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Southport ‘Broadwater Parklands’

Hopo Free Birthday Travel

By Blog, Home of the Arts (HOTA), Marina Mirage, Sea World, Southport 'Broadwater Parklands', Surfers Paradise

Hopo free birthday travel (and other awesome freebies)!

HOTA | Marina Mirage | Sea World | Broadwater Parklands | Surfers Paradise

It’s your birthday, and Hopo Gold Coast Ferry is here to help you celebrate with a free Hop On Hop Off Day Pass! To redeem, show proof of your date of birth to the Captain onboard the ferries on your special day or the week following. The offer is for locals only so also have your proof of a Gold Coast address handy. And to help you make the most of your gift, we have compiled a list of other awesome birthday freebies at our five iconic destinations. 

The entrance into Australia Fair.

Southport ‘Broadwater Parklands’

Broadwater Parklands is more than just a park. Wander across the road to Australia Fair. Abundant with shops and eateries, there are plenty of freebies to collect.

Boost Juice – Join the Vibe Club and receive a free birthday Boost two days before or after your actual birthday! 

Muffin Break – Free muffin during your birthday month.

Nandos – Free meal on birthday. Anyone up for a cheeky Nandos?

Katie’s Katies Rewards member birthday voucher valid for 30 days from your birthday.

Mos Burger – Free treat on your birthday.

The bustling streets of Surfers Paradise.

Surfers Paradise

Surfers Paradise: The crown jewel of the Gold Coast. There is so much to see and do in one of Australia’s most famous cities, and here are tasty b’day giveaways to make your visit into Surfers.

Vapiano’s VIP – Sign up to their mailing list to receive a 2 for 1 pizza, pasta or salad at their Surfers Paradise restaurant. The voucher is valid for ten days after your birthday.

Gelatissimo – Looking for a sweet birthday treat? Score a free scoop of gelato in the month of your birthday. 

Krispy Kreme offers a free 4 pack of doughnuts on your birthday. Sign up to their inner circle at least four weeks before your special day. 

Baskin-Robbins – More ice cream, anyone? Double up on creamy goodness and enjoy another chilled freebie.

San Churros – Treat you and a special someone (or eat all yourself, I’m not one to judge!) to delicious free churros for two!

Lord of the Fries  – A vegetarians favourite, indulge in bonus free fries and any classic sauce on your birthday when you show your ID.

Subway – Join Subway’s Eat Fresh Club on their website, and wait for the voucher to be emailed to you the day before your birthday.

Gloria Jeans – Everyone loves coffee, and what’s even better is free coffee. Enjoy a cuppa joe on the house.

The vibrant colours of HOTA, Home of the Arts, art gallery.

HOTA, Home of the Arts

Now that you’ve overindulged in free and delicious goodies (it’s your birthday, treat yourself!), it’s time to get a taste of culture. Take the Hopo to HOTA, Home of the Arts. The Gold Coast’s heart of culture, HOTA has a range of fun (and free!) things to do.

Explore the brand new multi-million dollar art gallery. Head up to the top floor to see stunning views of the city.

If your birthday falls on a Sunday, you have to check out the Bundall Farmers Market, hosted every Sunday morning from 6 am – 11.30 am. The markets have no entry cost, and you can get the chance to score some free samples from many local vendors.

Now you know the best birthday freebies on the Gold Coast, it’s time to plan your day aboard a free trip with Hopo Gold Coast Ferry. All you have to do is hop on at any of our five iconic stops and show the skipper your valid ID, and away you go!

Kindly note:
You can travel aboard Hopo once during your birthday week.
Valid ID must show proof of Gold Coast residency.

View Timetable

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With fully accessible piers and vessels, Hopo is a fun and unique way to see the Gold Coast. Hop on or hop off at your heart’s content at five iconic locations or enjoy a relaxing two-hour loop and admire the Gold Coast canal system, iconic skyline, and landmarks. Take advantage of the special $10 concession all-day ticket pricing Monday through to Friday when you show a valid ID.

Listed below are ideas of how to fill your day hopping on and off at all five Gold Coast locations.

