosa, but still have an amusement park experience on your holiday bucket list, spend the day at Aussie World. It has now reopened but is open only 10am - 3pm Thursday - Sunday at this stage. I haven’t been since it has reopened, so I’m yet to see if all rides are operating. I used to take my kids nearly once a month before lockdown happened. They loved it! There is still plenty to do for pre-schoolers and of course, older kids and adults have the whole park to pick from. It’s located in Palmview which is 45 mins from Noosa. 

Aussie World

1 Downunder Drive, Palmview

Last school holidays we also went  further North and explored around Hervey Bay for a 2-night mini break. It is only a 2.5 hour drive north of Noosa, so if you were wanting to extend your holiday whilst you’re up this way, take a drive on up.  You will go through Gympie, and if you pick the days correctly, you could always stop and do the Mary Valley Rattler Train.

The Classic Rattler Run

Wednesday and Saturdays

10am – 1pm return to Gympie

The All Stations Train


10am – 1:30pm return

Mary Valley Rattler

Tozer Street, Gympie

Ok back to it! Hervey Bay is well known for whale watching, which is from the end of July to the end of October.  September is the peak time, when whales and calves get very close to the boats. You can also visit the famous Fraser Island from Hervey Bay.

Even though we were too early for whales and did not visit Fraser Island, we still had lots of fun exploring in and around Hervey Bay. Hervey Bay has a long stretch of fully paved footpath along the 14km bay which is great for bike riding and walking. And I will have to say, they have newer and more exciting playgrounds than in Noosa. The newest adventure playground is the All Abilities Playground that caters for (as the name suggests) all ages and all abilities. The playgrounds are dotted all along the esplanade and close by are lots of shops, cafes and restaurants, as well as a range of different priced accommodation.  It is best to stay on the esplanade, where it all is happening. I wish it had been the warmer season when we were there as they have a huge water park called WetSide Water Park.  It is open from 9th Sept to May, and most of it is free.  You only have to pay for the slides and board riders ride.  It looked so much fun!  

All Abilities Playground

Esplanade, Pialba

Apart from all the great walks, Hervey Bay is a great place for fishing and enjoying the still waters of the calm bay. A must see is the 103-year-old Urangan Pier, which is 868 metres long!  It used to be even longer back in the day, and I now understand why! It needs to be so long because when the tide is out, it’s so far out that even at the very end of the pier, it is only good for fishing off.

Urangan Pier

Great Sandy Strait, Urangan

Back to Noosa and what’s reopened again. I’ve just found out that the kids’ playroom at the Noosa Leisure Centre is back. It’s open for casual play so let them climb, jump, swing, bounce and balance in air-conditioned comfort in a safe environment while you relax with a coffee and light snack from the onsite café. Open with limited spots and cleaning occurring every 2 hours. You must book on the the day for session times:

Monday to Friday 8-10 am, 10:30-12:30pm, 1-3pm, 3:30-5pm

Saturday 8-10am and Sunday 8:30-10:30 am

Cost is $5 per child.

This is the best place to go on those rainy days especially now the Noosa Civic shopping centre has completely removed the play area.  

Noosa Leisure Centre

9 Wallace Drive, Noosaville

After play time at the leisure centre, pop into the Noosa library which is opposite. Story time continues to be offered as an online service, but I believe it is returning next month (fingers crossed).  Even though story time hasn’t officially returned, you could always extend your time out and about by doing your own story time with your kids. Kids area is located at the back of the library.  Library is open Mon- Friday 9am - 5:30pm and Sat 9am - 3pm 

Both the leisure centre and library are located next to Ivory Palms Resort, so if you are staying in one of the units just walk on over as sometimes the car park gets full and it’s hard to park. 

I will continue to update you on reopenings and things to do around Noosa and the Sunshine Coast to max out your next holiday in Noosa….so stay tuned for the next blog in a fortnight…….

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