The Gold Coast is a coastal region approximately 70 kilometres south of Brisbane, Australia that, over the past 50 years, has coalesced from a collection of scattered villages into a city of approximately 400,000 people - Australia's seventh largest - and Australia's largest tourist resort. The South Coast Town Council changed its name to the Gold Coast Town Council in 1958 and Queensland officially proclaimed it the city of Gold Coast on May 16, 1959.
The subtropical climate, attractive surf beaches (the closest to Brisbane), and savvy marketing have attracted millions of tourists domestically and internationally, and a large industry has arisen to support them. The narrow coastal strip is consequently covered with high-rise apartments, hotels, nightclubs, and the usual assortment of shops selling cheap tourist paraphernalia.
The area also attracts large numbers of retired people.
Thanks to a new link to the State Capital Brisbane with the recent Pacific Motorway upgrade, taking three years finishing in 2000 at a cost of just under A$1 billion, the Gold Coast is served by two major airports, Brisbane International Airport and Gold Coast Airport.
The mayor of the Gold Coast is the former Olympic middle distance athlete Ron Clarke.
The Gold Coast is situated in the southeast corner of Queensland stretching from the south end of Brisbane to the border with New South Wales. The southernmost town is Coolangatta which includes Point Danger and its lighthouse, and is twin cities with Tweed Heads across the border. At Latitude 28.1667 degrees south, Longitude 153.55 degrees east, this is the most easterly point on the Queensland mainland (Point Lookout on the offshore island of North Stradbroke is slightly further east). From Coolangatta about 40 km of holiday resorts and surfing beaches stretch north as far as the towns of Southport and Surfers Paradise, which together form the Gold Coast's commercial centre (latitude about 27.7 degrees south). The administrative area of the Gold Coast City Council continues north up to Beenleigh. The major river in the area is the Nerang River. Much of the land between the coastal strip and the hinterland was once wetlands drained by this river, but the swamps have been converted into hundreds of kilometres of manmade waterways and artificial islands covered in palatial homes. The highly developed coastal strip sits on a narrow barrier sandbar between these waterways and the sea.
A number of National Parks are in the hinterland, close to the Gold Coast:
Lamington National Park
Springbrook National Park
Tamborine National Park
A number of theme parks are located near the Gold Coast.
Central Queensland University
Gold Coast Institute of TAFE
January - Magic Millions Racing Carnival
October - Lexmark Indy 300 Champ Car race, held in the streets of Surfers Paradise.
Australian Surf Life Saving Championship
Gold Coast City Marathon
Asia Pacific Masters Games
Gold Coast Show
Late November - Mid December is Schoolies period.
The local newspaper is The Gold Coast Bulletin part of the News Corporation group.
"Free to air" tv broadcasts are available from 9 stations situated in the Gold Coast, Brisbane and Northern New South Wales, but as the hinterland is hilly there are 'blind spots' that mean not all stations may be available in all areas.
Prime (Gold Coast)
Ten (Gold Coast)
88 BeachFM (Tourist Info. Top 40)
89.3 4CRB-FM (Christian)
90.9 SEAFM (Top 40 Pop)
91.7 Coast FM (Contemporary Music with ABC Local News and Information)
92.5 Gold 92.5 (Music of the 60's and 70's)
93.5 SBS (Brisbane)
94.1 Radio Hope Island (Jazz and Swing music)
97.7 4JJJ Triple J - alternative and chart music
102.9 Hot Tomato
104 4MBS Classic
105.7 Radio Metro
106 ABC Classic
882 4BH (Brisbane)
The Gold Coast has a subtropical climate with warm, mild winters and hot, bright summers. The Gold Coast is subject to humidity, mainly at the start of each calendar year.
Some of its climatic features:
Average summer daily temperature range — 19ºC to 29ºC
Average winter daily temperature range — 9ºC to 21ºC
Average of 287 days of Sunshine per year