Surfers Paradise

Surfers Paradise is a hub of entertainment, dining, and home to one of Australia’s best beaches. Walk past historical sights such as the neon ‘Pink Poodle’ sign and Cavill Avenue, named after Surfers Paradise founder Jim Cavill. Indulge in a wide variety of bars and eateries such as Kitty O’Sheas and Eden Kitchen & Bar. Change into your swimsuit and go for a dip in the ocean or lay back on the golden sands of Surfers Paradise beach.

The esplanade comes to life every Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday from 4 PM for the Surfers Paradise Beachfront Markets. The open-air market features 100+ stalls, live music, and tasty eats.

HOTA, Home of the Arts

Enter into the heart of the Gold Coast’s art and cultural scene at HOTA, Home of the Arts. Wander the brand new, multi-million dollar art gallery, showcasing local and international exhibitions. The latest addition to the Gold Coast skyline, recognizable by its brightly colored architecture, the gallery is one not to be missed. Relax on the top floor at the Exhibitionist Bar, boasting stunning rooftop views of the city.

Across from the art gallery is the HOTA cinema, showing a rich blend of mainstream, art-house and foreign films daily. Show your Hopo ticket and receive 20% off your cinema ticket.

HOTA, Home of the Arts, hosts the Bundall Farmers Markets. Open 6 AM to 11:0 AM, weave through farm-fresh produce stalls and stock your pantry for the week.

Stock up on fresh produce from local farmers.

Marina Mirage

Marina Mirage is the Gold Coast’s ultimate shopping, dining, and lifestyle precinct. Organize your next lunch with friends at one of the many waterfront restaurants such as the delicious Glass Dining and Lounge Bar. Stop and smell the coffee at Patio by Sunset as you wait for your ferry.  Stroll the boardwalk and jetty and be in awe of the multimillion-dollar yachts. For those in need of a pamper, treat yourself at Neonails, show your Hopo ticket for 15% off a manicure and pedicure package.

Broadwater Parklands

The Broadwater Parklands is a bustling outdoor space with plenty to see and do. Refresh and go for a swim at the Gold Coast Aquatic center. Pack the picnic basket and head to the Great Lawn, a vast space of greenery perfect for relaxing in the sunshine. Bring the grandkids with you to adventure the playgrounds and splash in the rock pools.

Stop for lunch at The Fish Shak for delicious fresh seafood and chips. Present your Hopo ticket and receive a special fish and chips deal.

Hopo Gold Coast Ferry is a unique location for your next catch up

Sea World

Say hello to polar bears, stingrays, sharks, dolphins, and much more at Sea World Marine Park.  Learn about the ocean and the park’s conservation efforts through the rescue and rehabilitation of wildlife. Enjoy captivating dolphin and seal shows and the dazzling acrobatics of professional water-skiers at the Thunder Lake Stunt Show.

Don’t miss out on seeing the Gold Coast from the best seat in town. Purchase your $10 all-day sightseeing pass online or on the day as you board the ferry.  Seats cannot be reserved and are subject to availability.

BOOK NOW

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Hopo Gold Coast Ferry is the best way to see the Gold Coast, here’s why…

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Hopo Gold Coast Ferry is the best way to see the Gold Coast, here’s why...

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The Gold Coast is arguably one of the greatest cities in Australia. Boasting an average of 300 days of sunshine, pristine coastlines, premier shopping, and theme parks, it’s hard to pass up. But did you know there is more to the city than just surf and sand? And the best way to see it all is not by road, but along the beautiful rivers that weave through the city.

Hopo ferries are a recent addition to the Gold Coast landscape. The iconic blue and white ferries are instantly recognizable as they drift across the sparkling waterways. Popular with locals and tourists alike, no visit to the Gold Coast is complete without a trip on the ferry, and here’s why.

Ultimate sightseeing experience

Start your day at any of the five destinations and hop on and hop off as you please. Hopo has stops at five iconic Gold Coast locations: Surfers Paradise, HOTA, Home of the Arts, Marina Mirage, Broadwater Parklands, and Sea World. These are five of the best highlights on the Gold Coast and can be seen in one day with a Hopo day pass. 

The best part of sightseeing with Hopo is that even the journey has its perks. The friendly skipper shares their knowledge and the secrets of the Gold Coast via the onboard commentary. Pass houses of the rich and famous, including everyone’s Kung Fu fighter, Jackie Chan or the ‘Thorpedo’ himself, Ian Thorpe. 

Bonus tip: The ferries conveniently depart hourly, seven days a week.

It’s the journey, not the destination

Picture a glorious, sunny day. The breeze in your hair as you cruise down sparkling waterways on the way to your next destination. Don’t picture it; live it aboard a Hopo Gold Coast Ferry. More than transport from one place to another, it is the perfect addition to your Gold Coast vacay or a locals day out. Hopo does all the hard work of travel, i.e. no more sitting in traffic or driving around to find a car spot.  

Bonus tip: Hopo has a small selection of alcoholic drinks onboard for you to enjoy a cold, crisp beverage. Put your feet up, wine in hand, and let your troubles drift away.

Perfect for the budget-savvy

Hopo ferry fares are an affordable way to see the Gold Coast. When you are on holiday, looking for something different to do in the city, or using it for your daily commute, Hopo Gold Coast Ferry has made it affordable for all your travel needs. With fare options to suit concessions and seniors, families, and ‘frequent floaters’, Hopo is an ideal choice. If you use the service regularly, save up to 40% on fares with a Frequent Hopper Pass.

Bonus tip: Concession cardholders can get a $10-day pass for all-day travel Monday-Friday.

“I’ll take them on the Hopo”

Have you ever had visitors from out of town and have been stuck on where to take them? Hopo is now your go-to for all of your guests. Hopo is something to be added to every tourist’s Gold Coast bucket list. For those with little time, a round trip is perfect for the bustling visitor. Complete a round trip and see the five must-see Gold Coast destinations without leaving the comfort of the ferry. For those with a whole day to spare, hop on and hop off at all destinations and see the city’s highlights. They’ll tick off their Gold Coast bucket list and thank you for being the best tour guide ever.

Ready to see the Gold Coast from the best view in town? Check out fare options and experience Hopo Gold Coast Ferry for yourself.

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Where to find the best parks and playgrounds on the Gold Coast

By Blog, Home of the Arts (HOTA), Marina Mirage, Sea World, Southport 'Broadwater Parklands', Surfers Paradise

Where to find the best parks and playgrounds on the Gold Coast

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There is no doubt that the Gold Coast is home to some of the best parks and playgrounds in South-East Queensland, and a trip on the Hopo ferry is the ultimate way to visit the best of the best. Like all great adventures, it’s about the journey, not the destination. Hopo ferries are an exciting way to experience the waterways. Your little ones will love the thrill that comes with being on a boat and can even help the skipper drive.

Broadwater Parklands

From rock pools, jumping pillows, and splash zones, there is nothing like the Broadwater Parklands. Children will be impressed by its playground, complete with a zip line, swings, and even a huge inflatable jumping pillow. There’s a kids bike track suitable for those new to wheels or who are self-proclaimed bicycle pros. Watch them tackle the obstacle course, weaving between poles and braving thrilling bike ramps. 

If you need a cooldown, check out the exciting sculptural Rockpools. Splash out in shallow water or play in the vibrant marine-themed fountains. Enjoy calm, natural swimming waters in the enclosed swimming enclosure.

When it’s time for a break, relax in the heart of the parklands on the Great Lawn. Visit the scrumptious Fish Shak for a coffee pick me up or a delicious lunch.

Hanging out at the Broadwater Parklands

Sea World Ferry Terminal

Hop off at Sea World ferry terminal and discover a world of natural wonders. Boasting more than The Spit, the northern side of Main Beach boasts beautiful green parks and walks

Wander through tree canopies along Federation Walk

Douglas Park

There is plenty to keep the kids busy at Douglas Park. Keep an eye out for hawks, pelicans and dolphins playing in the Gold Coast seaway. Bring your snorkelling gear and look for the variety of vibrant fish life swimming in the crystal waters.

Philip Park

Sitting across from Sea World is Philip Park, the perfect location for your next barbeque. Let the kids run wild on the green lawns or chuck on your bathers and head over to  Main Beach for a splash in the ocean.

Federation Walk Coastal Reserve

Sitting across from Sea World is Philip Park, the perfect location for your next barbeque. Let the kids run wild on the green lawns or chuck on your bathers and head over to  Main Beach for a splash in the ocean.

HOTA, Home of the Arts

Located in the center of the city, HOTA, Home of The Arts is the Gold Coast’s latest and greatest attraction. HOTA is a hub of culture situated along the Nerang River, offering stunning views of the Surfers Paradise skyline. Ample BBQ facilities and rich greenery make it the perfect family hang-out.

Don’t forget your bathers and miss out on the highlight of HOTA, which is the man-made lagoon, a sheltered swimming pool complimented with a small, sandy beach. Perfect for refreshing after a day of play, enjoy a dip in clear, cool water. Modern shower and toilet amenities are available onsite at your convenience.

Surfers Paradise

Lionel Perry Park

You needn’t stray too far from the Surfers Paradise ferry terminal to find a small slice of nature in the big city. Tucked away on the banks of Surfers Paradise is Lionel Perry Park. Kids can build sandcastles off the sandy shores or practice their best cartwheels on the lush grass. Your little ones can test their climbing skills on the rock climbing wall or reach new heights on the swings.

Marina Mirage

Hollindale Park

There’s more to the Marina Mirage stop than a luxury shopping centre. Wander across the road, and you’ll find exciting playground facilities. Hollindale Park is a beachside playground boasting a range of thrilling equipment. Ideal for little monkeys who love to climb, they’ll be excited to tackle the sizable red climbing frame. Take a slide down the unique tongue-shaped slippery dip. Check out Main Beach Pavillion for a bite to eat or bring your food to the beach for a picturesque picnic.

Hollindale Park

With affordable day and family pass options available, Hopo Gold Coast Ferries are the perfect way to discover the best parks on the Gold Coast.

BOOK NOW

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The ultimate Valentine’s Day with Hopo Ferries

By Blog, Home of the Arts (HOTA), Marina Mirage, Sea World, Southport 'Broadwater Parklands', Surfers Paradise

The Ultimate Valentine's Day With Hopo Ferries

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Hopo Ferries have got you and your sweetheart covered this Valentine’s Day.

Hopo Ferries are sharing the love with a 2-for-1 Hop On Hop Off Day Pass Special, meaning you can spend the day together on the Gold Coast waterways and visit five fab locations. Simply show this post on Sunday, February 14, to the Hopo Skipper to redeem this offer.

Surfers Paradise

White Rhino Valentine’s Day Sunday Sesh

Open from 11:30 am, White Rhino Bar + Eats offers $14.90 lunches and an extensive wine and cocktail menu, including six varieties of long island cocktail flavors. White Rhino’s modern decor makes it a great location to enjoy in a drink or two at their waterfall bar or dine against their picturesque garden wall, perfect for that Valentine’s Day Instagram pic!

Sunset picnic on the beach (free)

With picnic basket and rug in hand, treat your sweetheart to a romantic sunset picnic on the famous Surfers Paradise beach. Watch as the clouds change colour over the ocean in a dazzling array of colours.

HOTA, Home of the Arts

The Secret Life of a Love Song

Feel the love this Valentine’s Day at HOTA, Home of the Arts, sunset concert, The Secret Life of a Love Song. Featuring performances from The Brothers Calling with Wolfmother’s Ian Peres, Scott French, Alisha Todd, Geoff Green with special guests. Covering tracks by Bob Marley, Beyonce, INXS, Blondie, The Rolling Stones, and more, this special Valentine’s Day concert will warm your heart and bring the joy of music live from HOTA’s Outdoor Stage.

Enhance your experience and treat your loved one to one of HOTA’s gourmet hampers ($50) including hand-selected cheeses, bread, and antipasto delights with two glasses of your choice of red, white, or sparkling wine. After more? Upgrade to their indulgence hamper ($75) to include fresh Australian prawns and delectable chocolate-coated strawberries.

Bundall Farmers Market (Free)

Hold your lover’s hand as you weave through several local stalls and vendors at the Bundall Farmers Markets. Taste-test home-made treats, purchase fresh farm produce or surprise your special someone with freshly-picked flowers.

Broadwater Parklands

Kids DJ party in the park

Hit the dance floor for a Valentine’s Day DJ party at the Broadwater Parklands. Ideal for families, groove to favorites new and old, mixed by a professional DJ. Games and activities are also on offer, bringing fun for the whole family. It is located right near the big pillow.

Explore the Broadwater Parklands (Free)

For a more casual Valentine’s Day, take a stroll on the Broadwater Parklands. Pack a picnic basket and find the perfect spot on lush green grass to soak in the sunshine with your love.

Marina Mirage

High Tea

Spoil your sweetheart at Cafe Mirages at Marina Mirage. Including your choice of tea, coffee and a glass of sparkling wine on arrival, indulge in a selection of sweet and savoury treats. Choose from delicious mini eclairs filled with Chantilly cream, lemon meringue pie, scrumptious scones with jam and cream, mini savory muffins, an assortment of tasty sandwiches, and more.

Marina Mirage Jetty (Free)

The Marina Mirage jetty boasts incredible views of the stunning, multi-million dollar yachts. Wander the boardwalk and look in awe of the luxurious vessels or take in the sights from one of the many waterfront cafes and bars.

Sea World

Sea World Helicopters

Take your love to new heights this Valentine’s Day. Treat yourself and your loved one to the ultimate Valentine’s Day experience with Sea World Helicopters. Embark on a scenic flight exclusive for just the two of you over the stunning Gold Coast. Experience unforgettable views of the city’s towering-high rises and crystal blue coastlines. Enjoy a complimentary hamper pack including gourmet cheese, fresh bread, cold meats, and a bottle of Sirromet bubbles.

Federation Walk (Free)

Take a stroll across the road and wander the Federation Walk. Immerse yourself on a 3.5km nature track, sheltered by natural canopies the sound of the ocean, enjoy a moment away from the outside world. At the end of your walk, take a rest at The Spit, one of the Gold Coast’s much-loved beaches.

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Top 10 ways to cool off on the Gold Coast

By Blog, Home of the Arts (HOTA), Marina Mirage, Sea World, Southport 'Broadwater Parklands', Surfers Paradise, Uncategorized

Top 10 ways to cool off on the Gold Coast

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The Gold Coast is famous for its golden beaches, relaxed lifestyle, and endless sunshine. When the summer sun gets too hot to handle, catch a Hopo Ferry to one of these five iconic locations and beat the heat.

Surfers Paradise

1. Surf’s up!

You could choose no better place in Australia to learn to surf than Surfers Paradise. One of Australia’s most iconic beaches, this famous beach boasts ideal conditions for beginners and experienced surfers alike.

2. Gain your sea legs

View the Gold Coast’s iconic landmarks from a totally new perspective. The Gold Coast waterways are home to an abundant variety of water-based activities departing Surfers Paradise. Enjoy a cruise on shimmering waters with Sea World Cruises, including lunch and dinner sittings, journey to Surfers on a Hopo Ferry or even satisfy the thrillseeker within on a jetski or adrenaline-filled jet boating experience.

3. Dip your toes

Surfing not quite your thing? Don’t worry, Surfers Paradise is perfect for a relaxing dip. Cool off in the waves and take in the stunning views of the city. Visit in the late afternoon to witness a beautiful, colourful sky as the sun begins to set.

Broadwater Parklands

4. Rockin’ rock pools

The Broadwater Parklands rockpools are the ultimate splash pad for kids. They will love exploring the nooks and crannies of the pools. Watch them smile in anticipation as a large bucket slowly fills with water to drench the target below. During opening hours, lifeguards patrol the rockpools to keep your little ones safe.

5. Olympic ready

The Gold Coast Aquatic Centre is a world-class swimming centre, boasting six swimming pools including a children’s splash zone and two Olympic sized pools. Swim for leisure or practice your freestyle, there is enough room for it all!

6. Makea splash

We haven’t forgotten the big kids! The GC Aqua Park is one of Australia’s largest inflatable water parks and it sure doesn’t disappoint. Fifty-minutes of non-stop action, test your agility on this aquatic obstacle course. Suitable for kids from 5 years of age, it’s the perfect place for the whole family to cool off.

HOTA, Home Of The Arts

7. Cool down and culture up

The hub of culture on the Gold Coast, HOTA, Home of the Arts, boasts more than theatres and galleries. Take a dip in The Evandale Lake, a beautiful man-made lagoon based in the middle of the HOTA parklands. Check out their state of the art facilities and brand new art gallery due to open in April 2021.

Marina Mirage

8. The height of luxury

Luxury stores, delicious food, and air conditioning? You can’t pass up Marina Mirage for a glamorous cool down. Shop to your heart’s content at an abundance of high-class brands. Eat until you’re satisfied at indulgent, fine-dining restaurants and cafes. Wander the jetty and soak in the stunning views of the jetty, admiring a bounty of impressive yachts and boats.

Did you know that the sails on the roof of Marina Mirage are not only an iconic part of the Gold Coast Skyline but serve as purposefully built natural ventilation?

Sea World

9. Become a pirate for a day

One of Sea World’s newest attractions, The Reef at Castaway Bay is one of Australia’s largest interactive aquatic zones. Keep cool in the shade whilst the kids splash about. Watch as they blast water cannons at each other and dodge surprise water spouts.

10. The local’s secret

Cool off at the locals favourite spot, The Spit. The very most northern tip of the Gold Coast’s iconic stretch of beach, The Spit is a well-loved resident treasure. Take a stroll down the iconic pier that looks out to the Gold Coast Seaway before you jump in and cool down in the surf.

Slap on the sunscreen and cool off at five iconic Gold Coast destinations. Skip the traffic and hop on and hop off with Hopo Ferries. Book now!

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The ultimate Gold Coast day out with Hopo Ferries

By Blog, Home of the Arts (HOTA), Marina Mirage, Sea World, Southport 'Broadwater Parklands', Surfers Paradise, Uncategorized

The ultimate Gold Coast day out with Hopo Ferries

Sightseeing

Take advantage of the beautiful weather this summer, skip the traffic and choose a day out with Hopo. Your skipper and crew are excited to have you aboard, offering informative commentary about the Gold Coast and slipping out secrets of the city. There is no better way to spend a full day on the Gold Coast than to travel by ferry to all the must-see destinations.

Surfers Paradise

No day out in the Gold Coast is complete without a visit to the famous Surfers Paradise. A hub of culture, food and famed golden beaches, there is always something going on. Unwind from the day and soak in a glorious sunset on Surfers Paradise Beach. The two-kilometre beach is the heart of the city and a must-do on anybody’s list. Satisfy your hunger at one of Surfers Paradise restaurants. Boasting a wide variety of cuisine, tempt yourself with the tastes of Italy at Salt Meats Cheese pizzeria or be mesmerised by Mexican delights at La Diosa Mexicana.

Home of the Arts, HOTA

Home of the Arts (HOTA) is the Gold Coast’s vibrant cultural precinct. It is home of live music, theatre, cinema, conversation and critical thinking, surrounded by leafy parklands and a tranquil lake perfect for cooling off in. A quiet escape from the hustle and bustle of the Gold Coast, enjoy a lake-side stroll, you may even discover the best well-hidden view of Surfers Paradise. Check out one of the many events hosted by HOTA. Their cinema screens the latest releases and familiar favourites. A passion for art and culture, watch live performances in their state of the art theatre or sit down and tap your toes to live music on their outdoor stage. Purchase all farm fresh produce and freshly baked goods at the Bundall Farmers Market every Sunday morning.

Marina Mirage

The height of luxury on the Gold Coast, Marina Mirage is  Queensland’s most iconic waterfront shopping, dining and leisure destination. A shopaholic’s dream, spoil yourself at high fashion and boutique stores such as Tommy Hilfiger, Witchery and Gant. Once shopping has worked up an appetite, it’s time for lunch. Marina Mirage is the Gold Coast’s premier destination for waterfront dining. An assortment of award-winning modern cafes and gourmet restaurants line the boardwalk, providing stunning views looking over the sparkling marina. Unwind as you sip on tasty cocktails at Glass Dining & Lounge Bar or catch up for an indulgent lunch at Sunset Waterfront Grill. On Saturday mornings, wander fresh produce and homemade treats at the Marina Mirage Farmers Market.

Broadwater Park Lands

The Broadwater Parklands is a much-loved destination with Gold Coast residents and tourists alike. The three-kilometre stretch of vibrant parklands is home to a wide range of activities including rock pools, playgrounds, barbeque and picnic areas and boardwalk. The Broadwater Parklands is a much-loved destination with Gold Coast residents and tourists alike. Ideal for families, summer catch-ups with friends or even a first date, the Broadwater Parklands seems to have it all. 

Sea World Australia

Bring out your inner explorer at Sea World, Australia’s #1 marine park showcases beautiful underwater life, thrilling rides and unforgettable shows. Visit the icey poles in Australia, saying hello to polar bears and playful penguins. Get up close and personal with seafaring creatures including rays, dolphins, and if you’re brave enough, sharks! Unleash your inner thrillseeker and tackle Sea World’s new Vortex Spin Coaster or brace the weather on their Storm Coaster. For the pleasure-seekers, immerse yourself in one of Sea World’s daily shows, from the action-packed Thunder Lake Stunt Show to the mesmerising Feature Dolphin Presentation.

BOOK NOW

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For the romantics: Dating with Hopo Gold Coast Ferry

By Home of the Arts (HOTA), Marina Mirage, Sea World, Southport 'Broadwater Parklands', Surfers Paradise

For the romantics: Dating with Hopo Gold Coast Ferry

So, you’ve finally worked up the courage to ask that special someone out, and they’ve said yes. Congratulations! Or maybe you’ve been dating someone for a while and are running out of ideas for exciting and memorable dates. Either way, this blog is for you. Connect with people, form closer bonds, date on your terms and, most importantly, make it fun with Hopo Gold Coast Ferry service. It is undeniable that dating can be super nerve-racking… So to ease your nerves, we have put together a list of unique and lovable date ideas utilising Hopo as your favourite Hop On Hop Off mode of transport.

The location you choose sets the tone for your date. Below are Hopo’s five destinations: Surfers Paradise, Broadwater Parklands, Marina Mirage, HOTA and Sea World. You may want to hop off at one or two of these locations for your date, or if it is going well, perhaps you could visit all five!

Surfers Paradise

Energetic, enthusiastic and exciting! Surfers Paradise offers an electric social scene with world-class nightlife venues, award-winning restaurants and free artistic and cultural community events. The Surfers Paradise Beachfront Markets, for example, operate every Wednesday, Friday and Sunday night between 3:00pm and 8:00pm. Stroll along the iconic foreshore with your special someone to discover some of Gold Coast’s most unique market stalls, all while taking in the ocean breeze. The foreshore is bustling throughout the day with walkers, cyclists, surfers and beachgoers all sharing the beachfront boulevard, creating an incredible atmosphere – one that is sure to impress your date! 

  • Take a romantic stroll on the white sands of Budds beach, with a smoothie or juice in hand. 
  • Invest in a surfing or stand-up paddleboarding lesson for you and your date. Have a laugh AND learn a new skill!
  • Enjoy a romantic buffet lunch or dinner cruise from the Surfers Paradise Pier with Sea World Cruises.
  • For the more traditional romantics, have dinner and drinks at The Island Gold Coast Rooftop and watch the city light up from above. 
  • Hunt down the perfect cup of coffee. This shouldn’t be too hard considering the Gold Coast’s thriving cafe scene.
  • For the adventurous, experience the thrill of freefall flight without the danger with iFly Gold Coast’s indoor skydive centre.

 

Broadwater Parklands

The Gold Coast’s world class Broadwater Parklands offers a range of diverse locations and venues designed for almost everything and anything, including romance. Find a shady spot under a tree for an intimate picnic, or take a stroll through the park while soaking in the sunshine or moonlight.

  • Attend a ‘Movies Under the Stars’ night and take advantage of the fantastic food truck options.
  • Engage in meaningful conversation over a coffee at Shak Expresso – an icecream and espresso bar offering freshly brewed, barista-made coffee using a unique blend of Piazza Doro beans.
  • Share a few laughs over some of the best locally caught seafood on the Gold Coast at The Fish Shak.

 

Marina Mirage

Situated at Main Beach, Marina Mirage offers boutique shopping and waterfront dining for you and your special someone to indulge. Overlooking the beautiful marina, you can treat your date to sunset cocktails or a deliciously decadent lunch or dinner. Marina Mirage hosts many award-winning, fine dining restaurants including Glass Dining & Lounge Bar, Ristorante Fellini, Sky Restaurant and King Crab Co.

  • Held every Saturday from 7:00am to 12:00pm, stroll the Marina Mirage weekly Gourmet Farmers Markets and purchase some farm fresh, organic and local produce. 
  • View and discuss some divine art pieces at Anthea Polson Art.
  • Pamper yourselves by getting a couples massage at Esteem Medi Spa.

 

HOTA, Home Of The Arts

HOTA, Home Of The Arts, hosts a number of free and ticketed events and workshops every day. From Party in the Park (a bi-monthly outdoor music festival) to Gold Coast’s Annual Film Festival, HOTA has an event for every occasion – and dates are no exception!

  • Forget Netflix and chill – watch a movie at one of HOTA’s cinemas. The movies shown at HOTA are often exclusive, meaning you probably won’t find them at your local cinema.
  • Tour an art exhibition and show off your art expertise (or have a laugh at your lack of it!). With a new and improved gallery scheduled to open in early 2021, there has never been a better time to expand your art knowledge.

 

Sea World

Sea World offers the perfect combination of fun, adventure and relaxation, guaranteed to charm your date. It is a marine mammal park, oceanarium and theme park promoting conservation through education and the rescue of sick, injured or orphaned wildlife. If your special someone happens to be an animal lover, then Sea World will be a great place for you to hop off Hopo!

  • Visit Australia’s #1 Marine Park and observe tropical fish, penguins, dolphins, seals and more. Bonus points if you do so holding hands!
  • Attend Sea World Carnivale in 2021 and enjoy an evening filled with internationally inspired dining and spectacular entertainment. Think fire twirlers, musicians, dancers and more!
  • Get up close and personal with the gentle giants of the ocean with Sea World Cruises’ whale watching tour. 
  • Surprise your date with a helicopter flight and admire Gold Coast’s breathtakingly beautiful city and waters in style.

 

Dates are an opportunity to meet someone new or ignite a spark between you and someone you already know. They are also an opportunity to have fun, share laughs, or at the very least, learn something new about yourself. Hopo allows you to be whisked around the waterways, turning transportation (something normally mundane) into something exciting and whimsical. Exploring the Gold Coast with your special someone has never been so convenient, scenic and awe-inspiring. Now that you have a potential itinerary mapped out, give your date a call!

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Destination overview: Broadwater Parklands in Southport

By Southport 'Broadwater Parklands'

Destination overview: Broadwater Parklands in Southport

Southport Broadwater Parklands

The Gold Coast is best explored with a salty breeze aboard the comfortable and spacious Hopo Ferry. Cruising from one iconic location to the next, Hopo stops at the buzzing Broadwater Parklands. Broadwater Parklands is exactly what it sounds like – a parkland full of things to do right by the waterway. An aquatic centre, enclosed ocean pools and an extensive kid’s park can be found right near the drop-off point. A short and sweet stroll will see you at Chinatown and Australia Fair – a gateway to the hustle and bustle of Southport.

Broadwater Parklands is located on Marine Parade in Southport and stretches three kilometres. Loved by Gold Coast residents and tourists alike, the parklands is a vast expanse of green that is ideal for picnics and family fun. The parklands offer many diverse spaces and facilities that are available for hire. These spaces cater for everything from small family gatherings to large scale events. The Great Lawn hosts some of the city’s most popular events, including the Gold Coast Airport Marathon, Carols by Candlelight and the World Championship Triathlon.

 

The Rockpools water playground is the first of its kind on the Gold Coast, and is a hit with the kids! The Rockpools have shallow wade-height water with waterfalls and spouting water animals. There are multiple pool areas and creek beds with water filling up and emptying on timers. There is also a great fishing spot off the 100-metre long pier, as well as a swimming enclosure with a jumping pontoon. Broadwater Parklands is also a popular wedding ceremony venue, with a dedicated rooftop ceremony location (the Pier and Rooftop) providing an amazing city backdrop for those intimate, special occasions.

 

There are plenty of beautiful trees and shady spots for a picnic. Barbeque facilities are available to use for free. The kids will love running around the vast, open spaces of the parklands, playing on the playgrounds or splashing around in the pools. You may even want to utilise the parklands for dating, with the area offering a lovely boardwalk for you to stroll with your special someone. Broadwater Parklands seems to have it all, and if you do (for some strange reason) happen to want more, no more than a few steps will get you to both Southport’s Australia Fair shopping centre and Chinatown. Enjoy some spicy noodles or delicious dumplings before you hop back onto Hopo’s Gold Coast City Ferry!

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